Seminar in Cognitive Science

Fall, 2001

Description: Cognitive science is the interdisciplinary study of mind and intelligence. This seminar will discuss controversial topics concerning the nature of human and computer intelligence.

Organizer: Paul Thagard

Office hours (HH368): TR 12-1.

Email: Phone: extension 3594.

Web page:

Time: Wednesday, 2-4, in PAS 3026. Because of a Ph.D. oral exam, the first meeting, Sept. 12, will be in PAS 4288.

Textbook: A course pack will be compiled with readings for each week. Students should come to class prepared to discuss the reading. Go to list of readings.

Assignments: Each student will write a research essay of approximately 20 pages, to be supervised by one of the instructors who is a not member of the student's own department. Essay proposals should be handed in to Paul Thagard by Oct. 31, and students will present their work in class Nov. 28. The final essay is due Dec. 5.

Schedule: The following schedule is subject to change.

 Week  Dates  Instructor


 1  Sept. 12
 Paul Thagard, Philosophy
 What is cognitive science?
 2  Sept. 19  Pierre Jolicoeur, Psychology How does attention direct human thinking?
 3 Sept. 26  Richard Mann, Computer Science How can we build computer models of perception?
 4 Oct. 3  Mike Dixon, Psychology  Can meaning influence perception?
 5 Oct. 10
 Chris Eliasmith, Philosophy
What role can computational models play in neuroscience?
 6  Oct. 17  Andrea Aguiar, Psychology  How do infants learn about the physical world?
 7 Oct. 24  Mohamed Kamel, Systems Design Engineering How can intelligent machines cooperate?
 8 Oct. 31  Randy Harris, English  What's cognitive about rhetoric?
 9  Nov. 7  Chrysanne diMarco, Computer Science  What is the style and intent of language on the Web?
 10  Nov. 14  Catherine Burns, Systems Design Engineering Can we influence cognition through design? 
11  Nov. 21  William Cowan, Computer Science How can understanding the brain contribute to better user interfaces?
 12  Nov. 28 Student presentations


Cognitive Science resources

Note: this course is also being offered as Phil 475/673. Advanced undergraduates may take it as Phil 475, with permission of the instructor. Philosophy graduate students may take it as Phil 673. Students and faculty are also welcome to audit the course.

This page updated August 29, 2001.

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