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Judgmental heuristic and biases among ninth graders before and after studying the subject probability
judgmental heuristics and biases
|Issue Date:||2013-09-04 15:15:46 (UTC+8)|
The study aims to explore the differences of judgmental heuristic and biases on representativeness, availability (Kahneman &Tversky, 1974) and outcome approach (Konold, 1989) in terms of comprehension of probability concepts by ninth graders before and after studying the subject. The results are based on a quantitative analysis of the data collected from two sets of paper-and-pencil self-designed questionnaires. Pre-test questionnaire is meant to explore students’ potential probability biases when they work out the problems based on their previous knowledge and intuition prior to any instruction, while post-test questionnaire is conducted after instruction. The subjects in our experiment are composed of one hundred and forty-eight ninth graders who have only learned some basic probability concepts in primary school, and are classified into high-, mid- and low-scorer groups based on their previous academic performance.
The findings suggest that:
1. Gender effect is not significantly different, so there is no need to pay attention to the gender difference in teaching process.
2. The results of analyses for different groups are listed in what follows.
(1) Outcome approach:
In the problem of tossing a coin, the results of pre-test and post-test indicate that the proportion of subjects who are without biases is higher in mid- and high-scorers than that of low-scorers.
(2) Representativeness bias:
In the problem of positive recency effect and negative recency effect, the proportion of committing biases is higher in low-scorers than that of mid- and high-scorers in both pre- and post-tests.
In the problem of changes in sample spaces, the proportion of lack of biases is higher in mid- and high-scorers than that of low-scorers.
In the composite-event problem that deals with representative biases, the proportion of committing biases among low-scorers is higher than that of mid- and high-scorers in both pre- and post-tests.
(3) Availability bias:
There is no significant difference in the overall performance of pre- and post-tests among the three groups.
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