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A Behavioral Look at the Training of Alex: A Review of Pepperberg’s The Alex Studies: Cognitive and Communicative Abilities of Grey Parrots

Abstract

The Alex Studies: Cognitive and Communicative Abilities of Grey Parrots by Irene Pepperberg is reviewed from a behavior analytic orientation. The results of the majority of her experiments are discussed in terms drawn from the general literature of behavior analysis and Skinner’s analysis of verbal behavior. We conclude that she has provided evidence of the complex control of vocal behavior that illustrates a functional verbal repertoire of tacts and mands. This book suggests several areas for future research on the methods needed to establish verbal repertoires in species other than humans.

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Correspondence to Bruce E. Hesse.

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Hesse, B.E., Potter, B. A Behavioral Look at the Training of Alex: A Review of Pepperberg’s The Alex Studies: Cognitive and Communicative Abilities of Grey Parrots. Analysis Verbal Behav 20, 141–151 (2004). https://doi.org/10.1007/BF03393001

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