Computer Science Events

Oct 14

CS Tea: Mitchell Campbell (Carleton Psych)

The Mind and the Machine: How Technology Shapes Our Psychological and Social Realities

4:00 – 5:00 pm / Olin 306
Oct. 14 CS Tea

Abstract:  Just days ago, Facebook whistleblower Frances Haugen testified before Congress about the company's failure to act on its own data showing the detrimental psychological effect of its platforms on particularly its younger users. Haugen's testimony begs us to ask bigger questions, not just about the effect of social media on the mental health of young people, but also about technology's many effects on the mind more broadly. Our brain did not evolve to cope with the technological realities of the 21st century world. In this talk, I will review some of the main ways in which modern technologies, including smartphones, autonomous vehicles, virtual reality, machine learning algorithms, and social media, affect our psychological and social realities. I will provide insight into how psychologists view these technological advances, both what excites us and what alarms us. Finally, I will share some principles for approaching tech to increase the likelihood that technology will meet its promise of providing us with more efficient and enjoyable lives.

Biography:  Mitchell Campbell is a Visiting Assistant Professor of Psychology at Carleton. In his work, he develops, implements, and evaluates pro-diversity interventions. He focuses in particular on how we can increase motivation to engage in more inclusive behaviors, and has established tools for selecting particular psychological methods based on facets of the social context. This has led Mitchell to doing some DEI consulting work in addition to teaching. Outside of work, you’re likely to find Mitchell outside cross-country skiing, mountain biking, backpacking, or just enjoying some fresh air. He’s also an avid baker. Mitchell is teaching social cognition in the winter and intro to psychology and a seminar on intervention science in the spring. Mitchell received his BA in Psychology from Carleton in 2014, then spent a year coaching cross-country skiing and working as a barista before starting his PhD work at the University of Wisconsin - Madison. In addition to conducting his research, Mitchell also taught multiple seminar courses, including "Future Forces in Psychological Science," which introduced students to pioneering psychological work related to tech, social issues, and emerging topics like gene editing and the gut-brain connection.

Sponsored by Computer Science Events. Contact: David Liben-Nowell