Information acquisition and reduction in problem solving
Identifying task relevant information is a critical step in the problem solving process. It can be considered as an information reduction process. Acquiring information is a related process that can either precede information reduction or occur in conjunction with information reduction. In this study, we examine how the expertise level, problem representation and problem solving process affect information acquisition and reduction behavior. An experiment was conducted in which engineering students identified task relevant information in engineering problems that differ in terms of the level of concept similarity between relevant and irrelevant information and the level of domain knowledge similarity in irrelevant information. Signal detection theory, Markov model and Clustering analysis were used to analyze the results.