Analogical Reasoning

Dedre Gentner*, L. Smith

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

110 Scopus citations


Analogical reasoning is a kind of reasoning that is based on finding a common relational system between two situations, exemplars, or domains. When such a common system can be found, then what is known about one situation can be used to infer new information about the other. The basic intuition behind analogical reasoning is that when there are substantial similarities between situations, there are likely to be further similarities. This article describes the processes involved in analogical reasoning, reviews seminal research and recent developments in the field, and proposes new avenues of investigation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationEncyclopedia of Human Behavior
Subtitle of host publicationSecond Edition
PublisherElsevier Inc.
Number of pages7
ISBN (Electronic)9780123750006
ISBN (Print)9780080961804
StatePublished - Jan 1 2012


  • Analogy
  • Inference
  • Mapping
  • Metaphor
  • Reasoning
  • Relational similarity
  • Relational structure
  • Structural alignment
  • Structure-mapping

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychology(all)


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