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, behavioural 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 behavioural 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.
Table of Contents
1. 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 Program