The 6-Critical-Thinking Questions

Also known as the ‘Five W’s’ + number six the ‘How?’


keep six honest serving-men
(They taught me all I knew);
Their names are What and Why and When
And How and Where and Who. 

                    – Joseph Rudyard Kipling

The W-Questions together with the ‘How’ build a base of questions whose answers are needed for  information-gathering. With the help of those questions it should be possible to reveal all direct and inderect information on a subject.

The five W’s are:

What – is the question that deals with the purpose. The question answers was happened and encourage to gather more information related to the event/ topic. For example: What is this about? What is the context/situation? What is the main point? What is the topic?

Who – is the question that referees and deals with people. The question contains facts which relate both to persons who are directly and indirectly associated with the event. For example: Who is this written/designed by? Who is involved? Who is affected?

Why – is the question that deals with the reason. The question reveals more information on the background, the aim and the cause of an event. For example:Why did this occur? Why was that done? Why this?
argument/theory/suggestion/solution? Why not something else?

Where – is the question that deals with the place, location or media. The question aims for gathering more data about the scene of the event. For example: Where does it take place?

When – is the question that deals with the time or sequence. The question should give more information about the time, the date or the duration. not limited by hours, minute or days. For example: When did this occur?

How – is the question that deals with the mode. The question reveals data about the atmosphere, the emotions and the situation when the event happened and even after. For example: How did this occur? How does it work in theory? In practice/context?How does one factor affect another? How do the parts fit into the whole?

It is all about to get the facts straight!


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