Scientists use creativity and models in problem solving

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Washington, Sep 22 (ANI): Scientists go on to find answers to different questions by merging creativity with model based studies, according to a research.

Dr. Nancy J. Nersessian has studied the cognitive processes that underlie scientific creativity by observing scientists at work in their laboratories.

"Solving problems at the frontiers of science involves complex cognitive processes. In reasoning with models, part of the process occurs in the mind and part in the real-world manipulation of the model. The problem is not solved by the scientist alone, but by the scientist - model combination.

This is a highly creative cognitive process," she said.

Her study of the working methods of scientists helps in understanding how class and instructional laboratory settings can be improved to foster creativity, and how new teaching methods can be developed based on this understanding.

The methods would allow science students to master model-based reasoning approaches to problem solving and open the field to many more who do not think of themselves as traditional "scientists."

The study is published in an upcoming issue of Topics in Cognitive Science. (ANI)

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