Speaker Series

The next guest in the Psychology Speaker Series is Dr. John Paul Minda (Professor of Psychology, Principal Investigator of The Minda Lab, University of Western Ontario’s Brain and Mind Institute) will discuss the topic,

Concepts, Categories, and Classification:
Learning to Organize Our Experiences into Mental Structures.

Abstract: Humans and other animals organize their experience with the world into categories—behavioural equivalence classes. Cognitivist theories assume that we represent categories as concepts and that these concepts are represented by abstracted prototypes, verbalizable rules, implicit stimulus-response associations, clusters of features, and collections of exemplars bound together by similarity. How do we learn about categories? In my talk, I describe two decades of research in my lab in which we use artificial category learning paradigms to explore and understand the differences between human and nonhuman primates, the developmental trajectory of learning from childhood through old age, and the ways in which cognitive/affective states affect our ability to learn new categories and to make classification decisions. I also present new research from my lab in which we explore the possibility that language, culture, and thinking style can influence how new categories are acquired.

This colloquium will be held on Friday, March 10, 2023, in 3C01 from 12:30-1:20. Everyone is welcome to attend this free, in-person event. There will be a casual social gathering at The Club after the talk.

For more information on Dr. Minda:

Faculty profile: https://www.psychology.uwo.ca/people/faculty/profiles/minda.html

Minda Lab page: https://mindalab.com/