463Conscientiousness

463Conscientiousness - Evolutionary Psychology 101 Humans...

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Evolutionary Psychology 101 Humans evolved to solve recurrent problems our ancestors faced during the environment we evolved in: Pleistocene hunter-gatherers. The mind is made up of many domain-specific mechanisms= “modules.” Modules solve problems repeatedly encountered by our ancestors. Only problems that recur over and over again can be subjected to natural selection. It takes a long time to change gene frequencies. If a problem is relatively rare, evolution can’t solve it by constructing a module.
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Each module is specifically designed to solve an adaptive problem: The mind as a Swiss Army knife.
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Evolutionary Psychology 101 Modules are “dedicated intelligences” that receive characteristic inputs and produce characteristic output. Modules operate unconsciously. E.g.: Male fighting fish have a module sensitive to the color or another male (=input); when they see this, there is a characteristic output (= aggression). This is a reflex: it operates without conscious deliberation.
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Modular Information processing domains: David Geary, The Origin of Mind , 2005. Folk Psychology Self Self awareness: Represent self as social being and have a sense of persistence of self through time Self schema: Knowledge of one’s own personality and relationships with other people Individual Nonverbal behavior: e.g., postural cues Facial expression Language Theory of Mind: Ability to infer intentions, beliefs, emotional states and future behavior of individuals; no evidence in monkeys; controversial in chimpanzees Person Schema: Knowledge of specific other people and their networks Group Kin recognition: Mothers and babies recognize each other by smell; children able to identify odor of full siblings, not half siblings or step- siblings In-group/Out-group
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Modular Information processing domains: David Geary, The Origin of Mind , 2005. Folk Biology All humans classify flora and fauna on basis of morphology, behavior, growth patterns, and ecological niche; Disruptions of anterior temporal cortex disrupts ability to name living but not non-living things. (Not conclusive) Folk Physics Systems sensitive to invariant features of physical space. For humans, this includes ability to mentally represent physical objects and manipulate the objects, as in tool use. These may engage working memory: spatial intelligence. Navigation via mental maps of routes and landmarks both involve parietal cortex, but route task also involved hippocampus. Posterior hippocampus of taxi drivers in London larger than age-matched men. Volume correlated with time spent as taxi driver (Maguire et al., 2000)
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Characteristics of Implicit and Explicit Cognitive Systems Implicit System Explicit System o Unconscious Conscious o Automatic Controllable o Fast Relatively slow o Evolved Early Evolved Late o Common among animals May be unique to humans
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Characteristics of Implicit and Explicit Cognitive Systems Implicit System Explicit System o Parallel Processing
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This note was uploaded on 02/05/2011 for the course PSY 463 taught by Professor Unknown during the Fall '10 term at CSU Long Beach.

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463Conscientiousness - Evolutionary Psychology 101 Humans...

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