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ERIC Number: EJ1159323
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2017-Nov
Pages: 36
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0364-0213
Relational Priming Based on a Multiplicative Schema for Whole Numbers and Fractions
DeWolf, Melissa; Son, Ji Y.; Bassok, Miriam; Holyoak, Keith J.
Cognitive Science, v41 n8 p2053-2088 Nov 2017
Why might it be (at least sometimes) beneficial for adults to process fractions componentially? Recent research has shown that college-educated adults can capitalize on the bipartite structure of the fraction notation, performing more successfully with fractions than with decimals in relational tasks, notably analogical reasoning. This study examined patterns of relational priming for problems with fractions in a task that required arithmetic computations. College students were asked to judge whether or not multiplication equations involving fractions were correct. Some equations served as structurally inverse primes for the equation that immediately followed it (e.g., 4 × 3/4 = 3 followed by 3 × 8/6 = 4). Students with relatively high math ability showed relational priming (speeded solution times to the second of two successive relationally related fraction equations) both with and without high perceptual similarity (Experiment 2). Students with relatively low math ability also showed priming, but only when the structurally inverse equation pairs were supported by high perceptual similarity between numbers (e.g., 4 × 3/4 = 3 followed by 3 × 4/3 = 4). Several additional experiments established boundary conditions on relational priming with fractions. These findings are interpreted in terms of componential processing of fractions in a relational multiplication context that takes advantage of their inherent connections to a multiplicative schema for whole numbers.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: National Science Foundation (NSF)
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: DGE1144087