Psychology of Problem Solving: Theory and Practice

Psychology of Problem Solving: Theory and Practice

Psychology of Problem Solving: Theory and Practice

Psychology of Problem Solving: Theory and Practice

Excerpt

The compelling problem leading me to prepare this book was a very bothersome awareness of two immense bodies of information. Both highly developed sets of literature deal with the same psychological topic—human problem solving —yet in half a century the independent paths of these two ventures have seldom crossed.

On one hand is the chain of events appearing in psychology texts which link Wolfgang Köhler's (1925) classic and delightfully written studies of problem solving and intelligence in chimpanzees with modern bits of research and theory in experimental psychology. Some noteworthy scholars in this psychological tradition have been Thorndike (1911), Maier (1930, 1970), Katona (1940), Luchins and Luchins (1959), Wertheimer (1945); and more recently, Kendler and Kendler (1962), D. M. Johnson (1955, 1960), and in concept problem solving, Bourne (1966). Some exciting simulation work by computer scientists Newell, Shaw, and Simon (1958), Feigenbaum and Feldman (1963), and Hunt (1968, 1970), also must be included in our psychological sequence of problem-solving research and theory.

On the other hand is a problem-solving history evolving about the perpetual needs of industry for workable, innovative problem solutions. While the laboratory psychologist has . . .

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