Categorical Perception - The Modern Definition of Categorical Perception - Learned CP

Learned CP

The Lane/Lawrence demonstrations, lately replicated and extended by Goldstone (1994), showed that CP can be induced by learning alone. There are also the countless categories cataloged in our dictionaries that, according to categorical perception, are unlikely to be inborn. Nativist theorists such as Fodor have sometimes seemed to suggest that all of our categories are inborn. There are recent demonstrations that, although the primary color and speech categories may be inborn, their boundaries can be modified or even lost as a result of learning, and weaker secondary boundaries can be generated by learning alone.

In the case of innate CP, our categorically biased sensory detectors pick out their prepared color and speech-sound categories far more readily and reliably than if our perception had been continuous.

Learning is a cognitive process that results in a relatively permanent change in behavior. Learning can influence perceptual processing. Learning influences perceptual processing by altering the way in which an individual perceives a given stimulus based on prior experience or knowledge. This means that the way something is perceived is changed by how it was seen, observed, or experienced before. The effects of learning can be studied in categorical perception by looking at the processes involved

Learned categorical perception can be divided into different processes through some comparisons. The processes can be divided into between category and within category groups of comparison . Between category groups are those that compare between two separate sets of objects. Within category groups are those that compare within one set of objects. Between subjects comparisons lead to a categorical expansion effect. A categorical expansion occurs when the classifications and boundaries for the category become broader, encompassing a larger set of objects. In other words, a categorical expansion is when the "edge lines" for defining a category become wider. Within subjects comparisons lead to a categorical compression effect. A categorical compression effect corresponds to the narrowing of category boundaries to include a smaller set of objects (the "edge lines" are closer together) . Therefore, between category groups lead to less rigid group definitions whereas within category groups lead to more rigid definitions.

Another method of comparison is to look at both supervised and unsupervised group comparisons. Supervised groups are those for which categories have been provided, meaning that the category has been defined previously or given a label; unsupervised groups are groups for which categories are created, meaning that the categories will be defined as needed and are not labeled.

In studying learned categorical perception, themes are important. Learning categories is influenced by the presence of themes. Themes increase quality of learning. This is seen especially in cases where the existing themes are opposite. In learned categorical perception, themes serve as cues for different categories. They assist in designating what to look for when placing objects into their categories. For example, when perceiving shapes, angles are a theme. The number of angles and their size provide more information about the shape and cue different categories. Three angles would cue a triangle, whereas four might cue a rectangle or a square. Opposite to the theme of angles would be the theme of circularity. The stark contrast between the sharp contour of an angle and the round curvature of a circle make it easier to learn.

Similar to themes, labels are also important to learned categorical perception. Labels are “noun-like” titles that can encourage categorical processing with a focus on similarities. The strength of a label can be determined by three factors: analysis of affective (or emotional) strength, permeability (the ability to break through) of boundaries, and a judgment (measurement of rigidity) of discreteness. Sources of labels differ, and, similar to unsupervised/supervised categories, are either created or already exist. Labels effect perception regardless of their source. Peers, individuals, experts, cultures, and communities can create labels. The source doesn’t appear to matter as much as mere presence of a label, what matters is that there is a label. There is a positive correlation between strength of the label (combination of three factors) and the degree to which the label effects perception, meaning that the stronger the label, the more the label effects perception.

Cues used in learned categorical perception can foster easier recall and access of prior knowledge in the process of learning and using categories. An item in a category can be easier to recall if the category has a cue for the memory. As discussed, labels and themes both function as cues for categories, and, therefore, aid in the memory of these categories and the features of the objects belonging to them.

There are several brain structures at work that promote learned categorical perception. The areas and structures involved include: neurons, the prefrontal cortex, and the inferotemporal cortex. Neurons in general are linked to all processes in the brain and, therefore, facilitate learned categorical perception. They send the messages between brain areas and facilitate the visual and linguistic processing of the category. The prefrontal cortex is involved in “forming strong categorical representations.” The inferotemporal cortex has cells that code for different object categories and are turned along diagnostic category dimensions, areas distinguishing category boundaries.

The learning of categories and categorical perception can be improved through adding verbal labels, making themes relevant to the self, making more separate categories, and by targeting similar features that make it easier to form and define categories.

Learned categorical perception occurs not only in human species but has been demonstrated in animal species as well. Studies have targeted categorical perception using humans, monkeys, rodents, birds, frogs. These studies have led to numerous discoveries. They focus primarily on learning the boundaries of categories, where inclusion begins and ends, and they support the hypothesis that categorical perception does have a learned component.

Read more about this topic:  Categorical Perception, The Modern Definition of Categorical Perception

Other articles related to "cp":

United States Marine Corps Amphibious Reconnaissance Battalion - World War II-era - The Gilbert Islands - Apamama, November 1943
... engineers and a light machine gun section, established the beachhead and command post (CP) ... Shinn returned to the CP and reported his findings ... Back at the command post (CP), a new word came in from the natives that the Japanese had gathered all their weapons and were moving rapidly to the barge site ...

Famous quotes containing the word learned:

    Well gentlemen, this is it. This is what we’ve been waiting for. Tonight your target is Tokyo. And you’re gonna play ‘em the Star Spangled Banner with two-ton bombs. All you’ve got to do is to remember what you’ve learned and follow your squadron leaders. They’ll get you in, and they’ll get you out. Any questions? All right that’s all. Good luck to you. Give ‘em hell.
    Dudley Nichols (1895–1960)