Psychology Dictionary of Arguments

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Learning: learning is acquiring the ability to establish relationships between signs, symptoms or symbols and objects. This also includes e.g. recognition and recollection of patterns, similarities, sensory perceptions, self-perception, etc. In the ideal case, the ability to apply generalizations to future cases is acquired while learning. See also knowledge, knowledge-how, competence.

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Annotation: The above characterizations of concepts are neither definitions nor exhausting presentations of problems related to them. Instead, they are intended to give a short introduction to the contributions below. – Lexicon of Arguments.

 
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David Papineau on Learning - Dictionary of Arguments

I 252
Novelty/Learning/Drive/Animal/Papineau: e.g. a drive to register "unusual": the animal must be able to identify something unusual. It would not be good if this instinct would be satisfied every time it performed its function! For in the case of unusual things one should become even more watchful!
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Conclusion: there is no reason to exclude drives which are reinforced by their own fulfillment. But if this is the case, no learning mechanism will be able to use the disappearance of the drive as the source of the reinforcement, especially since this disappearance is not a good substitute for the fulfillment of its function.
Rather, the learning mechanism must function with the aid of a different sign so that a behavior is an effective means for the fulfillment of a drive.
It is not sure if this is actually inherited.


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Explanation of symbols: Roman numerals indicate the source, arabic numerals indicate the page number. The corresponding books are indicated on the right hand side. ((s)…): Comment by the sender of the contribution. Translations: Dictionary of Arguments
The note [Author1]Vs[Author2] or [Author]Vs[term] is an addition from the Dictionary of Arguments. If a German edition is specified, the page numbers refer to this edition.

Papineau I
David Papineau
"The Evolution of Means-End Reasoning" in: D. Papineau: The Roots of Reason, Oxford 2003, pp. 83-129
In
Der Geist der Tiere, D Perler/M. Wild, Frankfurt/M. 2005

Papineau II
David Papineau
The antipathetic fallacy and the boundaries of consciousness
In
Bewusstein, Thomas Metzinger, Paderborn/München/Wien/Zürich 1996

Papineau III
D. Papineau
Thinking about Consciousness Oxford 2004


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