Undergraduate Courses

Course Course Information Instructor
Design of Everyday Things
TR 09:30-10:50 in HSS 1346 (website)  
Description: A project-based course examining how principles from cognitive science apply to the design of things simple (doors) and complex (new technology). Learn about affordances, constraints, mappings, and conceptual models. Learn observational and design skills. Become a human-centered design thinker.
Meyer, Michael Wayne
Introduction to Cognitive Sci
MWF 16:00-16:50 in WLH 2001  
Description: A team taught course highlighting development of the field and the broad range of topics covered in the major. Example topics include addiction, analogy, animal cognition, human-computer interaction, language, neuroimaging, neural networks, reasoning, robots, and real-world applications.
An Introduction to Computing
MWF 10:00-10:50 in CENTR 113 (website)  
Description: A practical introduction to computers. Designed for undergraduates in the social sciences. Topics include: basic operations of personal computers (MAC, PC), UNIX, word processing, e-mail, spreadsheets, and creating web pages using the World Wide Web. No previous background in computing required.
Introduction to Data Science
TR 18:30-19:50 in CENTR 101 (website)  
Fleischer, Jason G
Cognitv Consequence/Technology
TR 14:00-15:20 in CENTR 119 (website)  
Description: The role of cognition and computation in the development of state-of-the art technologies such as human computational interaction in aviation, air traffic control, medical diagnosis, robotics and telerobotics, and the design and engineering of cognitive artifacts.
Fld Methods: Cognition in Wild
TR 11:00-12:20 in CICC 101  
Intro. to Research Methods
MWF 11:00-11:50 in PCYNH 106 (website)  
Intro. to Statistical Analysis
MWF 14:00-14:50 in SOLIS 107  
Neurobiology of Cognition
TR 11:00-12:20 in LEDDN AUD (website)  
Description: Introduction to the organization and functions of the nervous system. Topics include molecular, cellular, developmental, systems, and behavioral neurobiology. Specifically, structure and function of neurons, peripheral and central nervous systems, sensory, motor, and control systems, learning and memory mechanisms. (Students may not receive credit for both Biology 12 and Cognitive Science 17. This course fulfills general-education requirements for Marshall and Roosevelt Colleges as well as Warren by petition.)
Johnson, Christine M.
Freshman Seminar: Blogging Cognitive Science
W 14:00-14:50 in YORK 4050A (website)  
Description: Learn about cognitive science and science communication at the same time! This seminar will introduce students to the world of science blogging via hands-on workshops on how to set up and promote your own blog. Besides the technical aspects of blogging, we will also cover writing. Each student will choose from a menu of cognitive science articles and craft a blog post on that topic. Over the course of the quarter, we will work together to make each post interesting and informative.
Freshman Seminar: Knowing the Limits of Science
F 14:00-14:50 in CSB 180  
Description: The Freshman Seminar Program is designed to provide new students with the opportunity to explore an intellectual topic with a faculty member in a small seminar setting. Freshman Seminars are offered in all campus departments and undergraduate colleges, and topics vary from quarter to quarter. Enrollment is limited to fifteen to twenty students, with preference given to entering freshmen.
Freshman Seminar: Minds Making Religion
M 12:00-12:50 in CSB 180  
Description: The Freshman Seminar Program is designed to provide new students with the opportunity to explore an intellectual topic with a faculty member in a small seminar setting. Freshman Seminars are offered in all campus departments and undergraduate colleges, and topics vary from quarter to quarter. Enrollment is limited to fifteen to twenty students, with preference given to entering freshmen.
DSGN 100
TR 15:30-16:50 in HSS 1346  
TR 15:30-16:50 in PETER 108  
Description: An introduction to structure of natural language, and to the cognitive processes that underline its acquisition, comprehension, and production. This course covers findings from linguistics, computer science, psychology, and cognitive neuroscience to provide an integrated perspective on human language abilities. Prerequisites: Cognitive Science 1 and 14A.
Distributed Cognition
TR 15:30-16:50 in LEDDN AUD  
Description: Cognitive processes extend beyond the boundaries of the person to include the environment, artifacts, social interactions, and culture. Major themes include the philosophy and history of cognitive science, the role of artifacts in human cognition, and theories of socially-distributed, embodied, and extended cognition. Prerequisites: Cognitive Science 1 and Cognitive Science 14A.
Johnson, Christine M.
Cognitive Design Studio
TR 12:30-13:50 in CSB 002  
Description: This is a project-based course focused on the process of cognitive design. Students work in teams to design and evaluate a prototype application or redesign an existing system. Three hours of lecture and two hours of design laboratory. Prerequisites: Cognitive Science 102B or consent of instructor.
Renner, Nancy Owens
Neuroanatomy and Physiology
MWF 09:00-09:50 in PETER 108 (website)  
Cognitive Neuroscience
TR 14:00-15:20 in GH 242  
Description: This course reviews research investigating the neural bases for human mental processes, including processing of affective, social, linguistic, and visuospatial information, as well as memory, attention, and executive functions. Also discussed are brain development and brain aging, and the nature of intelligence and creativity. Prerequisites: Cognitive Science 107B and its prerequisites.
COGS 108
Data Science in Practice
MWF 11:00-11:50 in PETER 108 (website)  
Description: Data science is multidisciplinary, covering computer science, statistics, cognitive science and psychology, data visualization, artificial intelligence, and machine learning, among others. This course teaches critical skills needed to pursue a data science career using hands-on programming and experimental challenges. Prerequisites: Cognitive Science 18 or CSE 7 or CSE 8A or CSE 11.
COGS 115
Neurologcl Devlp & Cogntv Chng
MWF 09:00-09:50 in WLH 2204  
Intro to Machine Learning I
MWF 11:00-11:50 in CENTR 212 (website)  
Description: This course is one part of a two-course foundation that forms a rigorous introduction to machine learning and computational modeling of biological intelligence. Natural Computation I and II are independent courses that may be taken in either order. Topics in Natural Computation I may include Bayesian inference, regression, graphical models, sampling, hidden Markov model, decision theory, information theory, reinforcement learning, and some application areas. Prerequisites: Mathematics 20F or Mathematics 31AH, and Mathematics 180A or ECE 109, and Cognitive Science 109 or CSE 11, or consent of instructor.
Neural Signal Processing
MWF 09:00-09:50 in PETER 102 (website)  
DSGN 119
Design at Large
Description: New societal challenges, cultural values, and technological opportunities are changing design, and vice versa. The seminar explores this increased scale, real-world engagement, and disruptive impact. Invited speakers from UC San Diego and beyond share cutting-edge research on interaction, design, and learning. P/NP grades only. Prerequisites: upper-division standing.
COGS 121
Human Comptr Interac Prog Stud
MWF 14:00-14:50 in HSS 1330 (website)  
Description: This course covers fundamentals of user interface design and implementation of web-based systems. A major component is completion of a substantial programming project in which students work together in small teams. Three hours of lecture and one hour of laboratory. Prerequisites: Cognitive Science 120, Cognitive Science 18 or Cognitive Science 3 or Computer Science and Engineering 5A or Computer Science and Engineering 8A or Computer Science and Engineering 8B or Computer Science and Engineering 11 or Computer Science and Engineering 12 or Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering 9, or consent of instructor.
COGS 122
Interaction Design Startup
TR 14:00-15:20 in HSS 1346 (website)  
Description: Explores tools and processes for innovating novel business concepts to solve problems involving the interaction between humans and technology. Students will work with an interdisciplinary team to understand unmet user needs and to create a value proposition that balances technical feasibility, financial viability, and desirability. Pre-req: COGS120 or COGS187A or COGS187B or DSGN100.
COGS 152
Cognitive Foundations of Math
TR 09:30-10:50 in SOLIS 110  
Description: How the human mind/brain creates mathematics: embodiment, innovation, and creativity. The emergence and power of abstract concepts, such as infinity, infinitesimals, imaginary numbers, or zero. Cognitive approaches that connect mathematics to human thought in general. Prerequisites: Cognitive Science 1, or Philosophy 1, or Psychology 1, or Education Studies (20 or 30 or 31); upper-division standing.
COGS 153
Language Comprehension
TR 08:00-09:20 in WLH 2207  
COGS 160
Seminar on Special Topics: Advanced Interaction Design
TR 12:30-13:50 in HSS 1346 (website)  
Description: This is a studio class for students who are passionate about diving deep into interaction design and honing their design skills. Introduces social computing, input & interaction techniques, and information design. Students will regularly present work in a studio format. Pre-req: (CSE 8B or CSE 11) and (Cogs 120 or CSE 170).
COGS 160
Seminar on Special Topics: Brain Waves
MWF 10:00-10:50 in SOLIS 110 (website)  
Description: This course will provide an introduction to rhythms and large-scale electrical potentials of the brain. Topics will include the resonance properties of neurons, rhythmic interactions between neurons, and the coordination of activity across large populations of neurons that is measurable in the local field potential (LFP) and electroencephalogram (EEG). In addition, this course will discuss the advantages of temporally coordinated neural activity, and the insights that can be gained about the brain and cognitive disorders from studying this coordination. Pre-req: Cogs 17 or Cogs 107A.
COGS 160
Seminar on Special Topics: Communication in Infancy
Description: A mixed Practicum/Seminar course designed to provide hands-on experience in research on infancy and early childhood. Students learn skills and are assigned responsibilities based on the project to which they are assigned. Students also participate in a journal club and prepare brief end-of-quarter presentations and reports. This is a 3 quarter sequence: content, skills, and responsibilities evolve and expand every quarter. Contact Dr. Deak [gdeak@ucsd.edu] directly for permission to enroll in this course.
COGS 163
Metabolic Disorders/Brain
TR 09:30-10:50 in CENTR 113 (website)  
COGS 164
Neurobiology of Motivation
TR 11:00-12:20 in PETER 102  
COGS 171
Mirror Neuron System
TR 11:00-12:20 in CSB 005 (website)  
COGS 178
Genes, Brains & Behavior
TR 15:30-16:50 in CSB 005 (website)  
Description: Evidence for genetic mediation of behavioral and neural differences, mechanisms that may mediate these effects, and the roles of the environment and experience are discussed. Prerequisites: Cognitive Science 107A and 107B or consent of instructor.
COGS 180
Neural Coding/Sensory Systems
TR 15:30-16:50 in HSS 2321 (website)  
Description: This course covers recent advances in the understanding of common neural mechanisms and computational principles underlying the brain’s ability to process multiple sources of sensory information—vision, audition, olfaction, touch, and equilibrioception—and translate them into actions. Prerequisites: Cognitive Science 1, Cognitive Science 14B, Cognitive Science 101A, and Cognitive Science 109.

Search for undergraduate courses:

  • Course Number:
  • Instructor:
  • Quarter: