Adaptive neural networks for model updating of structures
Thus, there is an inherent conflating of the term EF with the functions of the prefrontal cortex (PFC) and vice versa that exists because of this history. Born out of the initial efforts to understand those PFC functions, the concept of EF was at first defined by default as what the prefrontal lobes do (Stuss & Benson, 1986). 286), were unable to develop or sustain a readiness for action or intentional quality to their actions, and were hyperactive as a consequence of the poor inhibition of the lower, more automatic forms of behavior. The unity and diversity of executive functions and their contributions to complex "frontal lobe" tasks: A latent variable analysis. Hence, the integration and execution of goal directed behavior, the inhibition of more automatic actions and reactions to extraneous stimuli (distractibility), the production of delayed reactions, the evaluation of one's goal-directed actions relative to the external environment – especially in novel circumstances – and the overall intentionality or purposive quality of behavior were all functions attributable to the PFC during the first 30-80 years of the scientific study of its functions. Particular attention was paid to the PFC rather than the more obvious, pedestrian, non-executive functions of the primary, secondary, and tertiary motor programming zones of the larger frontal lobes to be found adjacent and more anterior to the sensory-motor strip. Over time, this conflation has led to a circularity of reasoning in that the functions of the PFC are said to be EF while EF is then defined back to the functions of the PFC. Over the next 40 years, the frequency of use of the term EF would explode to become one of the most common terms to appear in neuropsychological journals. Allen (Eds.), Human development: An interactional perspective (pp.
Luria (1966) gives a fine account of the beginning history of the study of the functions of the frontal lobes on which I rely here to convey this historical period. It was based largely on animal ablation studies that resulted in a disorganized, fragmented, and unsubordinated character to the behavior of animals that had their PFC extirpated.
Luria (1966) distinguished among at least three such syndromes each related to the particular frontal region that had been destroyed (dorsolateral, ventro-medial, orbital). It is here, then, some 100 years after the initiation of scientific interest in the functions of the PFC that its over-arching "executive" nature is declared. Just what features make a function executive in nature or not were not clearly specified by Pribram. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 54, 687-696.
The first use of the term "executive" in reference to PFC functions has been attributed by others (Dimond, 1980; Fuster, 1997) to Karl Pribram (1973, 1976). In time, the frontal lobe syndrome noted by Luria (1966) would evolve into an executive disorder (Fuster, 1997) or a "dysexecutive syndrome" (Baddeley, 1986; Wilson, Alderman, Burgess, Emslie, & Evans, 1996).
Today, these would be considered forms of rule-governed behavior (Hayes, Gifford, & Ruckstuhl, 1996) or what Luria called the regulating functions of speech (Luria, 1966, p. Damage to the PFC and this array of impairments were typically accompanied by a release of more automatic forms of behavior.
For instance, this might occur in the inappropriate utilization of an object for its intended purposes in the wrong context as described by Lhermitte, Pillon, and Serdaru (1986).