PHIL 256/PSYCH 256

Purple Brain

Introduction to Cognitive Science

This course will be an introduction to some of the main themes and interdisciplinary questions at the heart of cognitive science. As a relatively new scientific discipline (in comparison with, say, physics or chemistry), many of the foundational issues are still to be settled.  This has led to lively debate and congress between people from competing schools of thought, coming from a wide range of backgrounds, including philosophy, psychology, linguistics, anthropology, computing and AI research, mathematics, and neuroscience.  While cognitive science gets its proper start after WWII, we will see how the roots of cognitive science go back much deeper in the Western intellectual tradition.  One should not be surprised about this much longer history, given that cognitive science asks a range of very specific questions about how thinking works, but also very general questions.