The Development of Analogy:Executive Resources in Relational Learning and Mapping


Individual differences in analogical reasoning, long of interest to intelligence researchers, provide a unique window to view how changes in working memory and relational learning may jointly contribute to development. Hosenfeld, van der Maas, and van den Boom (1997) collected geometric analogy data from 6-7 year children during repetitive testing sessions over the course of one year. They identified three groups of children who showed different performance trajectories. We simulate these data in DORA/LISA and suggest that improved performance over training sessions likely results from children improving in being able to identify spatial relations, while the differences in learning trajectories across the groups of children of the same age are best explained by individual differences in working memory.

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