Jun 14, 2024  
2023-2024 Academic Catalog 
2023-2024 Academic Catalog [Archived Catalog]

Baccalaureate Degree Requirements Advising Sheet

Cognitive Studies B.A.

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The Cognitive Studies degree program offers an integrative approach to the study of human consciousness and cognitive processing. This interdisciplinary and multidisciplinary program draws from fields including Philosophy, Computer Science, Psychology, Neuroscience, Linguistics, Art, Biology, and Physics. Cognitive Studies emphasizes strategies for investigating how real (biological) and artificial (computational) brains individually and cooperatively solve problems, form concepts, process language, interpret visual and other sensory input, and develop understandings of the world. Students in the program will examine traditional approaches to understanding the mind, with a strong emphasis on philosophical, psychological, and physiological approaches.

The degree program includes integrative courses at the introductory and advanced levels that draw from, consolidate, and expand the material students have learned in coursework from the various contributing disciplines. Central themes include the view of consciousness as an information processing system, how consciousness arises from basic physiological processes, the emergence of patterns and adaptive pattern-recognition, and nonlinear dynamical methods for modeling complex systems. Focus is on the use of language, symbols, and images for representing, manipulating, and communicating knowledge. Students are encouraged to examine issues associated with human/machine interfaces, and will explore basic processes of memory and decision, the relation of thought to action, and recent advances in machine intelligence.

View the degree program Roadmap, which provide recommended advising maps to complete the degree program. Please consult your academic advisor as you develop your academic plan.

Adequate investigations of these phenomena require a synthesis of skills, methods, and knowledge, and depend on considerable facility with information technology tools and systems. Thus, in addition to their broad-based conceptual analysis of intelligent systems, students will be trained in a diversity of scientific methods and techniques, including rigorous quantitative analysis and effective computer simulations. The program will help students develop strong skills in using, understanding, and evaluating information technologies such as Internet resources and database systems. Students will develop strong communication skills, and the ability to present and convey information clearly and effectively orally, in writing, and in Internet-based presentations.

The graduate in Cognitive Studies will be prepared for work in fields requiring strong interdisciplinary problem-solving skills and depending on contemporary information technologies. Students also will be prepared for entry into graduate programs in Cognitive Science or related fields.


1. Complete the Baccalaureate Degree Requirements.

A student must comply with all University regulations and satisfy the following requirements:

  1. Units and Residency  (minimum of 120 units: 40 units of upper division coursework and 30 semester units at Stanislaus State. At least 24 of these 30 units must be earned in upper-division courses, at least 12 must be in the major, and at least 9 must be applicable to General Education-Breadth requirements)
  2. Grade Point Average  (minimum grade point average of 2.0 (C) or better)
  3. General Education  (minimum of 49 units)
  4. Upper Division Writing Proficiency  (minimum of 3 units)
    - Writing Proficiency (WP) Course (may double count in the major)
  5. United States Constitution and California State and Local Government  (minimum of 3 units)
  6. Multicultural Requirement  (minimum of 3 units) (may double count with General Education requirements or in the major)

Subsequently all students must submit an application for graduation and receive approval from the major advisor, department chair, and Director of Academic Advising. For more information see the Baccalaureate Degree Requirements .

2. Complete the following prerequisites to the major:

(22 units)

3. Complete the major of 30 units, as approved by the major adviser.

The Major

(30 units)

1. Required courses:

(21 units)

2. Electives:

(9 units in consultation with adviser/coordinator)

By clicking on the course titles, the course will expand and show the course prerequisites outside the major.


*Indicates prerequisites beyond those to the major. Other courses may be approved by major adviser.

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