The joint Research Training Group (RTG) is based at Ruhr-University Bochum and Osnabrück University. Methodologically, it connects philosophy of mind and cognition with empirical research in cognitive science. The main goal of the RTG is to identify deficits in traditional conceptions of the human mind and to refine and enhance the existing conceptions by drawing on new developments in cognitive science that have not yet made their way into the prevailing philosophical approaches.

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Second RTG-Workshop in Osnabrück

On the 5th and 6th of October 2017, the second workshop of the DFG research training group (RTG) “Situated Cognition” was held in Osnabrück. The first day was opened by two PhD students, who reported their progressing work and afterwards were given feedback by the audience. Matej Koher presented a paper where he suggests that explanations in cognitive science have wrongfully combined mechanistic decomposition with the representational theory of mind. He argues that these two accounts are incompatible. Afterwards Jumana... » read more

RTG Opening Workshop

We are happy to report that the opening workshop of the DFG research training group (RTG) “Situated Cognition”, held on June 23rd at Ruhr-University Bochum, was a complete success! The workshop was opened by the 12 PhD students, Benjamin Angerer, Lasse Bergmann, Samuel Cosper, Samantha Ehli, Dali Gamsakhurdashvili, Matej Kohar, Nicolas Kuske, Guido Robin Löhr, Jumana Morciglio, Julian Packheiser, Elmarie Venter, Julia Wolf, and the Post-Doc Dr. Beate Krickel. They presented the projects and introduced the key aspects of Situated... » read more


The Interaction of Bayesian Pragmatics and Lexical Semantics in Linguistic Interpretation: Using Event-related Potentials to Investigate Hearers’ Probabilistic Predictions

Markus Werning & Erica Cosentino (in: G. Gunzelmann, A. Howes, T. Tenbrink & E. Davelaar (Eds.): Proceedings of the 39th Annual Conference of the Cognitive Science Society. Austin, TX: Cognitive Science Society.) We contrast two views of how contextual influence on sentence meaning composition can be explained. The Semantic Similarity View maintains that discourse context affects sentence meaning mainly because of the semantic similarity between the words in the discourse context and the words in the sentence (as measured by Latent Semantic Analysis). The Free Pragmatic View, in contrast, defends the claim that also pragmatic aspects of the discourse context can affect sentence meaning composition. This effect can be quantitatively modelled by Bayesian Pragmatics. We introduce a Predictive Completion Task in which the hearer at every moment in a communicative situation has to generate a probabilistic prediction about how a discourse being uttered by the speaker is continued. We test the predictions of the two views in EEG using the well-established observation that the conditional probability of a word given a context is negatively correlated with the amplitude of its N400 component.