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ERIC Number: ED313386
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1989
Pages: 7
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: N/A
ISSN: N/A
A New Strategy for Studying Spatial Aptitude.
Schiano, Diane J.; Barch, Don
An expert/novice paradigm is applied to the development of a computer-assisted test of spatial aptitude. The qualitative differences in encoding and solution strategies between high and low "spatials" were demonstrated. Initial efforts focused on the ubiquitous figural analogy test ("A:B::C:D"). Converging evidence from a variety of standard tasks indicates that high scorers encode figures more flexibly, apply spatial transformations more holistically, and attempt to solve problems in a more "top-down" manner than do low scorers, but pilot results also suggest that at least some of these skills may be trainable. A new methodology has been developed to computerize testing and training in future research. Figural analogy problems from the Cognitive Abilities Test were photodigitized for use in combination with a program, called "ANALOGY," written in AmigaBASIC. The resulting test procedure has a great deal in common with the subject-controlled "moving window" technique now commonly seen in text comprehension literature. The procedure allows the subject complete freedom in selecting what to view and when to view it. The computerized procedure constitutes a clear advance over paper-and-pencil tests and standard reaction-time studies, since it yields a rich database gathered under unobtrusive yet controlled conditions. In addition to overall speed and accuracy of solution, the database program provides for direct assessment of specific problem term encoding and comparison times and of global solution strategies. The general-purpose program is easily modified and allows for a feedback option. This research tool will be applied to a variety of subject populations and training conditions. (TJH)
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Assessments and Surveys: Cognitive Abilities Test