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Topics in Cognitive Science

Lila R Gleitman, John C Trueswell
This article describes early stages in the acquisition of a first vocabulary by infants and young children. It distinguishes two major stages, the first of which operates by a stand-alone word-to-world pairing procedure and the second of which, using the evidence so acquired, builds a domain-specific syntax-sensitive structure-to-world pairing procedure. As we show, the first stage of learning is slow, restricted in character, and to some extent errorful, whereas the second procedure is determinative, rapid, and essentially errorless...
June 15, 2018: Topics in Cognitive Science
Linda M Geven, Gershon Ben-Shakhar, Merel Kindt, Bruno Verschuere
From a cognitive perspective, lying can be regarded as a complex cognitive process requiring the interplay of several executive functions. Meta-analytic research on 114 studies encompassing 3,307 participants (Suchotzki, Verschuere, Van Bockstaele, Ben-Shakhar, & Crombez, ) suggests that computerized paradigms can reliably assess the cognitive burden of lying, with large reaction time differences between lying and truth telling. These studies, however, lack a key ingredient of real-life deception, namely self-initiated behavior...
June 15, 2018: Topics in Cognitive Science
Jonny Kim, Katie Drager
Previous work on English and Korean demonstrates that words are more quickly identified as real words when they are produced by a voice congruent with the age of the talkers who are most likely to use the word (Kim, 2016, Laboratory Phonology, 7, 18; Walker & Hay, 2011, Laboratory Phonology, 2, 219-237). However, this previous work presents stimuli blocked by voice, giving the participant ample time to form expectations about the talker and the words that the talker would likely use. To test whether the effect can be observed in the absence of cues to talker age prior to word onset, the current experiment replicates Kim (2016, Laboratory Phonology, 7, 18) but without blocking by talker...
June 13, 2018: Topics in Cognitive Science
Peter M Krafft
Researchers have recently demonstrated that group performance across tasks tends to be correlated, motivating the use of a single metric for the general collective intelligence of groups akin to general intelligence metrics for individuals. High general collective intelligence is achieved when a group performs well across a wide variety of tasks. A number of factors have been shown to be predictive of general collective intelligence, but there is sparse formal theory explaining the presence of correlations across tasks, betraying a fundamental gap in our understanding of what general collective intelligence is measuring...
June 13, 2018: Topics in Cognitive Science
Max M Louwerse
Debates on meaning and cognition suggest that an embodied cognition account is exclusive of a symbolic cognition account. Decades of research in the cognitive sciences have, however, shown that these accounts are not at all mutually exclusive. Acknowledging cognition is both symbolic and embodied generates more relevant questions that propel, rather than divide, the cognitive sciences: questions such as how computational symbolic findings map onto experimental embodied findings, and under what conditions cognition is relatively more symbolic or embodied in nature...
May 30, 2018: Topics in Cognitive Science
Celia B Harris, Amanda J Barnier, John Sutton, Greg Savage
While we often engage in conversational reminiscing with loved ones, the effects of these conversations on our memory performance remain poorly understood. On the one hand, Wegner's transactive memory theory predicts that intimate groups experience benefits from remembering together. On the other hand, research on collaborative recall has shown costs of shared remembering in groups of strangers-at least in terms of number of items recalled-and even in intimate groups there is heterogeneity in outcomes. In the current research, we studied the effects of particular communicative features in determining the outcomes of collaborative recall in intimate groups...
May 30, 2018: Topics in Cognitive Science
Arnaud Rey, Laure Minier, Raphaëlle Malassis, Louisa Bogaerts, Joël Fagot
Extracting the regularities of our environment is a core cognitive ability in human and non-human primates. Comparative studies may provide information of strong heuristic value to constrain the elaboration of computational models of regularity learning. This study illustrates this point by testing human and non-human primates (Guinea baboons, Papio papio) with the same experimental paradigm, using a novel online learning measure. For local co-occurrence regularities, we found similar patterns of regularity extraction in baboons and humans...
May 21, 2018: Topics in Cognitive Science
Gabriella Vigliocco, Marta Ponari, Courtenay Norbury
The paper describes two plausible hypotheses concerning the learning of abstract words and concepts. According to a first hypothesis, children would learn abstract words by extracting co-occurrences among words in linguistic input, using, for example, mechanisms as described by models of Distributional Semantics. According to a second hypothesis, children would exploit the fact that abstract words tend to have more emotional associations than concrete words to infer that they refer to internal/mental states...
May 21, 2018: Topics in Cognitive Science
Raeya Maswood, Suparna Rajaram
Sharing information and memories is a key feature of social interactions, making social contexts important for developing and transmitting accurate memories and also false memories. False memory transmission can have wide-ranging effects, including shaping personal memories of individuals as well as collective memories of a network of people. This paper reviews a collection of key findings and explanations in cognitive research on the transmission of false memories in small groups. It also reviews the emerging experimental work on larger networks and collective false memories...
May 21, 2018: Topics in Cognitive Science
Márton Sóskuthy, Paul Foulkes, Vincent Hughes, Bill Haddican
This study considers the role of different cognitive units in sound change: phonemes, contextual variants and words. We examine /u/-fronting and /j/-dropping in data from three generations of Derby English speakers. We analyze dynamic formant data and auditory judgments, using mixed effects regression methods, including generalized additive mixed models (GAMMs). /u/-fronting is reaching its end-point, showing complex conditioning by context and a frequency effect that weakens over time. /j/-dropping is declining, with low-frequency words showing more innovative variants with /j/ than high-frequency words...
May 17, 2018: Topics in Cognitive Science
Ray Jackendoff, Jenny Audring
Framed in psychological terms, the basic question of linguistic theory is what is stored in memory, and in what form. Traditionally, what is stored is divided into grammar and lexicon, where grammar contains the rules and the lexicon is an unstructured list of exceptions. We develop an alternative view in which rules of grammar are simply lexical items that contain variables, and in which rules have two functions. In their generative function, they are used to build novel structures, just as in traditional generative linguistics...
May 17, 2018: Topics in Cognitive Science
Phil Maguire, Philippe Moser, Rebecca Maguire, Mark T Keane
While seemingly a ubiquitous cognitive process, the precise definition and function of surprise remains elusive. Surprise is often conceptualized as being related to improbability or to contrasts with higher probability expectations. In contrast to this probabilistic view, we argue that surprising observations are those that undermine an existing model, implying an alternative causal origin. Surprises are not merely improbable events; instead, they indicate a breakdown in the model being used to quantify probability...
May 17, 2018: Topics in Cognitive Science
Adam Bear, David G Rand
People's devotion to, and love for, their romantic partners poses an evolutionary puzzle: Why is it better to stop your search for other partners once you enter a serious relationship when you could continue to search for somebody better? A recent formal model based on "strategic ignorance" suggests that such behavior can be adaptive and favored by natural selection, so long as you can signal your unwillingness to "look" for other potential mates to your current partner. Here, we re-examine this conclusion with a more detailed model designed to capture specific features of romantic relationships...
April 24, 2018: Topics in Cognitive Science
Lynn Clark
Understanding how and why pronunciations vary and change has been a dominant theme in variationist sociolinguistics (Labov, , ). Linguistic variability has also been an area of focus in psychology and cognitive science. Work from these two fields has shown that where variation exists in language, an alternative form, once used, persists in working memory and has a greater chance of reuse (Bock, ; Bock & Loebell, ; Branigan, Pickering, & Cleland, ). While there have been efforts to connect priming research with sociolinguistics at the level of grammar (Poplack, ; Travis, ), there has been less work which explicitly considers the potential role of priming as a motivating factor in accent variation and change...
April 24, 2018: Topics in Cognitive Science
Alessandro Lenci, Gianluca E Lebani, Lucia C Passaro
Recent psycholinguistic and neuroscientific research has emphasized the crucial role of emotions for abstract words, which would be grounded by affective experience, instead of a sensorimotor one. The hypothesis of affective embodiment has been proposed as an alternative to the idea that abstract words are linguistically coded and that linguistic processing plays a key role in their acquisition and processing. In this paper, we use distributional semantic models to explore the complex interplay between linguistic and affective information in the representation of abstract words...
April 6, 2018: Topics in Cognitive Science
Morten H Christiansen
Implicit learning and statistical learning are two contemporary approaches to the long-standing question in psychology and cognitive science of how organisms pick up on patterned regularities in their environment. Although both approaches focus on the learner's ability to use distributional properties to discover patterns in the input, the relevant research has largely been published in separate literatures and with surprisingly little cross-pollination between them. This has resulted in apparently opposing perspectives on the computations involved in learning, pitting chunk-based learning against probabilistic learning...
April 6, 2018: Topics in Cognitive Science
Jonathan Harrington, Felicitas Kleber, Ulrich Reubold, Florian Schiel, Mary Stevens
The paper defines the core components of an interactive-phonetic (IP) sound change model. The starting point for the IP-model is that a phonological category is often skewed phonetically in a certain direction by the production and perception of speech. A prediction of the model is that sound change is likely to come about as a result of perceiving phonetic variants in the direction of the skew and at the probabilistic edge of the listener's phonological category. The results of agent-based computational simulations applied to the sound change in progress, /u/-fronting in Standard Southern British, were consistent with this hypothesis...
March 26, 2018: Topics in Cognitive Science
Rose McCabe, Patrick G T Healey
The effectiveness of medical treatment depends on the quality of the patient-clinician relationship. It has been proposed that this depends on the extent to which the patient and clinician build a shared understanding of illness and treatment. Here, we use the tools of conversation analysis (CA) to explore this idea in the context of psychiatric consultations. The CA "repair" framework provides an analysis of the processes people use to deal with problems in speaking, hearing, and understanding. These problems are especially critical in the treatment of psychosis where patients and health care professionals need to communicate about the disputed meaning of hallucinations and delusion...
April 2018: Topics in Cognitive Science
Wayne D Gray
No abstract text is available yet for this article.
April 2018: Topics in Cognitive Science
Patrick G T Healey, Jan P de Ruiter, Gregory J Mills
Miscommunication is a neglected issue in the cognitive sciences, where it has often been discounted as noise in the system. This special issue argues for the opposite view: Miscommunication is a highly structured and ubiquitous feature of human interaction that systematically underpins people's ability to create and maintain shared languages. Contributions from conversation analysis, computational linguistics, experimental psychology, and formal semantics provide evidence for these claims. They highlight the multi-modal, multi-person character of miscommunication...
April 2018: Topics in Cognitive Science
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