ERIC Number: ED231522
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1983-Apr
Reference Count: 0
Children's Inferences About Addition and Subtraction Transformations.
Blevins, Belinda; And Others
A longitudinal study investigated children's ability to infer, from initial and final relative numerosity information, which of four transformations of a stimulus array had occurred: addition, subtraction, expansion, or contraction. It was expected that performance would reflect a sequence of three levels in understanding the effects of addition and subtraction: primitive, qualitative, and quantitative. A group of 68 children from 4.5 to 8 years of age participated. All were twice given the same battery of tasks, with a 1-year interval between assessments. The inference task consisted of parallel sets of primitive, qualitative, and quantitative trials for small number items (from 2 through 4) and large number items (from 7 through 9). On primitive inference trials two equal linear arrays of squares were presented. On qualitative inference trials the arrays differed by 1, and on quantitative inference trials the arrays differed by 2. Arrays were presented, described, transformed, and erased; the child was required to decide which transformation had been performed. In addition/subtraction trials, children were given relative numerosity information, saw a transformation, and made a judgment about the final relative numerosity. At the beginning and end of the battery of tasks, children were given number conservation tasks and scored as passing if they gave adequate explanations for correct judgments on large number trials. All tasks were presented on a color monitor attached to an Apple II computer. The systematic relationships found in this study suggest that it may be useful to focus on identifying general developmental changes occuring across related areas. (RH)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Inferential Reasoning; Numerosity Discrimination
Note: Paper presented at the Biennial Meeting of the Society for Research in Child Development (50th, Detroit, MI, April 21-24, 1983).