ERIC Number: ED239244
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1983-Dec
More on the Functional View of Cognition: A Biofunctional Model of Mental Content, Mental Structures, Awareness, and Attention. Technical Report No. 304.
Iran-Nejad, Asghar; Ortony, Andrew
Noting that current cognitive theories focus on the belief that knowledge is an organized collection of long-term structures upon which various processing mechanisms operate, this paper argues that mental functioning may be more readily characterized if the idea of abstract long-term associations and structures is abandoned. It proposes a model of cognition in which mental relations are transient functional relations, and in which psychological permanence is a functional characteristic of the neuronal system. It explains cognition and other aspects of mental life in terms of the activity of anatomically distributed constellations of neuronal elements, which are conceived of as physiological microsystems that are capable of generating specialized awareness experiences. The paper terms the overall mental counterpart of the combined activity of these elements "schema-of-the-moment" (SOM), a constantly changing phenomenon involving both global and focal experiences. It then discusses the three distinguishable, but not separate, components of SOM: the background, dominant, and independently functioning components. (Author/FL)
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: National Academy of Education, Washington, DC.; National Inst. of Education (ED), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: Illinois Univ., Urbana. Center for the Study of Reading.; Bolt, Beranek and Newman, Inc., Cambridge, MA.