J. James Woods - Lectures in the Sciences & Mathematics

Fall 2011 Woods Lecture Series Schedule

Gee

Watkins

Anderson

Strogatz

Savage-Rumbaugh

SandPlogo

Miller


Technology Panel: With James Gee, Craig Watkins and Craig Anderson

September 29, 2011, 7:30 P.M. Atherton Union, Reilly Room

Join us as we welcome James Gee, Craig Watkins and Craig Anderson to discuss technology, cognition and youth. The evening will begin with each guest presenting on a topic of their choice related to technology and cognition. This will be followed by a moderated discussion and conclude with questions from the audience.

James Gee is a member of the National Academy of Education. His book Sociolinguistics and Literacies (1990, Third Edition 2007) was one of the founding documents in the formation of the "New Literacy Studies", an interdisciplinary field devoted to studying language, learning, and literacy in an integrated way in the full range of their cognitive, social, and cultural contexts. His book An Introduction to Discourse Analysis (1999, Second Edition 2005) brings together his work on a methodology for studying communication in its cultural settings, an approach that has been widely influential over the last two decades.

Professor Gee's most recent books deal with video games, language, and learning. What Video Games Have to Teach Us About Learning and Literacy (2003, Second Edition 2007) argues that good video games are designed to enhance learning through effective learning principles supported by research in the Learning Sciences. Situated Language and Learning (2004) places video games within an overall theory of learning and literacy and shows how they can help us in thinking about the reform of schools. His most recent book is Good Video Games and Good Learning: Collected Essays (2007). Professor Gee has published widely in journals in linguistics, psychology, the social sciences, and education.

Craig Watkins studies young people's social and digital media behaviors. He teaches at the University of Texas, Austin, in the departments of Radio-Television-Film, Sociology, and the Center for African and African American Studies. Watkins addresses issues that range from the social impacts of young people's participation in digital media culture to educational implications. He has engaged a dynamic mix of communities including the National Institutes of Health and the National Institute of Drug Addiction, IBM Center for Social Software, SXSW Interactive, the National School Boards Association, Smart Mixed-Signal Connectivity, the Austin Forum on Science and Technology for Society, iCivics, MacArthur Foundation, and the Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum (NYC).

His book, The Young and the Digital: What the Migration to Social Network Sites, Games, and Anytime, Anywhere Media Means for Our Future (Beacon 2009), is based on survey research, in-depth interviews, and fieldwork with teens, young twenty-somethings, teachers, parents, and technology advocates. The Young and the Digital explores young people's dynamic engagement with social media, games, mobile phones, and communities like Facebook.

Craig Anderson is a Distinguished Professor of Liberal Arts and Sciences in the Department of Psychology at Iowa State University. He currently is Director of Iowa State University's Center for the Study of Violence, and President of the International Society for Research on Aggression. Anderson's 150+ publications span a wide range of areas, including judgment and decision making; depression, loneliness, and shyness; personality theory and measurement; and attribution theory. In recent years, his work has focused on the development of a General Aggression Model designed to integrate insights from cognitive, developmental, personality, and social psychology. His pioneering work on video-game violence has led to consultations with educators, government officials, child advocates, and news organizations worldwide. He is the author of Violent Video Game Effects on Children and Adolescents, which describes the effects of playing violent video games, explains how these effects occur, and explores possible actions that parents, educators, and public policy creators can take to deal with this important social issue.

 

Steven Strogatz: Synchronicity in Nature

October 11, 2011, 7:30 P.M Reilly Room

Steven Strogatz is the Jacob Gould Schurman Professor of Applied Mathematics at Cornell University, and is currently Director of the Center for Applied Mathematics. He holds a joint appointment in the College of Arts and Sciences (Mathematics) and the College of Engineering (Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering). In 2009 he was elected a Fellow of the Society for Industrial and Applied Mathematics for his "investigations of small-world networks and coupled oscillators and for outstanding science communication."

Strogatz has been a frequent guest on National Public Radio's RadioLab. In the spring of 2010 he wrote a weekly blog about mathematics for the New York Times; the Harvard Business Review described these columns as "must reads for entrepreneurs and executives" and "a model for how mathematics needs to be popularized." Strogatz has also filmed a series of 24 lectures on Chaos for the Teaching Company's Great Courses series, available on DVD. He is the author of Nonlinear Dynamics and Chaos (1994) and Sync (2003). His most recent book, The Calculus of Friendship, was published in August 2009.

 

Sue Savage-Rumbaugh: Bonobos, Language and Culture

November 2, 2011, 7:30 P.M Atherton Union, Reilly Room

Dr. Sue Savage-Rumbaugh is a scientist with special standing at Great Ape Trust - a world-class research center dedicated to studying the behavior and intelligence of great apes. The first and only scientist to conduct language research with Bonobos, Savage-Rumbaugh joined Great Ape Trust in 2005 following a 30-year association with Georgia State University's Language Research Center (LRC). Information developed at the LRC regarding the abilities of non-human primates to acquire symbols, comprehend spoken words, decode simple syntactical structures, learn concepts of number and quantity, and perform complex perceptual-motor tasks has helped change the way humans view other members of the primate order. Dr. Savage-Rumbaugh's work with Kanzi, the first ape to learn language in the same manner as children, was detailed in Language Comprehension in Ape and Child published in Monographs of the Society for Research in Child Development (1993). It was selected by the "Millennium Project" as one of the top 100 most influential works in cognitive science in the 20th century by the University of Minnesota Center for Cognitive Sciences in 1991.

 

SandPlogoBruce Miller: The Mind and Aging

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This is a Spirit and Place event! The Woods Lecture Series is pleased to partner with the UI Center for Aging and Community.

November 9, 2011, 7:30 P.M Atherton Union, Reilly Room

The Woods Lecture Series is proud to partner with the University of Indianapolis Center for Aging & Community as part of the Spirit and Place festival to present Dr. Bruce Miller. Our bodies and minds are inextricably linked. The neurological connections in our bodies interpret our environment, create our experiences and ultimately define our lives. As we age, these connections may begin to slow and change, and the definition of our daily lives changes. Understanding dementia and the physical and chemical changes in our bodies that cause it is a fascinating component of the human condition. Dementia can be caused by a number of different conditions; it is a symptom of neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer's, frontotemporal dementia or corticobasal degeneration.

Dr. Miller is Professor of Neurology at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF) where he holds the A.W. & Mary Margaret Clausen Distinguished Chair. Dr. Miller is the clinical director of the Memory and Aging Center (MAC) at UCSF, which is funded through the State of California, the National Institutes of Health (NIH), and the Larry L. Hillblom Foundation, amongst others. Dr. Miller will be speaking about his research and work at the Memory and Aging Center (MAC) at UC San Francisco. At the MAC, Dr. Miller links comprehensive patient evaluations to basic research in neuropsychology, neuropsychiatry, neuroimaging and genetics. At the conclusion of the lecture, the audience is invited to take part in a question and answer session with Dr. Miller.

As part of the J. James Woods Lecture Series Butler University will be welcoming Dr. Bruce Miller, a behavioral neurologist with a special interest in brain and behavior relationships and has focused his work in the area of dementia. Dr. Miller's lecture will focus on the brain and aging, with a specific focus on dementia. Dementia is the general term for progressive brain disorders that gradually destroys a person's ability to carry out daily activities.

Our bodies and minds are inextricably linked. The neurological connections in our bodies interprets our environment, creates our experiences and ultimately defines our lives. As we age, these connections may begin to slow and change, and the definition of our daily lives changes. Understanding dementia and the physical and chemical changes in our bodies that cause it is a fascinating component of the human condition. Dementia can be caused by a number of different conditions; it is a symptom of neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer's, frontotemporal dementia or corticobasal degeneration.

Dr. Miller will be speaking about his research and work at the Memory and Aging Center (MAC) at UC San Francisco. At the MAC, Dr. Miller links comprehensive patient evaluations to basic research in neuropsychology, neuropsychiatry, neuroimaging and genetics. At the conclusion of the lecture, the audience is invited to take part in a question and answer session with Dr. Miller.

Spring 2012 Woods Lecture Series Schedule

Ferber

Wolf-Chase

Jackson

**Please Note: We regret to announce that the April 22 Lecture with Dr. Frances Champagne has been cancelled **

Dan Ferber:Impacts of Climate Change on Global Health

January 25, 2012, 7:30 P.M. Atherton Union, Reilly Room

Much of the public debate about "global warming" has focused on air temperatures, melting glaciers and slowly rising sea levels, but climate change is already harming the health of people around the world. Award-winning journalist Dan Ferber specializes in putting a human face on groundbreaking stories on science, technology, health and the environment. As a correspondent for Science and contributor to national magazines such as Reader's Digest, Popular Science and Audubon, he's covered topics from malaria to cancer, from dam removal to factory farms, from high-tech crops to engineered tissues. In Changing Planet, Changing Health, he worked with Paul Epstein, MD, associate director of the Center for Health and Global Environment at Harvard Medical School, to reveal the surprising links between climate change and cholera, malaria, Lyme disease, asthma, and other public health concerns. Ferber holds a bachelor's degree in zoology from Duke, a Ph.D. in biology from Johns Hopkins University and a masters in journalism from the University of Illinois. For more information, see http://www.danferber.com/.

 

Grace Wolf-Chase: Stars, religion and science

February 22, 2012, 7:30 P.M. Atherton Union, Reilly Room

Grace Wolf-Chase has held a joint position between the Adler Planetarium and the University of Chicago Department of Astronomy & Astrophysics since 1998. She holds a Bachelor's degree in Physics from Cornell University and a Ph.D. in Astronomy from the University of Arizona. Grace was awarded a National Research Council postdoctoral fellowship to study the early stages of star formation at NASA/Ames Research Center in Moffett Field, CA (1994-1996), and a University of California President's postdoctoral fellowship to continue these studies at U.C. Riverside (1996-1998). Her primary research efforts focus on the earliest stages of star formation, from the formation of low-mass stars similar to our Sun, to the formation of massive stars in rich clusters. She has made important contributions to understanding the scope and effects of outflows generated by forming stars.

Grace is a member of the science team for the "Milky Way Project", one of a large suite of citizen science initiatives in the "Zooniverse". She is active in exhibit development, sky show production, mentoring student and postdoctoral research projects, and working with diverse audiences to help bring the excitement of scientific research to public audiences. Grace served on a task force to develop a Social Statement on Education for the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America. The statement was adopted at the Church-wide Assembly in Chicago in August 2007. She and her spouse, Dennis Chase, live in Naperville with their three teenaged children.

 

Wes Jackson: Consulting the Genius of the Place

March 29, 2012, 7:30 P.M. Atherton Union, Reilly Room

Wes Jackson, President of The Land Institute, was born in 1936 on a farm near Topeka, Kansas. After attending Kansas Wesleyan, he studied botany (M.A. University of Kansas, 1960) and genetics (Ph.D. North Carolina State University, 1967). He was a professor of biology at Kansas Wesleyan and later established the Environmental Studies department at California State University, Sacramento, where he became a tenured full professor. He resigned that position in 1976 and returned to Kansas to found The Land Institute. Dr. Jackson's writings include both papers and books. His most recent work, Consulting the Genius of the Place: An Ecological Approach to a New Agriculture, was published by Counterpoint Press in 2010. The work of The Land Institute has been featured extensively in the popular media including The Atlantic Monthly, Audubon, National Geographic, Time Magazine,The MacNeil-Lehrer News Hour, and National Public Radio's "All Things Considered." Life magazine named Wes Jackson as one of 18 individuals they predict will be among the 100 "important Americans of the 20th century." In the November 2005 issue, Smithsonian named him one of "35 Who Made a Difference" and in March, 2009 Wes was included in Rolling Stone's"100 Agents of Change. "In addition to lecturing nationwide and abroad, Dr. Jackson is involved outside The Land Institute with a variety of projects including being a Post Carbon Institute Fellow, a Councillor with the World Future Council and a member of the Green Lands Blue Waters Steering Committee.