Executive functions are cognitive gadgets

Behavioral and Brain Sciences 42 (2019)
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Abstract

Many psychologists and neuroscientists still see executive functions as independent, domain-general, supervisory functions that are often dissociated from more “low-level” associative learning. Here, we suggest that executive functions very much build on associative learning, and argue that executive functions might be better understood as culture-sensitive cognitive gadgets, rather than as ready-made cognitive instincts.

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