Higher order thinking seems like a larger construct than inductive reasoning but the constructs also seem related.

  • What is the connection between inductive reasoning and higher order thinking?
  • Is inductive reasoning a subset of higher order thinking or is inductive reasoning a mental process of higher order thinking?

1 Answer 1


A few thoughts:

I think of higher order thinking as a fuzzy concept. It is often used in educational psychology to between surface and deeper levels of subject engagement. It can also be used to discriminate between the kinds of thinking processes often seen as unique to humans.

Inductive reasoning is also a multifaceted construct, but it has both rich links both with philosophy and with cognitive psychology as can be seen in literatures on category learning and causal inference.

Certainly the principled and methodical processes of scientific induction (e.g., inference from data) involves many higher level thinking processes. However, many of the implicit processes of inferring categories and causal processes from experience might not be seen as higher order thinking.

  • $\begingroup$ tq, well explained. Anyway based on what u say is it possible that training in inductive reasoning will help in increasing our higher order thinking skill, if yes where to find the main literature on this $\endgroup$
    – juliee
    Apr 29, 2013 at 15:32
  • $\begingroup$ @juilee interesting question. I encourage you to ask a separate question about this, perhaps with a link to this one. $\endgroup$ Apr 30, 2013 at 0:54

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