What Varying the Learning Task and Category Structure Reveals About Inference Learning


A core issue in the cognitive sciences is understanding how people acquire conceptual knowledge. One way that people can acquire this knowledge is through the inference of missing feature information. Recent studies have proposed a shift away from the idea that inference learning results in knowledge of the internal structure of the categories being learned. The current study varies the inference learning task and the category structure being learned in order to examine these claims. The results provide little support for the notion that participants are acquiring either exemplar knowledge or a simple set of rules as a result of inference learning.

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