Markham Public Library Scholars Hub speakers series

Markham Public Library and York University invite you to the Scholars Hub Speaker Series. The partnership brings some of York’s top academic minds to York Region.

The series features talks and expertise from professionals in the Faculty of Health with subject matter around brain health.

The series takes place at the Markham Village Branch located at 6031 Highway 7. Each talk is from 7pm to 8:30pm, and for added convenience, childcare is provided for schoolage children ages 4-12.

Sept. 13, 2018 - Annalise D'Souza (PhD Candidate, Faculty of Health) Aging and Brain Health

Sept. 13, 2018  Aging and Brain Health

How does brain performance change as we get older? What can we do to encourage healthy aging? PhD student Annalise D'Souza will discuss how mental abilities vary with age, and techniques to improve performance.

Oct. 11, 2018 - Jennifer Steeves (Associate Dean Research & Graduate Education, Faculty of Science; Professor, Faculty of Health) The Seeing Brain

Oct. 11, 2018 The Seeing Brain 

Do we see with our eyes or with our brain? While our eyes capture light, it’s our brain that turns this information into the people, objects and places that have meaning. Join Professor Jennifer Steeves as she takes you on a journey from the eyes to the brain and learn how we transform light into the complex images of the world around us.

Nov. 8, 2018 - Ellen Bialystok (Distinguished Research Professor, Faculty of Health) Bilingualism Across the Lifespan: How Minds Accommodate Experience

Nov. 8, 2018 – Bilingualism Across the Lifespan: How Minds Accommodate Experience

All our experiences contribute to the way our minds and brains develop, but intense experiences have a special role in shaping our cognitive systems. As humans, no experience is more intense or pervasive than our use of language, so a lifetime of learning and using (at least) two languages has the potential to leave a profound mark on human cognition. A large body of research conducted with people at all stages in the lifespan, from infancy to old age, shows that the experience of being actively bilingual reshapes the mind and brain. Research with infants and children shows more precocious development of essential cognitive processes for bilinguals. The most dramatic findings, however, are found in older age where bilingualism protects cognitive function in healthy aging and postpones symptoms of dementia and other neurodegenerative diseases. This talk will review the evidence from these studies and propose an explanation for how exposure to and use of two languages leads to these cognitive and brain consequences.

Dec. 13, 2018 - W. Dale Stevens (Professor, Faculty of Health) How to Hack the Human Brain with Cognitive Neuroscience

Dec. 13, 2018  How to Hack the Human Brain with Cognitive Neuroscience

Cognitive neuroscience – the study of biological processes underlying cognition – has led to incredible advances in our understating of the human brain/mind relationship. Tools of modern neuroscience, such as neuroimaging, neurofeedback, and neurostimulation, allow us to observe and manipulate the inner workings of the living human brain. In this talk, Professor Dale Stevens discusses how these tools are used to understand higher-level cognition unique to humans, how it changes across the lifespan and in neurodevelopmental disorders, and how we might enhance cognition with neurointervention techniques.


The unique partnership is part of York University’s goals of community engagement and reputation-building, with a unique collaboration that invites alumni, students and their families, and the public to engage in meaningful talks and discussions on the fascination of our environment.

Space for each talk is limited.

The Oct. 11 talk is now FULL. If you would like to livestream the event, visit the Markham Public Library Facebook page here.