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A Day on Human Nature

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Learn about the hidden forces driving your behaviour in this day of talks from leading neuroscientists, psychologists and professors.

About this event

Is it possible to be genuinely altruistic?

What does the latest neuroscience reveal about what’s really driving our decisions and behaviour?

How can twin studies help us finally resolve the nature vs nurture debate?

These are just some of the questions the speakers will explore at The Weekend University this month.

New breakthroughs in the fields of epigenetics, neuroscience, and developmental psychology are beginning to show that our basic nature is a lot more mysterious, complex, and interesting than we previously thought.

By developing a greater understanding of the roots of your behaviour, it can empower you to break the negative patterns in your life, improve your relationships with others, and gain better control over what you do, and ultimately, who you become.

In this lecture series, we'll explore some of the deepest questions at the core of being human, with talks on:

  • Does Altruism Exist? Attachment, Neurobiology & Optimal Wellbeing; the role of parenting in shaping how prosocial (or antisocial) you become, the effects of stress, abuse, and attachment styles on empathic and altruistic capacities, the influence of genes and environments have on prosocial behaviour, and how to leverage insights from the new science of altruism to create greater levels of wellbeing - both in your own life and in the lives of others - Dr Graham Music, PhD
  • Fate or Free Will? The Neuroscience of Human Potential; where your decisions really come from, the role of your unconscious plays in shaping what you eat, whom you fall in love with, and the kind of person you become, the extent to which you can ‘rewire’ your brain, and how to use insights from the new science of the mind to reclaim control, and create a better future both for yourself, and those around you - Dr Hannah Critchlow, PhD
  • Twin Studies & The Nature vs Nurture Debate; how studying fraternal and identical twins can provide deep insights into human nature, shed light on the role of genetics in influencing decisions and behaviour, and why studying the lives of ‘reared-apart’ twins may hold the key to finally resolving the nature vs nurture question - Prof. Nancy Segal, PhD

You’ll learn how these insights can improve your own emotional intelligence and wellbeing, and how to help others do the same.

For a full breakdown of the lectures, speakers (and their reading recommendations) emailed to your inbox, please click here.


Does Altruism Exist? Attachment, Neurobiology & Optimal Wellbeing - Dr Graham Music, PhD

Dr Graham Music, PhD is a Consultant Child and Adolescent Psychotherapist at the Tavistock Centre and an adult Psychotherapist in private practice. Formerly Associate Clinical Director of the Tavistock Clinic’s Child and Family Department, he works at the Portman as a forensic psychotherapist, and his clinical experience has for decades been mainly with trauma. He has developed and managed a range of services working with the aftermath of child maltreatment and neglect. He supervises and teaches nationally and internationally, and has a particular interest in linking cutting-edge developmental findings with therapeutic practice. His publications include Nurturing Children: From Trauma to Hope (2019), Nurturing Natures: (2016, 2010), Affect and Emotion (2001), The Good Life: (2014) and the forthcoming Resparking (2022), as well as co-editing From Trauma to Harming Others (2021), and shortly his new book Resparking will come out shortly.

Fate or Free Will? The Neuroscience of Human Potential - Dr Hannah Critchlow, PhD

Dr Hannah Critchlow, PhD is an internationally acclaimed neuroscientist based at the University of Cambridge, who specialises in demystifying the human brain on Radio, TV and at Festivals. Dr Critchlow helped present BBC’s Tomorrow’s World Live and BBC2 -The Family Brain Games, published ‘Consciousness: A Ladybird Expert Guide’ with Penguin and The Science of Fate with Hodder in May 2019, which made The Sunday Times Bestseller list.

In 2019, Hannah was named by Nature as one of Cambridge University’s ‘Rising Stars in Life Sciences’ in recognition for achievements in science engagement. She was also elected member of the prestigious European Dana Alliance of the Brain and joined the judging panel for the prestigious Wellcome Trust Science book Prize for 2018.

Dr Critchlow’s work in science communication saw me named as a Top 100 UK scientist by the Science Council in 2014 and one of Cambridge University’s most ‘inspirational and successful women in science’ in 2013. While completing her PhD, Hannah was awarded a Cambridge University Fellowship and as an undergraduate received three University Prizes as Best Biologist.

Twin Studies & The Nature vs Nurture Debate - Prof. Nancy L. Segal, PhD

Prof. Nancy L. Segal, PhD is Professor of Psychology and Director of the Twins Studies Center at California State University, Fullerton. She has authored over 250 articles and six books on twins; her seventh book, Deliberately Divided: Inside the Controversial Study of Twins and Triplets Adopted Apart was released in November 2021. Dr. Segal’s 2012 book, Born Together-Reared Apart: The Landmark Minnesota Twin Study, won the 2013 William James Book Award from the American Psychological Association. She was a speaker at a TedX event in Manhattan Beach, California (2017), and delivered invited addresses at the Human Behavior and Evolution Society in Amsterdam, the Netherlands (2018) and the International Society for the Study of Individual Differences, in Florence, Italy (2019). She was also an invited participant in a debate on parenting organized by Intelligence Squared in New York City (2019). Dr. Segal’s work has been featured in the New York Times and the Wall Street Journal. She has appeared on national and international television and radio programs, including The Today Show, 20/20, Long Lost Lives, AirTalk (NPR), and Hidden Brain (NPR).

For a full breakdown of the lectures, speakers (and their reading recommendations) emailed to your inbox, please click here.

Event Schedule

  • 10:00am – 12:00pm: Does Altruism Exist? Attachment, Neurobiology & Optimal Wellbeing - Dr Graham Music, PhD
  • 12:00pm - 1:00pm: Lunch break
  • 1:00pm - 3:00pm: Fate or Free Will? The Neuroscience of Human Potential - Dr Hannah Critchlow, PhD
  • 3:00pm - 3:30pm: Afternoon break
  • 3:30pm - 5:00pm: Twin Studies & The Nature vs Nurture Debate - Prof. Nancy Segal, PhD

Please note - all times are in GMT.

If you need a time-zone converter, please click here.

Why Attend Live?

  • Get exclusive access to the content - at least six months before anyone else
  • Interact with world class speakers and leading academics in real time, and get your questions answered in the Q&A sessions
  • Build lasting relationships with a community of likeminded people as you interact throughout the talks
  • Earn a CPD certificate and demonstrate your commitment to ongoing professional development
  • Get lifetime access to video and audio recordings, and all available event materials (e.g. slides, handouts, etc.)


How does the Online Video Conference Work?

After you register on Eventbrite, you will receive an email with a unique link and instructions to join the video conference.

Will I be able to ask questions?

You will be able to submit questions to each speaker during the Q+A sessions.

What if I miss part of one of the lectures? Will I have access to the recordings?

Yes, the recordings will be emailed to all ticket-buyers (even those who can't attend on the day) approximately one hour after each lecture finishes.

This means that if you miss anything, you'll be able to catch up in your own time.

If you have any further questions, please email support@theweekenduniversity.com for more information.

Testimonials from previous participants

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Who is this event for?

You might be:

  • A mental health practitioner; psychotherapist, counsellor or coach, attending for continuing professional development
  • A psychology student seeking to broaden your knowledge in different areas of the subject
  • Considering a transition into a career in psychology, but not sure exactly what route to take yet
  • A member of the general public attending for the sheer joy of learning and exploring your curiosity.

TWU Guarantee

The Weekend University seeks to guarantee an excellent learning experience.

If you are not fully satisfied with the day, you will receive 100% of your money back, and we will cover the cost of your travel to and from the venue.

Refund Policy

We offer a full refund if you cancel within 7 days of the event date.

For cancellations in the week leading up to the event, tickets are transferable but non-refundable.

Want to Get Access to 100+ Hours of Psychology Lectures from All Past TWU Conferences?

Please click here for more information on TWU Memberships.

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Refunds up to 7 days before event

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Organiser The Weekend University

Organiser of A Day on Human Nature

The Weekend University aims to make the best minds and ideas in psychology more accessible to the general public. 

To do this, we organise 'lecture days', where you get a full day of talks from leading psychologists, authors and university professors. 

If you would like to get our latest psychology lectures sent to your inbox, you can sign up for the early access list at http://bit.ly/new-talks

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