analogical reasoning. types of reasoning content free reasoning: –deductive...

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  • Analogical Reasoning
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  • Types of reasoning Content free reasoning: Deductive reasoning Reasoning by similarity Inductive reasoning Analogical reasoning: analogical transfer: solving problem in one domain based on solution in another domain Analogical inference: generalizing properties/relations from one domain to another
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  • Analogical transfer Reason from base problem (previously solved) to target problem Recognition: identify a potential analog Abstraction: abstract general principle from base problem Mapping: apply principle to target
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  • Radiation Problem Problem Patient has an abdominal tumor (in center of body) Radiation will kill tumor But rays strong enough to kill tumor will also destroy healthy tissue that rays pass through on way to tumor Solution?
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  • Gick & Holyoak (1980) Only 20% solved it Participants were more likely to solve the problem if they were given an analogy.
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  • Fortress Problem Army general wants to attack a fortress in center of forest. Many roads lead to fortress like spokes of a wagon wheel. All the roads have land mines that are triggered by heavy traffic. If entire army travels down a road, land mines will go off. Solution?
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  • Solution The general sends small groups of soldiers down each of the roads, co-ordinating their movements so that they all arrive at the fortress at the same time.
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  • Structural Similarities Fortress ProblemRadiation Problem Fortress Tumor Mined Roads Surrounding tissue Attacking troops Rays varying in intensity Small groups of troops Converging on fortress Weak rays focused on tumor
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  • Recognition Process Radiation problem hard problem: Preceded by Fortress problem, 20% solved it If given hint that problems are related, 92% solved it Subjects do not produce corresponding solutions with any great frequency unless given a hint These results demonstrate the difficulty of recognizing the relevance of one problem and its solution to another Gick & Holyoak (1980)
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  • Transfer aspects of fortress problem to radiation problem Fortress problem was given with three different solutions: Dispersion: the generals army approaching the fort from several roads at once. Tunnel: a general digging a tunnel to the fort Open-route: a general attacking the fort via a supply route
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  • Problem Solutions The DISPERSION solution, in which small doses of radiation are aimed at the tumor from different directions so that the radiation accumulates and destroys the tumorous tissue; Solutions to the Radiation problem fell into three main categories: The OPEN-ROUTE solution, in which radiation is delivered to the tumor through the esophagus (tube leading from the throat to the stomach); The TUNNEL solution, in which an incision is made which leaves the tumor in place but which allows direct delivery of radiation.
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  • Distribution (%) of Solutions What do the results show?
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  • Abstraction Process Does performance improve if principle of base problem is stated? No Showing diagrams helps? No Showing multiple problems with related solutions helps? Yes
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  • Analogical Inference An atom is like the solar system TARGETBASE Knowledge about the base domain can be used to reason about the target domain. Structure mapping theory is a theory for how this could work.
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  • Structure Mapping Theory (Dedre Gentner, 83, 89) Theory on how to interpret an analogy 1) set up correspondences 2) focus on matches of relations, not attributes 3) focus on higher-order relations 4) extend knowledge about target by mapping relations from source to target
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  • BASED ON ALIGNED RELATIONS, ALIGN OBJECTS the nucleus is like the sun
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  • Mental Models Knowledge structure used to understand how objects and physical processes work Sometimes, mental models are based on poor analogies and can lead to incorrect predictons Example: thermostats. How to heat up a room quickly? ||50||60||70||80|| Current temp.Desired temp. OR? Kempton, 86
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  • if you said 80, what might your mental model be based on?
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  • Childrens Mental Models Children were told facts: Columbus sailed around the earth Shown space photographs What is their Conception of earth given these facts? Nussbaum 79 there are two earths, one is flat, the other is a sphere out in space
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  • Intuitive Physics Intuitive physics is based on naive mental models of physical processes The diagram shows a curved tube, lying flat on a table. A ball is shot into the opening and out the other end. What is the balls path after it shoots out the tube? Kaiser, McClosky & Profitt 86 OR ?
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  • Results Kaiser, McClosky & Profitt 86 (The C-curve problem is the same but shows just the C part of the spiral)
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  • Explanation by Kaiser et al. Grade school children start constructing theories of motion Theories of persistence of motion: an object persists in the way it is moving, unless there is friction. E.g., bouncing ball continues to bounce Theory is wrongly applied to spiral problem: overgeneralization
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  • Intuitive Physics with a set of gears Schwartz & Black, 1999 Suppose we swing this gear in this direction What is the direction of this gear?
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  • Schwartz & Black, 1999 Suppose we swing this gear in this direction ?
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  • Schwartz & Black, 1999 Suppose we swing this gear in this direction ? HINT:
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  • Time A Time B Path X Path Y Path Z From McCloskey, 1983
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  • Mental models might be initially be based on perceptual simulations (e.g., turning the gears in your mind) After training, these models might shift to more abstract rules to solve problems

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