What is consciousness? Can we tell if other animals experience subjectivity, or whether there will be conscious machines or robots? These fundamental philosophical questions are now being explored by neuroscientist Associate Professor Nao Tsuchiya and his team.
PSY2031 Developmental and biological psychology
PSY2042 Cognitive and social psychology
PSY3062 Research project unit
PSY3180 Human neuorpsychology: Developmental and neurodegenerative disorders
Why and how does our subjective conscious experience emerge from physical electrochemical activity in the brain? Why is neuronal activity in the cortex, but not in the cerebellum, responsible for consiousness? Do any other animals experience subjectivity? If so, how can we know? Will there be conscious machines or robots? How can we test it? These are fascinating fundamental questions, which used to be questions for philosophers, but now they are for neuroscientists. In particular, our current projects focus on:
1. Behavioural effects and neuronal correlates of conscious and non-conscious processing.
2. Clarifying the differences and relationship of the neuronal mechanisms of consciousness and attention.
3. Analysis of multi-channel neurophysiological data to understand the neuronal mechanisms of consciousness.
4. Testing theories of consciousness, in particular the integrated information theory of consciousness by Guilio Tononi, using empircal neuronal data.