Consciousness and Attention
Instructor: John Truscott
The course is concerned with two of the central topics in cognitive research and theory,
namely consciousness and attention. The focus will be on consciousness, with the closely
related phenomena of attention included in the consciousness topics. We will be concerned
especially with what consciousness and attention are, especially (but not entirely) what they
are in the brain, how they are studied, and how various theories try to explain them. We will
also look at unconscious processes – what they are, how important they are, and how they
differ from conscious processes. Throughout the semester, students will be expected to do
extensive reading on the topics, present some of the readings in class, and participate in
regular in-class discussion, all in English.
Dehaene, Stanislas (2014). Consciousness and the brain: Deciphering how the brain codes
our thoughts. New York: Viking.
Many additional readings will be assigned throughout the semester.