Cognitive Science. Summer 2013

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1 Cognitive Science Summer 2013 Course Description We will consider the nature of cognition from an interdisciplinary perspective, often utilizing a computational model. We will explore insights from philosophy, psychology, linguistics, artificial intelligence, anthropology, and neuroscience. Texts There is no assigned text, but there are several papers I want you to read (see the schedule of events). The Basics Keep in mind that a syllabus sometimes shifts as the course unfolds. I say that by way of noting the importance of class attendance, as you will be held responsible for any change in plans announced in class. Another basic admonition every syllabus should include is that cheating (broadly defined) is not allowed. Or, as the University likes me to say: All students enrolled at the University shall follow the tenets of common decency and acceptable behavior conducive to a positive learning environment. (See Student's Guide Handbook, Policies and Procedures, Conduct). Also, note that Students requesting accommodations for disabilities must go through the Academic Support Committee. For more information, please contact the Director of Disability Resources & Services. Course Format The course format will vary (wildly) from class to class, so I have been as specific as possible on the schedule of events. Grades Currently you have an A. To keep the A, do what I ask you with an appropriate sense of professionalism and punctuality. Specifically, you have several simple homework assignments. Additionally, I ask that each of you do a glorified book report on a topic we find mutually satisfactory. Should you feel a need to do extra credit, then you should do two glorified book reports. All students will receive an X as their course grade until either they complete the glorified book report(s) or in August when Summer school ends. Presentations and Reports The glorified book report is just what it says. Write a 10 page-ish summary/review of an original book having to do with cognitive science that I have approved. The purpose is for you to get deeper than our time allowed on a topic within cognitive science that is of interest to you. As such, my admonition is that you choose something that either you are earnestly interested in, or that would be useful to you as you make progress on your thesis/dissertation. If all else fails read a book by Pinker.

2 I would consider alternatives such as a computer-based demonstration project, or a series of related classic papers in lieu of a book per se. There are several times when I will expect you to make a short class presentation over a topic you have done some research on. Likewise, for most homework assignments, I will expect you to discuss in class what you discovered. The Instructor Dr. Tracy B. Henley You are welcome to drop by and speak with me any time that you find me in my office. Beyond that, just see me after class to schedule a meeting, or send me an at: Schedule of Events M 3 Course Overview Lecture: What is science and how does science work? The Greek World View Comte Logical Positivism Popper (and Hull) Kuhn Feyerabend Homework: (1) Go to the library and look for textbooks on Cognitive Science. What are the core and common features? (2) Go to the web and look for syllabi from courses on Cognitive Science. What are the core and common features? (3) Be prepared to present and discuss how cognitive science differs from cognitive psychology. (4) Read Computer Science as Empirical Inquiry, from section 1, p.114 forward until you get the point it can be found online at: be prepared to discuss why the computer is a reasonable model for the mind. Tu 4 Discussion: So what is Cognitive Science and where did it come from? Discussion: The computer as an interdisciplinary model of mind Lecture: A Brief History of Cognitive Science From the Ancient Greeks, thru the pre-cursors of CS, to German Phenomenology Homework: (1) Know something about the events and folks associated with the cognitive revolution. W 5 Lecture: From a "cognitive revolution" to a Cognitive Science George Miller, 7+2, 1956 Plans and the Structure of Behavior, 1960

3 Jerome Bruner Center for Cognitive Studies, 1960 subsequent work in educational psychology Noam Chomsky, Syntactic Structures, 1957 Skinner review, 1959 Aspects of a Theory of Syntax, 1965 David Broadbent -- Perception and Communication, 1958 Ulric Neisser Cognitive Psychology, 1967 Cognition & Reality, 1976 Simon & Newell GPS, 1957 Homework: Refresh yourself on the physiological basis of mind and behavior. Be prepared to talk about the how the brain is involved with learning and memory. Know the contributions of these Nobel Prize winners Th 6 Neuroscience as a basis You tell me about these Nobel Prize Winning contributions Cajal (1906) Sherrington (1932) Loewi (1936) Von Bekesy (1961) Huxley (1963) Granit, Hartline & Wald (1967) Axelrod (1970) Lorenz & Tinbergen (1973) my soapbox on sociobiology Sperry (1981) Hubel & Wiesel (1981) Kandel (2000) Discussion: Learning & Memory as biological phenomena Lecture: Perception Gestalt Psychology Gibson Perceptual Control Theory Lecture: Cognitive Development Piaget Theory of Mind Homework: Both Anthropology and Linguistics also had a cognitive revolution. See what you can find out about that.

4 M 10 Lecture: Anthropology and Linguistics Descriptive Anthropology and Linguistics Revolutionaries -- von Humbolt, Levi-Strauss, Sperber, Semiotics, Nietzsche, etc Cultural Universals (Whorf, 1941/1956) Color Terms (Berlin & Kay, 1969) Language, thought, and reality (Vygotsky) Beer Terms Describing language: phonology, syntax, semantics, pragmatics, etc Communications Model Language Acquisition (Chomsky) Cognitive Linguistics (Lakoff & Johnson, 1980) Embodied Cognition (Johnson, 1987; Lakoff & Johnson, 1999) Linguistic Flexibility (Lakoff & Johnson, 1987; others) Homework: There are many versions of Searle s Mind, Brains, Programs also known as the Chinese Room argument. Find one (that he wrote, not a secondary source) and read it. A PDF of the classic version can be found at citeseerx.ist.psu.edu look for that address in a Google search (it should be near the top). Tu 11 Lecture: Philosophy Ontology and Epistemology as they relate to Cognitive Science Philosophy of psychology (Ryle and Wittgenstein) Philosophy of mind Materialism: Churchland Functionalism: Fodor and Dennett Consciousness, intentionality, free will, & AI (Brentano and Searle) The Turing Test The Chinese Room (Searle) What Computer's Can't Do (Dreyfus) Philosophy of language (Grice and Searle) W 12 Watch the Dennet and Pinker DVDs. The library has a decent collection of taped lectures by famous philosophers and cognitive scientists so we ll watch a few of these folks in their own words and then discuss what we learned. Exact details TBA Th 13 Cognitive Psychology at TAMU-C. The Department has a decent collection of living cognitive psychologists so we ll watch a few of these folks talk about their research in their own words and then discuss what we have learned. Exact details TBA

5 Homework: The next meeting s material should all be review of topics you have previously covered in other courses. My plan is to briefly give my take on a few selected topics, so review your notes from Drs. Ball, Carlson, Green, Krueger, Lu, Pierce, Reysen, Stacks, etc and be prepared to discuss accordingly. M 17 Discussion: Cognitive Psychology Perception and Memory = Mind (James) Grand Theories (Miller, Minsky, Anderson, Newell, etc) Mental representations (Schank) Memory and Knowledge (Bartlett) Concepts and categories (Rosch) Reasoning, planning, and problem solving Social Cognition Tu 18 Lecture: Computer Science A Brief History of Computing Artificial Intelligence and Expert Systems Artificial Life and Robotics (Braitenberg and Brooks) Connectionism and Machine Learning Genetic algorithms Natural Language Processing The sociology of computing and cognitive science

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