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Chimpanzee Expert to Lecture on 'Primates and Human Nature'

(Posted February 2, 2004)

HUNTINGDON, Pa. -- Sally Boysen, director of the Comparative Cognition Project at Ohio State University, will give a talk at Juniata College on ?Primates and Human Nature? at 7:30 p.m., Thursday, Feb 12, in Alumni Hall in the Brumbaugh Science Center on the Juniata campus.

The lecture is free and open to the public.

Boysen is the chief primatologist at Ohio State University and has, for more than two decades, studied how chimpanzees think. Her lecture will pose the question: If we know more about the nature of chimpanzees, what does that tell us about human nature?

Her research interests include primate learning, particularly numerical skill and sign recognition. She also is interested in how chimpanzees react to spatial learning and in vocalizations, or how the chimpanzees ?talk? to each other.

Boysen has been a professor of psychology at Ohio State since 1997. She came to Ohio State as director of the Comparative Cognition Project in 1983. She was hired as an adjunct assistant professor in 1985 and promoted to senior research associate in 1987. She joined the faculty at Ohio State in 1991 as an assistant professor of psychology and was promoted to associate professor in 1994.

She spent three years studying biological science at Lake Erie College for Women, in Painesville, Ohio from 1967 to 1969 and went on to earn a bachelor?s degree in primate ethology from Ohio State in 1974. She earned a master?s degree in developmental psychology from the University of Oklahoma, in Norman, Okla. in 1976 and earned a doctorate in comparative psychology from Ohio State in 1983.

She also has worked as an affiliate scientist at the Living Links Center for Human and Primate Evolution and Behavior at Emory University in Atlanta, Ga., from 1998 to the present.

She is a member of numerous professional societies, including, the American Psychological Society, the American Society of Primatologists, the Animal Behavior Society, the Comparative Cognition Society and the International Primatological Society.

Contact John Wall at wallj@juniata.edu or (814) 641-3132 for more information.