Cognitive psychology does not reduce to neuroscience

Lincoln J. Colling, Reece P. Roberts

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    Abstract

    Contemporary scientific investigations of the mind have increasingly looked towards the brain in order to explain intelligent behavior. This is most evident with the rise of cognitive neuro-imaging. This approach has, however, been met with mixed reactions. On the one hand, classical cognitive scientists - in the computationalist-functionalist tradition - have argued that cognitive neuro-imaging does not, and cannot, answer questions about the cognitive mechanisms that are responsible for creating intelligent behavior; it is limited to questions about neural function or the neural basis of cognition. On the other hand, there are those who argue that an understanding of intelligent behavior can only be gained through study of the brain. We suggest that both views are misguided. We will present a third option: That neuroscience, properly used, can be employed in the development of cognitive theory, but that cognitive science does not reduce to neuroscience, because intelligent behavior can only be understood by studying how the brain interacts with the body and the brain-body with the environment.
    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationASCS09
    Subtitle of host publicationproceedings of the 9th Conference of the Australasian Society for Cognitive Science
    EditorsWayne Christensen, Elizabeth Schier, John Sutton
    Place of PublicationNorth Ryde, NSW
    PublisherMacquarie Centre for Cognitive Science
    Pages41-48
    Number of pages8
    ISBN (Print)9780646529189
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 2010
    EventConference of the Australasian Society for Cognitive Science (9th : 2009) - Sydney
    Duration: 30 Sep 20092 Oct 2009

    Conference

    ConferenceConference of the Australasian Society for Cognitive Science (9th : 2009)
    CitySydney
    Period30/09/092/10/09

    Bibliographical note

    Copyright 2009 by the Australasian Society for Cognitive Science. Publisher version archived with the permission of the Editor, ASCS09 : Proceedings of the 9th Conference of the Australasian Society for Cognitive Science. This copy is available for individual, non-commercial use. Permission to reprint/republish this version for other uses must be obtained from the publisher.

    Keywords

    • extended mind
    • reductionism
    • neuroscience
    • embodied cognition

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