Textbook Notes (381,222)
CA (168,408)
UTSC (19,325)
Psychology (10,054)
PSYB57H3 (376)
Chapter 10

Chapter 10 notes

9 Pages
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Department
Psychology
Course Code
PSYB57H3
Professor
Gabriela Ilie

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PSYB57- Chapter 10- Thinking, problem solving, and reasoning
Thinking is going beyond the info given; refers to more than one specific activity
Focused thinking begins with a clear starting point and has a specific goal;
unfocused thinking has the character of daydreaming, or unintentionally calling to
mind a # of diff and loosely related ideas
Introspection is the detailed, concurrent, and non-judgemental observation of the
contents of your consciousness as you work on a problem
Well defined problems- have a clear goal (you know immediately if youve reached
a solution), present a small set of info to start from and often present a set of rules or
guidelines to abide by while you are working toward a solution
Ill defined problems- dont have their goals, starting info or steps clearly spelled
out
Well defined problems are easy to present, they dont take weeks or months to solve,
easy to score, and easy to change
Classic problems and general methods of solution
Domain specific problem solving approaches work for only a limited class of problems
Generate and test technique
Generating possible solutions and then testing them
Loses effectiveness rapidly when there are many possibilities and when there is no
particular guidance for the generation process
Can be useful when there arent a lot of possibilities to keep track of
Means-end analysis
Comparing the goal with the starting point, thinking of possible ways of overcoming
the difference and choosing the best one; the selected option may have certain
prerequisite conditions
If the preconditions arent met then a subgoal is created. Through the creation of
subgoals, the task is broken down into manageable steps that allow a full solution to
be constructed
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Forces the problem solver to analyze aspects of the problem before starting to work
on it and to generate a plan to solve it
Not always the optimal way to reach a solution b/c sometimes the optimal way
involves taking a temporary step backward or further from the goal
Can make it more difficult to see that the most efficient path toward a goal isnt
always the most direct one
Working backward
The user analyzes the goal to determine the last step needed to achieve it, then the
next to last step, and so on
Like means end analysis, it involves forming subgoals
Used to solve many problems including the Tower of Hanoi problem
Plan moves in advance, setting intermediate goals along the way; it takes a few
trials before the solver can come to a solution
This technique is most effective when the backward path is unique, which makes the
process more efficient than working forward
The technique of reducing diff b/w the current state and the goal state is shared by
working backwards and means end analysis
Reasoning by analogy
The tumour problem was presented to Dunkers participants. He came to the
conclusion after looking at the participants performance that problem solving is not
a matter of blind trial and error but it involves a deep understanding of the elements
of the problem and their relationships
The solution of the tumour problem is to send weak rays of radiation from several
angles such that rays converge at the site of the tumour. Although the radiation from
each indivl ray is not strong enough to destroy the tumour or the healthy
surrounding tissue, the convergence of rays will be strong enough
Gick and Holyoak presented the tumour problem to his participants after each
person read a story (the story of the general on pg 339). Although the story was diff
from the tumour problem, the underlying method of solution was the same. They
found that participants who had read the story of the general and were told that it
contained a relevant hint were more likely to solve the tumour problem than were
www.notesolution.com
participants who simply read the general story but didnt have an analogy b/w the
problems explicitly pointed out
The first group was said to be using reasoning by analogy. This technique
involves using knowledge from one relatively known domain and applying it to
another domain
Participants who form schemas (mental representation) are likely to benefit from
work on analogous problems
In another exp, Gick and Holyoak found that instead of giving explicit hints, they
could present 2 analogous stories instead of one
Presenting multiple examples helps participants to form an abstract schema (or a
convergence schema), which they later apply to new analogous problems
Blocks to problem solving
A problem is something that cant be solved in a single, obvious step. Problem solving
carries the meaning of a goal with some barriers or constraints. Sometimes these
constraints can interfere with reaching the solution
Mental set
Is the tendency to adopt a certain framework, strategy, or procedure or to see things
in a certain way instead of in other equally plausible ways
Mental set is analogous to perceptual set, the tendency to perceive an object or
pattern in a certain way on the basis of your immediate perceptual experience
Like perceptual set, mental set seems to be induced by even short amounts of
practice
Causes people to make unwarranted assumptions w/o being aware of making them
Functional fixedness is when people have problems identifying alternate uses for
common objects
Lack of problem specific knowledge or expertise
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Description
PSYB57- Chapter 10- Thinking, problem solving, and reasoning Thinking is going beyond the info given; refers to more than one specific activity Focused thinking begins with a clear starting point and has a specific goal; unfocused thinking has the character of daydreaming, or unintentionally calling to mind a # of diff and loosely related ideas Introspection is the detailed, concurrent, and non-judgemental observation of the contents of your consciousness as you work on a problem Well defined problems- have a clear goal (you know immediately if youve reached a solution), present a small set of info to start from and often present a set of rules or guidelines to abide by while you are working toward a solution Ill defined problems- dont have their goals, starting info or steps clearly spelled out Well defined problems are easy to present, they dont take weeks or months to solve, easy to score, and easy to change Classic problems and general methods of solution Domain specific problem solving approaches work for only a limited class of problems Generate and test technique Generating possible solutions and then testing them Loses effectiveness rapidly when there are many possibilities and when there is no particular guidance for the generation process Can be useful when there arent a lot of possibilities to keep track of Means-end analysis Comparing the goal with the starting point, thinking of possible ways of overcoming the difference and choosing the best one; the selected option may have certain prerequisite conditions If the preconditions arent met then a subgoal is created. Through the creation of subgoals, the task is broken down into manageable steps that allow a full solution to be constructed www.notesolution.com
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