“The Emerging Spatial Mind”

“The Emerging Spatial Mind” edited by Jodie M. Plumert and John P. Spencer.


“Human activity and thought is embedded within and richly structured by space. The spatial mind has detailed knowledge of the world that surrounds it—it remembers where objects are, what they are, and how they are arranged relative to one another. It can navigate through spaces to locate and retrieve objects, or it can direct the actions of others through language. It can use maps to find out the way from one city to the next, or it can navigate using a virtual map to locate a missing computer file. But where do these abilities come from? What is the developmental origin of the spatial mind? This book examines how the spatial mind emerges from its humble origins in infancy to its mature, flexible, and skilled adult form. Each chapter presents research and theory that asks the following questions: what changes in spatial cognition occur over development? And how do these changes come about? The book provides conceptual as well as formal theoretical accounts of developmental processes at multiple levels of analysis (e.g. genes, neurons, behaviors, social interactions), providing an overview of general mechanisms of cognitive change. In addition, commentators place these advances in the understanding of spatial cognitive development within the field of spatial cognition more generally. This book sheds light on how the experiences of thinking about and interacting in space through time foster and shape the emerging spatial mind.”