Human culture is uniquely complex compared to other species. This complexity stems from the accumulation of culture over time through high- and low-fidelity transmission and innovation. One possible reason for why humans retain and create culture, is our ability to modulate teaching strategies in order to foster learning and innovation.We argue that teaching is more diverse, flexible, and complex in humans than in other species. This particular characteristic of human teaching rather than teaching itself is one of the reasons for human’s incredible capacity for cumulative culture. That is, humans unlike other species can signal to learners whether the information they are teaching can or cannot be modified. As a result teaching in humans can be used to support high or low fidelity transmission, innovation, and ultimately, cumulative culture.
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- Cultural learning
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