Chains of Inferences and the New Paradigm in the Psychology of Reasoning
- 414 Downloads
The new paradigm in the psychology of reasoning draws on Bayesian formal frameworks, and some advocates of the new paradigm think of these formal frameworks as providing a computational-level theory of rational human inference. I argue that Bayesian theories should not be seen as providing a computational-level theory of rational human inference, where by “Bayesian theories” I mean theories that claim that all rational credal states are probabilistically coherent and that rational adjustments of degrees of belief in the light of new evidence must be in accordance with some sort of conditionalization. The problems with the view I am criticizing can best be seen when we look at chains of inferences, rather than single-step inferences. Chains of inferences have been neglected almost entirely within the new paradigm.
KeywordsClassical Logic Human Reasoning Credal State Rational Inference Rational Reasoning
Thanks to Michael Caie, Adam Marushak, Robert Brandom, Karl Schafer and an anonymous referee for this journal for their insightful comments.
- Adams, E.W. 1998. A primer of probability logic. Stanford: CSLI Publications.Google Scholar
- Chandler, J. 2014. Subjective probabilities need not be sharp. Erkenntnis: 1–14. doi: 10.1007/s10670-013-9597-2.
- Elga, A. 2010. Subjective probabilities should be sharp. Philosophers’ Imprint 10.Google Scholar
- Harman, G.H. 1986. Change in view: principles of reasoning. Cambridge: MIT Press.Google Scholar
- Hedden, B. (forthcoming). Reasons without persons: rationality, identity, and time. Oxford: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
- Howson, C., and P. Urbach. 2006. Scientific reasoning: the Bayesian approach, 3rd ed. Chicago: Open Court Publishing.Google Scholar
- Moss, S. (forthcoming). Credal dilemmas. Noûs.Google Scholar
- Oaksford, M., N. Chater, and J. Larkin. 2000. Probabilities and polarity biases in conditional inference. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory, and Cognition 26: 883–899.Google Scholar
- Pfeifer, N., and G.D. Kleiter. 2006. Inference in conditional probability logic. Kybernetika 42: 391–404.Google Scholar
- Singmann, H., Klauer, K. C. & Over, D. E. 2014. New normative standards of conditional reasoning and the dual-source model. Frontiers in Psychology 5. doi: 10.3389/fpsyg.2014.00316.