Cognitive Science Major

The Center for Cognitive Science is currently developing a new Cognitive Science major. Below is a description of the requirements for fulfilling the new Cognitive Science Major. Please note: until the new major is officially approved by the University and the NJ Board of Governors, requirements are subject to change. Once approved, students will be able to declare the new Cognitive Science Major using myMajor and then follow their progress using Degree Navigator. To be added to the list of interested students who will be alerted via email once the new major is officially approved and comes online, please email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

Tracks and Requirements

There are 5 possible tracks for the major: (1) Cognitive Neuroscience, (2) Decision Making, (3) Language, (4) Mind, Machines & Computation, and (5) Perception. Each track is structured into 5 segments: (i) Quantitative Reasoning, (ii) Foundational, (iii) Distributional, (iv) Topics Courses, and (v) Capstone. Each track will have the same two requirements in Logical and Statistical Reasoning, the same Foundational course in Cognitive Science, a set of three Distributional requirements in cognate areas, and one Capstone Course involving independent research. The selection of courses that satisfy the Topic Electives segment will vary by track.

The major must consist of a minimum of 36 credits:

  1. Students will be required to complete a minimum of 4 courses in Cognitive Science (curriculum code 185).
  2. Grades of C or better must be earned in all courses counted toward the major.
  3. At least two thirds of the total credits must be from courses offered by the School of Arts and Sciences.
  4. At least two thirds of the total credits must be at the 300-level or above.
  5. No more than 4 courses from Philosophy and no more than 4 courses from Computer Science may be counted toward the major.
  6. No more than 3 courses from any other department (not listed above) may be counted toward the major.

Quantitative Reasoning Requirements

Students must satisfy a Quantitative Reasoning Requirement by completing one course from each of the following two categories:

  1. Computational/Logical Reasoning Component. This is met by taking Introduction to Logic (730:201; 3) or Introduction to Logic (730:202; 4) or Computing for Math and the Sciences (198:107; 3) or Introduction to Discrete Structures I (198:205; 4) or Mathematical Logic (640:461; 3) or Introduction to Mathematical Reasoning (640:300; 3).
  2. Statistical Reasoning Component. This is met by taking one course from one of the following categories:
    1. Cognitive Science. Students may take Research Methods in Cognitive Science (185:320; 3).
    2. Computer Science. Students may take Introduction to Discrete Structures II (198: 206; 4).
    3. Mathematics. Students may take any course in the Calculus sequence: Calculus I (640:135; 4) or Calculus II or (640:136; 4) or Calculus I for Mathematical and Physical (640:151; 4) or Calculus I for Mathematical and Physical (640:152; 4) or Honors Calculus I (640:191; 4) or Honors Calculus II (640:192; 4).
    4. Psychology. Students may take Quantitative Methods in Psychology (830:200).
    5. Statistics. Students may take any course in the Statistics sequence, Statistics I (960:211; 3) or Introductory Statistics for Business (960:285; 3) or Basic Statistics for Research (960:401; 3)

Foundational Requirement in Cognitive Science (185:201)

One foundational course is required for all majors, “Cognitive Science: A Multi- disciplinary Introduction” (185:201; 4). This course is taught in Fall terms.

Distributional Requirements

The distributional requirements consist of taking one course in three out of five of the areas of Cognitive Science: Cognitive Neuroscience, Decision Making, Language, Mind, Machines & Computation, and Perception. One course should be taken from three of the cognate areas.

  1. Cognitive Neuroscience. Brain, Mind and Behavior (119:195; 3) or Fundamentals of Neurobiology (146:245; 3; for CBN majors) or Essentials of Cell Biology & Neuroscience (146:295; 3) or Data Structures (198:112, 4) or Physiological Psychology (830:313; 3)
  2. Decision Making. Cognition and Decision Making (185:301; 4) or Reasoning, Problem Solving, and Decision Making (830:408 or 409; 3)
  3. Language. Language and Cognition (185: 410; 4) or Introduction to Linguistic Theory (615:201; 3) or Philosophy of Language (730:210; 3) or Psychology of Language (830:351; 3)
  4. Mind, Machines & Computation. The Concept of ‘Concepts’ in Cognitive Science (185: 310; 3) or Introduction to Computer Science (198:111; 4) or Introduction to Artificial Intelligence (198: 440, 4) or Minds, Machines and Persons (730:329; 3) or Philosophical Aspects of Cognitive Science (730:360; 3)
  5. Perception. Design and Analysis of Computer Algorithms (198:344; 4) or Sensation & Perception (830:301; 3)

Capstone Course (185:411; 4 or 185:495; 3)

Students are required to take one of the following courses to satisfy the Capstone Course requirement: (1) Advanced Topics in Cognitive Science (185:411; 4; offered Spring terms) or (2) Research in Cognitive Science (185:495; 3). This capstone is usually taken in a student’s Junior or Senior year.

Tracks

Students will select from one of 5 tracks that allow for concentration in a specific area of interest: Cognitive NeuroscienceDecision MakingLanguageMind, Machines & Computation, and Perception. Remaining credits will be completed by taking a minimum of three Topics Courses in a specific area of concentration. Note: there is no double-counting of courses; even though some courses appear on multiple lists, any one course can only count for satisfying one requirement.

  1. Cognitive Neuroscience Track Topics Courses (minimum of 9 elective credits):

    Behavioral and Neural Genetics (146:384; 3)
    Advanced Neurobiology I (146:445; 3)
    Advanced Neurobiology II (146:447; 3)
    Cognitive Neuroscience Through Case Studies (185:430; 4)
    Modeling and Simulation of Continuous Systems (198: 424; 4) 
    Introduction to Artificial Intelligence (198:440; 4)
    Mathematical Models in the Social and Biological Sciences (640:338; 3) 
    Minds, Machines and Persons (730:329; 3)
    Philosophical Aspects of Cognitive Science (730:360; 3) 
    Philosophy of Mind (730:418; 3)
    Cognition (830:305; 3)
    Behavioral Pharmacology (830:363; 3)
    Advanced Topics in Psychobiology (830:411; 3)
    Neuropsychopharmacology (830:412; 3)
    Introduction to Neural Processes - Biological and Artificial (14:125:440; 3)

  2. Decision Making Track Topics Courses (minimum of 9 elective credits):

    Human Nature and Human Diversity (185:253; 4)
    Cognition and Decision Making (185:301; 4) 
    Research Methods in Cognitive Science (185:320; 3) 
    Intermediate Microeconomic Analysis (220:320; 3) 
    Behavioral Economics (220:480; 3)
    Game Theory and Economics (220:482; 3)
    Mathematical Models in Social Sciences (640:339; 3)
    Philosophy of Psychology (730:328; 3)
    The Logic of Decision (730:424; 3)
    Small Groups (830:326; 3)
    Abnormal Psychology (830:340; 3)
    Research Methods in Psychology (830:355; 3)
    Health Psychology (830:377; 3)
    Reasoning, Problem Solving, and Decision Making (830:408 or 409; 3)

  3. Language Track Topics Courses (minimum of 9 elective credits):

    At least one course must be taken from this list: 
    Syntax (615:305; 3)
    Phonology (615:315; 3)
    Semantics (615:325; 3)
    Pragmatics (615:350; 3)

    At least one course must be taken from this list: 
    Philosophy of Language (730:420; 3)
    Semantics of Language (730:421; 3)
    Psychology of Language (830:351 or 615:371; 3)
    Language Acquisition (830:353; 3 or 615:433; 3) or Language Acquisition (830:484; 3)

    Other additional electives: 
    Language and Cognition (185:410; 4)
    Introduction to French Syntax (420:333; 3)
    Historical Linguistics (615:330; 3)
    Morphology (615:411; 3)
    Evolution of the Human Language Capacity (615:415; 3) 
    Language Typology (615:421; 3)
    Experimental Methodologies in Language Acquisition (615:435; 3) 
    Linguistics and Cognitive Science (615:441; 3)
    Phonetics (615:451; 3)
    Current Issues in Second Language Acquisition (940:420; 3) Spanish Syntax (940:421; 3)
    Spanish Semantics (940:422; 3)
    Spanish Phonetics and Phonology (940:362; 3)
    Bilingualism in the Spanish-Speaking World (940:363; 3)

  4. Mind, Machines & Computation Track Topics Courses (minimum of 9 elective credits):

    Brain, Mind, and Behavior (119:195; 3; honors) 
    Introduction to Neural Processes (125:405; 3)
    The Concept of ‘Concepts’ in Cognitive Science (185:360; 3) 
    Introduction to Discrete Structures I (198:205; 4) 
    Introduction to Discrete Structures II (198:206; 4)
    Design and Analysis of Computer Algorithms (198:344; 4) 
    Introduction to Artificial Intelligence (198:440; 4)
    Formal Languages and Automata (198:452; 3)
    Minds, Machines and Persons (730:329; 3)
    Philosophical Aspects of Cognitive Science (730:360; 3) 
    Philosophy of Mind (730:418; 3)
    Cognition (830: 305; 3)

  5. Perception Track Topics Courses (minimum of 9 elective credits):

    Visual Intelligence (185:401; 3)
    Design and Analysis of Computer Algorithms (198:344; 4) 
    Introduction to Artificial Intelligence (198:440; 4)
    Philosophy of Psychology (730:328; 3)
    Philosophical Aspects of Cognitive Science (730:360; 3) 
    Sensation & Perception (830:301; 3)
    Physiological Psychology (830:313; 3)
    Topics in Visual Perception (830:480; 3)

    One of the following:
    Graph Theory (640:428; 3) or
    Mathematical Logic (640:461; 3)
    Mathematical Theory of Probability (640:477; 3)

Contact RuCCS

Psychology Building Addition
152 Frelinghuysen Road
Piscataway, NJ 08854-8020


Phone:

  • 848-445-1625
  • 848-445-6660
  • 848-445-0635


Fax:

  • 732-445-6715