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Tutorials

Tutorials

Tutorials allow participants to gain new insights, knowledge, and skills from a range of topics in the field of cognitive science. Many incorporate hands-on activities. The tutorials will be held the day before the main conference, on August 10, 2016. The location will be the same as the main conference.

Analysing discourse relations in natural language: The case of space and time
(Full day tutorial)
Thora Tenbrink

Discourse relations are explicit or implicit links between utterances and sentences or sentence parts that reflect how a speaker conceptualizes the relationships between various aspects of what they are saying. In this tutorial, we will explore these effects by focusing on how speakers conceptualize and express relationships in time and space in discourse (Tenbrink, 2007). In the first half, we will discuss the linguistic options in this regard, and work out some principles for (and differences between) temporal and spatial relationships. In the second half, we will look at how these effects can be investigated by a systematic analysis of speakers' discourse produced under controlled circumstances. This includes a brief introduction to the methodology of Cognitive Discourse Analysis (Tenbrink, 2015).

Cognitive models of transfer of cognitive skills
(Full day tutorial)
Niels Taatgen

The chief goal of the tutorial is to give participants some hands-on experience with the PRIMs cognitive architecture. This system is derived from ACT-R theory but uses more basic primitive information processing units (the PRIMs), which can be clustered into mental operators that perform tasks. Many of these clusters are task-general, and can thus be conserved across different tasks. The PRIMs application is easy to use, and gives a good overview of how tasks are interconnected and what the results of running models are. It will therefore start with a relatively brief theoretical overview, followed by a small exercise in which participants have to construct a small model that performs addition by counting, in order to investigate the transfer between regular counting and counting as part of doing addition. The afternoon session will at example of how PRIMs can model a case of far transfer, in which training on task switching improves the model's performance on the Stroop task (we will look at data from Karbach & Kray, 2009, for this). In the subsequent exercise, participants will extend that model with a working memory task. We will end the session with some discussion about how PRIMs can discover its own knowledge, and future directions of the architecture.

Quantum Models of Cognition and Decision
(Full day tutorial)
Jennifer Trueblood, James Yearsley, Peter Kvam, Zheng (Joyce) Wang, and Jerome Busemeyer

This full day tutorial is an exposition of a rapidly growing new alternative approach to building computational models of cognition and decision based on quantum theory. This tutorial will provide an exposition of the basic assumptions of classical versus quantum theories. These basic assumptions will be examined, side-by-side, in a parallel and elementary manner. We will show that quantum theory provides a unified and powerful explanation for a wide variety of paradoxes found in human cognition and decision ranging from attitude, inference, causal reasoning, judgment and decision, and memory. This tutorial introduces and trains cognitive scientists on this promising new theoretical and modeling approach.

Meta-Analytic Methods for Cognitive Science
(Full day tutorial)
Sho Tsuji, Molly Lewis, Chris Bergmann, Michael Frank, and Alejandrina Cristia

Meta-analysis is a powerful yet underused tool in cognitive science. It allows researchers to leverage entire bodies of literature to get a broad and quantitative overview of a particular phenomenon, thereby promoting theory development, and to make more precise estimates of effect sizes, which enables robust planning of prospective studies (e.g. through power analyses). In this tutorial, we will introduce meta-analysis as a tool with which to inform everyday research, and provide participants with hands-on experience conducting their own meta-analysis.
We will also present an online platform we have developed for conducting meta-analyses in the field of language development: MetaLab.

Wallace: Automating Cultural Evolution Experiments Through Crowdsourcing
(Full day tutorial)
Jordan Suchow, Thomas Morgan, Jessica Hamrick, Michael Pacer, Stephan Meylan, and Thomas Griffiths

The tutorial will include a mix of presentations, demonstrations, and hand-on activities with the goal of giving attendees enough knowledge to be able to use Wallace to run their own studies and to understand the new scale of experimentation that Wallace makes feasible. The tutorial will begin with a 60 minute presentation on cultural evolution experiments, describing the intellectual history of the approach, common experimental designs, and the most notable results produced in these paradigms. After this, we will introduce attendees to Wallace itself. The day will conclude with an open discussion section where we will cover issues that came up during the day, experimenter best practices, and how Wallace compares with other existing experimental platforms.