Conceptual fluency in inductive reasoning

M. Dantlgraber, T. Kuhlmann, U.-D. Reips

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Psychological effects connected with fluent processing are called fluency effects. In a sample of 403 participants we test whether conceptual fluency effects can be found in the context of inductive reasoning, a context that has not been investigated before. As a conceptual manipulation we vary the use of symbols (persons and crosses) in reasoning tasks. These symbols were chosen to provide hints for the solution of the implemented tasks and thus manipulate fluency. We found evidence that these hints influence ease of processing. The proportion of solved tasks increased by 11% on average in the condition with conceptual hints, F(1,399) = 13.47, partial η2 = .033, p < .001. However, we did not find an effect of the conceptual manipulation on the temporal perception of the task. In a second study (n = 62) we strengthened our findings by investigating solution strategies for the tasks in more detail, 79% of the participants described the tasks in a way they were intended. Our results illustrate the advantages of the separation of ease of processing, fluency experience, and judgments. © 2019 Dantlgraber et al. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.
Original languageEnglish
Article numbere0225050
Number of pages17
JournalPLoS ONE
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - 21 Nov 2019


  • adult
  • article
  • controlled study
  • decision making
  • female
  • human
  • human experiment
  • human tissue
  • inductive reasoning
  • major clinical study
  • male
  • perception
  • concept formation
  • movement (physiology)
  • problem solving
  • task performance
  • theoretical model
  • time factor
  • Concept Formation
  • Humans
  • Models
  • Theoretical
  • Movement
  • Perception
  • Problem Solving
  • Task Performance and Analysis
  • Time Factors

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