• Entry
  • Reader's guide
  • Entries A-Z
  • Subject index

Analogical Reasoning

Analogical reasoning is the ability to perceive and use relational commonality between two situations. Most commonly, analogy involves mapping relational structures from a familiar (base situation to an unfamiliar situation (target). For example, solving the analogy “chicken is to chick like tiger is to___?” requires perceiving the relation parent–offspring in the base domain (chicken:chick) and mapping the same relation to the target (tiger:__?) to get to the answer cub. Relational similarity is the crux of analogical reasoning; what is crucial here is the sameness of the relation, not of other similarities—chickens and tigers do not look alike.

This reliance on relational similarity allows analogical reasoners to discover concepts and draw inferences in new and unfamiliar domains; situations and domains that at first do not look ...

    • Loading...
    locked icon

    Sign in to access this content

    Get a 30 day FREE TRIAL

    • Watch videos from a variety of sources bringing classroom topics to life
    • Read modern, diverse business cases
    • Explore hundreds of books and reference titles