Structural Constraints and Real-World Plausibility in Analogical Inference

Linsey Smith, Dedre Gentner

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


Theoretical accounts of analogy have largely agreed that structural constraints play a substantial role in the mapping process. Less is known, however, about the robustness of these constraints in the inference process and the way in which particular content influences the use of structural constraints in analogical inference. We conducted two studies testing whether the plausibility (or implausibility) of an inference influences adherence to general structural principles in analogical reasoning. We found substantial reliance on the predicted structural constraints, but also an influence of the plausibility of the inference.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationProceedings of the 32nd Annual Conference of the Cognitive Science Society
EditorsRichard Catrambone, Stellan Ohlsson
PublisherCognitive Science Society
Number of pages6
ISBN (Print)978-0-9768318-6-0
StatePublished - 2010

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