Animal Language

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Meeting Information
Location: ASH 111
Days: Tuesday, Thursday
Time: 12:30-1:50
Email: jtrudeau@hampshire.edu
Extension: 5630
Office: ASH 203
Office Hours:
Home Page:
Technical Information
Course Level: 100
Course Number: 133
Course Capacity: 23
Course Website:


Animal Language is a Cognitive Science class taught by Jeremiah J. Trudeau.

Course Description

We humans are the only animals that learn and use language naturally. Why is that? Is it a matter of genetics? Brain size? Culture? Is it really just a matter of how we define 'language'? We will look at the past several decades of experimental evidence on attempts to teach non-human primates such as chimpanzees, gorillas, orangutans to learn and use something like human languages, as well as examine naturally-occurring primate and animal communication systems. We will address a wide of cognitive, evolutionary and other biological issues that bear on these matters. The course will focus primarily on non-human primates, but also include parrots, bees, and more.

Learning Goals

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