Festivals, Cultural and City Events

Science Festival interview with Dr Thomas Bak

Dr Thomas Bak of the School of Philosophy, Psychology and Language Sciences took part in a discussion exploring what happens when we learn new languages, and how this affects our brains' development at various stages in life.

He was be joined by the University's Professor Antonella Sorace and Professor Aubrey Manning, together with Louise Glen from Education Scotland at the event 'Me and Granny are Learning Spanish: is it ever too late to learn a second language?' at 8pm on Wednesday 15 April at Summerhall.

Dr Thomas Bak

What can people coming along to your event expect?

It depends on them. Most of the event will be a discussion, so we will see where the questions from audience will take us; this unpredictability makes for much of the fascination of live events.

What do you hope audiences can get out of coming along to the Science Festival?

Hopefully they can gain some knowledge and be entertained.

Why is taking part in the science festival important to you?

I enjoy communicating with people, and I get a lot of inspiration for my work from speaking to audiences such as in the science festival.

What impact does your day-to-day work have on society?

Hopefully it can inform people in their decisions and induce their curiosity to learn more.

How does your work with non-scientists affect how you carry out your day-to-day role?

If you specialise in a certain area of science, you will find that you know which arguments you can expect from which colleagues; it gets very predictable. Working with non-scientists can be like a breath of fresh air.

What do you get out of engaging with the public?

Outside audiences will have different experiences, questions, ideas and concerns compared with those working in my field, and this can be very inspiring.