Dr. Jonathan Redshaw (from the University of Queensland, Australia) will give a virtual talk at the CogSci Colloquium on Thursday, March 11, at 8 am.
Title: What do young children and non-human primates understand about possibilities?
Abstract: A growing literature suggests that young children and non-human primates can mentally represent alternative possible states of reality. However, recent studies have also uncovered two conspicuous cognitive blind spots. In situations of physical uncertainty, young children and primates act as if only one of two mutually exclusive possibilities could eventuate; in situations of epistemic uncertainty, they act as if two mutually exclusive possibilities might both be true. In my presentation, I will attempt to reconcile these findings and suggest that children begin to maturely reason about possibilities only when they acquire a capacity for metarepresentation. I will also discuss findings suggesting that children’s reasoning about alternative future outcomes matures before their reasoning about counterfactual past outcomes, and highlight potential links between this protracted development and the emergence of higher-order theory of mind.
Dr. Redshaw nicely agreed to have few single/small-group meetings after his talk. If you are interested in meeting with Dr. Redshaw to discuss your own or his research, please register until next Thursday (March 4) by sending an e-mail to Lydia Schidelko (firstname.lastname@example.org).
The talk (& the meetings afterwards) will be held online, via Zoom:
Meeting ID: 914 1025 6578