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Making Up Your Own Mind: Thinking Effectively through Creative Puzzle-Solving

by Edward Burger Princeton University Press
Pub Date:
Hbk 136 pages
AU$39.99 NZ$43.47
Product Status: In Stock Now
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How you can become better at solving real-world problems by learning creative puzzle-solving skills


We solve countless problems - big and small - every day. With so much practice, why do we often have trouble making simple decisions- much less arriving at optimal solutions to important questions? Are we doomed to this muddle - or is there a practical way to learn to think more effectively and creatively? In this enlightening, entertaining, and inspiring book, Edward Burger shows how we can become far better at solving real-world problems by learning creative puzzle-solving skills using simple, effective thinking techniques.


Making Up Your Own Mind teaches these techniques, including how to ask good questions, fail and try again, and change your mind, and then helps you practice them with fun verbal and visual puzzles. The goal is not to quickly solve each challenge but to come up with as many different ways of thinking about it as possible. As you see the puzzles in ever-greater depth, your mind will change, helping you become a more imaginative and creative thinker in daily life. And learning how to be a better thinker pays off in incalculable ways for anyone'including students, business people, professionals, athletes, artists, leaders, and lifelong learners.


A book about changing your mind and creating an even better version of yourself through mental play, Making Up Your Own Mind will delight and reward anyone who wants to learn how to find better solutions to life's innumerable puzzles.




“This is a marvelous book in the spirit of George Pólya and Martin Gardner, but in the service of higher lessons about how we should think and take joy in our own thinking. In this era of high-stakes testing, where getting the right answer would seem to be the only purpose of solving puzzles, Edward Burger invites us to explore the journey of puzzling itself, arguing persuasively for its deeper and more lasting value. It is on this journey of 'making up our minds' that we discover what we are truly capable of.”—Adam Falk, President, Alfred P. Sloan Foundation

“We often claim that education should not just teach facts; it should help us learn how to think clearly. Making Up Your Own Mind is a book that takes that goal seriously. It is brilliantly constructed, clearly written, and fun.”—William C. Powers Jr., former president of the University of Texas at Austin
Edward B. Burger is the president of Southwestern University, a mathematics professor, and a leading teacher on thinking, innovation, and creativity. He has written more than seventy research articles, video series, and books, including The 5 Elements of Effective Thinking (with Michael Starbird) (Princeton), and has delivered hundreds of addresses worldwide. He lives in Georgetown, Texas.