The intent of this study is to evaluate existing literature on the concept, teaching and assessment of critical thinking. To reach this goal, critical thinking will be examined in terms of its multiple definitions, and its relationship to higher order thinking, critical teaching, and assessment.

In response to the need for a more generative and creative way of assessing critical thinking, the authors offer an activity assigned in the basic course (artifacts) as a viable tool for allowing students to take an active role in learning to think critically. The artifacts are then analyzed to determine if they serve as an authentic form of critical thinking assessment.