The Comparative Cognition Laboratory is a part of the Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences at The University of Iowa. Our research concerns the experimental investigation of cognitive processes in adaptive behavior, with an overarching interest in comparing cognition in humans and nonhuman animals. Specific research topics include: category learning, cognitive flexibility, and same-different conceptualization. The evidence that we collect constantly surprises us and forces us to view human cognition in a fresh light.
Resolving the Associative Learning Paradox
How powerful is associative learning? On the one hand, it powers amazing feats of artificial intelligence. On the other hand, it is deemed to be a simple and limited form of animal and human learning.
In the March 2023 issue of Current Biology, Wasserman et al. show that, via associative learning, pigeons learn a novel categorization task that can stump more sophisticated forms of learning.