David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
Thinking and Reasoning 6 (4):273 – 311 (2000)
We report the results of three experiments designed to assess the role of suppositions in human reasoning. Theories of reasoning based on formal rules propose that the ability to make suppositions is central to deductive reasoning. Our first experiment compared two types of problem that could be solved by a suppositional strategy. Our results showed no difference in difficulty between problems requiring affirmative or negative suppositions and very low logical solution rates throughout. Further analysis of the error data showed a pattern of responses, which suggested that participants reason from a superficial representation of the premises in these arguments and this drives their choice of conclusion. Our second experiment employed a different set of suppositional problems but with extremely similar proofs in terms of the rules applied and number of inferential steps required. As predicted by our interpretation of reasoning strategies employed in Experiment 1, logical performance was very much higher on these problems. Our third experiment showed that problems that could be solved by constructing an initial representation of the premises were easier than problems in which this representation was not sufficient. This effect was independent of the suppositional structure of the problems. We discuss the implications of this research for theories of reasoning based on mental models and inference rules.
|Keywords||No keywords specified (fix it)|
|Categories||categorize this paper)|
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
|Through your library|
References found in this work BETA
No references found.
Citations of this work BETA
Philip N. Johnson-Laird (2001). Mental Models and Deduction. Trends in Cognitive Sciences 5 (10):434-442.
Similar books and articles
Juan A. Garc (2007). Mental Models in Propositional Reasoning and Working Memory's Central Executive. Thinking and Reasoning 13 (4):370 – 393.
Walter Schaeken & Philip N. Johnson-Laird (2000). Strategies in Temporal Reasoning. Thinking and Reasoning 6 (3):193 – 219.
Vicky Dierckx & Andr (2003). Is Model Construction Open to Strategic Decisions? An Exploration in the Field of Linear Reasoning. Thinking and Reasoning 9 (2):97 – 131.
Carlos Santamaria Juan A. Garcia-Madruga Philip & N. Johnson-Laird (1998). Reasoning From Double Conditionals: The Effects of Logical Structure and Believability. Thinking and Reasoning 4 (2):97 – 122.
Andre Vandierendonck (1996). Evidence for Mental-Model-Based Reasoning: A Comparison of Reasoning with Time and Space Concepts. Thinking and Reasoning 2 (4):249 – 272.
Rosemary J. Stevenson & David E. Over (2001). Reasoning From Uncertain Premises: Effects of Expertise and Conversational Context. Thinking and Reasoning 7 (4):367 – 390.
Manuel Carreiras & Carlos Santamaria (1997). Reasoning About Relations: Spatial and Nonspatial Problems. Thinking and Reasoning 3 (3):191 – 208.
John Best (2005). Recognition of Proofs in Conditional Reasoning. Thinking and Reasoning 11 (4):326 – 348.
Stephen E. Newstead, Peter Bradon, Simon J. Handley, Ian Dennis & Jonathan St B. T. Evans (2006). Predicting the Difficulty of Complex Logical Reasoning Problems. Thinking and Reasoning 12 (1):62 – 90.
Added to index2009-01-28
Total downloads14 ( #182,031 of 1,725,989 )
Recent downloads (6 months)1 ( #349,693 of 1,725,989 )
How can I increase my downloads?