Introduction to Cognitive Science

Undergraduate 1st/2nd year

drps     team-taught course

I teach the Philosophy part of the Situated Cognition theme described below

Course description

This course introduces students to the study of Cognitive Science as the intersection of an array of interrelated disciplines including philosophy, psychology, linguistics, anthropology, computer science, human-computer interaction, and neuroscience.


Students attend 2 hours of lecture per week, 2 hours of lab per week, as well as a biweekly tutorial hour.

Course content

This course is divided into three themed blocks:

  1. Nativism & Empiricism:   Basic questions about the degree to which certain cognitive capacities are “native”, or hard-wired, in the human brain from birth or can be learned via empirical evidence during development.

  2. Representation:   Principles regarding the types of hypothesized structures and symbols that could be used to represent external reality in the human brain or in a computational model.

  3. Situated Cognition:   Fundamental approaches to cognition that incorporate the physical constraints and affordances of the body.