Representation of Knowledge

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Where is the hierarchical network of concepts stored?
In the semantic memory.
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What are the three theories of concept storage?
Feature lists in memory, as prototypes in memory, as labelled memory traces of instances
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What do concepts enable us to do?
Generalise from past experience of instances to predict properties of new instances.
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What must categories be in order to use them for prediction?
Natural kinds, meaning there is some basis for generalisation.
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Why do conceptual hierarchies provide economy of representation?
Properties common to all members can be stored just once, and subordinate categories "inherit" properties of superordinate.
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What is the economy principle?
RTs for verifying prepositions are less when the link between preposition and article is closer. Retrieval time is determined by number of links between a category and the property.
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What else can verification time be influence by (3)?
When concepts are acquired in life, how familiar a concept is, typicality.
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At what level to people tend to name at?
Basic level.
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What are the other two levels people learn later in life?
Abstract and specific.
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How do we classify things?
By reference to a mental definition listing features of a category's members.
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What are necessary/ essential features?
Features of a category that are more than merely frequently associated with a member.
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What are sufficient features?
Multiple features of a category that equally are sufficient for placing a member in that category.
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What are some priori arguments against the classical view (3)?
For many concepts its hard to come up with common-sense defining factors, some categories seem to have no common core of defining features (e.g. game).
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Why might all members of a category not be equal (3)?
Fuzziness of category boundaries, typicality effects, similarity ratings.
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What are the effects of typicality?
When asked to generate members of a category, people are more likely to name typical members first. Children learn typical members earlier.
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How to RTs differ between more and less typical instances?
More typical instances produce faster RTs.
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What is modern feature-list theory?
Categorisation by probabilistic or weighted combination of characteristic features.
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How is category membership determined in feature-list theory?
By which category's features produce the highest weighted sum of matching features.
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What are the implications of feature-list theory (4)?
Typical members have more high-weight features, category boundaries are fuzzy, context can influence weight of features, similar members have more features in common.
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What is prototype theory?
The idea that concepts are represented in the mind by an average or ideal member of the category, known as the "prototype."
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How can similarity be visualised?
As distance in multidimensional space.
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What does prototype theory accommodate (2)?
Fuzziness of boundaries, typicality.
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When might prototype theory not be applicable?
When features are discrete, as opposed to continuous.
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What theory combines prototype and feature-list theory and why might it be better?
Hybrid theory, because it includes discrete and continuous properties.
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What are instance/ exemplar theories?
Involve no abstract representation, but suggests that we retain in memory record of many labelled instances. We assign a stimulus based n how similar it is to previous instances.
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Card 2

Front

What are the three theories of concept storage?

Back

Feature lists in memory, as prototypes in memory, as labelled memory traces of instances

Card 3

Front

What do concepts enable us to do?

Back

Preview of the front of card 3

Card 4

Front

What must categories be in order to use them for prediction?

Back

Preview of the front of card 4

Card 5

Front

Why do conceptual hierarchies provide economy of representation?

Back

Preview of the front of card 5
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