Accounting for Belief Bias in a Mental Model Framework: Comment on Klauer, Musch, and Naumer

Psychological Review 112 (2):509-517 (2005)


K. C. Klauer, J. Musch, and B. Naumer (2000) presented a general multinomial model of belief bias effects in syllogistic reasoning. They claimed to map a particular mental model account of belief bias (J. V. Oakhill, P. N. Johnson-Laird, & A. Garnham, 1989) onto this model and to show empirically that it is incorrect. The authors argue that this mental model account does not map onto the multinomial model and that it can account for the data presented by Klauer et al. (Experiments 1–4). The authors further argue that additional data Klauer et al. presented in support of a new model of their own (Experiments 5– 8) are explained by this mental model account. The mental model account is, therefore, refuted neither by Klauer et al.’s theoretical analysis nor by any of the results they presented. Furthermore, the account can accommodate more recent findings on belief bias in a more satisfactory way than can alternative models that have been proposed.

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Alan Garnham
University of Sussex

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