Yasin Tuna Kurşunlu

About Me

Academic Commitment
I am a 4th year undergraduate student at the University of Toronto, St. George campus. I am double majoring in Cognitive Science & Linguistics and minoring in Anthropology (General). Among my areas of interest are language evolution, language origins, premodern language, cognitive evolution – and interfaces between language, brain, culture, and cognition in general.
Research Experience
I am a volunteer in the project Foreign-Origin Words In Turkish: An Experimental Study on Speakers' Mental Lexicons, University of Toronto, and an intern at the Language and Cognition Lab, Koç University. During the fall, I will be working on an individual study on cognitive evolution – with a special emphasis on possible implications for the dynamical systems framework.
Theoretical Interests
I am curious about the emergence and organization of propositional knowing, as well as its demarkation from and interaction with other sorts of knowing. Central in this regard is how we invent and use language to make sense of ourselves and our surroundings, as well as how language affects and co-evolves with us.
Methodological Interests
I am interested in two domains of evidence, one linguistic and the other non-linguistic. The former is semantic relation judgments as a comparative aperture into the structure of our conceptual knowledge. The latter is representational gestures as a comparative aperture into the evolution of our conceptual knowledge.
Writing Experience
Since November, 2022, I have been writing for the online science magazine Evrim Ağacı ("Tree of Evolution"). Topics so far include cultural patterns in cognitive variation, the evolution of speech and language, comparative neuroanatomy and intelligence measures, as well as the internal and external organization of language.
Artistic Commitment
I was granted piano diploma by the Associated Board of the Royal Schools of Music in 2019 and the Leyla Pamir Award at the International Young Talent Music Competition in 2016. Most of my repertoire consists of work by Maurice Ravel and Claude Debussy, and since 2019, I have been performing my own work as well.