The course of Philosophy of Mind is part of the program in Cognitive Sciences of Communication and Action (master level) and is included among the characterizing training activities. The course will introduce some central topics in empirically informed philosophy of mind including the functionalist view of the mind, the nature of mental representations, the mechanistic approach to cognitive neuroscience, the naturalization of consciousness and self-consciousness, the possibility of a clinical cognitive neuroscience.
Upon completion of the course students
- will have gained familiarity with some of the most important issues in the philosophy of mind driven by cognitive sciences;
- will be able to critically evaluate different positions on core themes of the course;
- will develop a critical thought on philosophical matters involving the mind, and the ability to build rigorous, clear arguments using an appropriate scientific and philosophical vocabulary.


teacher profile | teaching materials


This course will provide students with an introduction to some of the main topics in philosophy of mind. The course will be broken down into two parts. In the first part, we will look mostly at recent versions of “functionalist” theories of mind. On the basis of that introduction and overview, we shall then discuss a series of very recent debates in the philosophy of mind that centre around the view that the mind is a physical and naturally evolved computational device.

Core Documentation

J.L. Bermúdez - Cognitive Science. An Introduction to the Science of the Mind - Cambridge University Press, Cambridge 2020 (III ed.).
S. Dehaene - Consciousness and the Brain: Deciphering How the Brain Codes Our Thoughts - Viking Press, New York 2014.
D. Wegner - The Illusion of Conscious Will - MIT Press, Cambridge (MA) 2017 (II ed.).

Type of evaluation

Verification of learning takes place through an oral exam. Is it possible to write a 3,000-word final paper (in Italian or English) to be discussed in the exam. Students are required to get their paper topics approved by the instructor.