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The effects of successful versus failure-based cases on argumentation while solving decision-making problems

  • Andrew Tawfik
  • David Jonassen
Research Article

Abstract

Solving complex, ill-structured problems may be effectively supported by case-based reasoning through case libraries that provide just-in-time domain-specific principles in the form of stories. The cases not only articulate previous experiences of practitioners, but also serve as problem-solving narratives from which learners can acquire meaning. The current study investigated the effects of different case-types (success, failures) on analogical transfer to similar problems. In the first week, undergraduate sales management students (N = 36) were assigned to different case library treatments (success, failure) and asked to construct a multifaceted argument (initial argument, counterargument, rebuttal) to resolve an ill-structured, decision-making hiring problem. In the following week, students constructed an argument to solve a novel case without the support of the case library. Data analysis revealed the failure-based case library condition produced significantly higher scores on measurements of counterarguments and holistic argumentation scores on both tasks. A discussion of the implications for pedagogy and instructional design are also presented.

Keywords

Problem solving Decision making Argumentation Case-based reasoning Case libraries Failure Failure-driven memory 

Notes

Acknowledgments

We would like to express our gratitude for the helpful comments of the reviewers throughout the iterations of this manuscript. We would like also like to thank the editors for their detailed assistance at each stage of the review process.

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Copyright information

© Association for Educational Communications and Technology 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Concodia University Chicago (Office CC 248 i)River ForestUSA
  2. 2.University of MissouriColumbiaUSA

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