Friday, September 28th. 2018, 11:30 am, Salle des conférences (3rd Floor), Centre Universitaire des Saints-Pères, 45 rue des Saints-Pères, 75006 Paris
Sandra R. Waxman Professor of Psychology, Northwestern University, USA
Becoming human: How (and how early) do language and cognition come together in the infant mind?
Language is a signature of our species. To acquire a language, infants must identify which signals are part of their language and must discover how these signals are linked to the objects and events they encounter and to their core representations. For infants as young as 3 months of age, listening to human vocalizations promotes the formation of object categories, a core cognitive capacity. Moreover, this precocious link emerges from a broader template that initially encompasses vocalizations of human and non-human primates, but is rapidly tuned specifically to human vocalizations. This work showcases powerful contributions of both ‘nature’ and ‘nurture’ as infants discover increasingly precise links between language and cognition. I’ll discuss the impact of this early emerging language-cognition link for developmental cognitive and neurosciences.
Thierry Nazzi (firstname.lastname@example.org)