May 22, 2024  
Undergraduate Record 2007-2008 
Undergraduate Record 2007-2008 [ARCHIVED RECORD]

Cognitive Science

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Requirements for Major

Thirty credits are required for the major in cognitive science.

Before declaring, prospective majors must have completed and obtained a grade of C+ or better in two designated cognitive science courses. These courses must come from two different core areas: cognitive psychology, computer science, linguistics, neuroscience, and philosophy. Refer to the program website for a list of approved courses.

Prospective majors must also have a GPA of 2.000 or better for all cognitive science courses completed at the University.

Required courses: MATH 131 or 122 (students are strongly advised to take MATH 131 instead of MATH 122); at least one designated cognitive science course in each of the five core areas (both 400 level courses must come from the same core area), at least two courses at the 400 level or above in one of the five core areas, excluding directed readings, research, or internship courses. Courses counted in the 30 credits may not be taken on a credit/no credit basis.

Distinguished Majors Program in Cognitive Science

General Information

Outstanding cognitive science majors who have completed 18 credits towards their major and who have a cumulative GPA of 3.400 or better may apply by the third semester before graduating to the Distinguished Majors Program. Students who are accepted will complete a thesis based on two semesters of empirical or theoretical research. Upon successful completion of the program, students will normally be recommended for a baccalaureate award of Distinction, High Distinction or Highest Distinction.


Students applying to the DMP must have a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.400 and have completed 18 credits towards their Cognitive Science major by the end of the semester in which they apply. In addition to the normal requirements for the cognitive science major, they must register for two semesters of supervised research (COGS 497). Based on their independent research, students must complete a thesis or review at least one month prior to graduation.

Additional Information

For more information, contact the Program Coordinator, 140A Gilmer Hall, P.O. Box 400400, Charlottesville, VA 22904-4400; (434) 982-3019;

Courses Approved for Major

Particular courses within relevant departments are designated as being cognitive science courses. Courses from other departments, such as mathematics or systems engineering, may be designated as cognitive science courses if their content is judged to be appropriate by the undergraduate committee that oversees the curriculum. The following is a list of designated courses offered on a regular basis. There are also numerous cognitive science courses that are offered more infrequently; thus, the following list is not exhaustive.

Computer Science

All CS courses except 110, 120, or 182. EE 200 counts for credit, but does not fill area requirement.

Synchronic Linguistics


  • Students may count PSYC 220 OR BIOL 317 towards the major, but NOT both.
  • Students may count PSYC 420 OR BIOL 408 towards the major, but NOT both.
  • Students may count PSYC 420 OR BIOL 417 towards the major, but NOT both.

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