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Examination of some theoretical explanations of the performance on thematic versions of Wason's selection task

Darko Lončarić

Puni tekst: hrvatski pdf 443 Kb

str. 46-68

preuzimanja: 930



Numerous explanations of participants performance on thematic versions of Wason's selection task are discussed
in this paper. Goal of this investigation is to compare different predictions of participants performance from the
perspective of two competing theories: Social Contract Theory (Cosmides, 1989; Cosmides & Tooby, 1992) and Task Understending Theory (Liberman i Klar, 1996). Social Contract Theory predicts high rate of logically correct answers (content effect) on selection task only when conditional rule can be represented as social exchange. Task Understanding Theory considers specific elements in textual context of the selection task that can inhibit or facilitate logical reasoning and content effect. In order to test competing predictions of these theories several variations of selection task were constructed in which social exchange, facilitative and inhibitive elements were manipulated. Sample of 125 students (98 female and 27 male) from University of Rijeka participated in this investigation. Results show that, in most cases, only Social Contract Theory can explain students' answers and content effect. Elements proposed by Task Understanding Theory fail to produce substantial content effect and have minimal influence on subjects' performance on the selection task.

Ključne riječi

Wason's selection task, Logic, Deductive reasoning

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Podaci na drugim jezicima: hrvatski

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