MAJOR: All cognitive science majors take the following eight fundamental courses: Cognitive Science 101: Introduction to Cognitive Science; Cognitive Science 242: Computational Approaches to Cognition; Philosophy 225: Formal Logic; Psychology 306: Cognitive Psychology; Cognitive Science 310: Research Methods in Cognitive Science; Cognitive Science 320: Cognitive Neuroscience; Cognitive Science 330: Linguistics for Cognitive Science, Linguistics 301: Introduction to Linguistic Structure or Linguistics 350: Psycholinguistics; and Cognitive Science 490: Senior Seminar.
By the spring semester of the junior year, the cognitive science major declares an emphasis in one of the tracks listed below, and then completes three courses in the Computation, Philosophy or Psychology emphasis or four courses in the Bioscience emphasis.
Neuroscience Emphasis: Biology 115: General Zoology, Biology 130: Introduction to Cell and Molecular Biochemistry, Biology 240: Vertebrate Physiology, and either Biology 333: Neurobiology or Biology 340: Advanced Animal Physiology.
Computation Emphasis: Three of the following courses: Cognitive Science 210: Introduction to Artificial Intelligence; Math 186: Network Models; Math 350: Mathematical Logic or Philosophy 325: Metalogic; Math 354: Set Theory and Foundations of Mathematics; Computer Science 311: Data Structures and Algorithms; Math 352: Computability and Complexity; Cognitive Science 343: Probabilistic Models of Cognition;
Philosophy Emphasis: Three of the following courses: Philosophy 360: Philosophy of Mind; Philosophy 365: Philosophy of Science, Philosophy 370: Philosophy of Language; Philosophy 375: Theory of Knowledge; Philosophy 380: Wittgenstein.
Psychology Emphasis: Three of the following courses: Psychology 200: Methods in Psychological Science; Psychology 201: Statistics in Psychological Science; Cognitive Science 230: Mind, Brain, and Behavior; Cognitive Science 301: Applied Cognitive Science and Education; Psychology 301: Learning; Psychology 302: Perception; Psychology 303: Psychophysiology; Psychology 322: Physiological Psychology.
WRITING REQUIREMENT: Students majoring in Cognitive Science will satisfy the final component of Occidental College's college-wide writing requirement by arranging (with the instructor) for a 300-level course counting towards the major (from Cognitive Science or a related field) to be designated as the student's writing course. A grade of B- or better must be attained in this course. The writing requirement must be satisfactorily completed by May of the student's junior year. Students who fail the requirement or who fail to meet the deadline will be required to take both a composition course in the senior year and demonstrate acceptable writing skills in the senior comprehensive in order to graduate. Students should familiarize themselves with the departmental requirement at the time of declaring the major. See the Writing Program and consult the department chair for additional information.
COMPREHENSIVE REQUIREMENT: In the senior year the student carries out a project or writes a thesis on a topic in Cognitive Science related to the chosen emphasis. The project or thesis is coordinated with the work of the Cognitive Science Senior Seminar. All majors take the Senior Seminar in the fall semester of the senior year.
MINOR: A minor in Cognitive Science consists of Cog Sci 101, 242, 310, one of Cognitive Science 330: Linguistics for Cognitive Science, Linguistics 301: Introduction to Linguistic Structure or Linguistics 350: Psycholinguistics; and two other courses in cognitive science or from the list of courses included in the four emphases.
HONORS: Honors in Cognitive Science may be awarded to graduating seniors who demonstrate excellence in their course work and distinction in their senior comprehensive project. To be eligible, students must have a 3.5 grade point average in the major and a 3.25 overall grade point average. In addition, the comprehensive project or thesis must be judged as a "pass with distinction." See the Honors Program and consult the program chair for further details.