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Animal Learning and Cognition - Essay Example

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This paper "Animal Learning and Cognition" focuses on the cognition - an ability to receive and process information in the brain in a way as to interpret it and act accordingly. The highest level of cognition observed so far is in human beings but, some animals have shown certain levels of learning. …
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Animal Learning and Cognition
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Download file to see previous pages These skills were judged on the basis of object tracking system, semantic congruity, transitive inference and language skills of animals.
The dimension of animal intelligence is a vital component of the analyses regarding animal cognition and learning that essentially serve the same purpose. As demonstrated in a series of experiments conducted on rats and pigeons by Skinner, the data revealed how animals acquired learned behaviours through training. This experiment also indicated the learning processes of animals through a sense of positive reinforcers (Pearce, 2008). In the experiment, there was an exigency between the behaviour and the unconditioned stimulus. Upon pulling down a lever, the rats and pigeons got access to a food reward. This reward trained the animals to pull down the lever in order to get food. This demonstrated the learning which occurred among the animals enabling them to pull the lever even in the absence of a food reward. This idea of learning can be explained through the reinforcement theory which suggests the increased probability of behaviours which are rewarded positively, which in this case was the food. The aforementioned discussion establishes the existence of a relationship between intelligence and learning, yet it is important to identify that the scope of any research which is directed towards exploring the realm of intelligence in the animal kingdom must take into account the inherent differences of the species. Pearce (2008) categories such variations as contextual variables that must be considered to address the differences between cognition factors amongst animals.
Moreover, the scope of learning in animals recognizes that they do possess cognitive capacities in order to solve problems and learn in an unsupervised manner. All environments enable the “agents” to form a predictive model of the external setting by means of environmental precepts.  ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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