ESP Biography



AVRIL KENNEY, MIT '11, cognitive science and computer science




Major: Brain and Cognitive Sciences

College/Employer: none

Year of Graduation: 2011

Picture of Avril Kenney

Brief Biographical Sketch:

Not Available.



Past Classes

  (Look at the class archive for more.)


Perception of Reality in Splash 2016
In this class you'll learn about how your perception of the world is influenced by your brain, your past experience, and your attention. We'll talk about things like * Why does the same shade of grey look black or white depending on where it is in an image? * Does the language you speak affect how you think about non-linguistic things? * How well can people actually pay attention to multiple things at once?


Probabilistic Reasoning in Spark! 2012
Probabilistic models let you represent how likely different things are to be true. People have notoriously bad probabilistic intuition in some cases, but in some cases you're surprisingly good at mental calculations you don't even know you're doing. In this class we'll go over the basics of probability, and then talk about ways in which people are good or bad at thinking probabilistically.


Language and Thought in Spark! 2011
Does speaking a different language make people think about the world in a different way? Are there things that we couldn't think about without words? These questions have been heavily debated for decades by linguists, cognitive scientists, and anthropologists, with still no clear answer. We'll discuss some of the research that has been done on this topic, and you are welcome to contribute your own opinions!


SAT Prep Writing - MATLAB in SATPrep Fall 2010
Writing: Section E (MATLAB)


Grammar Tips 'n' Tricks in Spark! 2010
In this class we'll go over some basic ideas of English grammar and style - the little things that make a big difference in how professional your writing sounds. There will be some focus on topics assessed by the Writing section of the SAT.


How Language Works in HSSP Spring 2010
This class will be an introductory overview of linguistics. Topics covered each week will probably be: Phonology - how sounds form speech Morphology - how morphemes form words (e.g., "dog" + "-s" = "dogs") Syntax - how words form sentences Semantics - how sentences have meanings Acquisition - how babies learn language


Grammar is Fun in Splash! 2009
In this class we will explore the structure of English sentences. Ideally it will be discussion-based, so come with questions! What we talk about will depend on the interests of the students. Some possible topics are: - parts of speech - common grammatical errors - things your English teacher tells you not to do but aren't actually wrong - ambiguous sentences


Playing with Matrices in SPLASH (2007)
You will learn what matrices are and try out some of their surprisingly diverse mathematical applications. Did you know that ...


Playing with Matrices in SPLASH (2007)
You will learn what matrices are and try out some of their surprisingly diverse mathematical applications. Did you know that ...