Laboratoire Psychologie de la Perception - UMR 8242
Université Paris Descartes
In search for the cognitive foundations of Euclidean geometry
Affiliations: Véronique Izard, Integrative Neuroscience and Cognition Center, CNRS & Université Paris Descartes
Abstract: Euclidean geometry has been historically regarded as the most "natural" geometry. Taking inspiration from the flourishing field of numerical cognition, in the past years I have been looking for the cognitive foundations of geometry: Do children, infants, and people without formal education in geometry have access to intuitive concepts that bear some of the content of Euclidean concepts? Results have been mixed. In particular, we found that angle, a central tenant of Euclidean geometry, is not intuitive for children. These results call into question the status of Euclidean geometry as a natural geometry.