Elective course - The Feeling of Being: Theoretical and Empirical Approaches to the Neuroscientific Study of Human Consciousness
This course introduces the main theoretical models and the empirical methods employed to explain and measure consciousness. Students are offered the opportunity to learn about the neurobiological mechanisms possibly underlying the emergence of consciousness and to grasp why science needs to embrace also conceptual and philosophical levels of analysis. The course outlines the multi-faceted nature of consciousness by discussing different aspects of the phenomenon in normal as well as in abnormal conditions. Students are encouraged throughout the course to actively participate in discussions and to make critical thinking regarding the current state of knowledge about how the brain relates to the mind.
The following topics will be covered during the course:
Theme 1: Framing consciousness
- What do we mean by ‘conscious’?
- The hard vs. the easy problem
- Mapping different aspects of consciousness
- Consciousness and Accessibility
Theme 2: Theoretical Approaches to the study of consciousness
- Globalist vs. localist models
- Theories: Baars; Damasio; Zeki; Tononi; Lamme; Edelman; Carrara-Augustenborg
- The emergence of consciousness and the problem of binding
- Understanding consciousness from the social psychology perspective
Theme 3: Methodological challenges
- Objective and Subjective assessments of consciousness
- Consciousness and Emotions
- Disorders of consciousness: coma, vegetative states, locked-in syndrome
- Anesthesia and brain default network
Theme 4: Consciousness applied (selected topics)
- Somnambulism and Crime
- Non-human consciousness
Course Learning Objectives
By the end of this course, students will be able to:
- Appreciate the multi-faceted nature of consciousness
- Identify the conceptual and methodological problems in studying consciousness
- Discuss some of the key approaches to consciousness
- Recognize the strengths and weakness of current methodologies
- Trace the neurobiological mechanisms possibly underlying the
emergence of consciousness
All teaching in spring semester in phase 1 (from 7 February 2022 to 1 April 2022) is held at campus. The teaching will be livestreamed on Zoom too. Students will not be able to participate interactively in the livestreaming. Due to that students will only be registered for attendance if they participate in the teaching on campus.
Registration period November 15 - December 1 or May 15 - June 1
International students can find information on course registration and deadlines at psychology.ku.dk.
- 10 ECTS
- Type of assessment
Written assignmentFree written assignment submitted in Digital Eksamen according to the exam schedule.
The exam paper can be written in groups of maximum 3 students.
1 student max 12 pages, 2 students max 15 pages and 3 students max 18 pages
- Marking scale
- 7-point grading scale
- Censorship form
- No external censorship
Criteria for exam assessment
Vejledende karakterbeskrivelse (Danish)
- Class Instruction
- Course number
- 10 ECTS
- Programme level
1 semester10 weeks, starts week 36 or 6
- Spring And Autumn
- About 30 students per class, 15 Bachelor and 15 Master students
- Department of Psychology, Study Council
- Department of Psychology
- Faculty of Social Sciences
- Claudia Carrara-Augustenborg (14-6c6c6a7e707e7c7d6e776b787b7049797c8237747e376d74)
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Courseinformation of students