Franklin & Marshall College Franklin & Marshall College

Michael L. Anderson

Associate Professor of Psychology, Chair Scientific & Philosophical Studies of Mind Program
717-291-3826
Office: LSP132A
Summary: Human cognition, cognitive neuroscience and robotics

Professional Biography

Michael L. Anderson is an Associate Professor in the Department of Psychology at F&M, and a Visiting Associate Professor at the Institute for Advanced Computer Studies at the University of Maryland, College Park, where he is also a member of the Graduate Faculty in the Program in Neuroscience and Cognitive Science. He earned a B.S. with honors in pre-medical studies at the University of Notre Dame, a Ph.D. in Philosophy from Yale University (where he was a Sterling Prize Fellow), and did a post-doc in computer science at the University of Maryland. In 2012 he was selected to be a Fellow of the Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences, at Stanford University.

Prof. Anderson is author or co-author of over eighty scholarly and scientific publications in artificial intelligence, cognitive science, and philosophy of mind.  His work has appeared in such journals as Artificial Intelligence, Behavioral and Brain Sciences, Connection Science, Journal of Logic and Computation, The Neuroscientist, Philosophical Psychology and Synthese.

Before coming to F&M, Prof. Anderson was a Research Scientist at the University of Maryland, worked in industry as a Biomedical Systems Scientist and as an Applications Developer, and was a Tutor at St. John's College, Annapolis.

Education

Post-doc, University of Maryland, College Park, 2001-5 (Computer Science / Artificial Intelligence)

Ph.D., Yale University, 1996 (Philosophy of Mind / Cognitive Science)

B.S., University of Notre Dame, 1990 (Pre-Medical Studies)

Research Interests

  • The role of circuit re-use in the evolution and functional architecture of the brain (the "massive redeployment hypothesis")
  • The role of behavior, and of the brain's motor-control areas, in supporting higher-order cognitive functions (such as language)
  • The foundations of intentionality (the connection between objects of thought and things in the world)
  • The role of self-monitoring and self-control in maintaining robust real-world agency
  • The promise and limitations of data-mining and machine learning methods in neuroscience

For more details see Anderson's projects page.

Grants & Awards

Grants:

Improving robustness with generalized metacognition. NSF, $894,854, 3 years, 2008-2011 (D. Perils, PI, M.L. Anderson, co-PI, T. Oates, co-PI.)

Metacognition and natural language understanding. ONR, $360,000, 3 years, 2008-11. (D. Perlis, PI, M.L. Anderson, co-PI, T. Oates, co-PI.)

Generalized metacognition: developing the key to robust cognition. AFOSR, $710,000, 3 years, 2008-11. (D. Perlis, PI, M.L. Anderson, co-PI, T. Oates, co-PI.)

Overcoming the problem of brittleness with the metacognitive loop. AFOSR, $631,516, 3 years, 2006-2008. (D. Perils, PI, M.L. Anderson, co-PI, T. Oates, co-PI.)

Toward human-level natural-language dialog. ONR $334,454, 3 years, 2006-2008. (D. Perlis, PI, and M.L. Anderson, co-PI. )

Reason-guided knowledge acquisition and transfer. DARPA, $488,741, 2 years, 2006-2007.  (D. Perlis, PI, M.L. Anderson, co-PI, T. Oates, co-PI.)

Detecting, classifying, and handling contradictions in a large, dynamic information environment. AFOSR. $520,000, 3 years. 2003-2005. (D. Perlis, PI, and M.L. Anderson, co-PI.)

Modeling question-answer exchanges for domain-oriented conversational adequacy. ONR $300,000, 3 years. 2003-2005. (D. Perlis, PI, and M.L. Anderson, co-PI.)


Awards/Honors:

Selected as a 2012-13 Fellow of the Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences, Stanford University

Nominated for the Society for Philosophy and Psychology's Stanton Prize, 2009.

Keynote speaker, AAAI Fall Symposium on Biologically Inspired Cognitive Architectures, 2008.

Keynote speaker, Third Annual Young Researchers Conference in Cognitive Science, University of Quebec, Montreal, 2006.

University Fellow, Yale University, 1995-6.

Exchange Scholar, Harvard University, 1992-4.

Sterling Prize Fellow, Yale University, 1990-2.

National Science Foundation Commended Scholar, 1990.

Publications

Recent publications:

Uddin, L., Kinnison, J., Pessoa, L.  & Anderson, M.L. (in press). Beyond the tripartite cognition-emotion-interoception model of the human insular cortex. Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience.

Anderson, M.L., Kinnison, J. & Pessoa, L. (2013). Describing functional diversity of brain regions and brain networks. NeuroImage, 73: 50-58.

Anderson, M.L. & Penner-Wilger, M. (2013). Neural reuse in the evolution and development of the brain: Evidence for developmental homology? Developmental Psychobiology, 55(1): 42-51.

Anderson, M.L., Richardson, M. & Chemero, A. (2012). Eroding the boundaries of cognition: Implications of embodiment. Topics in Cognitive Science, 4(4): 717-30.

Anderson, M.L. (2010). Neural reuse: A fundamental organizational principle of the brain. (Target article) Behavioral and Brain Sciences, 33(3).

Schmill, M.D., Anderson, M.L., Fults, S., Josyula, D., Oates, T., Perlis, D., Shahri, H., Wilson, S. and Wright, D. (2010). The Metacognitive Loop and reasoning about anomalies. In: M. Cox and A. Raja, (eds.). Metareasoning: Thinking about thinking. MIT Press.

Anderson, M.L., Brumbaugh, J. and Şuben, A. (2010).  Investigating functional cooperation in the human brain using simple graph-theoretic methods.  In: A. Chaovalitwongse, P.M. Pardalos, V. and P. Xanthopoulos, (eds.). Computational Neuroscience. Springer.

Anderson, M.L. & Chemero, T. (2009). Affordances and intentionality: Reply to Roberts. Journal of Mind and Behavior, 30(4): 301-12.

Anderson, M.L. (2009). What mindedness is.  Europe's Journal of Psychology, 4: 1-12.

For a complete list including links see Anderson's publications page

Presentations

Anderson, M.L. (2008). Circuit sharing and the implementation of intelligent systems. Keynote address, AAAI Fall Symposium on Biologically Inspired Cognitive Architectures, Washington, D.C.

Anderson, M.L. (2008). The Massive Redeployment Hypothesis and the functional organization of the cortex. University of Adelaide, Adelaide, Australia, July 2008.

Anderson, M.L. (2008). The Massive Redeployment Hypothesis and the functional organization of the cortex. Distinguished Speaker series, Carleton University, Ottawa, Canada, March 2008.

Anderson, M.L. (2008). Investigating functional cooperation in the cortex with graph-theoretic methods. Plenary address, Conference on computational neuroscience: Engineering approaches in neuroscience research. University of Florida, February, 2008.

Anderson, M.L. (2007). The Massive Redeployment Hypothesis and the functional organization of the cortex. University of Murcia, Spain, December 2007.

Anderson, M.L. (2007). Evolution, embodiment, and the nature of the mind: a field guide to embodied cognition. University of Murcia, Spain, December 2007.

Anderson, M.L. (2007). Circuit sharing for action-grounded meaning. Plenary address, Symposium on Language and Robots. Aveiro, Portugal, December 2007

Anderson, M.L. (2006). Action-grounded cognition: Evolution, embodiment and the nature of the mind. Keynote address, Cognitio 2006: Young Researchers Conference in Cognitive Science. University of Quebec at Montreal.

Anderson, M.L. (2006). Internal mechanisms for external symbol grounding. Plenary address, Conference on Extended Symbol Grounding, University of Plymouth, UK.

Anderson, M.L. and Chemero, T. (2006). The future of the extended mind: on the temporal orientation of cognition. Plenary address. The Extended Mind 2: Just When You Thought It Was Safe To Go Back in The Head. University of Hertfordshire.

Student Collaborations

Students work in Anderson's lab on a variety of topics, including human cognition, cognitive neuroscience and robotics.

Some recent publications that have resulted from these collaborations are listed below:

Anderson, M.L., Brumbaugh, J. and Suben, A. (in press). Investigating functional cooperation in the human brain using simple graph-theoretic methods. In: A. Chaovalitwongse, P.M. Pardalos, V. and P. Xanthopoulos, (eds.). Computational Neuroscience. Springer.

Suben, A., Anderson, M.L. and Chemero, T. (2008). The Duck/Rabbit Illusion: Re-examination of information encapsulation. Proceedings of the 30th Annual Meeting of the Cognitive Science Society.

Parzych, E.M. (2008). The effect of priming on feature binding theory: stimulus feature distortion? Society for Neuroscience.

Anderson, M.L., Brumbaugh, J. and Suben, A. (2008). Investigating functional cooperation in the human cortex with simple graph-theoretic methods: Evidence for neural redeployment theories of the evolution and organization of the cortex. Society for Neuroscience.