PNP as a primary major
The PNP major comprises two tracks. The Cognitive Neuroscience (CN) track integrates the study of higher brain functioning with behavioral research directed at understanding activities such as perceiving, attending, remembering, and acting. The Language, Cognition and Culture (LCC) track addresses the importance of language in human cognition, and the integration of cognition with one's cultural environment. You must opt for one of these tracks.
Because PNP core requirements are distributed among various disciplines, you are required as well to complete a depth requirement in one of PNP's core disciplines: anthropology, neuroscience, linguistics, philosophy, or psychology. The depth requirement includes three upper-division courses selected from an approved list of courses in the pertinent department. This ensures that you attain some depth in a traditional discipline in the course of completing your PNP major, and puts you in a better position to pursue interdisciplinary work.
Requirements for a PNP major
What follows is a summary of requirements. Because PNP includes two tracks and involves courses in many departments, there is no simple way to list major requirements. A handy <PNP Major Checklist<link to PDF Major Checklist> is available as a PDF file. If you print a copy of the checklist, you can more easily trace your way through various options and the requirements for each. Majors are encouraged to print a copy of the checklist to facilitate keeping track of their progress through the major.
I. Prerequisites. Majors are strongly encouraged to complete prerequisites prior to enrolling in upper-level courses unless they have received an explicit waiver from the instructor.
Philosophy: 100, 102, 120, or 125
Psychology: 100B or AP score of 5
(Prerequisites are specific for the class of 2016 on. Phil 131 or 233 will not count towards meeting the prerequisite.)
II. Introductory Sequence. Successful completion of MBB 120 and 122, or
PNP 200 and
PNP 201 or Psych 301
II. Core Requirements. These requirements must be met by students in both the CN and LCC track.
- 6 credits of upper-division Philosophy courses (which have a lower-division Philosophy courses as a prerequisite), from a PNP-approved list
- 6 credits of upper-division Psychology courses (which have Psychology 100b as a prerequisite), from a PNP-approved list.
III. Track-Specific Requirements. These vary depending on whether you are on the CN or LCC track
- CN track: Bio 2960 or Psych 3401 and Psych 344/Bio 3411 and Psych 3604
- Prerequisite: Ling/Anthro 170: Introduction to Linguistics (LA) AND Anthro 150 Human Evolution
(deleted FL12: Anthro/Ling 2151: Language, Culture, and Society and Anthro 160B: Introduction to Cultural Anthropology); plus
- 6 units for LCC from PNP-approved list.
IV. Depth requirement. Nine credits (three courses) at the 300- or 400-level (at least one course must be at the 400-level) in one track-specific area:
- CN track: Philosophy, Neuroscience, or Psychology
- LCC track: Philosophy, Psychology, Linguistics, or Anthropology
V. The Capstone. If PNP is your first major, you are required to complete a capstone sequence. This is typically done in your senior year; last semester of junior year, at the earliest. A capstone can take the following forms:
(A) PNP 390: PNP Reading Group (2 unit) PLUS PNP 495: PNP Seminar (3 units)
(B) PNP 390: PNP Reading Group (2 unit) PLUS 3 units of PNP 500 Independent Work or the equivalent course in an affiliated discipline (PNP 500, Psych 500, etc.)
(C) PNP 499: Study for Honors (6 units).
Independent Studies must be approved in advance. Please see Independent Study in PNP for details.
Honors projects must be approved in advance, by the PNP Honors Coordinator. For details please see Honors web page.
PNP as a Second Major
PNP may be taken as a second major, in which case the requirements include I-IV above. Although not required to satisfy the Capstone requirement (requirement V), second majors are encouraged to do so. This option might be of particular interest to students with a first major in one of the allied disciplines. However, PNP can be combined with any first major: recent PNP graduates have had first majors in Drawing and Printmaking, Computer Science and Engineering, Economics, and French.
Courses taken in summer school do not in normal circumstances count towards the PNP major. In exceptional circumstances they can count, but only subject to PNP administrative approval. Petitions are more likely to succeed for lower-level courses that are prerequisites for the major, rather than for upper-level courses satisfying the core, track-specific, or depth requirements. No course will be considered unless it is taught by a regular, full-time member of the faculty. Requests should include details of petition.
- A grade of C- or better is required in courses counted toward the major.
- Only prerequisites can be taken pass/fail. Only courses taken for a letter grade can be counted toward the major.
- Your major GPA is based on all courses counted toward the major excluding prerequisites.
Students completing the MBB sequence
- MBB 120 and MBB122 count as an introductory sequence for the PNP major, so, if you have completed these classes, there is no need to take either PNP 200 (Introduction to Cognitive Science) or PNP 201 (Inquiry in the Cognitive Sciences).
- Students passing MBB 120 with a grade of B- or higher can satisfy the core Psychology requirements by taking 2 courses from the approved list that need not include PNP 360 (Cognitive Psychology) nor PNP 433 (Psychology of Language).
- MBB 300 counts for 3 units of credit towards either the Psychology core requirements or either the Psychology or Neuroscience depth requirement. You will need to request administrative approval of the subject matter.
For information of study abroad options for majors, please see the PNP Study Abroad page.