Are Cognitive Skills Context-Bound? DN PERKINS, GAVRIEL SALOMON

Are Cognitive Skills Context-Bound?
First Published January 1, 1989
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Effective problem solving, sound decision making, insightful invention—do such aspects of good thinking depend more on deep expertise in a specialty than on reflective awareness and general strategies? Over the past thirty years, considerable research and controversy have surrounded this issue. An historical sketch of the arguments for the strong specialist position and the strong generalist position suggests that each camp, in its own way, has oversimplified the interaction between general strategic knowledge and specialized domain knowledge. We suggest a synthesis: General and specialized knowledge function in close partnership. We explore the nature of this partnership and consider its implications for educational practice.

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Dr. Todd Twyman is a Research Associate/Assistant Professor at the University of Oregon. Dr. Gerald Tindal is the Castle-McIntosh-Knight Professor of Education and Area Head of Educational Leadership/Teacher Education at the University of Oregon.

Marie José Durand, Ph.D., erg(c) Professeure-adjointe Programme d'ergothérapie Université Laval Faculté de médecine Pav. Ferdinand Vandry Université Laval Québec. G1K 7P4

Patrick Loisel, M.D. Professeur titulaire Département de chirurgie Université de Sherbrooke Sherbrooke, Québec

Pierre Durand, Ph.D. Professeur agrégé École des relations industrielles, Université de Montréal, Montréal, Québec


Professor John Stevenson is the Head of the School of Vocational, Community and Technology Education in the Faculty of Education, Griffith University—Mt Gravatt, Messines Ridge Road, Nathan, Queensland 4111.

MAURICE HOLLINGSWORTH (CEC #683), secondary special education teacher, County of Lethbridge Public Schools, Lethbridge, Alberta. JOHN WOODWARD (CEC WA Federation), Associate Professor, School of Education, University of Puget Sound, Tacoma, Washington.

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