Questions that I would ask myself to ensure that I used critical thinking in when conducting my research and problem analysis.
- What is the extent and what are the similarities of the community illness between both the adults and the children?
- When was the onset of the particular illness?
- Is everyone exhibiting the same symptoms?
- Has everyone who has the symptoms visited the same vicinity or location?
Strategies I would employ in investigating this problem
I would personally interview every single child or adult affected by the illness to collect some crucial information for my research of attempting to determine the nature of the illnesses and their sources.
- When did these illnesses first occur and how did they begin in each person?
- What are the symptoms of the illnesses and are they similar in every person?
- Are the children and the adult’s ages similar?
- Are the people affected related or are there any existing relationships between them?
- Does a connection exist between the affected families, for instance, do the adults work together or do the children go the same education institutions?
- I would then question the company about the unsafe dumping of chemicals
- I would investigate why the company is not following rules and regulations of chemical dumping and if it is aware of the problems this harmful chemical disposal has caused.
- After gathering this information, I would then sit down and analyze the information comprehensively. I would then conduct an investigation to try and determine whether the particular illness has a name or whether it is a relatively new disease. I would use a variety of sources such as the internet, disease experts, the Centre for Controlled diseases amongst others to gather more information on this illness.
Assumptions to be aware of
There is one chief assumption that I had to be aware of so as to ensure that it did not interfere with my critical thinking. This is the assumption that the people who became ill are united to hazardous chemical disposal practices. In contrary, research may prove that the symptoms may be related to mismanaged chemical dumps or that some individuals may have already been exhibiting similar symptoms resulting from other sources other than the harmful chemical disposals.
One of the fallacies encountered in the course of researching the problem is that the company is intentionally practicing unsafe chemical disposal practices. Another fallacy is that some of the illnesses are actually genetic or that the people infected are careless individuals who love frequenting waste disposal sites.