Hey, I'm Zoe. I'm a second year graduate student in Oakland University's Psychology department. My passion is learning and researching animal minds. You might suspect a lot of things about what your pet or your favorite wild animal thinks and knows, but I want to find out and prove what they are really capable of knowing and understanding. My current area of interest is causal reasoning in the physical domain; this is what animals understand about the physical environment (e.g. do they have a concept for physical mechanisms like gravity, support, or force that they can use to solve physical problems?). I'm working on my master's thesis (on the way to PhD) with three striped skunks (Mephitis mephitis) at the Organization for Bat Conservation, giving them a series of puzzles to see if A. they can learn to pull wooden slats to reach food and B. if so, what they understand about the physical mechanism of support.
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