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The Interface between Learning and Cognition:The 2010 Winter Conference on Animal Learning and Behavior Focus Session

  • Author(s): Blaisdell, Aaron P.
  • Weiss, Stanley J.
  • et al.
Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International Public License

The study of human and animal behavior in psychology is almost always framed at either the associative or the cognitive level of explanation. Despite continued debate between proponents of each approach, we appear to be no closer to a consensus view than we were when the debate began in earnest in the 1960 s. Could it be that the two levels of explanation are irreconcilable? Or is it possible that both frameworks are useful, though incompatible? Perhaps these frameworks merely account for the same behaviors but at different levels of explanation, as characterized by hardware-software or genotype-phenotype analogies. This special issue provides a venue for contemporary scientists involved in this debate to express their views, and follows from a Focus Session of the same title held at the 2010 meeting of the Winter Conference in Animal Learning & Behavior.

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