Interactivity fosters Bayesian reasoning without instruction


Successful statistical reasoning emerges from a dynamic system including: a cognitive agent, material artifacts with their actions possibilities, and the thoughts and actions that are realized while reasoning takes place. Five experiments provide evidence that enabling the physical manipulation of the problem information (through the use of playing cards) substantially improves statistical reasoning, without training or instruction. Although they often go unnoticed, the action possibilities of the material artifacts available and the actions that are realized on those artifacts are constitutive of successful statistical reasoning, even in adults who have ostensibly reached cognitive maturity.

In Journal of Experimental Psychology: General, 144(3), 581-603.