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Cognitive neuroscience

Historical Origins and Philosophical Foundations: – Cognitive neuroscience emerged as an interdisciplinary field combining neuroscience and psychology. – Early attempts to understand brain functions, like […]

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Historical Origins and Philosophical Foundations:
– Cognitive neuroscience emerged as an interdisciplinary field combining neuroscience and psychology.
– Early attempts to understand brain functions, like phrenology, were eventually replaced by more scientific methods.
– Philosophers such as Galen, Descartes, and Aristotle laid the foundation for understanding the brain’s role in mental activity.
– Gestalt theory, neuropsychology, and the cognitive revolution were pivotal in the formation of cognitive neuroscience.

Methods and Theoretical Approaches in Cognitive Neuroscience:
– Cognitive neuroscience integrates cognitive science theories with neurobiology and computational modeling.
– Techniques like neuroimaging, electrophysiology, and cognitive genomics are employed in cognitive neuroscience.
– Theoretical frameworks like computational neuroscience and cognitive psychology play a fundamental role in cognitive neuroscience research.
– Developmental cognitive neuroscience focuses on brain growth and its impact on cognitive abilities.

Neuropsychology and Brain Mapping:
– Neuropsychologists like Broca and Wernicke localized mental functions in the brain through the study of brain injuries.
– Brain mapping techniques like fMRI, PET, and staining methods have revolutionized the field.
– The neuron doctrine, established by Golgi and Cajal, laid the foundation for understanding neural communication.
– Mapping brain functions and understanding brain pulsations during tasks have been crucial in cognitive neuroscience.

Cognitive Revolution and Birth of Cognitive Science:
– The cognitive revolution shifted the focus from behaviorism to understanding human thought and imagination.
– Cognitive science emerged from a decline in psychology’s popularity and integrated approaches from computer science and psychology.
– Key figures like John B. Watson and important authors like Christof Koch have contributed significantly to cognitive neuroscience.
– Notable publications like ‘The Cognitive Neurosciences III’ and ‘Principles of Neural Science’ have been influential in the field.

Recent Trends and Advancements in Cognitive Neuroscience:
– Research in cognitive neuroscience has expanded to explore interactions between brain areas and uses multiple technologies and computational approaches.
– Non-invasive functional neuroimaging advancements and optogenetics have allowed for more detailed studies on brain functions.
– Key researchers like Gazzaniga, Dehaene, and Schultz have made significant contributions to understanding cognitive and behavioral disorders.
– Recognitions like the Brain Prize, Kavli Prize, and Nobel Prizes have highlighted important discoveries in cognitive neuroscience.

Cognitive neuroscience (Wikipedia)

Cognitive neuroscience is the scientific field that is concerned with the study of the biological processes and aspects that underlie cognition, with a specific focus on the neural connections in the brain which are involved in mental processes. It addresses the questions of how cognitive activities are affected or controlled by neural circuits in the brain. Cognitive neuroscience is a branch of both neuroscience and psychology, overlapping with disciplines such as behavioral neuroscience, cognitive psychology, physiological psychology and affective neuroscience. Cognitive neuroscience relies upon theories in cognitive science coupled with evidence from neurobiology, and computational modeling.

Parts of the brain play an important role in this field. Neurons play the most vital role, since the main point is to establish an understanding of cognition from a neural perspective, along with the different lobes of the cerebral cortex.

Methods employed in cognitive neuroscience include experimental procedures from psychophysics and cognitive psychology, functional neuroimaging, electrophysiology, cognitive genomics, and behavioral genetics.

Studies of patients with cognitive deficits due to brain lesions constitute an important aspect of cognitive neuroscience. The damages in lesioned brains provide a comparable starting point on regards to healthy and fully functioning brains. These damages change the neural circuits in the brain and cause it to malfunction during basic cognitive processes, such as memory or learning. People have learning disabilities and such damage, can be compared with how the healthy neural circuits are functioning, and possibly draw conclusions about the basis of the affected cognitive processes. Some examples of learning disabilities in the brain include places in Wernicke's area, the left side of the temporal lobe, and Brocca's area close to the frontal lobe.

Also, cognitive abilities based on brain development are studied and examined under the subfield of developmental cognitive neuroscience. This shows brain development over time, analyzing differences and concocting possible reasons for those differences.

Theoretical approaches include computational neuroscience and cognitive psychology.

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