CHANGING PERSPECTIVES IN COGNITIVE NEUROPSYCHOLOGY*

Authors:
O.S.M. Marin, Christine Glenn, J.A. Walker
Published Online:
27 Sep 2007
DOI:
10.1080/00207598208247443
Pages:
231-257
Volume/Issue No:
Volume 17 Issue 1-4

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Neuropsychology, the study of behavioral and mental disorders resulting from brain damage, seeks to integrate observable mental and motor functions with knowledge of nervous system structure and function. The first part of this paper deals with the empirical and theoretical contributions that arise from the study of classical clinical syndromes, from cognitive psychology based on information processing, and from the computationally‐based study of complex cognitive systems such as language. The second part of this paper deals with two areas of neuropsychological research, memory mechanisms and motor behavior, that exemplify some of the methodological and conceptual problems that arise in trying to bridge animal and human studies, or psychological and physiological levels of analysis. Suggestions are made for how greater progress can be made by considering fundamental processes, and, by focusing on levels of abstraction useful to both the psychologist and the biologist. The last part of the paper briefly discusses some of the major issues involved in an attempt to establish a neurobiologically‐based theory of human behavioral and mental function.

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