Skip to main content

First-Year Focus

´╗┐´╗┐Courses Open to First-year Students

There are 2 introductory Cognitive Science courses that are required for the major and the minor. Each course is taught once a year and they may be taken in any order.

CogSci 110: Introduction to Cognitive Science

  • This course introduces students to cognitive science through the lens of many different disciplines. Become familiar with and invested in cognitive science research, focusing on big themes in the study of the mind and mental representation, exemplified by interdisciplinary work conducted at Northwestern University

CogSci 202: Evaluating Evidence

  • This course will teach you to evaluate the evidence of others - and to marshal your own - across science, politics, society, health, education, and industry. Assignments and readings will focus on real¬world questions drawn from newspaper articles, podcasts, and op-eds, as well as the research literature and data science media that collect and evaluate empirical evidence.

Note that you do not need to take these courses before beginning to work on other major requirements.  Many of the courses in the Themes for the major do not have any prerequisites, and are intended for students new to the field.  COG SCI 207 (Intro to Cognitive Modeling), COG SCI 210 (Language & the Brain), and COG SCI 211 (Learning, Reasoning, and Representation) are some particularly good options!


erinleddon168x210.jpgDr. Erin Leddon is the Director of Undergraduate Studies for Cognitive Science. To set up a meeting with her, please send an email to In the email, please say why you would like a meeting, and please include a copy of your current transcript (if possible) and a Major / Minor Worksheet.

When filling out the worksheet, please be sure to include which quarter you took the class (even though the form only asks for a Y/N response). Having a copy of this worksheet will greatly streamline the meeting!