Psikhologicheskie Issledovaniya • ISSN 2075-7999
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Spiridonov V.F., Erofeeva M.A., Klowait N.O., Ardislamov V.V., Morozov M.I., Zdilar S. Interactive problem solving revisited: Replicating the effects of interactivity using matchstick algebra problems.

Full text in Russian: Спиридонов В.Ф., Ерофеева М.А., Кловайт Н.О., Ардисламов В.В., Морозов М.И., Здилар С. Репликация эффектов интерактивного решения задач спичечной алгебры

Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration, Moscow, Russia
Moscow School of Social and Economic Sciences, Moscow, Russia

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The concept of embodied cognition has driven researchers to the creation of novel experimental procedures that would make it possible to evaluate the impact of motor activity on cognitive processes. Among those is the integration of motor activity into the process of problem solving [Weller, Villejoubert, and Vallée-Tourangeau, 2011]. The 'interactive' condition within the Weller et al. [2011] study enabled the participants to interact with physical objects (sticks) while problem-solving. This experimental manipulation substantially increased the success rate for most matchstick algebra problems. Given the differential source of difficulty in these problems [Knoblich et al., 1999], we hesitate to suggest that there is a single (or general) type of motor activity that could explain the uniform effect of interactivity on the success rate. In order to verify these results and to evaluate the effect of interactive problem solving, we carried out a conceptual replication of Weller et al. [2011] study. Three experimental variants were applied: the first variant aimed to evaluate the interactivity effect on the solving, the second variant attempted to vary the amount of motor activity produced by the solver, while the third variant aimed to maximize interactivity through the application of virtual reality technologies. In addition to the success rate, we considered the number of epistemic and pragmatic actions [Kirsh, Maglio, 1994] visible in video-recordings of the individual experimental instances. An increase in epistemic actions could serve as an indicator of a transfer of a part of the cognitive functions onto the material environment. However, our results failed to replicate the abovementioned effects [Weller et al., 2011]. Despite a substantially higher number of epistemic actions in the second experiment, the success rate remained unaffected. One possible explanation is that the mere possibility of physical manipulation does not automatically make the solving process interactive. We discuss the challenges and outlook of the interactive problem solving, as well as its role in the studies of embodied cognition.

Keywords: replication, interactive problem solving, affordance, epistemic actions, virtual reality

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Acknowledgement
The authors would like to express their sincere gratitude to K. Kurbanov and V. Kryuchkova for their help with the annotation of the video protocols. We would like to thank the two anonymous reviewers. Their thoughtful comments have substantially improved this work.

Funding
The reported study was funded by RFBR, project number 20-013-00521

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Received 26 July 2021. Date of publication: 31 October 2021.

About author

Spiridonov Vladimir F. Doctor of Psychology, professor, head of the Cognitive Research Lab, Department of Psychology, Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration, Vernadskogo prosp. 82, b.1, 119571 Moscow, Russia.
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Erofeeva Maria A. PhD, Senior Research Associate at the International Center for Contemporary Sociological Theory, Moscow School of Social and Economic Sciences, Gazetnyj per. 3/5, 125009 Moscow, Russia; Research Associate at the Center for Sociological Research, Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration, Vernadskogo prosp. 82, b.1, 119571 Moscow, Russia.
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Klowait Nils Oliver. Senior Research Associate at the International Center for Contemporary Sociological Theory, Moscow School of Social and Economic Sciences, Gazetnyj per. 3/5, 125009 Moscow, Russia; Research Associate at the Center for Innovative Social Research, Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration, Vernadskogo prosp. 82, b.1, 119571 Moscow, Russia.
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Ardislamov Vladlen V. Junior Research Associate at the Cognitive Research Lab, Department of Psychology, Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration, Vernadskogo prosp. 82, b.1, 119571 Moscow, Russia.
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Morozov Maxim I. Research Associate at the Cognitive Research Lab, Department of Psychology, Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration, Vernadskogo prosp. 82, b.1, 119571 Moscow, Russia.
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Zdilar Stevo. Junior Research Associate at the Cognitive Research Lab, Department of Psychology, Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration, Vernadskogo prosp. 82, b.1, 119571 Moscow, Russia.
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Suggested citation

Spiridonov V.F., Erofeeva M.A., Klowait N.O., Ardislamov V.V., Morozov M.I., Zdilar S. Interactive problem solving revisited: Replicating the effects of interactivity using matchstick algebra problems. Psikhologicheskie Issledovaniya, 2021, Vol. 14, No. 79, p. 5. http://psystudy.ru

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