What Is Cognitive Science?


In this richly detailed analysis, Barbara Von Eckardt lays the foundations for understanding what it means to be a cognitive scientist. She characterizes the basic assumptions that define the cognitive science approach and systematically sorts out a host of recent and the controversies surrounding them.

Von Eckardt takes issue with those who argue that there is no agreed-upon research paradigm and agreed-upon set of assumptions or methods in cognitive science, and with those who believe that the field should not be so committed. She argues that there is indeed a framework of shared commitments that includes basic questions guiding research, substantive assumptions constraining how those questions are to be answered, and methodological assumptions about how to find those answers.

A Bradford Book

Table of Contents

  1. Acknowledgments
  2. Introduction
  3. 1. Some Preliminaries
  4. 2. The Domain and the Basic Questions
  5. 3. The Computational Assumption
  6. 4. Representation in General
  7. 5. Mental Representation
  8. 6. Current Approaches to Content Determination
  9. 7. Constraints on a Theory of Content Determination
  10. 8. Significance
  11. 9. The Methodological Assumptions
  12. Appendix: Characterizing an Immature Science
  13. Notes
  14. Glossary
  15. Abbreviations
  16. Technical Terms
  17. References
  18. Supplementary Readings
  19. Index