This collection of essays focuses on three reasoning problems devised by Peter Wason - the selection task, the 2-4-6 task, and the THOG problem - which have had a considerable influence since their invention.; The reasons why people make so many errors in these seemingly simple tasks are still not fully understood. A variety of different theoretical perspectives have been used in trying to explain performance. These include the mental models approach, the pragmatic reasoning approach, and the mental logic approach. This book contains chapters which discuss all these theories. Other chapters review the literature or offer alternative theoretical perspectives. A final chapter by Peter Wason describes how he came to create the tasks discussed.
Creating a psychology of reasoning - the contribution of Peter Wason, J.St.B.T. Evans, S.E. Newstead; the effects of rule clarification, decision justification and selection instructions on Wason's abstract selection task, R. A. Griggs; content effects in Wason's selection task, R.L. Dominowski; pragmatic reasoning about human voluntary action - evidence from Wason's selection task, K.J. Holyoak, P.W. Cheng; deontic reasoning, K.I. Manktelow, D. E. Over; inference and mental models, P.N. Johnson-Laird; relevance and reasoning, J.St.B.T. Evans; the abstract selection - thesis, antithesis and synthesis, D.W. Green; finding logic in human reasoning requires looking in the right places - a mental logic view of logical reasoning tasks, D.P. O'Brien; hypothesis testing, M.E. Gorman; scientific reasoning, R.D. Tweney, S.T. Chitwood; the THOG problem and its implications for human reasoning, S.E. Newstead, V. Girotto, P. Legrenzi; creativity in research, P.C. Wason.