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    Wasserman, Edward A. Brooks, Daniel I. and McMurray, Bob 2015. Pigeons acquire multiple categories in parallel via associative learning: A parallel to human word learning?. Cognition, Vol. 136, p. 99.

    McCormack, Teresa Simms, Victoria McGourty, Jemma and Beckers, Tom 2013. Encouraging children to think counterfactually enhances blocking in a causal learning task. The Quarterly Journal of Experimental Psychology, Vol. 66, Issue. 10, p. 1910.


Rats and infants as propositional reasoners: A plausible possibility?

  • Leyre Castro (a1) and Edward A. Wasserman (a1)
  • DOI:
  • Published online: 01 April 2009

Mitchell et al. contemplate the possibility of rats being capable of propositional reasoning. We suggest that this is an unlikely and unsubstantiated possibility. Nonhuman animals and human infants do learn about the contingencies in the world; however, such learning seems not to be based on propositional reasoning, but on more elementary associative processes.

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T. Beckers , R. R. Miller , J. De Houwer & K. Urushihara (2006) Reasoning rats: Forward blocking in Pavlovian animal conditioning is sensitive to constraints of causal inference. Journal of Experimental Psychology: General 135:92102.

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M. D. S. Braine (1978) On the relation between the natural logic of reasoning and standard logic. Psychological Review 85:121.

M. H. Christiansen , R. A. C. Dale , M. R. Ellefson & C. M. Conway (2002) The role of sequential learning in language evolution: Computational and experimental studies. In:Simulating the evolution of language, ed. A. Cangelosi & D. Parisi , pp. 165–88. Springer-Verlag.

R. L. Goldstone & L. W. Barsalou (1998) Reuniting perception and conception. Cognition 65:231–62.

R. Leech , D. Mareschal & R. P. Cooper (2008) Analogy as relational priming: A developmental and computational perspective on the origins of a complex cognitive skill. Behavioral and Brain Sciences 31:357–78.

D. M. Sobel & N. Z. Kirkham (2006) Blickets and babies: The development of causal reasoning in toddlers and infants. Developmental Psychology 42:1103–15.

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Behavioral and Brain Sciences
  • ISSN: 0140-525X
  • EISSN: 1469-1825
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