# Cognitive Arithmetic revisited: Effects of equation presentation format

- Michael C. W. Yip,
*The Hong Kong Institute of Education*

## Abstract

The present study examined the cognitive processing of basic
arithmetic. Thirty university students participated in a simple calculation
verification experiment. In the experiment, a series of simple addition problems
were randomly presented to each participant in one of the twelve experimental
conditions (3 + 4 = 8) or (8 = 3 + 4) or (ŽO + Žl = ”ª) or
(”ª = ŽO + Žl) or (ŽO + 4 = ”ª) or (8 =
ŽO + Žl) or (12 = ŽO + ‹ã) or (8 + 7 = 13).
Participants were asked to verify whether the equation is correct or not by
pressing a key as quickly and accurately as possible. The general pattern of
results revealed that both the variables of equation presentation format and the
numerical surface form influences the equation verification time but this was not
the case for the variable of problem size.

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