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Cognition, Evolution, and Behaviorby Sara J. Shettleworth
Synopses & Reviews
How do animals perceive the world, learn, remember, search for food or mates, communicate, and find their way around? Do any nonhuman animals count, imitate one another, use a language, or have a culture? What are the uses of cognition in nature and how might it have evolved? What is the current status of Darwin's claim that other species share the same "mental powers" as humans, but to different degrees?
In this completely revised second edition of Cognition, Evolution, and Behavior, Sara Shettleworth addresses these questions, among others, by integrating findings from psychology, behavioral ecology, and ethology in a unique and wide-ranging synthesis of theory and research on animal cognition, in the broadest sense--from species-specific adaptations of vision in fish and associative learning in rats to discussions of theory of mind in chimpanzees, dogs, and ravens. She reviews the latest research on topics such as episodic memory, metacognition, and cooperation and other-regarding behavior in animals, as well as recent theories about what makes human cognition unique.
In every part of this new edition, Shettleworth incorporates findings and theoretical approaches that have emerged since the first edition was published in 1998. The chapters are now organized into three sections: Fundamental Mechanisms (perception, learning, categorization, memory), Physical Cognition (space, time, number, physical causation), and Social Cognition (social knowledge, social learning, communication). Shettleworth has also added new chapters on evolution and the brain and on numerical cognition, and a new chapter on physical causation that integrates theories of instrumental behavior with discussions of foraging, planning, and tool using.
How do animals perceive the world, learn, remember, search for food or mates, and find their way around? Do any non-human animals count, imitate one another, use a language, or think as we do? What use is cognition in nature and how might it have evolved? Historically, research on such questions has been fragmented between psychology, where the emphasis has been on theoretical models and lab experiments, and biology, where studies focus on evolution and the adaptive use of perception, learning, and decision-making in the field.
Cognition, Evolution and the Study of Behavior integrates research from psychology, behavioral ecology, and ethology in a wide-ranging synthesis of theory and research about animal cognition in the broadest sense, from species-specific adaptations in fish to cognitive mapping in rats and honeybees to theories of mind for chimpanzees. As a major contribution to the emerging discipline of comparative cognition, the book is an invaluable resource for all students and researchers in psychology, zoology, and behavioral neuroscience. It will also interest general readers curious about the details of how and why animals--including humans--process, retain, and use information as they do.
About the Author
Sara Shettleworth is Professor Emerita in the Departments of Psychology and Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at the University of Toronto, where she obtained her Ph.D. in 1970. Her research on learning and memory in a variety of species of birds and mammals has been published in over 100 articles and book chapters. Her contributions have been recognized by numerous awards, including the International Comparative Cognition Society's 2008 Research Award. She is a fellow of the Royal Society of Canada and Animal Behavior Society, and a member of the Society of Experimental Psychologists.
Table of Contents
Chapter 1. Cognition and the study of behavior
1.1 What is comparative cognition about?
1.2 Kinds of explanation for behavior
1.3 Approaches to comparative cognition
Chapter 2. Evolution, behavior, and cognition: A primer
2.1 Testing adaptation
2.2 Mapping phylogeny
2.3 Evolution, cognition, and the structure of behavior
2.4 Evolution and the brain
2.5 What does all this have to do with comparative psychology?
2.6 Summarizing and looking ahead
Part I. Fundamental Mechanisms
Chapter 3. Perception and attention
3.1 Specialized sensory systems
3.2 How can we find out what animals perceive?
3.3 Some psychophysical principles
3.4 Signal detection theory
3.5 Perception and evolution: Sensory ecology
3.6 Search and attention
3.7 Attention and foraging: The behavioral ecology of attention
Chapter 4. Learning: Introduction and Pavlovian conditioning
4.1 General processes and "constraints on learning"
4.2 A framework for thinking about learning
4.3 When and how will learning evolve?
4.4 Pavlovian conditioning: Conditions for learning
4.5 What is learned?
4.6 Conditional control of behavior: Occasion setting and modulation
4.7 Effects of learning on behavior
4.8 Concluding remarks
Chapter 5. Recognition learning
5.2 Perceptual learning
5.4 The behavioral ecology of social recognition: Recognizing kin
5.5. Forms of recognition learning compared
Chapter 6. Discrimination, classification, and concepts
6.1 Three examples
6.2 Untrained responses to natural stimuli
6.3 Classifying complex natural stimuli
6.4 Discrimination learning
6.5 Category discrimination and concepts
6.6 Summary and conclusions
Chapter 7. Memory
7.1 Functions and properties of memory
7.2 Methods for studying memory in animals
7.3 Conditions for memory
7.4 Species differences in memory?
7.5 Mechanisms: What is remembered and why is it forgotten?
7.6 Memory and consciousness
7.7 Summary and conclusions
Part II. Physical Cognition
Chapter 8. Getting around: Spatial cognition
8.1 Mechanisms for spatial orientation
8.2 Modularity and integration
8.3 Acquiring spatial knowledge: The conditions for learning
8.4 Do animals have cognitive maps?
Chapter 9. Timing
9.1 Circadian rhythms
9.2 Interval timing: Data
9.3 Interval timing: Theories
9.4 Two timing systems?
Chapter 10. Numerical competence
10.1 Numerosity discrimination and the analogue magnitude system
10.2 The object tracking system
10.3. Ordinal comparison: Numerosity, serial position, and transitive inference
10.4 Labels and language
10.5 Numerical cognition and comparative psychology
Chapter 11. Cognition and the consequences of behavior: Foraging, planning, instrumental learning and using tools
11.2 Long term or short term maximizing: Do animals plan ahead?
11.3 Causal learning and instrumental behavior
11.4 Using tools
11.5 On causal learning and killjoy explanations
Part III. Social Cognition
Chapter 12. Social intelligence
12.1 The social intelligence hypothesis
12.2 The nature of social knowledge
12.3 Intentionality and social understanding
12.4 Theory of mind
Chapter 13. Social learning
13.1 Social learning in context
13.2 Mechanisms : Social learning without imitation
13.3 Mechanisms: Imitation
13.4 Do nonhuman animals teach?
13.5 Animal cultures?
Chapter 14. Communication and language
14.1 Basic issues
14.2 Natural communication systems
14.3 Trying to teach human language to other species
14.4 Language evolution and animal communication: Current directions
Chapter 15. Summing up and looking ahead
15.1 Modularity and the animal mind
15.2 Theory and method in comparative cognition
15.3 Humans vs. other species: Different in degree or kind?
15.4 The future: Tinbergen's four questions, and a fifth one
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