Psychological Nativism
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Psychological Nativism
In the field of psychology, nativism is the view that certain skills or abilities are "native" or hard-wired into the brain at birth. This is in contrast to the "blank slate" or tabula rasa view, which states that the brain has inborn capabilities for learning from the environment but does not contain content such as innate beliefs. This factor contributes to the ongoing nature versus nurture dispute, one borne from the current difficulty of reverse engineering the subconscious operations of the brain, especially the human brain. Some nativists believe that specific beliefs or preferences are "hard-wired". For example, one might argue that some moral intuitions are innate or that color preferences are innate. A less established argument is that nature supplies the human mind with specialized learning devices. This latter view differs from empiricism only to the extent that the algorithms that translate experience into information may be more complex and specialized in nativist the ...
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Psychology
Psychology is the scientific study of mind and behavior. Psychology includes the study of conscious and unconscious phenomena, including feelings and thoughts. It is an academic discipline of immense scope, crossing the boundaries between the natural and social sciences. Psychologists seek an understanding of the emergent properties of brains, linking the discipline to neuroscience. As social scientists, psychologists aim to understand the behavior of individuals and groups.Fernald LD (2008)''Psychology: Six perspectives'' (pp.12–15). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications.Hockenbury & Hockenbury. Psychology. Worth Publishers, 2010. Ψ (''psi''), the first letter of the Greek word ''psyche'' from which the term psychology is derived (see below), is commonly associated with the science. A professional practitioner or researcher involved in the discipline is called a psychologist. Some psychologists can also be classified as behavioral or cognitive scientists. Some psyc ...
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Predicate (grammar)
The term predicate is used in one of two ways in linguistics and its subfields. The first defines a predicate as everything in a standard declarative sentence except the subject, and the other views it as just the main content verb or associated predicative expression of a clause. Thus, by the first definition the predicate of the sentence ''Frank likes cake'' is ''likes cake''. By the second definition, the predicate of the same sentence is just the content verb ''likes'', whereby ''Frank'' and ''cake'' are the arguments of this predicate. Differences between these two definitions can lead to confusion. Syntax Traditional grammar The notion of a predicate in traditional grammar traces back to Aristotelian logic. A predicate is seen as a property that a subject has or is characterized by. A predicate is therefore an expression that can be ''true of'' something. Thus, the expression "is moving" is true of anything that is moving. This classical understanding of predicates ...
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Literacy
Literacy in its broadest sense describes "particular ways of thinking about and doing reading and writing" with the purpose of understanding or expressing thoughts or ideas in written form in some specific context of use. In other words, humans in literate societies have sets of practices for producing and consuming writing, and they also have beliefs about these practices. Reading, in this view, is always reading something for some purpose; writing is always writing something for someone for some particular ends. Beliefs about reading and writing and its value for society and for the individual always influence the ways literacy is taught, learned, and practiced over the lifespan. Some researchers suggest that the history of interest in the concept of "literacy" can be divided into two periods. Firstly is the period before 1950, when literacy was understood solely as alphabetical literacy (word and letter recognition). Secondly is the period after 1950, when literacy slowly ...
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Language Acquisition
Language acquisition is the process by which humans acquire the capacity to perceive and comprehend language (in other words, gain the ability to be aware of language and to understand it), as well as to produce and use words and sentences to communicate. Language acquisition involves structures, rules and representation. The capacity to use language successfully requires one to acquire a range of tools including phonology, morphology, syntax, semantics, and an extensive vocabulary. Language can be vocalized as in speech, or manual as in sign. Human language capacity is represented in the brain. Even though human language capacity is finite, one can say and understand an infinite number of sentences, which is based on a syntactic principle called recursion. Evidence suggests that every individual has three recursive mechanisms that allow sentences to go indeterminately. These three mechanisms are: ''relativization'', ''complementation'' and ''coordination''. There are two ma ...
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The Blank Slate
''The Blank Slate: The Modern Denial of Human Nature'' is a best-selling 2002 book by the cognitive psychologist Steven Pinker, in which the author makes a case against tabula rasa models in the social sciences, arguing that human behavior is substantially shaped by evolutionary psychological adaptations. The book was nominated for the 2003 Aventis Prizes and was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize. Summary Pinker argues that modern science has challenged three "linked dogmas" that constitute the dominant view of human nature in intellectual life: * the blank slate ''Tabula rasa'' (; "blank slate") is the theory that individuals are born without built-in mental content, and therefore all knowledge comes from experience or perception. Epistemological proponents of ''tabula rasa'' disagree with the doctri ... (the mind has no innate traits)—empiricism * the noble savage (people are born good and corrupted by society)—romanticism * the ghost in the machine (each of us ha ...
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