Annual Christopher Comer Undergraduate Seminar- “What a bird can tell you about your brain” by Stephanie White (UCLA)
October 12, 2022
1:00 PM - 2:00 PM
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Please join us on Wednesday, October 12th at 1pm for the 2022 Annual Christopher Comer Undergraduate Seminar featuring Dr. Stephanie White (UCLA). Dr. White will present "What a bird can tell you about your brain."
Host: Angie Salles
Abstract: Long before they learn to sing, songbird nestlings, like human babies, cry for attention. Only through hours of practice during ‘critical periods’ do they develop a song suitable for courting mates. Language also blossoms during a critical period whose closure makes it difficult to speak a foreign tongue. In addition to critical periods, many other parallels between song and speech exist pointing to convergent evolution of the underlying brain systems. Although humans are the only species to possess language, clues to language origins, brain mechanisms, and deficits thereof can be gleaned from study of songbirds. I will share three stories from my research team that span evolutionary, developmental and moment-to-moment timeframes that may inform the neurogenetic basis of human language on each of these scales.
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