Section_1_Notes

Section_1_Notes - Cognitive Neuroscience Lecture 1 What is...

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Cognitive Neuroscience Lecture 1 What is cognitive neuroscience? Neuroscience is a physical science -- it seeks to understand physical mechanisms of the nervous system. Cognitive neuroscience is the branch of neuroscience that seeks to understand the mechanisms of the nervous system that are directly related to cognitive (mental) processes. These mechanisms are thought to reside in the brain. Because cognition refers to functions of the mind, we must begin our study of cognitive neuroscience by first examining the relation between the mind and the brain.
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Ontology Ontology is the philosophical study of the nature of reality. It addresses the question of "what exists". Most people, and all scientists, agree that one realm, or domain, of reality is the physical. It includes all entities and effects that are described by physical science. Controversy arises in deciding whether this is the only realm of existence. What makes this problem hard is our personal experience. Experiential descriptions are usually called "mental", but it is difficult to determine whether mental, or more currently "cognitive", descriptions refer to a unique and separate domain of existence, or simply are a round-about way of referring to the physical domain. The philosophy of mind is a branch of philosophy that studies the nature of the mind, and its relationship to the physical body, particularly the brain. A central topic in the philosophy of mind is the mind-body problem , or the mind-brain problem . Although many well-developed philosophies of mind have been proposed over the centuries, there is still no generally agreed-upon solution to the mind-body problem.
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Philosophy of mind 3 traditional approaches to the mind-body problem: 1) Dualism : physical and mental are two fundamental domains of existence. The three main types of dualism differ in the causal relations they propose between physical and mental phenomena. a. interactionism : there are physical effects caused by the mental realm and mental effects that have physical causes. b. epiphenomenalism : causation only occurs in one direction, i.e. from physical to mental. c. parallelism : mental and physical effects are related, but not causally. Mental and physical events are in direct correspondence, but do not cause one another. 2) Idealism : the fundamental domain of reality is the mental -- the physical world is the construction of the mind -- material objects have no existence except as the contents of perceptual states of the mind.
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3) Physicalism (materialism) : the fundamental domain of reality is the physical. Mental events are essentially physical in nature. a. identity theory of mind (type physicalism) : mental events are identical to physical events in the brain. b.
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Section_1_Notes - Cognitive Neuroscience Lecture 1 What is...

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