BAPS 2018 - Psychological organization: What, why, and how?


The law of Prägnanz states that “[…] psychological organization will always be as “good” as the prevailing conditions allow” (Koffka, 1935, p. 110). We clarify this definition by proposing that Prägnanz is about maximizing the efficiency of process and outcome. Often there is a trade-off between the two: the most useful organization is almost never the one demanding the least resources. The aim of this project is to clarify and test what “good” and “prevailing conditions” mean in the case of human visual perceptual organization. Here, we want to discuss our own understanding of the law of Prägnanz as well as the possible applications in related fields (i.e., perceptual organization in other modalities as well as cognitive organization, but also insights in the perceptual and cognitive neuroscience domain). This will allow us to detect and elaborate connections between different subfields of psychology in how human individuals organize perceptual and cognitive information and use this organized information.

May 18, 2018
Ghent, Belgium