Compound Remote Associate (CRA) problems have been used to investigate insight problem solving using both behavioral and neuroimaging techniques. However, it is unclear to what extent CRA problems exhibit characteristics of insight such as impasses and restructuring. CRA problem-solving characteristics were examined in a study in which participants solved CRA problems while providing concurrent verbal protocols. The results show that solutions subjectively judged as insight by participants do exhibit some characteristics of insight. However, the results also show that there are at least two different ways in which people experience insight when solving CRA problems. Sometimes problems are solved and judged as insight when the solution is the first thing considered, but these solutions do not exhibit any characteristics of insight aside from the “Aha!” experience. In other cases, the solution is derived after a longer period of problem solving, and the solution process more closely resembles insight as it is has been traditionally defined in the literature. The results show that separating these two types of solution processes may provide a better understanding of the behavioral and neuroanatomical correlates of insight solutions.
Cranford, Edward A. and Moss, Jarrod
"Is Insight Always the Same? A Protocol Analysis of Insight in Compound Remote Associate Problems,"
The Journal of Problem Solving:
2, Article 8.