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Cognition and Conditionals
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Cognition and Conditionals: Probability and Logic in Human Thinking

Mike Oaksford and Nick Chater


The conditional, if…then, is probably the most important term in natural language and forms the core of systems of logic and mental representation. It occurs in all human languages and allows people to express their knowledge of the causal or law-like structure of the world and of others' behaviour. The way in which the conditional is modelled also determines the core of most logical systems. Unsurprisingly, it is also the most-researched expression in the psychology of human reasoning. This book brings together recent developments in the cognitive science and psychology of conditional reasoni ... More

Keywords: conditional reasoning, mental representation, human languages, behaviour, human reasoning, conditionals, psychology of reasoning, probabilistic reasoning, logical reasoning, mental logics

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2010 Print ISBN-13: 9780199233298
Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: March 2012 DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199233298.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Mike Oaksford, editor
Professor of Psychology, Department of Psychological Sciences, Birkbeck College, London, UK

Nick Chater, editor
Professor of Cognitive and Decision Sciences, Department of Psychology, University College London

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Front Matter

Part 1 Introduction

Part 2 Working memory: Function, representation, and process

Chapter 3 Conditionals and possibilities

Ruth M.J. Byrne, and Philip N. Johnson-Laird

Chapter 5 The logical response to a noisy world

Keith Stenning, and Michiel van Lambalgen

Chapter 6 Conditionals and probability

Vittorio Girotto, and Philip N. Johnson-Laird

Chapter 7 Causal discounting and conditional reasoning in children

Nilufa Ali, Anne Schlottmann, Abigail Shaw, Nick Chater, and Mike Oaksford

Chapter 8 Conditionals and non-constructive reasoning

David E. Over, Jonathan St. B.T. Evans, and Shira Elqayam

Chapter 9 The conditional in mental probability logic

Niki Pfeifer, and Gernot D. Kleiter

Part 3 Long term memory: Function, representation, and process

Part 4 Integrative approaches

Part 5 Epilogue

End Matter