gesture and cognition

cogs 155 (winter '17)

 

department of cognitive science

university of california, san diego

 

 

NEW: Midterm 2 review

Projects: Examples (presentation slides) of good quality projects: "A" grade; "A+" grade.

 

 

 

 

 

instructor:

prof. rafael núñez

office hours:

by appointment

lectures:

tuesday & thursday, 11:00-12:20am (wlh 2115)

 

teaching assistant (office hours):

josephine relaford-doyle (thursday 1-2pm or by appt., csb 235)

 

undergrad. coordinator :

thanh maxwell

 

 

description:

The goal of this course is to provide a general overview of a relatively new field: the study of spontaneous (hand and body) gestures and their relationship to speech and cognition. This field is located at the conjunction of many disciplines, such as linguistics, psychology, neuroscience, neuropsychology, anthropology, and even non-human animal studies. The course will cover, typologies of gesture, the relationship between gesture and speech, the role of gestures in the evolution of language, the development of gesture production, the comprehension of gestural signals, brain bases of the gesture-speech integration, gesture production and conceptual systems, and gestural behavior in special populations. We will also explore some methodological and theoretical implications of these findings for embodied cognition. And I hope we’ll have a lot of fun!

 

   

 

lectures and sections :

Attending lectures is (not mandatory— see exceptions below) but very important! Lectures will cover a broad range of topics, sometimes overlapping with the reading materials. This class does not have sections.

textbook and readings:

 

This course does not have a specific textbook. Instead, we will read academic articles from various sources (see schedule below).

 

   

 

   

 

reading assignments:

There will be weekly reading assignments whose content will be covered by corresponding midterms.

 

Evaluation:

There will be two midterms and a final group project (Guidelines to be posted here). The midterms will cover material from the lectures as well as from the reading assignments. This course will not have a final exam. Instead, each student will participate in a group project (4 students per group), which will consist of a written document and a final presentation at the end of the course (guidelines to be posted here). An essential criterion of the evaluation of this group project is how well the work (both, presentation and text) engages with the material covered in the course. Attendance during the days of group presentations (3/9, 3/14, 3/16) is mandatory.

 

   

 

grading and scale :

60% of the course grade will come from the two midterms (30% each), and 40% from the final group project (20% for the presentation and 20% for the written document).
Grades will be based on the following scale (not curved): A:85-100 B:70-84.99 C:55-69.99 D:40-54.99 F:0-39.99

 

 

 

academic dishonesty:

This course does not tolerate academic dishonesty and follows UCSD policy on this matter. For more information click here.

 

 

tentative

schedule:

 

 

   

 

Date

reading assignments

 

contents

complementary suggested readings

W1

Tu 1/10

McNeill, D. (2000). Introduction. Language and Gesture.

Presentation, syllabus, schedule; Introduction. The phenomenon.

(no slides)

 

 

W1

Th 1/12

McNeill, D. (1992). Hand and Mind. Ch. 3.

 

Gesture: The phenomenon (cont.) Basic concepts, typologies of gesture and definitions

(Slides lecture 2)

McNeill, D. (1992). Hand and Mind. Ch. 4.

Goldin-Meadow, S. (2003). How Our Hands Help us Think. Ch. 1.

W2

Tu 1/17

McNeill, D. (1985). So you think gestures are nonverbal?

 

Homework 1

(due 1/24)

 

Why has it been problematic to study gesture? Why did it take so long?

 

 

(Slides lecture 3)

Feyereisen, P. (1987). A reply to McNeill (1985).

W2

Th 1/19

Kendon, A. (2000). Language and Gesture: unity or duality?,

The Gesture-speech relationship


Mayberry, R. & Jaques, J. (2000). Gesture production during stuttered speech: insights into the nature of gesture-speech integration.

W3

Tu 1/24

Krauss, R.M. (1998). Why do we gesture when we speak?

Gesture in speech production

 

W3

Th 1/26

Kelly, S.D., Barr, D.J., Church, R.B., & Lynch, K. (1999). Offering a hand to pragmatic understanding.

Gesture and language comprehension

(Slides Week 3: lectures 5, 6)


 

W4

Tu 1/31



Gesture in non-human animals?
Guest lecture: Prof. Federico Rossano


 

W4

Th 2/2

Midterm 1


 

W5

Tu 2/7

Corballis, M.C. (1999). The gestural origins of language.

Gesture and language evolution
Basic questions, demonstratives, pointing
, bodily actions

Why don't apes point?

The development of gesture production

Slides lecture 8

W5

Th 2/9

Gesture: Evolution, development, and the human social primate

 

Slides Lecture 9

 

 

 

 

W6

Tu 2/14



Pointing and its complexities

 

Slides Lecture 10

 

Presentation of the Guidelines for the Group Projects


 

W6

Th 2/16

Willems, R.M. & Hagoort, P. (2007). Neural evidence for the interplay between language, gesture,
and action

Brain, language, gesture, action

 

Slides Lecture 11


W7

Tu 2/21

Núñez, Cooperrider, Doan, Wassmann (2012). Contours of time: Topographic construals of past, present, and future in the Yupno valley of Papua New Guinea.

Brain, language, gesture, action (Cont.)

Gesture and conceptual systems I: Spatial construals of time (a case study)

 


W7

Th 2/23



Gesture and conceptual systems I: Spatial construals of time (a case study)

Slides Lecture 12

 

W8

Tu 2/28

Núñez (2008). A fresh look at the foundations of mathematics: Gesture and the psychological reality of conceptual metaphor

Gesture and conceptual systems II: Mathematics and Science (a case study)

Slides Lecture 13


W8

Th 3/2

Iverson & Goldin-Meadow (1997). What’s communication got to do with it? Gesture in congenitally blind children.

Gesture in special populations: Congenitally blind subjects
Review; Projects Q&A


Slides Lecture 14



 

 

 

W9

Tu 3/7


Midterm 2



W9

Th 3/9

Group Project Guidelines

 

Schedule of presentations

Group projects presentations (1)



W10

Tu 3/14

Group projects presentations (2)

 



W10

Th 3/16

Group projects presentations (3)

FINAL WRITTEN DOCUMENTS DUE

   

 

readings:


Corballis, M.C. (1999). The gestural origins of language. American Scientist, 87, 138-145.
Feyereisen, P. (1987).
Gestures and speech, interactions and separations: A reply to McNeill (1985). Psychological Review, 94, 493-498
Goldin-Meadow, S. (2003). Hearing Gesture: How Our Hands Help us Think. Cambridge: Belknap Press.
Iverson, J.M. & Goldin-Meadow, S. (1997). What’s communication got to do with it? Gesture in congenitally blind children. Developmental Psychology, 33, 453-467.
Kelly, S.D., Barr, D.J., Church, R.B., & Lynch, K. (1999). Offering a hand to pragmatic understanding: The role of speech and gesture in comprehension and memory. Journal of Memory and Language, 40, 577-592.
Kendon, A. (2000). Language and Gesture: unity or duality?, In McNeill, D. (Ed.), Language and Gesture (Chapter 2, pp. 47-63). New York: Cambridge.
Krauss, R.M. (1998). Why do we gesture when we speak? Current Directions in Psychological Science, 7, 54-60.
Lakoff, G. (1993). The Contemporary Theory of Metaphor. In M. Ortony (Ed.) Metaphor and Thought (2nd. Edition), pp. 202-251. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press

LeBaron, C. & Streeck, J. (2000). Gestures, knowledge, and the world, In McNeill, D. (Ed.), Language and Gesture (pp. 118-138). New York: Cambridge.

McNeill, D. (1985). So you think gestures are nonverbal? Psychological Review, 92, 350-371.

McNeill, D. (1992) Ch. 3. Hand and Mind: What Gestures Reveal about Thought (chapter 3, pp. 75-104). Chicago: University of Chicago Press.

McNeill, D. (1992) Ch. 4. Hand and Mind: What Gestures Reveal about Thought (chapter 4, pp. 105-133). Chicago: Univ. of Chicago Press.

McNeill, D. (2000). Introduction. In D. McNeill (Ed.) Language and Gesture, pp. 1-10. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Marghetis, T, & Núñez, R. (2013). The motion behind the symbols: A vital role for dynamism in the conceptualization of limits and continuity in expert mathematics. Topics in Cognitive Science.

Mayberry, R. & Jaques, J. (2000). Gesture production during stuttered speech: insights into the nature of gesture-speech integration, In McNeill, D. (Ed.), Language and Gesture (pp. 199-214). New York: Cambridge.

Núñez, R. (2008). A fresh look at the foundations of mathematics: Gesture and the psychological reality of conceptual metaphor. In A. Cienki & C. Müller (Eds.) Metaphor and Gesture (pp. 93-114).Amsterdam: J. Benjamins.

Núñez, R., Cooperrider, K., Doan, D, Wassmann, J. (2012). Contours of time: Topographic construals of past, present, and future in the Yupno valley of Papua New Guinea. Cognition, 124, 25-35.

Willems, R.M. & Hagoort, P. (2007). Neural evidence for the interplay between language, gesture,
and action: A review. Brain and Language.