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Experimental Psychology (Russia)

Publisher: Moscow State University of Psychology and Education

ISSN (printed version): 2072-7593

ISSN (online): 2311-7036


License: CC BY-NC 4.0

Published since 2008

Published quarterly

Free of fees
Open Access Journal


The Expansion of the Model of Mechanisms of Insight Problem Solving in the S. Ohlsson’s Representational Change Theory 70


Chistopolskaya A.V.
PhD in Psychology, Associate Professor, Department of General Psychology, P.G. Demidov Yaroslavl State University, Yaroslavl, Russia

Lazareva N.Y.
Junior Researcher, P.G. Demidov Yaroslavl State University, Yaroslavl, Russia

Markina P.N.
Junior Researcher, Institute of Psychology of RAS, Moscow, Russia

Makarov I.N.
Researcher, P.G. Demidov Yaroslavl State University, Yaroslavl, Russia

The paper explores an option to expand the model of mechanisms of insight problem solving proposed by S. Ohlsson. The proposed mechanisms of insight problem solving — chunk decomposition and constraint relaxation — considered within the framework of high-level and low-level processes. Chunk decomposition described as low-level mechanism and constraint relaxation as high-level mechanism. We assume that difficulty of the different insight problems can be explained by high level chunk decomposition and low-level constraint relaxation. The paper describes two experiments dedicated to verify the assumption. The first experiment examines process of solving anagrams (with word) as high-level chunk decomposition. The main results of the experiment show the prospect of distinguishing the semantic chunk decomposition as insight problem solving mechanism. The second experiment use nine-dot insight problem to examine its solution process as relaxation of low-level (perceptual) constraints. Based on the results of the experiments, it can be considered possible to conclude that the expansion of S. Ohlsson’s model of mechanisms of insight problem solving allows to deem the solutions of various problems in a unified system.

Keywords: insight, insight problem, semantic chunk, chunk decomposition, constraint relaxation, ana- grams, nine-dot problem

Column: Cognitive Psychology


For Reference


The reported study was funded by Russian Foundation for Basic Research (RFBR), project number 18-313-00123.

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