Winter Term 2020-21

Please note that only 'active' doctoral students of the GTC can participate in the courses listed. In case there are more applications than places on a course, ‘active’ doctoral students of the GTC are preferred over students who are still in the process of admission. The latter will be considered in case of vacant places on a particular course. Doctoral students who have not yet passed their admission interviews ('applicants') and guest students from other faculties can participate only in case of vacancies.

 You may also attend courses from our three masters programs. Likewise, you will have to register online through the Alma system. A list to the courses can be found in the Module handbook of each Masterprogram (see in regulations of each program). Very few of them have admission restrictions, though, and are for masters students only. If you have troubles with the registration to the lecture through Alma, please contact us.

Courses indicated as 'Elective' will run throughout the semester and take place once a week. They are specialist courses offered to masters students, however, they might also be of interest to doctoral students working or planning to work in that particular field. 


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Course title

Measuring consciousness: on the search for the neural correlates of consciousness

Dr. Pablo Grassi, Dr. Michael Bannert and Prof. Hong Yu Wong
Course content / topics

Please register via the ILIAS Link for the course. You will be set on a waiting list and will be notified, if you can participate in the course.


It is unclear how phenomenal consciousness (aka. “qualia”) relates to the physical world as experience is not easily explained by the methods of natural science. Indeed, most of the philosophical debate on consciousness deals with the question of whether we can or cannot close this explanatory gap (Levine, 1983) or solve the “hard-problem”  of consciousness (Chalmers, 1996) at all. In this seminar, we would like to leave this ontological hard-problems aside and focus on the “easy problem” of consciousness which we can approach using empirical methods: the search for the neural substrate of awareness and experience or the neural correlates of consciousness (NCC)(cf. Crick and Koch 1990).

The seminar aims to introduce cognitive neuroscientists to 1) the most influential empirical theories of consciousness, 2) the different methods for investigating and isolating the NCCs (masking, bistable perceptions, attentional blink, etc) and 3) about ongoing debates in the field (e.g., what is perception? Where are transitions of consciousness initiated?). During the three-day seminar, we will focus on empirical (mostly human) research investigating “content” consciousness in the visual domain (e.g., binocular rivalry, color perception, etc) and also on the different “states” of consciousness (e.g., sleep, wakefulness, etc).


Finally, we have invited guest speakers, experts in the field of consciousness research, to join us with dedicated talks.

We will host: 

Dr. Jinyou Zou (Max-Planck-Institute for biological cybernetics), Dr. 

Theofanis Panagiotaropoulos (INSERM researcher at UNICOG laboratory in NeuroSpin).


Course requirements:

Prior to the seminar, participants will be asked to read and prepare a talk about one or two papers (20 mins + 10 mins questions). The selection of papers will be made in advance (22/01/2021). Moreover, we expect the students to prepare questions in advance for some of the others papers.


Max. Course Participants: 25




Day, time & location

Introduction and paper selection: 22 January 2021 at 9:00. Seminar: 24-25-26 February 2021 from 9:00 until 17:00