Embodied Cognition at the Crossroads of
Philosophy, Linguistics, Psychology and Artificial Intelligence

May 13-15, 2021, Cluj-Napoca, ROMANIA

Section 2B


2B: Embodied learning



Thursday 13/5, 14:30-15:50



Daniela Roman, Lioara Coturbaș

Affiliation: University of Oradea
Title: Embodied cognition - topic of reflection for the optimization of psychological approach in education
Abstract: The central thesis of the embodied cognition paradigm is represented by the idea that cognition depends on the body, its states, but also on the contexts in which it is located. In other words, cognition is embodied in the sensory-motor, in emotions and in external stimuli throughout development. Thus, abstract cognition, which is related to adulthood, is also embodied. Starting from these data derived from consistent research, we will x-ray the aspects/variables mentioned above, in direct relation with the teaching-learning process. Thus, we postulated that an approach of teaching more focused on embodying cognition could optimize learning, enable cognition to become more mature and consequently could help children to function at the level of their potential. In our study, we started from the hypothesis that a teaching style based on a flexible approach, respectively on conceptual change and not on the transmission of information could help the students/pupils to develop a more embodied, more flexible and adaptive cognition. Embodied, interactive teaching can represent a support in guiding cognitive and learning processes. Interactive learning has maximum effectiveness in helping students move through the ZPD. More specifically, it helps students/pupils to assimilate and interpret new knowledge more effectively, having the opportunity to relate themselves to a rich and well-organized storage of mental representations of what they already know, but also to become more aware of what they do not know. Problem solving is achieved in a certain context; the ability to form judgments also depends on the degree of familiarity with the way things are accomplished, with the expectations and demands of the teacher. The presentation will finish with a critical analysis of the challenges generated by this paradigm, of the situation encountered in schools, dilemmas that raise complex questions, but also viable solutions. Approaching teaching from the perspective of the practitioner with the mind of a scientist can provide keys for optimizing academic learning, but also for counseling children with potential/performances below expectations.


Diego S. Maranan

Affiliation: University of the Philippines Open University
Title: Haplós: Structured vibrotactile stimulation for embodied learning
Abstract: This poster describes the design, development, and evaluation of Haplós, a wearable technology that aims to increase body awareness through the structured application of vibrotactile stimulation on the skin. Inspired by principles of somatic methodologies for embodied learning and experimental research on the effects of tactile stimulation on sensorimotor cortical organization, Haplós appears to alter the perception of the size, shape, and connectedness of the physical self. We review existing vibrotactile technologies and known uses of vibrotactile stimuli; describe the hardware, textile, and software components of Haplós; describe results from a quasi-experimental workshop to evaluate Haplós; and discuss future research and development directions.


Laurent M Chaudron, Laura Christon

Affiliation: Theorin-Lab and French Air & Space Force Research Center; Montpellier University and Safetyn SA
Title: The Hyper-Metacognition in Effective Demonstration
Abstract: The aim of this paper is to describe an ongoing research dedicated to investigate the cognitive activity of a teacher or a coach during an effective demonstration of a technical gesture. In professional or leisure situations, any learning sequence in which the demonstration of a gesture is required can be considered as a standard embodied cognition case. Indeed, the demonstrator - say D - has to monitor her.his movement - M - thanks to two means: #1 the classical exteroceptive and proprioceptive feedback loops and: #2 the appearance of the variant M* of the motion M she.he mentally sees so as it provides inside each learning students - {S1, ...,Sn} - the optimal neuro-cognitive reaction which will induce the best gesture. Roughly said: the full awareness of D is required in a real time self-imagery. A first conceptual analysis reveals that the #1 classical feedback control loop of M requires a standard metacognitive activity of D which can be seen as a multiple-task: 'I am an skillfull practitioner (and I know that), but I must pay attention to control the various phases of my praxies in M so as to monitor its temporo-spatial characteristics'. This goes clearly far beyond the canonical mental imagery and send D back to her.his own cognitive learning phase as a beginner. Thus the two primal levels of the whole enactive set K of knowledge and praxies of D are: K = K_p u K_m p = praxies, knowledge and believes (ie: the fundamental elements of the embodied cognition of D) ; m = meta-knowledge. Formally K_p are arguments of the K_p functions and properties. The pivotal point lies in the upper level #2: D must monitor both the praxies K_p and their regulations K_m so as to induce the best learning process inside each watching learner. This implies a third level: the *hyper-metacognition* K_h which functors are applied to K_m and K_p in multiplexed loops: 'Considering the dynamic image M* I keep in my mind as the most effective demonstration of the gesture M, I do monitor my praxies and their characteristics so as to perform this optimal performance'. The underlying hyper-knowledge of D involved in this process is the generic model S* of student that D uses to identify the optimal M*. This can be considered as an ultimate prototype of embodied cognition combining metacognition and hypercognition. An empirical proto-test has been successfully conducted for 3 years among a population of future teacher of japanese fencing: the model is proposed as a simple three layers grid: K_p: I know how to do M and how explain it, K_m: I know how to control and describe the characteristics of M and its variants, K_h: I know the optimal M* dedicated to the learning process. The model is currently mathematically developped so as to provide predictive capabilities allowing teachers and coaches to enrich their didactic efficiency. Main References Flavell, Metacognitive aspects of problem solving. 1976 Chaudron et al. Meta-Cognitive Skills Modeling, Neuroergonomics Axa- Isae 2016.


Radostina Minina

Affiliation: Bulgarian Acedemy of Scienses
Title: Embodied Cognition And Personal Identity
Abstract: "One of the consequences of extended mind thesis (EMT) (Clark and Chalmers) is the possibility of extended personal identity. I am focusing on answering the question whether this idea is acceptable for the body identity criterion.
The idea of extended identity (EI) was created by Andy Clark and David Chalmers (1988). Their assumption is that the self is extended and distributed beyond the borders of the body in the environment as a consequence of the understanding that the personal identity is following the mind and some parts of a person's identity can be determined by their environment.

The EMT proposes that some objects in the external environment can be part of a cognitive process and in that way function as extensions of the mind itself. Examples of such objects are written calculations, a diary, or a PC; in general, it concerns objects that store information. For Clark and Chalmers the inner processes of knowledge acquisition are equivalent to the external objects.

Contemporary researches on the connection between personal identity and extended cognition (Wilson, Lenard 2014) are based on so called neo-Lockean approach of taking the autobiographical memory as a central for the personhood. Experimental data suggest that in patients with Alzheimer's or other forms of dementia have a negative effect on their sense of self identity (Addis and Tippett 2004). They support their argument based on the extension of memory and recollection or the so-called personal narrative. These include the idea of transactive memory (shared memory between two or more agents) and memory involving external artefacts.

I am using the body criterion in my research and the forms of technologies used for body extension in the sense of extending human body capabilities. I am giving examples of people with motor disabilities, who use mobility devices, as well as cases of autoimmune diseases to illustrate the possible extension or reduction of body identity. The center of my research is the problem of qualia or subjective experience and the connection between mind and body in forming the concept of the self. I argue that the abilities neither end nor begin at the skin, but instead supervene on and extend to the world in which one lives and on which one ever depends. For example, my ability to run depends on some natural and social conditions. It of course also involves my particular body and its functioning. But my body is just one component. Even if I lacked lower limbs, I might run using prosthetics. Given current technologies, I might even be faster than someone with “organic” legs. It is not a matter of whether certain structures exist in the environment, but of how the identity, individual history, ancestral history, and the social components interact with the environment. Just as the capability of running is not limited to the biological body. Extension makes us what we are. I argue that the extensions of the mind cannot be understood without the extensions of the body, and vice versa."


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