Inference to the Hypothesis of Extended Cognition

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract / Description of output

This paper examines the justification for the hypothesis of extended cognition (HEC). HEC claims that human cognitive processes can, and often do, extend outside our head to include objects in the environment. HEC has been justified by inference to the best explanation (IBE). Both advocates and critics of HEC Claim that we can infer the truth value of HEC based on whether HEC makes a positive or negative explanatory contribution to cognitive science. I argue that IBE cannot play this epistemic role. A serious rival to HEC exists with a differing truth value, and this invalidates IBEs for both the truth and the falsity of HEC. Explanatory value to cognitive science is not a guide to the truth value of HEC.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)353-362
Number of pages10
JournalStudies In History and Philosophy of Science Part A
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2010

Keywords / Materials (for Non-textual outputs)

  • Extended mind
  • Extended cognition
  • Embedded cognition
  • Externalism
  • Inference to the best explanation
  • Functionalism
  • MIND
  • HEAD


Dive into the research topics of 'Inference to the Hypothesis of Extended Cognition'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this