Cognitive Science

Overview

Cognitive Science is the science of the mind. Drawing on the fields of mathematics, philosophy, psychology, neurobiology, computer science, and linguistics, Cognitive Science studies the nature of consciousness, the interaction of mind and matter, and the relationship between thought and language. Cognitive Science addresses long-standing questions about the nature of thought, intelligence, perception, emotion, and other aspects of our mental life by employing the methodologies of the contributing disciplines mentioned above, including philosophical reflection and argument, experimental psychology, the modeling of intelligence with machines, and the investigation of the biological basis of cognition.

Major Requirements

A total of at least 48 units to be distributed as follows:

COURSEWORK

COGS 101Introduction to Cognitive Science

4

COGS 201Empirical Methods in Cognitive Science

4

COGS 242Computational Approaches to Cognition

4

PHIL 225Formal Logic

4

PSYC 306Cognitive Psychology

4

COGS 490Senior Seminar in Cognitive Science

4

Neuroscience

Students must select either

COGS 104Introduction to Neuroscience

4

Or

COGS 320Cognitive Neuroscience

4

Linguistics

Students must select one course from the list below:

COGS 330Linguistics for Cognitive Science

4

LING 301Introduction to Linguistics

4

LING 350Psycholinguistics

4

Philosophy

Students must select one course from the list below:

PHIL 360Philosophy of Mind

4

PHIL 365Philosophy of Science

4

PHIL 370Philosophy of Language

4

PHIL 375Theory of Knowledge

4

PHIL 380Wittgenstein

4

Additional Electives

Students must select three additional courses to complete the major. 

Electives can be drawn from courses offered through the department, the list above, can be a course cross-listed with cognitive science, or can come from the list below. A total of 4 units can be applied to the major from either directed research or independent study. 

All students are encouraged to take a statistics course (e.g. BIO 268, MATH 146, or PSYC 201). Those students intending to do an empirical project for their senior comprehensives or who intend to go on to graduate school in cognitive science or in a related field should discuss course choices with their advisor.

BIO 240Vertebrate Physiology

4

BIO 268Biostatistics

4

BIO 320Developmental Biology

4

BIO 333Neurobiology

4

BIO 340Advanced Animal Physiology

4

BIO 378Animal Behavior

4

COMP 311Data Structures and Algorithms

4

COMP 353Information Theory

4

ECON 305Game Theory

4

ECON 340Behavioral Economics

4

KINE 301Human Anatomy II

4

KINE 304Human Physiology

4

KINE 310Motor Learning and Control

4

LING 355Sociolinguistics

4

MATH 146Statistics

4

MATH 150Statistical Data Analysis

4

MATH 186Network Models

4

MATH 330Probability

4

MATH 350Mathematical Logic

4

MATH 352Computability and Complexity

4

MATH 354Set Theory and Foundations of Mathematics

4

MATH 370Numerical Analysis

4

MATH 392Mathematical Models in Biology

4

PHIL 250Bioethics

4

PHIL 305Topics in Modern Philosophy

4

PHIL 325Metalogic

4

PHIL 355Philosophy of Space and Time

4

PSYC 111The Origins of Knowledge

PSYC 201Statistics in Psychological Science

4

PSYC 302Perception

4

PSYC 322LPhysiological Psychology Laboratory

2

PSYC 403Psychophysiology

4

PSYC 444Thinking and Reasoning

4

WRITING REQUIREMENT

To pass the departmental writing requirement students must attain a B- or better in a 300-level fundamental course or 300-level cognitive science class by the end of their junior year.

COMPREHENSIVE REQUIREMENT

In the senior year the student carries out a project or writes a thesis on a topic in Cognitive Science related to their prior coursework. The project or thesis is coordinated with the work of the Cognitive Science Senior Seminar. All majors take the Senior Seminar in the fall semester of the senior year.

HONORS

Honors in Cognitive Science may be awarded to graduating seniors who demonstrate excellence in their course work and distinction in their senior comprehensive project. To be eligible, students must have a 3.5 grade point average in the major and a 3.25 overall grade point average. In addition, the comprehensive project or thesis must be judged as a "pass with distinction."

Minor Requirements

A total of 24 units, including COGS 101 and five other courses any of which can come from the list of fundamental courses or have a cognitive science designation. One of these can be a course without a cognitive science designation from the list of electives for the major.

Courses

Cognitive Science Courses

Faculty

Regular Faculty

Andrew Shtulman, chair

Associate Professor, Cognitive Science; Psychology

B.A., Princeton University; Ph.D., Harvard University

Carolyn Brighouse

Professor, Cognitive Science, Philosophy

B.A., University of Liverpool; M.A., Ph.D., University of Southern California

Alan Knoerr

Associate Professor, Mathematics, Cognitive Science

B.A., Oberlin College; Sc.M., Ph.D., Brown University

Carmel Levitan

Associate Professor, Cognitive Science; Advisory Committee, Neuroscience

B.A., Stanford University; Ph.D., UC Berkeley

Justin Li

Assistant Professor, Cognitive Science

PhD, University of Michigan

Diana Card Linden

Professor, Cognitive Science; Advisory Committee, Neuroscience

A.B., M.A., Ph.D., University of California, Los Angeles

Michael Shelton

Associate Professor, Spanish and French Studies; Cognitive Science; Affiliated Faculty, Linguistics; Affiliated Faculty, Latino/a and Latin American Studies; Advisory Committee, Group Language

B.S., St. Cloud State University; M.A., Ph.D., Pennsylvania State University

Aleksandra Sherman

Assistant Professor, Cognitive Science; Advisory Committee, Neuroscience

B.A., Rutgers University; Ph.D., Northwestern University

Saul Traiger

Professor, Cognitive Science, Philosophy

B.A., State University of New York, Binghamton M.A., Ph.D., University of Pittsburgh

On Special Appointment

Dylan Sabo

Adjunct Assistant Professor, Philosophy

Ph.D., University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill