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Behaviourist researchers argued that problem solving was a process; that is, organisms faced with a problem applied behaviour that had been successful on a previous occasion.
Like difference reduction, the means-ends analysis heuristic looks for the action that will lead to the greatest reduction in difference between the current state and goal state, but also specifies what to do if that action cannot be taken.
Means-ends analysis can be specified as follows The application of means-ends analysis can be illustrated with the Tower of Hanoi problem.
A problem arises when we need to overcome some obstacle in order to get from our current state to a desired state.
Problem solving is the process that an organism implements in order to try to get from the current state to the desired state.
They have a boat on their side that is capable of carrying two creatures at a time across the river.
The goal is to transport all six creatures across to the other side of the river.For a real life example of overcoming fuctional fixedness, see: Overcoming functional fixedness: Apollo 13 Questions: What do you think of Köhler's claim that his apes had demonstrated insight?What proportion of Maier's participants spontaneously found the solution before getting any kind of hint? The problem space for the eight puzzle consists of the initial arrangement of tiles, the desired arrangement of tiles (normally 1, 2, 3….8), and all the possible arrangements that can be arrived at in between.One of these was called the Einstellung effect, now more commonly referred to as .This occurs when a problem solver becomes fixated on applying a strategy that has previously worked, but is less helpful for the current problem.Another heuristic is , whereby people take the action that leads to the biggest similarity between current state and goal state.Before reading further, see if you can solve the following problem: In the hobbits and orcs problem the task instructions are as follows: On one side of a river are three hobbits and three orcs.A description of these studies, with photographs, can be found here.The Gestalt psychologists described several aspects of thought that acted as barriers to successful problem solving.In particular, in the process of thinking about a problem individuals sometimes "restructured" their representation of the problem, leading to a flash of insight that enabled them to reach a solution.In (1915) Wolfgang Köhler described a series of studies with apes in which the animals appeared to demonstrate insight in problem solving situations.