An antidote to illusory inferences

Thinking and Reasoning 6 (4):313 – 333 (2000)
The mental model theory predicts that reasoners normally represent what is true, but not what is false. One consequence is that reasoners should make "illusory" inferences, which are compelling but invalid. Three experiments confirmed the existence of such illusions based on disjunctions of disjunctions. They also established a successful antidote to them: Reasoners are much less likely to succumb to illusions if the inferences concern disjunctions of physical objects (alternative newspaper advertisements) rather disjunctions of the truth values of assertions. The results shed light both on the cause of the illusions and on the current controversy among different theories of reasoning.
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