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Seminar on Expert Performance

Join the seminar on expert performance, which will take place on June 9th from 10.30 - 14.30

In the light of prof. Barbara MonteroThought in Action (2016, Oxford) we are very happy to have the opportunity to arrange this seminar on expert performance - to catch up on current debates on how thinking and decision making unfold in expertise performance.  

The Seminar takes place June 9th from 10.30 - 14.30
in Building 39: lab for play and innovation, Campus Odense, University of Southern Denmark.
(Building 39 is placed next to the swimming hall and the outdoor athletic experimentarium)

10.30: Well come and introduction to the seminar (Søren Harnow and Susanne Ravn)

10.45- 12.00: Questioning the Breadth of the Attentional Focus Effect (Barbara Montero)

12.00-12.30: Break (please bring your own lunch)

12.30- 13.15: Varieties of Reflection and Action Control (Søren Harnow Klausen)

13.15-13.30: Coffee break

13.15- 14.00: Interactive intentionality skills of athletes and dancers (Susanne Ravn)

14.00- 14.30: Final discussion and round-off

To coordinate the whole arrangement, we will please ask you to register your participation no later than the 1st of June. Please use the following link:

The seminar is arranged in cooperation by the research program "Knowledge and Values", Department for the Study of Culture (Søren Harnow Klausen) and the research unit "Movement, Culture and Society", Department of Sport Science and Biomechanics (Susanne Ravn).

Further information or questions or


Questioning the Breadth of the Attentional Focus Effect
- Barbara Montero

A large body of experimental evidence is commonly cited in support of a view called "the attentional focus effect", which is the hypothesis that focusing on the body (typically designated as an "internal" focus of attention) leads to suboptimal results relative to focusing on the consequences of bodily actions (commonly regarded as an "external" focus of attention). This effect is thought to apply to all skills at all levels of ability (see Wulf 2013 for a review). As Reza Abdollahipour and colleagues (2015) put it, "it is now clear that the attentional focus effect is independent of the type of task... [and is] generaliz[able] across level of expertise, age, dis/ability, etc." (pp. 5-6).  However, here, I consider the difficulty of eliminating confounds in experiments testing the effect and examine four situations in which an internal attentional focus appears, at least sometimes, to be preferable to an external one. These situations, I suggest, are worthy of further empirical investigation before we can accept that the attentional focus effect applies to all types of skills, all skill levels, and all measures of performance quality.

Varieties of Reflection and Action Control 
- Søren Harnow Klausen

Views about the positive or negative impact of thinking and reflection on performance almost invariably rely on particular, and often very narrow, notions of reflection. While not denying that there is a substantial question as to how far thinking impedes or improves performance, I will argue that some of the current controversies might be resolved by more carefully distinguishing different senses and types of reflection and action control. I will also argue that distinguishing different roles and functions of reflection might help to accommodate otherwise incompatible views of expertise and skilled action. "Non-cognitive" or "automaticity" views of skilled action may not be as strongly opposed to views that emphasize cognition and conscious control as it is often thought, but should be seen as focusing on different aspects and senses of attention, thinking, effort, and action regulation.

Interactive intentionality - on the mutual incorporated skills of athletes and dancers
- Susanne Ravn

In any ball game or any dance the sense of the other informs the practitioners' perception and movement - often in a very direct way: the physical interactions are defining for the game or dance. This presentation focuses on exploring how this sense of the other(s) also unfolds on a pre-reflective level of intentionality - that is, how the athlete's movements become directed and shaped in an interactive flux of micro-coordination before he or she is aware of it.  In accordance with De Jaegher, Di Paolo and Fuchs's enactive phenomenological work, I argue that pre-reflective intentionality is not per se centred in the subject, but can unfold in the intersubjective realm of interaction and for example form the ground for experiencing that 'it dances me'. In the argumentation, I draw on analyses of different kinds of couple based practices - like aikido, Argentinean tango and sports dance.

Redaktionen afsluttet: 21.04.2017