.:İnsanlarda Sosyal Öğrenmenin Evrimleşmesi :.
İnsanların düşünme, plan yapma ve beklenti oluşturma gibi yüksek bilişsel yetenek gerektiren özellikleri çoğunlukla onların gelişmiş sosyal öğrenme yeteneklerinden oluşur. Sosyal öğrenme izleyenin modeli takip ederek bilgiye ulaşması ve onu transfer etmesidir. Maymunlarda da bulunan sosyal öğrenme insanlar kadar gelişmiş ve hızlı olmamaktadır. Bunun nedeni insanların dillerini ve ortak kültürel paylaşımlarını kullanarak bilgilerini daha geniş bir durum ve koşul içinde kullanabilmesi ve dilleriyle bunu gelecek nesillere daha hızlı transfer etmesidir. İnsanlar ayrıca sosyal öğrenmelerini grup içindeki rollerini öğrenmede, diğer bireyleri tanımada ve grup içindeki kaynakları paylaşma esnasında da kullanırlar böylece sosyal çevreye kolaylıkla adaptasyon sağlarlar.
Humans like other social primates have involved in social learning frequently. Much of their ability to think, plan and develop expectancies is products of our highly developed cognitive abilities that are mostly arisen from human social learning. Social learning is the transmission of information from model to observer that happens among human and nonhuman species. Social learning happens with 3 levels; stimulus enhancement, imitation and highest cognitive level that all are happened by observing the model so the human or nonhuman can become sensitive to the cues coming from environment by observing other animal or human rather than engaging in individual learning ,trail-and-error learning. Third level which is highest cognitive level is using the information that has been learned from observing the model at a different time and context are seen rare in species. In addition to that, visual social learning and olfactory social learning are the two types of social learning that the initial is highly developed in mammals. Human and monkeys are highly capable of visual social learning (by evolvement of visual memory), they can learn not to make mistakes by observing others errors or by looking at others corrects. For example, the washing of sweet potato was started firstly with a young female ape than within five years all members of that ape group has started to wash their potatoes and it also has been transmitted to offsprings from mothers by social learning. This case is also similar in human and they also can generalize their behaviors to a more extended situation and context and apply their behaviors for future contexts as well (Tomasello, 2003).
Like apes, human are also capable of imitation and teaching but humans are more favorable when passing their knowledge and learning to preceding generations by engaging in social learning much more quickly than apes. Shared cultural elements can be seen as the contribution factor that since children are born, they share the elements of culture such as language, games and cultural customs that has made them to develop their cognitions wihin the culture (Langer, & Killen, 1998). This social learning is the essence of our highly developed cognitions so that we can direct our future behaviors in a combination of our cognitions and our social learning that we have acquired from our environment. One of the most important differences that change us from apes is that we are capable of generalizing our cognitions even cognitions about ourselves to a wider context (Tomasello, 2003). In contrast, apes do not have big brains, language, and ability to recognize others (theory of mind) and can not predict long-term consequences of their actions (Gifford, Jr., 2002). However, human learned how to solve complex social relations and social adaptations they are facing with the help of their evolved big brains. In addition they also learned how to communicate and exchange information with evolvement of language.
With the relevance of social learning, human have learned how to deal with changes in their environments with group learning. Since human have been lived in groups for centuries, they must learn social cognitions about group cohesion. It is known that the social environment has shaped human mind. For primitive learning that is the beginning of social learning, human have to evolve their cognitive abilities for to recognize other individuals, can make kinship and rank differences for his/her survival and adaptation and has to learn what is given and forbidden for his/her rank when it comes to sharing sources (Cummins, 2000). As human social cognitions have evolved for preceding centuries, human also have started to live in social dominance hierarchies and that way of living has made some cognitive processes evolved to get through the social norms that the hierarchical society and institutions has created that are far from primitive social interactions. These cognitive skills are for to read other peoples mind, to recognize dominance relations and social norms and to understand cheaters that are all explained by evolution of theory of mind and have capability for social
exchange reasoning (reciprocity) that are now found in human cognitive reasoning (Cummins, 2000).
It is known that cultural evolution has started 50.000 years ago with Homo sapiens sapiens. Homo sapiens sapiens were living in a state of pre-consciousness, with the evolution of consciousness they have evolved in their subsystems such as their consciousness, intellect and life subsystem (Banathy, 2002). With evolvement of consciousness, Homo sapiens sapiens created their self and social images in their minds that led to improved social understanding later developed into their ethics, spirituality and morality as a part of their culture as well. Secondly with the evolvement of their intellect subsystem, they have developed cognition, learning and communication that have later evolved into language with preceding generations. Banathy states that lastly with the evolvement of their way of life subsystem they have developed their collective social systems and structures. Banathy sees the evolution of consciousness as a necessity for evolution because of its organizing role over communication, cognition, learning and forming their lives into a collective culture.
Another view that sees the way for passing from primate social learning to human culture explains that human capacity of imitation and increased cognitive capabilities that they can approve or disapprove their offsprings learned behaviors that has enabled new generations learning efficiently. This social learning has enabled Homo sapiens to transform what they know into a cultural formation that made us to transform culture into new generations that are workable for members of group (Castro, & Toro, 2004). Firstly it enabled human to leave individual learning that is more costly and less adaptive and imitation enabled them to save more energy and time for their adaptive success. But together with qualitative and quantitative aspects of imitation, it is not enough for cultural success of Homo sapiens. Instead the primates also must have the ability to approve or disapprove their offsprings
learned behaviors which has a positive evaluation of individual behavior and this way of learning has acted as a form of inherited learning. There may be conflict between parents and offspring when evaluating the learned behavior, but even there is a slight change occurred during hominization, there havent been any significant interruption in hominid culture evolution (Castro, & Toro, 2004). Another study states that the interaction of social and individual learning within the environment, as Castro and Toro has stated that in a constant environment social learning works more than individual learning (Aoki, & Wakano, & Feldman, 2005). This approach also can be seen as the collective evolutionary learning in a constant environment that states individual determinations within context that human who share culture have shared cognitive images in their minds (Laszlo, & Laszlo, 2004).
A proper way of looking at mind and culture interaction, we can take the view of interactionism as the dual way of explaining human cognition as the agent responding to environment that displays adaptation and human cognition as the outcome of several processes involved in evolution (Marcello, 2006). Its actually the rejection of body-mind dualism that Descartes has firstly stated because interactionism as a product of cultural-historical psychology states intelligence as the purposed way of explaining world and sees cognition as the process that keeps us in touch with world rather than internal mechanisms.
Lastly to conclude, we can say that we are making change through our purposes and intentions rather than change is happening to us. The future is not determined its probabilistic; we can determine the pathway that human should evolve by evaluating our enjoyments and meaningfulness so we can evolve in consciousness and direct our pathway of evolution (Laszlo, & Laszlo, 2004).
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Aori, K. , & Wakano, J. Y. , & Feldman, M. W. (2005). The emergence of social learning in a temporally chancing environment: A Theoretical Model. Current Anthropology, 299-330.
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