Cambridge Neuroscience Interdisciplinary Seminar - Dr Sara Baker (Title TBC)

External Event - 18th Jan 2022

Time: 4pm - 5pm (GMT)

Online Event

Speaker: Sara Baker, University of Cambridge

Sara’s research aims to improve children’s lives by identifying factors at home and school that can support their agency over their own learning. Children’s agency requires cognitive flexibility. In psychological terms, this depends on their developing executive functions. Sara studies the interaction between developing executive functions and the acquisition of domain-specific knowledge, like early science learning. How do children discover the general laws underlying these domains? How entrenched are their beliefs, and what kinds of evidence or experiences are needed to revise these?

Sara uses lab-based experiments and works with teachers in schools to translate research from cognitive science into educational contexts. What types of strategies can children use to solve everyday problems more effectively, and how can adults support this? Later in development, what are the key factors in adults’ use of evidence-based reasoning (e.g. critical thinking and scientific reasoning)? And finally, how can neuroscientists and educators work together for better evidence-informed practice and practice-informed evidence? Sara's projects addressing questions like these have been funded by the Newton Trust, a Cambridge Humanities Research Grant, the Economic and Social Research Council, the LEGO Foundation and the Nuffield Foundation.

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