polysemy, WordNet, quantitative literacy, quantitative reasoning


The subject of this journal goes by a variety of names: numeracy, quantitative literacy, and quantitative reasoning. Some authors use the terms interchangeably. Others see distinctions between them. Study of psycholinguistic and ontological concepts laid out in the literature of WordNet and familiarity with the papers in this journal suggests a vocabulary matrix consisting of four rows (word senses) and three columns (word forms, namely numeracy, QL, and QR). The four word senses correspond to four sets of synonyms: {numeracy}, {numeracy, QL}, {QL, QR}, and {numeracy, QL, QR}. Each of the word forms is polysemous: “numeracy” points to the first, second and fourth senses; “QL” points to the second, third and fourth; “QR” points to the third and fourth. The four synsets (senses) are on three different branches diverging from the WordNet synset identifying the concept of cognition and knowledge. {QL, QR} is on the cognitive process branch; {numeracy} and {numeracy, QL} are on the cognitive skill and ability branch; and {numeracy, QL, QR} is on the mental attitude branch. For comparison, WordNet places the synsets for mathematics, statistics, and other hyponyms of “disciplines of study” on another branch, the cognitive content branch.



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