Tackling depression and dementia over a Pint of Science

Philosophy researcher Mark Miller and Psychology PhD student Brittany Blankinship share their research insights on depression and dementia at the 2019 Pint of Science Festival (20-22 May)

Researchers in the School of Philosophy, Psychology and Language Sciences (PPLS) will be part of evening events communicating contemporary scientific developments at this year's Pint of Science festival in Edinburgh.

Using cognitive science to understand mental health

On Tuesday 21 May, philosophy researcher Dr Mark Miller will consider how the predictive processing approach to cognitive science can help us to explain and understand mental health, specifically, suffering and enlightenment.

His talk is part of an evening event with clinical psychologist Dr Stella Chan, which aims to explore the causes of depression and how science might show us the path to happiness.

This event is now sold out.

Pint of Science | Can we talk about depression?

Mark is a Postdoctoral Research Assistant on the interdisciplinary philosophy project X-SPECT, which investigates the nature of conscious experience in the predictive brain.


Predictive processing

Predictive processing/coding is a theory of cognition in which the brain is constantly generating models of the world based on context and information from memory to predict sensory input.

Language learning and dementia

On Wednesday 22 May, Psychology PhD student Brittany Blankinship will present experiences with language learning in groups of all ages with participants ranging from children to octogenarians and in patients with an early diagnosis of dementia.

Her talk is part of an evening event with clinical psychologist Dr Azucena Guzman, which aims to look into the role of unconventional rehabilitation techniques to manage dementia.

Pint of Science | Deconstructing Dementia 

Brittany's PhD, supervised by Dr Thomas Bak, focuses on non-pharmaceutical interventions to age-related neurodegenerative diseases. One of the aims of the PhD is to examine the effects of language learning across the lifespan, including patients with brain diseases like dementia, and their carers.

Thomas Bak

Pint of Science festival

Taking place across 24 countries, the annual festival brings scientists to discuss their latest research with the general public in local pubs, bars or cafes.

It is run mainly by volunteers and was established by a community of postgraduate and postdoctoral researchers in 2012. 

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Pint of Science