Metacognitive Diversity: An Interdisciplinary Approach


Keynote Speaker

Ecole Normale Supérieure, Paris

While cognitive diversity has become an important subject of research, metacognitive diversity is still poorly understood. Metacognition refers to the set of conscious or unconscious processes with which agents contextually control their first-order cognitive activity (such as perceiving, remembering, learning, or problem solving) by assessing its feasibility or likelihood of success. Metacognitive skills are involved in many daily activities, such as conversing, reading, planning, and forming collaborations. Some of these skills are evenly distributed across cultures, e.g., distinguishing familiar from new environments, informative from repetitive messages, difficult from easy cognitive tasks. Others, however, seem to be socially constructed, or differentially shaped by social norms, linguistic and conversational usage, educational methods, religious practices, and self-related attitudes. Sensitivity to truth, epistemic authority, social consensus, evidentiality, uncertainty, and thought coherence seems to vary significantly across languages and cultures. Social norms, models of mind, and stereotypical attitudes about the self might also deeply influence how epistemic self-evaluation is conducted, and how it affects behavior.

The aim of this conference is to study these and similar questions with interdisciplinary methods: Cross-cultural evidence from linguistics, developmental, experimental, and social psychology, and anthropology, will be discussed with the goal of examining metacognitive diversity and its cultural, social, institutional, or psychological sources.

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Organized by: Joëlle Proust and Martin Fortier (Institut Jean-Nicod)
Location: Ecole Normale Supérieure, Salle Dussane, 45 rue d'Ulm, 75005, Paris