Recent Progress in Mathematical Psychology

Recent Progress in Mathematical Psychology

Recent Progress in Mathematical Psychology

Recent Progress in Mathematical Psychology

Synopsis

Mathematical psychology is an interdisciplinary area of research in which methods of mathematics, operations research, and computer science in psychology are used. Now more than thirty years old, the field has continued to grow rapidly and has taken on a life of its own. This volume summarizes recent progress in mathematical psychology as seen by some of the leading figures in the field as well as some of its leading young researchers.

The papers presented in this volume reflect the most important current directions of research in mathematical psychology. They cover topics in measurement, decision and choice, psychophysics and psychometrics, knowledge representation, neural nets and learning models, and cognitive modeling. Some of the major ideas included are new applications of concepts of measurement theory to social phenomena, new directions in the theory of probabilistic choice, surprising results in nonlinear utility theory, applications of boolean methods in the theory of knowledge spaces, applications of neural net ideas to concept learning, developments in the theory of parallel processing models of response time, new results in inhibition theory, and new concepts about paired associate learning.

Excerpt

Mathematical psychology is an interdisciplinary area of research in which we use methods of mathematics, operations research, and computer science in psychology. Now more than 30 years old, the field has continued to grow rapidly and has taken a life of its own. We have prepared a volume that summarizes recent progress in mathematical psychology as seen by some of the leading figures in the field, as well as some of its leading young researchers.

This volume received its impetus at the July 1992 meeting of the European Mathematical Psychology group in Brussels, a meeting at which many of the papers in the book were originally presented. the excitement about the field and its new directions led the participants at that meeting to suggest that a volume be prepared. However, the resulting book is not just conference proceedings; after the meeting in Brussels, the editors decided that a broader pool of contributions than could be taken from the meeting itself would enhance the volume, making it broader in scope, and of interest to a wider audience than simply a proceedings volume. Hence, we solicited papers from major figures in mathematical psychology, and were delighted at the response.

When, in 1971, a first meeting of the European "Mathematical Psychologists" was held in Paris, none of the participants may have realized that they would be the start of a long tradition. Nor may Eric Degreef and Jean Van Buggenhaut have realized that their book, Trends in Mathematical Psychology (Degreef &Van Buggenhaut, 1984) would only be the first in a sequence of which this present volume is the sixth. Other predecessor volumes arising from the meetings of the European Mathematical Psychology Group are by Roskam and Suck (1987), Roskam (1989), Doignon and Falmagne (1991) and Fisher and Laming (1994). We believe that this volume is a timely one because of growing interest in the field and the major developments that have taken place since the latter two volumes appeared.

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