What is a Mind?
University of Cape Town
  • Start Date: 03 Aug, 2020
  • 6 weeks
  • Study Content: Videos


Explore the most pertinent scientific and philosophical concepts for understanding our own minds with this free online course

Course Fee: Free
Certificate Cost: See Fees and Eligibility

Introduction

Introduction Video

Course Description

This course is made available through the eLearnAfrica and FutureLearn partnership.

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This free online course will bring together learners and practitioners interested in how the mind works. It aims to build bridges between traditionally antagonistic approaches to understanding the mind.


What is a mind?


This question has perplexed philosophers, scientists, historians and ordinary people across time and cultures.


While advances in the medical understanding of how the brain functions can shed light on neurological functions and disorders, the essential question of what the mind is speaks to a different problem.


This problem cannot be answered by a purely scientific understanding of the brain, nor by a purely philosophical or psychological approach. Many disciplines have attempted to address the question, resulting in multiple and sometimes antithetical answers.


New understandings of the mind


On this course, Professor Mark Solms, Chair of Neuropsychology at the University of Cape Town, will adopt a multidisciplinary approach.


He will bring in perspectives from a range of disciplines, to explore four specific aspects of the mind- subjectivity, intentionality, consciousness and agency. Together, these will help us think about the fundamental questions: what it is to be a mind, why we have a mind and what it feels like to have a mind.


You can find out more in Professor Mark Solms’s posts for the FutureLearn blog: “What is a mind? One of the great mysteries of our time” and “Thinking and feeling: what’s the difference?


This course is aimed at anyone with an interest in psychology and the mind. The course will also appeal to practitioners, students and researchers from a range of disciplines, whose work directly or indirectly looks at the mind and the brain. This includes, but is not limited to neuroscience, psychology, psychoanalysis, philosophy, psychiatry and neurology.


Certificate cost may vary. You will be redirected to the host page for cost and payment options.

University of Cape Town

The University of Cape Town (UCT) is the oldest university in South Africa.

With its main campus located on the slopes of Devil’s Peak in the Cape Peninsula, it was third on The Telegraph’s 2014 list of the most beautiful campuses in the world.

UCT is one of the leading higher education and research institutions on the African continent and has a tradition of academic excellence that is respected worldwide.

On its staff are more than one-third of South Africa’s A-rated researchers and academics - all of whom are also recognised as world leaders in their respective fields, who have earned international awards and published articles in the world’s most prestigious journals. UCT has also established research and teaching partnerships with universities across Africa and around the world.

UCT focuses research on the leading problems of the day and seeks to instil in graduates a sense of social commitment and responsibility to their communities. UCT has established multidisciplinary research initiatives to tackle contemporary issues such as safety and violence, poverty and inequality, the crisis in basic education across South Africa, African challenges brought by climate change, issues affecting children, urbanisation and various gender issues, to name a few.

 

This institution is available on eLearnAfrica through partnership with FutureLearn.

You may be able to download course materials after enrolling in this course. If not, all of the necessary course materials provided by the course instructor will be available on the provider's course page.
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Effective Date: September 22, 2016