As psychologists, we strive to understand the human mind. As neuroscientists, we attempt to understand the mind as the result of brain function. How cognition arises from what happens in the brain is still largely a mystery. We try to dissect cognition into basic processes, either by localizing where specific functions may happen, or by specifying which variables change brain processing.
The tools we have at hand are usually crude and indirect, restricted in their use, difficult to understand, complex to analyze, and require us to make many a priori assumptions.
In this seminar, we will face these challenges head-on by studying some current biopsychological and neuroscientific methods. We will approach them by examining original research papers, and by identifying each method's unique strengths and limitations.
The specific topics and methods will be chosen in the first session.
Some examples for topics are: analyzing movement as a mirror of cognition; probing brain function with TMS; inducing rhythms in the brain; current trends in multi-cell invasive recordings; fMRI multi-voxel pattern analysis; modeling approaches; brain connectivity.
The aim of the seminar is to build knowledge and expertise of current neuroscientific approaches and to get to know exemplary research questions which they are currently used to address.
The seminar will be held in English.
We will use a mix of presentations, group work, reading, discussion, and media.
We will review the methodological background before we go into the details of the methods, so that we will be able to realistically judge the possibilities and limitations of each method.
will be announced in the seminar