Relational Discrimination Learning in Pigeons

Robert G. Cook and Edward A. Wasserman

in The Oxford Handbook of Comparative Cognition

Second edition

Published in print March 2012 | ISBN: 9780195392661
Published online September 2012 | | DOI:

Series: Oxford Library of Psychology

 Relational Discrimination Learning in Pigeons

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  • Psychology
  • Cognitive Psychology
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This chapter explores the possibility that nonhuman animals are capable of conceptual thought. Specifically, we consider whether pigeons can learn same/different discriminations and transfer those discriminations to new stimuli, thereby testifying to the conceptual nature of that discrimination behavior. Considerable experimental evidence does indeed suggest that pigeons exhibit abstract conceptual thought, although controversy still surrounds the nature of that thinking and whether different tasks rely on different perceptual and conceptual processes.

Keywords: pigeons; primates; same/different discrimination; concept learning

Article.  12013 words. 

Subjects: Psychology ; Cognitive Psychology ; Cognitive Neuroscience

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