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Self-directed learning: Understanding the interactions between decision making, learning, and memory

Dr. Todd Gureckis

Monday, February 08, 2016, 12:00pm - 01:30pm

New York University, Department of Psychology

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My research explores how people learn from their interactions with the world around them. For example, how are we so good at figuring out how something works by tinkering with it? How do we formulate questions with the goal of gaining knowledge and reducing our uncertainty? How do our choices to gather information affect our memory or conceptual knowledge? Such questions strike at the heart of what makes us such an adaptable and intelligent species. In this talk, I will overview recent progress in my lab understanding how people gather information in "self-directed" learning environments (i.e.,where the learner is in control of what to learn about and when to learn it). A primary objective of my work is to develop detailed computational models of human learning, and my talk will highlight the important role that such models can play in helping to understand self-directed learning as an aspect of human behavior. I will conclude by discussing implications of this work for education, instructional design, as well as the basic science of human learning.

Dr. Todd Gureckis