Resources and References


Quiz. Regarding quiz question number one, see some of the research on interleaving like David W. Braithwaite and Robert L. Goldstone, "Effects of Variation and Prior Knowledge on Abstract Concept Learning," Cognition and Instruction 33, no. 3 (2015): 226-256.

Regarding quiz question number two, see the work of Michelene Chi et al. She has done some great work, especially their paper "Seeing Deep Structure From the Interactions of Surface Features."

Regarding quiz question number three, consider the research of Dedre Gentner. She's spent a lifetime documenting the power of analogical thinking for learning.

Resources. For more on Car Talk, check out their podcast. It's a blast--and a great look into problem solving in action. To learn more in that fashion, use compare and contrast as much as possible. This UNC tools gives a nice introduction to the practice as well as some exercises.

For a better understanding of analogies and systems-thinking in learning, see Richland, Lindsey Engle, and Nina Simms, “Analogy, Higher Order Thinking, and Education,” Wiley Interdisciplinary Reviews: Cognitive Science 6, no. 2 (March 2015).

And if you really want to geek out on analogies and higher order thinking and learning, see Douglas Hofstadter and Emmanuel Sander, Surfaces and Essences: Analogy as the Fuel and Fire of Thinking, 1st ed. (New York: Basic Books, 2013).

The Learning Scientists have a wonderful description of interleaving and it's implications for learning. So does Scientific American. Quartz also excerpted my book's section on interleaving.

If you want to learn about using hypotheticals and argumentation, take a look at this guide.

References, Part I. The text regarding Mary Gordon Spence comes from Stump the Chumps, "Did Tom and Ray make the right call? Was a vacuum leak causing Mary Gordon's car to sing that high-pitched note?,” 04/02/11, Show: 201114, Car Talk, (accessed September 16, 2016). I also interviewed Spence by phone.

For the Uber example, see Aaron Sankin, “Every Company That’s like Uber but for (Something),” The Daily Dot, August 7, 2014. (accessed September 16, 2016).

For more on online ettiquite, see Berger, Jonah Contagious: Why things catch on. Simon and Schuster, 2016.

The original Vapor 3000 study is: Mary L. Gick, and Keith J. Holyoak, "Schema Induction and Analogical Transfer," Cognitive Psychology 15, no. 1 (1983): 1-38. The most recent study is: James R. Kubricht, Hongjing Lu, and Keith J. Holyoak, "Animation Facilitates Source Understanding and Spontaneous Analogical Transfer," Proceedings of the 37th Annual Conference of the Cognitive Science Society, (July, 2015).

For three strikes, see Pollack, John. Shortcut: how analogies reveal connections, spark innovation, and sell our greatest ideas. Penguin, 2015.

For Susan Sarandon quote, see 5/24/2016, Mike McPadden. “25 Years Ago, Thelma and Louise Popped Culture With Feminism.” VH1 News. Accessed October 25, 2016.

The jokes came from Green, Amanda. “20 of Steven Wright’s Funniest Jokes For His 59th Birthday.” Mental Floss. Accessed October 25, 2016. and “‘What’s The Deal With...’: 15 Jokes From Jerry Seinfeld On His Birthday,” WSCBS, Accessed October 25, 2016.

The contract study comes from Jeffrey Loewenstein, Leigh Thompson, and Dedre Gentner, "Analogical learning in negotiation teams: Comparing cases promotes learning and transfer," Academy of Management Learning & Education 2, no. 2 (2003): 119-127.

In this module, I also relied on the following:

Douglas Hofstadter and Emmanuel Sander, Surfaces and Essences: Analogy as the Fuel and Fire of Thinking, 1st ed. (New York: Basic Books, 2013).

Edward B. Burger and Michael Starbird, The 5 Elements of Effective Thinking, Kindle ed. (Princeton NJ: Princeton University Press, 2012).

Michelene T.H. Chi, P. J. Feltovich & R. Glaser, “Categorization and Representation of Physics Problems by Experts and Novices,” Cognitive Science 5, no. 2, (1981): 121-152.

Robert J. Marzano, The Art and Science of Teaching: A Comprehensive Framework for Effective Instruction (Professional Development).,Kindle ed. (Association for Supervision & Curriculum Development, 2007).

Robert L. Goldstone and Samuel B. Day, “Introduction to ‘New Conceptualizations of Transfer of Learning’,” Educational Psychologist 47, no. 3 (2012): 149–52. doi:10.1080/00461520.2012.695710.

Susannah BF Paletz, Joel Chan and Christian D. Schunn, "Uncovering Uncertainty through Disagreement," Applied Cognitive Psychology 30, no. 3 (2016): 387-400.

References Part II. With regard to the Goldstone study mentioned in the text, see David W. Braithwaite and Robert L. Goldstone, "Effects of Variation and Prior Knowledge on Abstract Concept Learning," Cognition and Instruction 33, no. 3 (2015): 226-256.

For a longer explanation of the answer to the king problem, Goldstone explains: "Every kingdom needs to be assigned to one daughter. There are 7 possible daughters. If there were only one kingdom, there would be seven possibilities. If there were two kingdoms, then for every one of the 7 ways of assigning the first kingdom, there would be 7 ways of assigning the second kingdom (just because Gertrude is assigned France doesn’t mean that Germany can’t be assigned to her too), making 7 X 7 possibilities.  Every additional country that needs to be assigned to a daughter multiplies by 7 the number of possible arrangements."

Note that interleaving doesn't always show benefits, at least in the early part of the learning process. Goldstone again: "David Braithwaite and I find that variation of problems that exemplify the same deep principle isn’t ALWAYS a good thing. In particular, the more you know, the more you can “withstand” variation. People with relatively poor initial understandings of the relevant math principles benefit more from training with SIMILAR problems that don’t show much variation. People with better initial understandings of the underlying math benefit more from DISSIMILAR problems that show more variation." In short, the more expertise, the more benefits from variation.

For studies on mixing up practice, see Dennis K. Landin, Edward P. Hebert and Malcolm Fairweather, “The Effects of Variable Practice on the Performance of a Basketball Skill,” Research Quarterly for Exercise and Sport 64, no. 2 (1993): 232–37. doi:10.1080/02701367.1993.10608803. Also see Gavin Breslin et al, “Constant or variable practice: Recreating the especial skill effect,”Acta Psychologica 140, no.2 (2012): 154-7.

The physics problem is from B.H. Ross, J.P Mestre & J.L. Docktor, “Understanding how to teach physics understanding,” in Integrating Cognitive Science with Innovative Teaching in STEM Disciplines, eds. M. McDaniel, R. Frey, S. Fitzpatrick, & H.L. Roediger  (Saint Louis: Washington University Libraries, 2014). doi:

The Steve Jobs quotes are from Alan Deutschman, The Second Coming of Steve Jobs (Crown Business, 2001).

I first came across Steve Brodner in: Cynthia Cotts, “Top of the Class: Some of NYC’s Leading Professors Share Their Secrets,” Observer News & Politics, January 21, 2015, (accessed September 26, 2016). Also see Frail Fiend, “BIG INTERVIEW - STEVE BRODNER,” Frail Fiend, 2013, and Staff, “Satirical Illustrator Steve Brodner on Politics, Process, and ... Sushi.” The Hub, February 19, 2014. Robert Marzano's book Classroom Instruction That Works was also helpful in writing up this section. 

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