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Scientists from Harvard and Stanford Will Debate "Origins of Knowledge" April 16 University News
For release: April 6, 2010

For press information, contact Gabrielle Maxey, 901/678-2843

Two prominent scientists will participate in a broadcast debate about “The Origins of Knowledge” on Friday, April 16, from noon to 1:30 p.m. in The Zone at the FedEx Institute of Technology on the University of Memphis campus. The event is free and open to the public. It was organized by the Ohio State Center for Cognitive Science and is being hosted here by the U of M’s Institute for Intelligent Systems.

Professors Susan Carey of Harvard University and James McClelland of Stanford University will take different positions on the questions “How do people gain knowledge about the world around them?” and “Are we born with some fundamental knowledge, or do we have to learn everything?”

Carey advocates the theory of innate knowledge, based on her studies of infant understanding of object and number. McClelland is an advocate of the learning theory, through his pioneering research of learning in neural networks.

Seating will be available on a first come, first served basis. The Zone has seating for 187 people.

Parking is available in the Fogelman parking garage on Innovation Drive.

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