Advanced Concepts and Methods in Cognitive Science
This course will address the current state and open questions in consciousness research. This topic lies at the intersection of neuroscience, computer science, linguistics, philosophy and physics. We will discuss important insights from these disciplines in order to understand various facets of the problem. The course will consist of lectures and mini-projects.
One of the major challenges that scientific research is now facing is understanding the nature of consciousness. In this module we will consider this problem from several perspectives and analyse the various solutions proposed within different theoretical frameworks.
We will not try to address the question merely from a philosophical point of view but we’ll try to gain a better understanding of consciousness form a perspective of modern science.
We will initially face the epistemological issues related to the study of consciousness (the hard/easy problem) and what is the function of consciousness. We will then learn how these questions have been addressed by evolutionary, experimental, clinical, computational and synthetic studies and what are the solutions they provided. Finally, we’ll provide an integrative approach about consciousness in the context of the Distributed Adaptive Control theory of mind, brain and body.
Every week two articles will be selected for open discussion and critically evaluated in a typical journal club format.
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