Monday, July 2, 2018

Being Smart: A Probe

Image result for puzzle

Environmental & Science Education
Biological Evolution
Nature of Science
Edward Hessler

The puzzle solving abilities of social and solitary animals can help us understand what it means to be smart.

In this short video from Science (AAAS), behavioral biologists pose a challenge to two social and two solitary animals. They are confronted with a box in which there is a treat. The box has a "handle" that opens the box when it is tugged.

A simple experimental set-up designed to opens the door, if only a crack, to cognition.

The film includes a brief essay which includes another study with a larger sample of critters that draws the opposite conclusion!

This is the way science works--in fits and starts, tentative probes, new experiments and evidence that sometimes corroborates and other times contradicts. The puzzle is complex and the pieces are small and not so easily fit together to probide an explanation.

No comments:

Post a Comment