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The use and misuse of the term "experience" in contemporary psychology: a reanalysis of the experience-performance relationship

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The use of the term "experience" is rarely explained in sufficient detail to allow researchers to fully appreciate the complexity of the experience-performance relationship. The findings research in this area are difficult to interpret and often lead to unwarranted or exaggerated claims. The interpretation of the results is made difficult from problems stemming from a poorly defined and measured construct and an inadequate conceptualization of the relationship of experience to several specific dependent variables. Additionally, exposure is often misconstrued as experience. This paper aims to develop a conceptual framework of experience that will be helpful in promoting consistency in the use of the term by researchers, theorists, and professionals and that will facilitate understanding of what are now confusing findings concerning the effects of experience.

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: September 1, 2003

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