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J Exp Psychol Learn Mem Cogn. 1994 Mar;20(2):366-78.

Effects of solving related proofs on memory and transfer in geometry problem solving.

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Department of Psychology, Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania 15213-3890.


Three experiments investigate the relationship between memory and problem solving in the domain of geometry theorem proving. In Experiment 1, Ss memories for an original problem-solving episode were interfered with retroactively by solving a 2nd problem that had the same diagram, but no memory effects were observed that depended on the second problem's logical similarity to the original. Results suggest that the diagram is the basis for geometry problem-solving memories. Experiments 2 and 3 investigated problem-solving memories in use by examining Ss transfer to a 3rd (test) problem. As with the memory results, transfer was reduced when the 1st two problems had the same diagram relative to when they had 2 different diagrams. Transfer was reduced most in the condition with the greatest proportion of memory-interfering steps. Results suggest that the structure and quality of problem-solving memories affect problem-solving transfer.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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