Office of the Registrar
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Phone: (603) 646-xxxx
Fax: (603) 646-xxxx
Email: reg@Dartmouth.EDU

Organization, Regulations, and Courses 2017-18

PSYC 83.07 The Problem of Other Minds

Success in a social world requires understanding other people’s thoughts and feelings. Yet, other people’s mental states are not directly observable: you cannot see a thought or touch a feeling. Nonetheless, humans are actually quite proficient in inferring these invisible, internal states of mind. How do we accomplish these mind-reading feats? This course will address this question, which is known as ‘the problem of other minds.’ We will tackle ‘the problem of other minds’ from multiple angles, relying heavily on neuroscience and psychology research, as well as a few foundational papers from philosophy. Specifically, we will address questions such as: Do specialized portions of the brain accomplish mental state inference? When do mind-reading skills develop in children and are humans the only species that can represent other minds? Why do some people, such as individuals with autism spectrum disorder (ASD), experience difficulties in understanding others? What leads to biases in mental state inference, such as anthropomorphism  (when people attribute mental states to inanimate objects) and dehumanization (when people under attribute mental states to humans)?




PSYC 1, PSYC 10, PSYC 23, 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.


18S: 2A