Cognition & Technology
September 1
CEP 909
Fall 2005
Stuff by day

In class:

  • Introduction to People
  • Introduction to Course
  • Definitions for Cognition and Technology
  • Sign up to E-Group/Yahoo Group

Required Readings:

Pinker, S. (1997). Chapter 2: Thinking machines. In S. Pinker, How the mind works (pp. 59-110). W.W. Norton and Company: New York. (Download part 1, Download Part 2) NOTE: The pdf contains more than the required reading, the rest is optional.
Anderson, J.R. (2005). Chapter 1: The science of cognition. In J.R. Anderson, Cognitive science and its implications (pp. 1-35). Worth Publishers: New York. (Download)


Suggested Readings:

Pinker, S. (1997) How the Mind Works (pp. 1-58). W.W. Norton and Company: New York. (Download part 1, Download part 2, Download part 3).
Ashcraft, M. (1989). Human Memory and Cognition (pp. 1-35). Scott, Foresman and Company: Glenview, IL. (Download) The missing pages are available. NOTE: This is a review of the historical context. If you know all of this from CEP 911, browse through the familiar parts quickly, and pay more attention to the newer parts.



Reminder: All work for the class is to be turned in electronically so that others in the class may access your work. Put it on your web-page, on the e-groups, or whichever way you can make your work publicly visible. Assignments due next Wed at 11:59 pm.

Write a one page theory summarizing your theory of how the mind works. I know that's a tough question, and may be answered any number of ways. I want you write your answer before you do the readings. The goal is not to recite back what you've read, but to honestly put forth how you think the mind does what it does. I do honestly do not want to hear any proseminar party line either, unless that's truly what you believe. There are no wrong answers (although there are better written answers, more complete arguments, and more honest answers).

One way to proceed is to take some common, everday task and tell me how your mind performs these activities. Examples include:

How is it that you can look out a window, and transform pulses (or particles, or waves) of light into objects like "trees", "the sky, " "clouds," and "grass" and know what they mean, and what relationships exist between those objects?

How is it that you can read this this assignment, make meaning from it, and associate responses in your mind to the questions I'm raising?

How do you make decisions, like planning a route from point A to point B?

Aim for about 700 words.

Reminder: One goal in this class is to have an electronic portfolio ready soon, in which everyone can view your work. If you can get a website up this week, and post your assignment, that's great. Make sure you send everyone the link so they know where it is. If not, post it to the yahoo group and let people know where it is.
It's time to begin work on getting a portfolio up for this course if you have the web skills already. If you do not yet have web skills, it is time to start acquiring basic web authoring skills.
Reminder: Look at some other students work BEFORE you get to class on Thursday. Be prepared to talk about one other student's theory of mind in depth that you found particularly interesting or worth discussing.
  PDFUser !pdf_user_F05! cep9091234