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Klauer and Phye’s Cognitive Training for Children (Cognitive training for children: a developmental program of inductive reasoning and problem solving. Hogrefe & Hogrefe Publisher, Kirkland, 1994) provides instruction in inductive reasoning through a sequence of 120 illustrations following a prescribed two-way categorization (a) attributes of objects versus relations between objects, and (b) similarities or differences versus both similarities and differences in attributes or relations. While the program’s effectivity has been established, its prescribed categorization of problems has yet to be validated. If training performance is in accordance with the prescribed categorization, then performance patterns should be more similar for problems in the same than in different categories. In the current research, correlations of performance between problem categories were used as similarity measures in multidimensional scaling. The resulting solution yielded the attribute–relation and similarity–difference dimensions thus showing that performance reflects problem complexity. Visual salience, however, may override problem complexity, as suggested by the finding that the matrix arrangement of objects facilitated training in the algorithmically complex similarity-and-difference problems. The use of everyday-life objects as opposed to abstract objects also was shown to facilitate inductive reasoning.

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