Office of the Registrar
Campus Address
Hanover, NH
03755-3529
Phone: (603) 646-xxxx
Fax: (603) 646-xxxx
Email: reg@Dartmouth.EDU

Organization, Regulations, and Courses 2021-22


PSYC 81.04 Neural Basis of Human Imagination

The capacities that set humans apart in kind, not just in degree, from all other known animals include, in part, capacities and propensities for art, music, analogical reasoning, abstract thought, creativity, the spontaneous generation and use of symbols, the ability to reason abstractly about others and about events, as well as the ability to manipulate symbols recursively and syntactically. This course will explore the hypothesis that all these modes of human behavior and cognition share a common root cause in our brains. We will focus in particular on the human capacity to imagine. We can, for example, construct a representation of a thing, say an airplane, or an event, say a planned party, and then go about making real that which we imagined. How is this capacity to imagine and creatively plan realized in the brain? Where did it first appear in the human lineage? What is the relationship of imagining to other important capacities, such as attention, volition, consciousness, planning and executive control? The goal of this course is to try to answer such questions by reading empirical and theoretical papers and chapters that try to account for what it is that makes the human mind human, by looking at distinctive aspects of processing in the human brain.

Instructor

Tse

Prerequisite

One of the following: PSYC 6, PSYC 21, PSYC 28; and instructor permission through the department website.

The Timetable of Class Meetings contains the most up-to-date information about a course. It includes not only the meeting time and instructor, but also its official distributive and/or world culture designation. This information supersedes any information you may see elsewhere, to include what may appear in this ORC/Catalog or on a department/program website. Note that course attributes may change term to term therefore those in effect are those (only) during the term in which you enroll in the course.