This classic volume compiles and describes interdisciplinary research on the formal nature of human knowledge about the world. Three key dimensions that characterize mental models research are examined: the nature of the domain studied, the nature of the theoretical approach, and the nature of the methodology.
"This book goes far beyond earlier work, both in research methodology, and specificity of theory."
—American Journal of Psychology
"Mental Models succeeds as an introduction to the vigorous, multidisciplinary attack on the ethereal problems surrounding knowledge representation."
—Dennis E. Egan
AT&T Bell Laboratories
Contents: A.L. Stevens, D. Gentner, Introduction. D.A. Norman, Some Observations on Mental Models. A.A. diSessa, Phenomenology and the Evolution of Intuition. R.M. Young, Surrogates and Mappings: Two Kinds of Conceptual Models for Interactive Devices. K.D. Forbus, Qualitative Reasoning About Space and Motion. J.H. Larkin, The Role of Problem Representation in Physics. D. Gentner, D.R. Gentner, Flowing Waters or Teeming Crowds: Mental Models of Electricity. M.D. Williams, J.D. Hollan, A.L. Stevens, Human Reasoning About a Simple Physical System. J. de Kleer, J.S. Brown, Assumptions and Ambiguities in Mechanistic Mental Models. E. Hutchins, Understanding Micronesian Navigation. J.G. Greeno, Conceptual Entities. A. Bundy, L. Byrd, Using the Method of Fibres in Mecho to Calculate Radii of Gyration. M. Wiser, S. Carey, When Heat and Temperature Were One. M. McCloskey, Naive Theories of Motion. J. Clement, A Conceptual Model Discussed by Galileo and Used Intuitively by Physics Students.