Brain Myths

February 7, 2008 :: Patti Sorensen
Moderated by Cameron MacLennan

Myths about our brains are everywhere. Some of the myths, such as the "Mozart effect" and "we only use 10% of our brain", are relatively harmless. Other myths though, such as "girls can''t do math", have had a huge direct or indirect negative impact on our beliefs and attitudes and on governmental policies. Patti Sorensen points out that myths have regularly been manipulated or misinterpreted to justify unpopular policies (for example, early retirement) or to sell products and services (for example, "OptiMind") that are not needed. She will look at some of the more common myths (especially those related to brainwaves and to aging), the origins of those myths and what the research actually tells us about our brains.


Patti grew up in Red Deer in a family of pilots. She didn''t realize that everyone else''s family didn''t know how to fly until she was about 10 years old. Her family was very surprised when she decided to become a speech-language pathologist instead of a flight instructor. Patti earned her B.Sc. from the U of Alberta (speech pathology and audiology), her M.Sc.from the U of Western Ontario (speech-language pathology) and M. Ed. from the U of New Brunswick (adult education). In 1989 she started to work at Barons-Eureka-Warner Health Unit and subsequently, for the Chinook Health region. She then returned to the U.of Lethbridge to obtain her PhD in neuroscience and is currently finishing her PhD. Her dissertation focuses on brain wave activity in adults with fetal alcohol spectrum disorders. Patti has started a neurofeedback and research office in Lethbridge called "NeuroAdvances".

DATE: Thursday, February 7, 2008
TIME: Noon – 1:30 PM
LOCATION: Ericksen’s Restaurant (lower level of The Keg)
1715 Mayor Magrath Drive S., Lethbridge
COST: $10.00 (includes lunch)

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