The B.S. in Cognitive Sciences is structured to provide students with a challenging introduction to the broad field of Cognitive Sciences that is strongly grounded in theory and an empirical approach emphasizing experimental/computational methods. To ensure an intellectually coherent experience, students in the major are able to choose courses from areas including: (a) Cognitive Neuroscience; (b) Experimental Psychology–Sensation, Perception, Attention, and Memory; (c) Language Science; and (d) Computational Cognitive Science. In addition, students are required to acquire a background in (a) calculus, (b) statistics, (c) introductory computer programming, and (d) some combination of the natural sciences, logic and philosophy of science, linguistics, or more advanced computer science or mathematics.

The Cognitive Science (B.S.) major prepares students for a research career in cognitive science, focusing on any of the current dominant approaches of the field. The study of cognition can be approached though cognitive neuroscience, behavioral experiments, language science, computational and mathematical modeling, or any combination of those. The major combines strong technical skills with deep knowledge of at least one of these approaches.

NOTE: Students may complete the B.A. in Psychology, the B.S. in Psychology, or B.S. in Cognitive Sciences. You may not double major within the majors offered by the department.



The current degree requirements can be found in the UCI Catalogue. For prior catalogue years, please refer to this link:
NOTE: The BS Cog Sci degree requirements have changed effective Fall 2021, as noted in the UCI Catalogue and as listed below.  Please refer to prior catalogue editions for previous degree requirements.  

All students must meet the University Requirements.
All students must meet the School Requirements.
School requirements must be met and must include courses as specified below:

A. Complete the following:
MATH 2A & 2B  Single-Variable Calculus I & II  
PSYCH 10A-10B-10C

Probability and Statistics in Psychology I-II-III

COGS 106

Computational Lab Skills

COGS 107

Cognitive Modeling

COGS 108

Neural Analytics

PSYCH 114M or COGS 14P or I&C SCI 31

MATLAB Programming or Scientific Python for Research or Introduction to Programming

PSYCH 9A - 9B - 9C Psychology Fundamentals  
COG SCI 109 Cognitive Sciences Research Seminar  
B. Select three (3) courses from the following list:  
Research Methods  
PSYCH 112A - 112LA Experimental Psychology - Experimental Psychology Laboratory  
PSYCH 112BW - 112LB Advanced Experimental Psychology - Advanced Experimental Psychology Laboratory  
PSYCH 112C - 112LC Research in Experimental Psychology (LEC and LAB)  
COGS 112P - 112LP Research in Perception and Psychophysics - Research in Perception and Psychophysics Laboratory  
COGS 112R - 112LR Cognitive Robotics - Cognitive Robotics Laboratory  
C. Select six courses from the following list:  
BIO SCI 35  The Brain and Behavior  
BIO SCI 36  Drugs and the Brain  
BIO SCI 37  Brain Dysfunction and Repair  
BIO SCI 38  Mind, Memory, Amnesia, and the Brain  
COGS 14P Scientific Python for Research (1)  
I&C SCI 31  Introduction to Programming (1)  
I&C SCI 32  Programming with Software Libraries  
I&C SCI 33  Intermediate Programming  
LSCI 3 Introduction to Linguistics  
LSCI 10 Introduction to Phonology  
LSCI 20 Introduction to Syntax  
LSCI 51 Acquisition of Language  
LPS 30 Introduction to Symbolic Logic  
LPS 31 Introduction to Inductive Logic  
MATH 2D Multivariable Calculus I  
MATH 2E Multivariable Calculus II  
MATH 3A Introduction to Linear Algebra  
MATH 3D Elementary Differential Equations  
PHYSICS 3A-3B-3C Basic Physics I - II - III  
  with labs PHYSICS 7LC and PHYSICS 7LD
Classical Physics  
PHYSICS 15 Physics of Music  
PSYCH 14M MATLAB Programming (1)  
STATS 7 Basic Statistics  
STATS 110 Statistical Methods for Data Analysis I  
STATS 111 Statistical Methods for Data Analysis II  
STATS 112 Statistical Methods for Data Analysis III  
NOTE: Careful selection should be made in order to satisfy general education requirements and prerequisites for upper-division courses.  

D. Select three courses from the following:

Upper Division Core Courses  
PSYCH 130A Perception and Sensory Processes  
PSYCH 140C Cognitive Science  
PSYCH 140J Judgment and Decision Making  
PSYCH 140L Principles of Learning Theory  
PSYCH 140M Human Memory  
PSYCH 150 Psychology of Language  
PSYCH 160A Introduction to Cognitive Neuroscience  
PSYCH 160D Brain Disorders and Behavior  
E. Select seven courses from the following list. Up to three courses may also be taken from Requirement B and Requirement D: (2), (3)  
COMPSCI 171 Introduction to Artificial Intelligence  
COMPSCI 178 Machine Learning and Data-Mining  
COMPSCI 183 Introduction to Computational Biology  
LSCI 102 Formal Languages and Automata  
LSCI 111 Intermediate Phonology  
LSCI 121 Intermediate Syntax  
PSYCH 112R - LR Cognitive Robotics / Cognitive Robotics Lab  
PSYCH 120A Abnormal Psychology  
PSYCH 120D Developmental Psychology  
PSYCH 120H History of Psychology  
PSYCH 120P Personality Theories  
PSYCH 131A Vision  
PSYCH 131B Hearing  
PSYCH 156A Acquisition of Language II  
PSYCH 161 Language and the Brain  
PSYCH 161H Hearing and the Brain  
PSYCH 162N Human Neuropsychology  

(1). If not used to satisfy Introductory Programming Requirement.
(2). Research methods (Requirement B) and core (Requirement D) courses may be used to fulfill the core elective requirement (Requirement E) but cannot count for both requirements.
(3). If accepted into the Honors Program, H101A-H101B-H101C may be used for three of the seven elective courses under Requirement E.




The Honors Program in Psychology and Cognitive Sciences is an advanced educational and research program for outstanding undergraduate students in these two majors.

The program emphasizes advanced competence in scientific research, and allows participants the opportunity to pursue advanced work in independent research, in addition to earning honors upon graduation. While the program is designed for students who are interested in pursuing graduate study or seeking challenging research experiences as a capstone to their undergraduate experience, all Psychology and Cognitive Sciences majors who meet the minimum eligibility requirements are welcome to apply.

For more information about the Honors Program, please visit here.



Effective 2021-22, in order to change your major to the B.S. in Cognitive Sciences, you must meet the following requirements:



Cumulative UC GPA

3.2 GPA
3.2 GPA for the quarter prior to changing major

Course grades

Must complete the following courses with no grade less than a C:
COGS 14P, PSYCH 14M (formerly 114M), or ICS 31

For a listing of change of major requirements for all majors at UCI, please visit here



For academic advising (e.g., coursework required, change of major requirements), contact the School of Social Sciences' Undergraduate Student Affairs Office at: or (949) 824-6803. 


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Program Learning Outcomes - B.S. in CogSci


Acquire a Broad, Multidisciplinary Knowledge of Cognitive Sciences

  • Majors can describe important questions, results, and theories in each of the following areas: consciousness, language, learning, memory, perception, and decision making.
  • Majors have a foundation in biology, chemistry, physics, and/or mathematics to provide a scientific basis for the multidisciplinary study of cognitive sciences.
  • In each of four areas of more intensive study, majors can use theories in those areas to predict, evaluate, or interpret behavior in circumstances such as those they might encounter in their work or daily life.

Acquire understanding of the relationship between Cognitive Sciences and Neuroscience

  • Majors understand and can describe how aspects of mental function relate to activity in the brain.

Interpret and Evaluate Research Results

  • Majors can evaluate critically and apply to their life and work scientifically-based information available in the media as well as research journals in psychological science.
  • Majors can explain how research method and design choices constrain the possible inferences from data.
  • Majors understand the issues surrounding reproducibility and transparency in science

Obtain an in-depth understanding of research methods in Cognitive Sciences

  • Majors have an understanding of the different research methods used in cognitive sciences including behavioral experiments, psychophysics, neuroscience methods, and mathematical modeling.
  • Majors have a mastery of at least one scientific programming language and computational research methods


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