Order effects in learning relational structures

Baxter EavesUniversity of Louisville
Patrick ShaftoUniversity of Louisville


Much of the knowledge people acquire is structured: number systems, taxonomies; chemical structures. Learning using the individual components that compose a structured theory may be difficult due to the memory load induced by remembering the entities and their relations. Though much research has demonstrated the effects of ordering on category learning, to our knowledge, none has been conducted on the learning of relational structures. In three experiments we explore the effects of different orderings in learning different relational structures, finding that ordering affects learning, only orderings that tend to eliminate simpler alternative structures are better, and that the complexity of learning appears to be driven by the number of relations, as opposed to the number of nodes.


Order effects in learning relational structures (1.6 MB)

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