MBB 120A Introduction to Study of the Mind-Brain: Psychological, Biological and Philosophical Perspectives
A consideration of three primary areas of research in cognitive science: attention, memory and language. These topics are used to illustrate the techniques by which mental abilities are investigated and explained in psychology and neuroscience: the focus, in particular, is on the use of reaction time studies, brain imaging and cell recordings to isolate the basic components that make up complex functions. In addition to the central concepts and theories in each area, the course addresses philosophical implications of this research concerning how the mind and brain are related, how the mind-brain encodes or represents information, and the nature of consciousness. And there is an emphasis on applying these findings to important problems, such as Alzheimer's disease and deficits due to brain damage. The class is taught by three members of the faculty from different disciplines and combines a whole-group lecture with small discussion classes. The goal is to give students a good understanding of the interdisciplinary nature of cognitive science and to help them develop the ability to think and write critically about scientific research into the mind-brain.
MBB 122 Introduction to the Study of the Mind Brain II
In this course, participants in the Mind, Brain, Behavior program continue their exploration of cognitive science. We explore different frameworks for thinking about how the different branches of cognitive science relate to each other. The course contains an introduction to relevant topics in the philosophy of science and the philosophy of mind.
In the sophomore year, students are able to undertake research under the supervision of a faculty member who serves as a research mentor for the MBB program. Sophomores may choose among several research options, each combining independent work with opportunities to work collaboratively. This research experience culminates in a research symposium held at the end of the spring semester, sophomore year.