Category: Deborah Kelemen

See Jane Evolve: Picture Books Explain Darwin

April 19th, 2014 in 2014, College and Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, Deborah Kelemen, Newsmakers, Wall Street Journal 0 comments

kelemenWall Street Journal (subscription required)
Deborah Kelemen, College of Arts & Sciences

Evolution by natural selection is one of the best ideas in all of science. It predicts and explains an incredibly wide range of biological facts. But only 60% of Americans believe evolution is true…

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Are you smarter than a 5-year-old? New research shows kindergarteners can learn more

April 10th, 2014 in 2014, College and Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, Deborah Kelemen, Newsmakers, RESEARCH @ BU 0 comments

kelemenKPCC (Southern California Public Radio)
Deborah Kelemen, College of Arts & Sciences

George Brown Elementary in San Bernadino is a glossy new school: Construction finished just two years ago. And what’s going on in the classrooms is just as cutting edge…

Expert quote:

“I think that we are generally underestimating, really, their capacity to understand some very, very abstract things.”

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How challenging kids earlier means earlier success

March 22nd, 2014 in 2014, College and Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, Deborah Kelemen, Newsmakers, RESEARCH @ BU 0 comments

kelemenDeseret News
Deborah Kelemen, College of Arts & Sciences

Two new studies show children learn advanced material much earlier than previously believed. Both studies also indicate that if educators do not teach the more challenging content, students are at a disadvantage…

Expert quote:

“Imagine what a curriculum spread over several years might do for scientific literacy long term. It’s an exciting thought.”

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Study Shows Kids Understand Complex Science

March 15th, 2014 in 2014, College and Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, Deborah Kelemen, Newsmakers, RESEARCH @ BU 0 comments

kelemenLab Manager
Deborah Kelemen, College of Arts & Sciences

It turns out kids can understand complex scientific concepts – like natural selection – far beyond what anyone would have expected…

Expert quote:

“It shows that kids are a lot smarter than we ever give them credit for.  They can handle a surprising degree of complexity when you frame things in a way that taps into the natural human drive for a good, cohesive explanation.”

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Even Young Kids Can Understand How Evolution Works

March 13th, 2014 in 2014, Business Insider, College and Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, Deborah Kelemen, Newsmakers, RESEARCH @ BU 0 comments

kelemenBusiness Insider
Deborah Kelemen, College of Arts & Sciences

“The history of developmental psychology shows that the age at which children can reach cognitive milestones depends in no small part on the cleverness of the methods used to measure their ability.”…

Expert quote:

“Adaptation by natural selection is a core mechanism of evolution. It is also one of the most widely misunderstood scientific processes. Misconceptions are rooted in cognitive biases found in preschoolers, yet concerns about complexity mean that adaptation by natural selection is generally not comprehensively taught until adolescence. This is long after untutored theoretical misunderstandings are likely to have become entrenched.”

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Have we misjudged kids’ ability to learn science?

March 12th, 2014 in 2014, College and Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, Deborah Kelemen, Feature, Futurity News, Newsmakers, RESEARCH @ BU 0 comments

kelemenFuturity News
Deborah Kelemen, College of Arts & Sciences

It turns out kids can understand complex scientific concepts—like natural selection—far beyond what anyone would have expected, a new study suggests. Boston University psychologist Deborah Kelemen and colleagues created a 10-page picture storybook about a group of fictional mammals with long trunks called pilosas. Then they read it aloud to kids…

Expert quote:

“We’re still astonished by what we found. It shows that kids are a lot smarter than we ever give them credit for. They can handle a surprising degree of complexity when you frame things in a way that taps into the natural human drive for a good, cohesive explanation.”

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Evolution Is Coming To A Storybook Near You

March 10th, 2014 in 2014, College and Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, Deborah Kelemen, Newsmakers, NPR, RESEARCH @ BU 0 comments

kelemenNPR “Cosmos & Culture Blog”
Deborah Kelemen, College of Arts & Sciences

Young children are notorious for their surfeit of why questions, often directed at aspects of the biological world…

Expert quote:

“There have been a slew of education studies over the past 30 years indicating that adults don’t tend to understand adaptation even after instruction. This is often because they maintain inaccurate teleological ideas that natural selection transforms animals to give them the body parts they need or animals transform themselves through their own efforts.”

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Intuitions of Our Immortality: Visions of Life Before Conception

February 3rd, 2014 in 2014, College and Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, Deborah Kelemen, Natalie Emmons, Newsmakers, RESEARCH @ BU 0 comments

Pacific Standard
Deborah Kelemen, College of Arts & Sciences
Natalie Emmons, College of Arts & Sciences

We’ve all ruminated about the possibility of life after death. But what about the notion of life before birth—or even conception?…

Expert quote:

Emmons

“Even kids who had biological knowledge about reproduction still seemed to think that they had existed in some sort of eternal form. And that form really seemed to be about emotions and desires.”

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Human Belief in Soul is ‘Innate’, Say Scientists

February 2nd, 2014 in 2014, College and Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, Deborah Kelemen, International Business Times, Natalie Emmons, Newsmakers, RESEARCH @ BU 0 comments

International Business Times (UK)
Deborah Kelemen, College of Arts & Sciences
Natalie Emmons, College of Arts & Sciences

We are born with a predisposition to believe in an immortal soul, according to a recent scientific study…

Expert quotes:

Kelemen

“This work shows that it’s possible for science to study religious belief. At the same time, it helps us understand some universal aspects of human cognition and the structure of the mind.”

Emmons

“I study these things for a living but even find myself defaulting to them. I know that my mind is a product of my brain but I still like to think of myself as something independent of my body.”

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Are we hard-wired to believe we’re IMMORTAL? Belief that we are eternal is part of human nature and develops during childhood

January 30th, 2014 in 2014, College and Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, Daily Mail, Deborah Kelemen, Natalie Emmons, Newsmakers, RESEARCH @ BU 0 comments

Daily Mail
Deborah Kelemen, College of Arts & Sciences
Natalie Emmons, College of Arts & Sciences

People across the world, regardless of their religion or culture, believe that humans are immortal, according to research. A new study has shed some light on people’s beliefs that a person’s soul or essence transcends the physical body’s death…

Expert quotes:

Kelemen –

“This work shows that it’s possible for science to study religious belief. At the same time, it helps us understand some universal aspects of human cognition and the structure of the mind.”

Emmons –

“Even kids who had biological knowledge about reproduction still seemed to think that they had existed in some sort of eternal form and that form really seemed to be about emotions and desires.”

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