Using robots to understand animal cognition

Frohnwieser, Anna and Murray, John and Pike, Thomas W. and Wilkinson, Anna (2016) Using robots to understand animal cognition. Journal of the Experimental Analysis of Behavior, 105 (1). pp. 14-22. ISSN 0022-5002

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Abstract

In recent years, robotic animals and humans have been used to answer a variety of questions related to behavior. In the case of animal behavior, these efforts have largely been in the field of behavioral ecology. They have proved to be a useful tool for this enterprise as they allow the presentation of naturalistic social stimuli whilst providing the experimenter with full control of the stimulus. In interactive experiments, the behavior of robots can be controlled in a manner that is impossible with real animals, making them ideal instruments for the study of social stimuli in animals. This paper provides an overview of the current state of the field and considers the impact that the use of robots could have on fundamental questions related to comparative psychology: namely, perception, spatial cognition, social cognition, and early cognitive development. We make the case that the use of robots to investigate these key areas could have an important impact on the field of animal cognition.

Additional Information:Special Issue on Comparative Cognition
Keywords:Behaviour, Animal cognition, Robot, Perception, Spatial Cognition, Social Cognition, Developmental Cognition, JCNotOpen
Subjects:H Engineering > H670 Robotics and Cybernetics
C Biological Sciences > C850 Cognitive Psychology
Divisions:College of Science > School of Computer Science
College of Science > School of Life Sciences
ID Code:19596
Deposited On:16 Nov 2015 17:02

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