Cornell University

During the spring semester, in-person concerts, events and lectures that involve outside guests will not be held, per the university’s COVID-19 travel and visitor policy.

Cognitive Science Colloquium Series

Friday, April 16, 2021 at 12:20pm to 1:30pm

Virtual Event

Susan Goldin-Meadow, PhD

Beardsley Ruml Distinguished Service Professor in Psychology,

Comparative Human Development, and the Committee on Education

University of Chicago



Gesture as a Mechanism of Change

The spontaneous gestures that people produce when they talk can index cognitive instability and reflect thoughts not yet found in speech. But gesture can go beyond reflecting thought to play a role in changing thought.  I consider whether gesture brings about change because it is itself an action and thus brings action into our mental representations.  I provide evidence for this hypothesis but suggest that it's not the whole story.  Gesture is a special kind of action –– it is representational and thus more abstract than direct action on objects, which may be what allows gesture to play a role in learning.


Dial-In Information
Meeting ID: 973 4019 5932, Passcode: 748309


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Event Type



Cognitive Science


linguistics, cascal, cogscievents


Contact E-Mail

Contact Name

Julie Simmons-Lynch

Contact Phone

607 255 6431


Susan Goldin-Meadow

Speaker Affiliation

University of Chicago

Registration Status




Open To


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