Teaching Support For:
Computational Explorations in Cognitive Neuroscience
Understanding the Mind by Simulating the Brain

Randall C. O'Reilly and Yuko Munakata

A Bradford Book
The MIT Press
Cambridge, Massachusetts
London, England

Course Web Sites

The following are a list of web sites for courses that use the textbook (please send us any new/updated links): The text has also been used at the following institutions, but web sites are not availble:

Sample Syllabi:

Here are syllabi that Randy and Yuko have used in their classes.

Randy's class is Computational Cognitive Neuroscience: Psych 4175/5175. It is one-semester long and pretty much covers the entire book, with time at the end for student projects.

Yuko's class is Introduction to Neural Network Models in Cognitive Science. It is one-quarter long and therefore requires faster coverage of the book, and does not allow for student projects at the end.


All of the figures in the text are available electronically for use in preparing lectures and such. Of course, any use in a published paper will require obtaining permission from MIT Press.

Most of the figures were created with idraw (a drawing program that is part of the InterViews toolkit, which is incidentally what is used in the PDP++ software). These files have a .id extension. One nice feature of idraw is that the save file is actually in postcript format, so these files can be used directly as postscript files. Other files are .eps (encapsulated postscript) or .epsi (encapsulated postscript with a preview image).

To aid in finding the figures, we have created symbolic links based on the chapter and figure number within the chapter. So, to find figure 2 from chapter five, you can just pull up fig_05_02.ps or you can see what it points to (ls -la fig_05_02.ps) to find out what kind of file it is, etc.

Answer Key:

An answer key for all the problems in the text is available by email request from the authors. You must send us your web page or some other way of verifying that you are actually an instructor and not a student.

To request the key, please contact anti-spam email addr img.

Lecture Overheads/Slides:

Our lecture overheads/slides are available in PDF format (they were created in LaTeX using the slides documentstyle -- these are also available, but probably less widely usable).

Randy's overheads are "slides" that are presented on an LCD projector using a version of xdvi under Linux -- powerpoint for the latex user (see this page for more details). These slides are in landscape format, and might serve as a better starting point for those who might want to create powerpoint lectures. The key idea for using the LCD projector is that much of the time in lecture can be spent giving a guided tour through the simulations, with these lecture slides providing supporting material. Previous year's attempts to have students go through the simulations themselves during class time proved to be an inefficient use of time that got bogged down with procedural details, so there is now a separate lab time for that.

Yuko's overheads are in portrait format and were last delivered using an overhead projector, though she will probably be converting to the LCD next time.

Two different archive formats for the files are available -- a .zip format (as used on most Windows platforms) and a .tar.gz format (gzipped tar file, used on Unix/Linux). Also, Randy's slides are available in a screen presentation format (full color, 1 slide per page) and a printout/handout format (white background, 4 slides per page).

Yuko's Overheads

Randy's Slides