Cognitive Science

Course no: CSCI 3702, LING 3005, PHIL 3310, PSYC 3005

Time/place: MW 10-11:15, Muenzinger D430 (ICS meeting room)

Course mailing list:

Professor: Mike Eisenberg,
Office hours: ECOT 736, Fri. 1:30-3 PM or by appointment

TA: Glenn Blauvelt,

Webmeister: Ann Eisenberg,

What is this course about?

This course is an introduction to the study of thinking and intelligent behavior, with a primary (but not exclusive) focus on human cognition. Our style of work will be interdisciplinary, drawing upon ideas from psychology, philosophy, artificial intelligence, neuroscience, and linguistics. Among the topics that we will explore will be problem-solving, judgment and decision-making, mental imagery, consciousness, animal intelligence, evolutionary psychology, and language acquisition. The guiding theme throughout the coming weeks will be the "computational metaphor of mind" -- the idea that the mind can be modelled as a computational system.

Prerequisites for taking this course

At least two of the following: CSCI 1300, PSYC 2145, LING 2000, PHIL 2440.


Course readings will be assigned periodically during the semester. There will be seven problem sets in the course, and one final paper. The problem sets will mostly be short-essay questions dealing with the readings and lecture topics. The final paper should be an essay dealing with any of the topics that we have covered during the semester. (This should be your opportunity to do some additional reading about your favorite ideas in the course.) The final paper should be approximately 4000 words in length.

Grading will be based on the following algorithm: problem sets will be worth 75 percent of the final grade (with the best six counting for 12 points each, and the remaining set counting for 3 points); the final paper will be worth 25 percent of the grade.

Current schedule

(last updated 8/28/01) -- this schedule is subject to change, so check back regularly!