Cognition, Evolution and Behavior

Cognition, Evolution and Behavior

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Integrating research from psychology, behavioural ecology, and ethology in a wide-ranging synthesis of theory and research about animal cognition in the broadest sense, this book deals with species-specific adaptations in fish to cognitive mapping in rats and honeybees to theories of mind for chimpanzees. The text analyzes questions like: 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?show more

Product details

  • Hardback | 704 pages
  • 163.1 x 241.6 x 36.8mm | 1,194.35g
  • Oxford University Press Inc
  • New York, United States
  • English
  • 173 halftones, 73 line drawings
  • 0195110471
  • 9780195110470

Review quote

"This book is a very comprehensive review of animal cognition. It differs from other texts on this topic in a number of ways, as outlined by Shettleworth in her preface and in the opening chapter. Essentially, Shettleworth wants to advocate an 'adaptationist or ecological approach to cognition'. In doing so, she brings together a wealth of data on animal cognition, studied from quite different theoretical viewpoints, such as cognitive ethology, animal learning theory, neuroscience, behavioural ecology and cognitive psychology. . . . Each chapter ends with a clear and useful summary, and helpful suggestions for further reading. The book's numerous illustrations, which are mostly tables or figures redrawn by Margaret Nelson, greatly add to its appeal. . . . [T]his is a marvellously rich, well-written and stimulating book. . . . I greatly enjoyed reading [and] recommend it highly to anyone interested in animal cognition, evolution and behaviour."--Animal Behaviour"Shettleworth's new book is one of the most compelling studies showing how a synergism between biology and psychology can make a significant contribution to our general understanding of how minds work and how they might have evolved. It provides an extremely readable, informative and, above all, integrative approach to the study of animal cognition. This book provides a seminal contribution to the interdisciplinary science of animal cognition, and I hope it will have a major impact on the way we think about cognitive properties and the evolution of animal minds. I regard it as an investment for the future!" -- Nicola Clayton, UC Davis"Sara Shettleworth has probably written the most comprehensive study of the animal mind ever and therefore a fundamental textbook on 'comparative cognition'. She first gets consciousness out of the way: whether an animal is conscious or not is impossible to determine, since consciousness is a private, subjective phenomenon. We can study cognition, and certainly cognition lends credibility to the idea that at least some animals must be at least to some degree conscious, but experiments can only prove facts about cognition. She reviews the field of cognitive ethology from the beginning and then analyzes the main cognitive tasks from an information-processing perspective By the end of her review of cognitive faculties, it become apparent that, at least among vertebrates, there are no significant differences in learning, except for language. All vertebrates are capable of 'associative' learning What no other vertebrate seems to be capable of is 'syntax'." -- Piero Scaruffi, Thymos.comshow more

Table of contents

Cognition, Evolution and the Study of Behavior; 1.1: Cognition and Consciousness; 1.2: Kinds of Explanation of Behavior; 1.3: Approaches to Comparative Cognition; 1.4: Testing Adaptive/Evolutionary Explanations; 1.5: Evolution and Cognition; 1.6: Summary; 2: Perception and Attention; 2.1: Specialized Sensory Systems; 2.2: How Can We Find Out What Animals Perceive?; 2.3: Some Psychophisical Principles; 2.4: Signal Detection Theory; 2.5: Perception and Evolution; 2.6: Perceiving Objects; 2.7: Attention; 2.8: Summary; 3: Learning: A Framework and Its Application to Pavlovian Conditioning; 3.1: General Processes and Adaptive Specializations; 3.2: A Framework for Thinking About Learning; 3.3: When Will Learning Evolve?; 3.4: Pavlovian Conditioning; 3.5: Varieties of Associative Learning; 3.6: Summary; 4: Simple Recognition Learning; 4.1: Habituation; 4.2: Perceptual Learning; 4.3: Imprinting; 4.4: Recognition and Altruism; 5: Discrimination and Classification; 5.1: Introduction: Three Examples; 5.2: Untrained Responses to Natural Stimuli; 5.3: Classifying Complex Natural Stimuli; 5.4: Discrimination Learning; 5.5: Category Discrimination and Concepts; 5.6: Summary and Conclusions; 6: Memory; 6.1: The Issues; 6.2: Methods for Studying Memory in Animals; 6.3: Conditions for Memory; 6.4: Species Differences in Memory; 6.5: Contents of Memory; 6.6: Summary and Conclusions; 7: Getting Around; 7.1: Mechanisms for Spatial Orientation; 7.2: How is Spatial Information Integrated? Modularity and Averaging; 7.3: Do Animals Have Cognitive Maps?; 7.4: Acquiring Spatial Knowledge: The Conditions for Learning; 7.5: Summary and Conclusions; 8: Timing and Counting; 8.1: Circadian Rhythms; 8.2: Characteristics of Interval Timing; 8.3: Theories of Interval Timing; 8.4: Do Animals Count?; 8.5: Summary; 9: Foraging and Measuring Rate; 9.1: Introduction; 9.2: How Individuals Choose Patches; 9.3: Choosing Patches With a Group; 9.4: Leaving Depleting Patches; 9.5: Choosing Prey; 9.6: Assessing Risk; 9.7: Summary; 10: Learning From Others; 10.1: The Behavioral Ecology of Social Learning; 10.2: Mechanisms for Social Learning; 10.3: Vocal Imitation: Bird Song Learning; 10.4: Tool Use and Teaching; 10.5: Putting It All Together; 11: Cognitive Ethology and the Evolution of Mind; 11.1: Cognitive Ethology; 11.2: Intentions, Intentionality, and the Intentional Stance; 11.3: Monkey in the Mirror; 11.4: Theory of Mind; 11.5: The Social Theory of Intellect and Evolutionary Psychology; 11.6: Whither Cognitive Ethology; 12: Communication and Language; 12.1: Approaches to Studying Communication; 12.2: Some Natural Communication Systems; 12.3: Trying to Teach Human Language to Other Species; 12.4: Overview; 13: Summing Up and Looking Ahead; 13.1: Modularity and the Animal Mind; 13.2: How Does Cognition Evolve?; 13.3: Anthropomorphism and Representational Explanations; 13.4: Synthesizing the Ecological and Anthropocentric Programshow more

Rating details

23 ratings
4.04 out of 5 stars
5 39% (9)
4 43% (10)
3 4% (1)
2 9% (2)
1 4% (1)
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