Contact Information

Cognitive Science
PO Box 9
FI-00014 University of Helsinki

Welcome to the Cognitive Science Unit!

Cognitive science may be defined as the interdisciplinary study of processes and capacities underlying intelligent behaviours in organisms and artefacts. Such processes and capacities include perception, learning, memory, thought, and language. The common denominator of all these phenomena is that they can be studied from the point of view of representing and processing information. As an interdisciplinary enterprise, cognitive science integrates areas of cognitive psychology, linguistics, cognitive and computational neuroscience, computer science, and philosophy.

In Helsinki, cognitive science is firmly based on naturalistic research methods such as psychological experimentation, brain imaging and stimulation (EEG, MEG, fMRI, TMS), mathematical modelling, and analytical philosophy.

Studying Cognitive Science at the University of Helsinki

The Study Programme comprises of courses in cognitive psychology, cognitive neuroscience, generative linguistics, research methods and statistics, and analytical philosophy. The annual Curriculum contains selected courses from the Study Programme (compulsory courses and selected optional courses subject to supply and demand). Although most lecture courses are in Finnish, some teaching is provided in English each year, and it is possible to complete most of the study units in English by independent work, such as book exams or essays.

Teaching in Helsinki is research oriented. Beyond the compulsory introductory courses, the curriculum is quite flexible and can be tailored to suit individual needs and scientific interests.

In terms of studies, the Cognitive Science unit at the University of Helsinki is small and friendly, but demanding. Students often participate in research projects already at the undergraduate level.


Research at the University of Helsinki Cognitive Science Unit is focused around three main areas: cognitive neuroscience, traffic cognition, and generative linguistics.

Department of Modern Languages

Faculty of Arts

University of Helsinki