Understanding Relevance Vis-a-Vis Internal Transfer

Angela Kennedy

We designed a verbal protocol experiment to gather more data on analogical learning in the physical sciences and on the similarity metrics people use in particular2. The first result of the experiment is that the subjects used both the quantity type of the goal and information-contents of the source and target problems as the relevant indices for all the within-domain analogies. A second result is that the subjects had tests similar to the information-content metric encoded in the applicability conditions of the iterative macro-operators [4] they used to perform the remainder of the internal transfer in the study. Thus, the same tests were used to find the relevant experience regardless of whether the learning mechanism employed was the more flexible but deliberate internal analogy or the more compiled and efficient iterative macro-operators.

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