Cognitive Science Speaker Series continues Oct. 7 with talk on cultural evolutionary psychology

woman computer webinar

Cognitive science is the scientific study of the mind and its processes. What is especially exciting about cognitive science is its nature of interdisciplinary cooperation, involving psychologists, philosophers, computer scientists, neuroscientists, anthropologists, biologists, and linguists.

York University’s Department of Philosophy, in the Faculty of Liberal Arts & Professional Studies, presents the Cognitive Science Speakers Series. All talks take place on Wednesdays from 12:30 to 2:30 p.m. via Zoom. Prior to each talk, the Zoom link will be emailed to all students and faculty from Cognitive Science and Philosophy. Those not affiliated with these groups can join by emailing to receive the Zoom links.

Cecilia Heyes

The next event in the series takes place on Oct. 7 and features Cecilia Heyes, All Souls College and Department of Experimental Psychology, University of Oxford on the topic of
“Cultural Evolutionary Psychology.”

The character and effectiveness of cognitive mechanisms has traditionally been explained by nature and nurture. In the last decade, evidence has emerged that distinctively human cognitive mechanisms, like physical technology, are shaped by culture. At the individual level, these “cognitive gadgets” are inherited via social interaction. At the population level, they have been made fit for purpose by cultural selection. In the first part of the talk, Heyes will introduce these ideas using the example of imitation. In the second, she will focus on metacognition, and discuss the prospects for a cultural evolutionary psychology.

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