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Prospectus

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Brain and Cognition, Neural Underpinnings of Emotion and Cognition

Course
2011-2012

Goals

The student will gain broad overviews of (a) classical and modern theories on emotion, and a deeper insight into how theoretical concepts and hypotheses in this area can be applied to empirical phenomena; (b) classical and modern theories of the mechanisms underlying cognitive processes such as perception, memory and language, and a deeper insight into how these mechanisms could be implemented in the brain.

Description

This course deals with two topics in Brain and Cognition:

Emotion
This topic addresses human emotion and how it is implemented in the brain. The four lectures provide an overview of the basic theoretical streams in investigating and theorizing about emotions and affective processing, including evolutionary, anthropological, information-processing, and neurophysiological approaches. Examples will be discussed for how these streams of reasoning are reflected in studies on the neural underpinnings of emotions.

Cognitive processes and the brain
This topic concerns the mechanisms underlying cognitive processes such as perception, memory and language. The four lectures provide an overview of the main theoretical ideas on the nature of these mechanisms, ranging from symbolic accounts to neural and dynamical views. Examples of how cognitive processes could be implemented in the brain will be presented and discussed. Potential applications of neural mechanisms of cognition will be presented and discussed as well.

Literature

  • PDF links on Blackboard

  • Ward, J. (2010). The Student’s Guide to Cognitive Neuroscience 2nd Edition. Psychology Press.

Mode of teaching and of assessment

  • Lectures, self-study assignments.

  • Written exam (MC and essay questions).