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Benő Csapó: An analysis of the development of inductive reasoning on the basis of a large-scale survey

The paper presents the results of a national survey on the development of inductive reasoning. The main aims of the study were to collect data that may serve as benchmark for students' general cognitive abilities; to estimate the pace of the development of these abilities and to analyze how several background variables influence development. The same test of inductive reasoning (comprised of verbal analogies, number analogies and number series tasks) were administered to four age groups: 5th, 7th, 9th and 11th grade (11.5-, 13.5-, 15.5- and 17.5-year-old) students (N>7500). The results show that the development over the examined period is relatively slow, around one quarter standard deviation per year. The correlation coefficients with the academic achievement fluctuated around 0,4 for the younger participants and were much lower for the older ones. Higher correlations were found with mathematics and science test results. Little (grade 7 and 11) or insignificant (grade 5 and 7) gender differences were found, but the achievements broadly varied by the school type in the upper grades. The largest differences were found between the children of parents with different schooling. The difference between the developmental level of children whose mother attended primary schools only and those with university degrees equals around for years of development.

MAGYAR PEDAGÓGIA 101. Number 3. 373-391. (2001)

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Magyar Tudományos Akadémia