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Intelligent Guessing and Testing as One of Problem Solving Strategy

This technique is often referred to as the method of trial-and-error. In using this strategy, we make a guess, and then test it again based on the conditions of the problem. In the “solve” part we put forth a guess, arrived at intelligently by some careful mathematical manipulations. In the “check” or verification part, we test our guess to show that it is indeed correct.

Furthermore, there are some examples of the using of Intelligent Guessing and Testing Strategy in everyday life problem solving situations, such as: cooking a roast to determine if it is ready to be served; the carpenter estimates the size and shape of the piece of wood and then by continuously testing its fit and modifying it, solves the construction problem; a lawyer  determines the possible guilt or innocence of a potential client.

This is an example of problem could be solved by Intelligent Guessing and Testing Strategy in Mathematics:

Problem: In Roman numerals, the following two “equation” are correct:

   L  I  X

+ L  V  I,    X.X = C

   C  X  V

Now, consider the preceding as letters of the alphabet as representative of Arabic numerals. If we substitute the proper Arabic numerals, the “equations” are also correct. Each letter denotes the same and unique numeral throughout the problem. What are the two “equations” in Arabic numerals?

Reference: Posamentier, Alferd S. and Krulik, Stephen. 1998. Problem Solving Strategies for Efficient and Elegant Solution. Corwin Press Inc. California.


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