The mental model theory assumes that people reason by manipulating mental representations of states of the world, called “mental models.” In the present study we used a new deduction task based on diagrammatic premises. We show that a premise can prime other premises that induce similar mental models in a way analogous to the case of words with related meanings, which can prime one another. We present three experiments. In Experiment 1 we used an evaluation task. In Experiment 2, a construction task was used. The priming effect was obtained in both cases. In a third experiment we show that the priming effect was still present when participants were instructed to ignore a prime displayed before the premises. In all three experiments we compared determinate and indeterminate problems and found faster responses in the former.
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This research was supported by grants from the Spanish government (PB94-0394).
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Moreno-Ríos, S., García-Madruga, J.A. Priming in deduction: A spatial arrangement task. Memory & Cognition 30, 1118–1127 (2002). https://doi.org/10.3758/BF03194329
- Priming Effect
- Mental Model
- Visual Word Recognition
- Spatial Arrangement Task
- Determinate Problem