# Understanding probabilistic thinking: The legacy of Efraim Fischbein

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## Abstract

The study and analysis of probabilistic thinking, in particular its development in children, is a key element in our attempts to uncover the workings of the human mind and an essential foundation for the development of effective instruction in concepts central to modern models of scientific and social phenomena. This paper honours the contribution of Efraim Fischbein, who died in July 1998, to these endeavours. The first section summarises Fischbein's early work, culminating in his 1975 book ‘The Intuitive Sources of Probabilistic Thinking in Children’. The second focusses on three major themes prominent in that book, and elaborated in later work by Fischbein and his colleagues, namely: (a) The role of intuition in mathematical and scientific thinking, (b) The development of probabilistic thinking, and (c) The influence of instruction on that development. In the final section, suggestions are made as to how Fischbein's pioneering work can be built upon, in particular for improving the teaching of probability in schools.

## Keywords

Final Section Major Theme Human Mind Social Phenomenon Effective Instruction## Preview

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