George Lucas Educational Foundation

Daniel Levitin

Founding Dean of Arts and Humanities, Minerva Schools at KGI

Daniel J. Levitin is founding dean of arts and humanities at the Minerva Schools at KGI and James McGill Professor Emeritus of psychology, music, and computer science at McGill University.

Levitin earned a PhD in cognitive psychology with a PhD minor in music technology from the University of Oregon and a BA in cognitive psychology from Stanford. He completed post-doctoral training at Stanford University Medical School and UC Berkeley.

He is the author of the four international best-selling books This Is Your Brain on Music, The World in Six Songs, The Organized Mind: Thinking Straight in the Age of Information Overload, and A Field Guide to Lies: Critical Thinking in the Information Age, which was released in 2016. A Field Guide to Lies was winner of the Quebec Writers’ Federation 2016 Mavis Gallant Prize for Non-Fiction, the 2017 National Business Book Award, and the Axiom Business Book Awards 2017 silver medal for Business Ethics. It was shortlisted for the Donner Prize and named a “Best Book of the Year” by the Washington Independent Review of Books.

Levitin has published more than 100 scientific articles in leading journals, including Science, Nature, PNAS, Neuron, and Cognition. He is credited with fundamental discoveries about the nature of musical memory and absolute pitch, the neural correlates of musical structure, and the role of the cerebellum in mediating musical emotion.

Prior to entering academia, Levitin was a record producer and engineer with artists such as Blue Öyster Cult, Santana, and Stevie Wonder.


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