ERIC Number: ED408167
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1997-Mar
Emergence of Abductive Reasoning in Mathematical Problem Solving.
This paper examines the novel problem solving actions of a pair of college students. The analysis highlights the role of the solvers' inferential processes including abductions, deductions, and inductions as structuring resources that contribute to both their understanding of the problems they face and the emerging novelty that constitutes their viable solution activity. The purpose of this research is to clarify the processes by which learners construct new knowledge in mathematical problem solving situations, with particular focus on instances where the learner's emerging abductions help to facilitate development of novel problem solution activity. Findings indicate that: (1) abduction is characterized as an ongoing, sense-making process that constitutes the problem solver's source of ideas as to how to proceed when unexpected problems occur; (2) problem solvers' abductions aided their novel explorations, serving to organize and structure their subsequent solution activity; and (3) novelty demonstrated by the problem solvers through their abductive inferences suggests the need to rethink views toward teaching problem solving. Contains 23 references. (DDR)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: North Carolina Univ., Charlotte.
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Educational Research Association (Chicago, IL, March, 1997).