Thinking and Language Organizing Our Thoughts…. (Making cognitive sense out of our world…) Cognition Concept Category Hierarchies We form concepts by… Definition prototypes Problem Solving With Cognition Cognitive Problem Solving: Algorithms Heuristics Insight Limitations of heuristic judgments… Heuristic problem solving: hugely useful, but sometimes leads us astray… Availability heuristic Representative heuristic Other Limitations of Heuristic Judgments… Overconfidence Belief Bias Belief Perseverance Framing Obstacles to Problem Solving… Confirmation Bias Fixation Mental sets / Rigidity Functional Fixedness Creativity and Cognition Definition? Correlation between intelligence and creativity??? Types of Creativity Convergent Thinking Divergent Thinking Language is…. “…the Jewel in the Crown of Cognition.” “…complexity built of simplicity.” Defining Language What component distinguishes language from other forms of communication? Words (spoken, written or signed) Language Structure 3 Building Blocks of Language Phonemes Morphemes Grammar (semantics and syntax) Language Structure Phonemes Smallest units of sound in language 40 in English language ( 869 in human speech) Do changes in phonemes produce changes in meaning? Why?(Try an example…) Morphemes Smallest units of meaning (includes prefixes, suffixes) 100,000 in English language = 615,000 words in Oxford Dictionary! Language Structure Grammar: System of rules that govern language Semantics: the study of meaning for morphemes, words, sentences.. Adding ed suffix = past tense Syntax: rules for combining words into sentences o adjectives comes before nouns Language Development Month 4 10 12 24 24+ Stage Babbles speech sounds (receptive language) Babbles household language one-word stage Two-word stage (telegraphic speech rapid development into complete sentences Theories of Language Development Skinner vs. Chomsky B.F. Skinner Language – Operant Conditioning (nurture) Association pairing objects with words Imitation Words and syntax modeled by others Reinforcement Praise Noam Chomsky Language occurs naturally / Nature Universal grammar underlies all human language (nouns, verbs etc.) Language Acquisition Device: (switchbox) Brain is prewired for universal grammar- thus ready to learn any of 6,000 languages (switches will be set to specific language) Surface structure: organization of language Deep structure: meaning Language Development Babies- a built in readiness to learn grammatical rules Critical period o Childhood: best / only time to master certain elements of language (accent etc.) o 2nd language: those who learn it early learn it best o (Chomsky: L.A.D.- grammar switches set early) o Learning window- closes gradually after age 7 o Hearing children / deaf children: parallel results o No language as child / language learning capacity never fully develops Language and Thinking Linguistic Determinism Hypothesis Language Influences how we think… Examples? To expand language is to expand the ability to think.” The Bilingual Advantage… Studies suggest that bilingual children… Are more advanced in school Are better at following complicated instructions Demonstrate better mental flexibility Tend to perform better on tests of creativity Language deprived… 2/3 of the world’s children are bilingual 7% of U.S. children are bilingual Thinking in Images Examples? Procedural memory (mental picture) Mental (visual) simulation Animal Cognition Washoe and Kanzi Washoe Kanzi Linguistic Capability? Washoe 1st 4 years: 132 signs Age 32: 181 signs “Baby dead, baby gone, baby finished.” Equivalent of what human age? Kanzi Critical Period Semantic nuances of English Vanishing Languages… 6,800 languages in the world today 250 spoken by 1,000,000 or more people 600 have speaking populations robust enough to last beyond the century Africa- birthplace of 1/3 of the world’s languages- 54 are extinct and 116 are near extinction South America: 640 languages- 80% spoken by 10,000 or less What’s causing accelerated language extinction???