Simulation Systems for Cognitive Psychology
PITTSBURGH UNIV PA LEARNING RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT CENTER
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Three views of the function of computer simulation in cognitive psychology are analyzed. The strong view that computer simulations will produce more rigorously specified theories is seen to be overstating the case. Two more pragmatic views are supported. One looks at computer method as a means of exploring or validating psychological theories. The other looks to computer simulation as a source of useful concepts. Several simulation efforts are presented as illustrations of these latter views. After establishing some perspective on the uses of simulation, the discussion turns to psychological simulation languages, and to aspects of programming environments which facilitate simulation work. A new simulation language, PRISM, is described.