Intelligence Is Defined as the Ability to Acquire and Apply Knowledge

Only available on StudyMode
  • Download(s) : 135
  • Published : January 20, 2013
Open Document
Text Preview
Intelligence is defined as the ability to acquire and apply knowledge. Psychologists have exploited this concept in many ways to try and determine whether non-human animals are capable of intelligence. From social learning it is logical to assume that, since non-human animals are able to both acquire and use new behaviours, they must be intelligent in some way. Heyes stated that there are 6 types of behaviour which suggest intelligence. These are imitation, self-recognition, social relationship formation, role-taking, deception and perspective taking. These 6 behaviours are referred to as the theory of mind (ToM). Imitation is the ability to copy another's behaviour; this may be because the behaviour is adaptive. Kawai studied Japanese macaques and found that due to one monkey's actions (Imo), a large amount of the macaque population acquired a useful behaviour in a 5-year period. Kawai reported that Imo would wash her sweet potatoes before consumption, later other macaque monkeys showed the same behaviour. Kawai thus suggested that the rest of the monkeys had imitated Imo's behaviour. Galef suggested that this behaviour was due to social learning. Given the time period, of 5 years, it is possible that other monkeys had learned this potato washing behaviour by themselves instead of imitating Imo. The observers in this experiment provided the sweet potatoes, and would pay more attention to the monkeys that washed the potatoes. This attention would be a reinforcer of the behaviour causing other monkeys to copy it. Although there is not enough supportive evidence for imitation, some behaviour can be linked to association learning e.g. conditioning through reinforcement. Elf-recognition is the ability to realise that an image in the mirror is in fact a reflection of oneself. This gives a good basis to ToM as intelligence is required to recognise that the mirror image is not another individual. This behaviour has been reported in the higher primates. Gallup's...
tracking img