chapter  10
Instructional Implications of Everyday Reasoning
Pages 56

In this section I explore some of the implications of my discussions of everyday cognition for learning and instruction. I first review the concept of situated cognition developed in chapters 1 and 8 and a variety of related concepts, and indicate how they pertain to both traditional instruction and to various proposed alternative approaches to education. In addition, I examine the related concept of authentic assessment, or the use of natural, everyday situations and problems to assess a student’s competencies and academic progress. I then look at research on the adequacy of informal reasoning and the effectiveness of various interventions to improve such reasoning. Next, I review some research by Richard Nisbett and his associates on the use of everyday knowledge and everyday situations as aids to instruction in formal (i.e., statistical and deductive) reasoning as well as the converse (i.e., the effects of instruction in formal reasoning on our everyday reasoning). This latter research obviously follows from the studies on reasoning and judgment heuristics discussed in chapter 9, as does the research on debiasing to be discussed in the final section of this chapter. In general, most of the research and applications to be discussed in this chapter follow from my discussions in the preceding chapters.