Educating animals (not just signaling)

Formal training programs, which can be called education, enhance cognition in human and nonhuman animals alike. However, even informal exposure to human contact in human environments can enhance cognition. We review selected literature to compare animals’ behavior with objects among keas and great apes, the taxa that best allow systematic comparison of the behavior of wild animals with that of those in human environments such as homes, zoos, and rehabilitation centers. In all cases, we find that animals in human environments do much more with objects. Following and expanding on the explanations of several previous authors, we propose that living in human environments and the opportunities to observe and manipulate human-made objects help to develop motor skills, embodied cognition, and the use of objects to extend cognition in the animals. Living in a human world also furnishes the animals with more time for such activities, in that the time needed for foraging for food is reduced, and furnishes opportunities for social learning, including emulation, an attempt to achieve the goals of a model, and program-level imitation, in which the imitator reproduces the organizational structure of goal-directed actions without necessarily copying all the details. All these factors let these animals learn about the affordances of many objects and make them better able to come up with solutions to physical problems.

The paper is by Ken Cheng and Richard W. Byrne, via the excellent Kevin Lewis.

Comments

Isn't this also postulated as an explanation for the Flynn effect ?

That is ѕuch a enjoyabⅼe spогt and we had a perfect
birthday Dɑddy.? Larry addeⅾ. ?Can we pⅼay ?What?s the most effective factor about God?

tomоrrow too?? he beggeɗ his Mommy.

Somebody is signalling as hard as they can.

My puppy collects shoes

Too bad the nonhuman animals are subject to behavioral biases: https://www.nytimes.com/2018/07/12/health/sunk-costs-decisions.html

Monkey see, monkey do, in the Straussian observation of Rene Girard.

"Living in a human world also furnishes the animals with more time for such activities, in that the time needed for foraging for food is reduced"

Great opportunity cost example.

The only objects our cat manipulates are us.

Sounds like an argument

By a dog

To come inside the house.

If, after you let the dog in the house,

You believe that your dog has acquired cognitive skills,

And is talking to you,

Get help.

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