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ERIC Number: EJ1120457
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2016-Dec
Pages: 26
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-1040-726X
The Structure of Ill-Structured (and Well-Structured) Problems Revisited
Reed, Stephen K.
Educational Psychology Review, v28 n4 p691-716 Dec 2016
In his 1973 article "The Structure of ill structured problems", Herbert Simon proposed that solving ill-structured problems could be modeled within the same information-processing framework developed for solving well-structured problems. This claim is reexamined within the context of over 40 years of subsequent research and theoretical development. Well-structured (puzzle) problems can be represented by a problem space consisting of well-defined initial and goal states that are connected by legal moves. In contrast, the initial, goal, and intermediate states of ill-structured (design) problems are incompletely specified. This article analyzes the similarities and differences among puzzles, insight puzzles, classroom problems, and design problems within Gick's ("Educational Psychologist," 21, 99-120, 1986) theoretical framework consisting of representation construction, schema activation, and heuristic search. The analysis supports Simon's ("Artificial Intelligence," 4, 181-201, 1973) claim that information-processing principles apply to all problems but apply differently as problems become more ill structured.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Information Analyses; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A