• Class Number 6909
  • Term Code 3360
  • Class Info
  • Unit Value 6 units
  • Mode of Delivery In Person
    • AsPr Mark Edwards
    • AsPr Stephanie Goodhew
  • Class Dates
  • Class Start Date 24/07/2023
  • Class End Date 27/10/2023
  • Census Date 31/08/2023
  • Last Date to Enrol 31/07/2023
SELT Survey Results

This course combines two distinct modules, one on visual neuroscience and one on cognitive neuroscience. These two topics are addressed in distinct modules because traditionally these topics have been approached in different ways, but here they are combined into a single course to highlight that considering them in synergy is the most powerful way to understand the nexus between psychological function and the brain.

Topics covered in the visual neuroscience section include: learning the practical skills in designing and running psychophysical studies, understanding the neural machinery underlying the perception of objects, depth, and motion, and an explanation of sensory and perceptual illusions and what they tell us about the brain. The cognitive neuroscience section will focus on contemporary issues and therefore the content is subject to change. Indicative examples of content include using knowledge of brain structure and function to understand visual attention and predict task performance, how the human body alters what we see and how we think, and how cognitive neuroscience can inform our understanding of neurological conditions.

This is an Honours Pathway Course.

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion, students will have the knowledge and skills to:

  1. Describe the fundamental concepts and major themes in visual and cognitive neuroscience, and the theories and methods that have been used to address these.
  2. Compare and contrast particular approaches to studying visual and cognitive neuroscience in light of their use to answer a particular research question.
  3. Apply critical analysis skills to design and evaluate research studies and their conclusions.
  4. Use conceptual and critical skills to evaluate existing experimental research within visual and cognitive neuroscience.

Research-Led Teaching

Lectures are strongly focused on introducing theoretical frameworks and critical experimental research techniques in visual and cognitive neuroscience, and linking these to real-world applications.

Supplementary reading for your own interest might be suggested from time to time. The distinction between 'prescribed' and 'suggested' will be made very clear.

Recommended student system requirements 

ANU courses commonly use a number of online resources and activities including:

  • video material, similar to YouTube, for lectures and other instruction
  • two-way video conferencing for interactive learning
  • email and other messaging tools for communication
  • interactive web apps for formative and collaborative activities
  • print and photo/scan for handwritten work
  • home-based assessment.

To fully participate in ANU learning, students need:

  • A computer or laptop. Mobile devices may work well but in some situations a computer/laptop may be more appropriate.
  • Webcam
  • Speakers and a microphone (e.g. headset)
  • Reliable, stable internet connection. Broadband recommended. If using a mobile network or wi-fi then check performance is adequate.
  • Suitable location with minimal interruptions and adequate privacy for classes and assessments.
  • Printing, and photo/scanning equipment

For more information please see https://www.anu.edu.au/students/systems/recommended-student-system-requirements

Staff Feedback

Students will be given feedback in the following forms in this course:

  • Written comments
  • Verbal comments
  • Feedback to the whole class
  • Feedback to tutorial groups
  • Feedback to individual students during consultations

Student Feedback

ANU is committed to the demonstration of educational excellence and regularly seeks feedback from students. Students are encouraged to offer feedback directly to their Course Convener or through their College and Course representatives (if applicable). Feedback can also be provided to Course Conveners and teachers via the Student Experience of Learning & Teaching (SELT) feedback program. SELT surveys are confidential and also provide the Colleges and ANU Executive with opportunities to recognise excellent teaching, and opportunities for improvement.

Other Information

The University is returning to on campus teaching delivery for all in person courses, for all students, in the second half 2023. Remote adjustments will not be offered from the 1st of July, 2023 and international students will be required to be on campus studying in person.

Class Schedule

Week/Session Summary of Activities Assessment
1 Course overviewLectures: For lecture times, see ANU Timetable. The lectures will be run as flipped classes. This means that the lecture content will consist of two components, online material that will be available before the live lecture, and the in-person live lecture. It is expected that students will have have engaged with the online content before the relevant live lecture. The online material will give the foundational knowledge for the topics being covered that week and will take the form of lecture slides, audio and/or video and assigned readings. It will also identify a number of questions and or issues to think about prior to the live lectures. These questions/issues will be targeted on developing a sound understanding of the applications of the material. While the live lectures will answer any questions from students on the online content, their focus will be on working through addressing the questions/issues posed in the online content. That is, their focus will be on problem solving and applications to consolidate, deepen, and extend students’ understanding of the material. All of the materials (e.g., lecture recordings, PowerPoint slides and overheads) will be available on Wattle.Laboratory Classes: Given the flipped structure of the lectures, no additional laboratory classes will be required.
Indicative lecture structure is:Week 1Admin & overviewThe Scientific Approach 
2 Week 2The Scientific Approach and the Role of Theory
3 Week 3Research Methods – design, interpretation, and analysis 
4 Week 4Research Methods – design, interpretation, and analysis
5 Week 5Replicability, Reliability, Registration, and Review
6 Week 6Ecological Validity versus Experimental Control Essay Assignment Due TBC
7 Week 7Illusions and perceptual constancies Mid-semester assessment TBC
8 Week 8Thresholds & designing experiments
9 Week 9Spatial frequency analysis 
10 Week 10Spatial frequency analysis continuedDepth perception
11 Week 11Depth perception continued
12 Week 12Theoretical approaches to perceptionPerception and emotion

Tutorial Registration

No labs for this course.

Assessment Summary

Assessment task Value Learning Outcomes
Mid semester assessment (written). 40 % 1,2,3
End of Semester exam (written) 40 % 1,2,3
Essay Assignment 20 % 1,2,3,4

* If the Due Date and Return of Assessment date are blank, see the Assessment Tab for specific Assessment Task details


ANU has educational policies, procedures and guidelines , which are designed to ensure that staff and students are aware of the University’s academic standards, and implement them. Students are expected to have read the Academic Integrity Rule before the commencement of their course. Other key policies and guidelines include:

Assessment Requirements

The ANU is using Turnitin to enhance student citation and referencing techniques, and to assess assignment submissions as a component of the University's approach to managing Academic Integrity. For additional information regarding Turnitin please visit the Academic Skills website. In rare cases where online submission using Turnitin software is not technically possible; or where not using Turnitin software has been justified by the Course Convener and approved by the Associate Dean (Education) on the basis of the teaching model being employed; students shall submit assessment online via ‘Wattle’ outside of Turnitin, or failing that in hard copy, or through a combination of submission methods as approved by the Associate Dean (Education). The submission method is detailed below.

Moderation of Assessment

Marks that are allocated during Semester are to be considered provisional until formalised by the College examiners meeting at the end of each Semester. If appropriate, some moderation of marks might be applied prior to final results being released.


Please note, that where a date range is used in the Assessment Summary in relation to exams, the due date and return date indicate the approximate timeframe in which the exam will be held and results returned to the student (official end of Semester results released on ISIS). Students should consult the course wattle site and the ANU final examination timetable to confirm the date, time and venue of the exam.

Assessment Task 1

Value: 40 %
Learning Outcomes: 1,2,3

Mid semester assessment (written).

Covers weeks 1 – 6

Value: 40%

Date TBC.

Assessment Task 2

Value: 40 %
Learning Outcomes: 1,2,3

End of Semester exam (written)

Covers weeks 7-12

Value: 40%

The date range in the Assessment Summary indicates the start of the end of semester exam period and the date official end of semester results are released on ISIS. Please check the ANU final Examination Timetable http://www.anu.edu.au/students/program-administration/assessments-exams/examination-timetable to confirm the date, time and location exam.

Assessment Task 3

Value: 20 %
Learning Outcomes: 1,2,3,4

Essay Assignment

A written assignment that will require answering a number of set questions about specified readings.

Presentation requirements: Submitted via turnitin

Value: 20%

Due: Specific details will be posted on Wattle.

Estimated return date: TBC - approximately 3 weeks from submission

Academic Integrity

Academic integrity is a core part of the ANU culture as a community of scholars. The University’s students are an integral part of that community. The academic integrity principle commits all students to engage in academic work in ways that are consistent with, and actively support, academic integrity, and to uphold this commitment by behaving honestly, responsibly and ethically, and with respect and fairness, in scholarly practice.

The University expects all staff and students to be familiar with the academic integrity principle, the Academic Integrity Rule 2021, the Policy: Student Academic Integrity and Procedure: Student Academic Integrity, and to uphold high standards of academic integrity to ensure the quality and value of our qualifications.

The Academic Integrity Rule 2021 is a legal document that the University uses to promote academic integrity, and manage breaches of the academic integrity principle. The Policy and Procedure support the Rule by outlining overarching principles, responsibilities and processes. The Academic Integrity Rule 2021 commences on 1 December 2021 and applies to courses commencing on or after that date, as well as to research conduct occurring on or after that date. Prior to this, the Academic Misconduct Rule 2015 applies.


The University commits to assisting all students to understand how to engage in academic work in ways that are consistent with, and actively support academic integrity. All coursework students must complete the online Academic Integrity Module (Epigeum), and Higher Degree Research (HDR) students are required to complete research integrity training. The Academic Integrity website provides information about services available to assist students with their assignments, examinations and other learning activities, as well as understanding and upholding academic integrity.

Online Submission

You will be required to electronically sign a declaration as part of the submission of your assignment. Please keep a copy of the assignment for your records. Unless an exemption has been approved by the Associate Dean (Education) submission must be through Turnitin.

Hardcopy Submission

For some forms of assessment (hand written assignments, art works, laboratory notes, etc.) hard copy submission is appropriate when approved by the Associate Dean (Education). Hard copy submissions must utilise the Assignment Cover Sheet. Please keep a copy of tasks completed for your records.

Late Submission

Late submission permitted. Late submission of assessment tasks without an extension are penalised at the rate of 5% of the possible marks available per working day or part thereof. Late submission of assessment tasks is not accepted after 10 working days after the due date, or on or after the date specified in the course outline for the return of the assessment item. Late submission is not accepted for take-home examinations.

Referencing Requirements

The Academic Skills website has information to assist you with your writing and assessments. The website includes information about Academic Integrity including referencing requirements for different disciplines. There is also information on Plagiarism and different ways to use source material.

Returning Assignments

Student assignments will be returned online via turnitin.

Extensions and Penalties

Extensions and late submission of assessment pieces are covered by the Student Assessment (Coursework) Policy and Procedure. Extensions may be granted for assessment pieces that are not examinations or take-home examinations. If you need an extension, you must request an extension in writing on or before the due date. If you have documented and appropriate medical evidence that demonstrates you were not able to request an extension on or before the due date, you may be able to request it after the due date.

Resubmission of Assignments

Not permitted.


 If you have any questions about the assessment of a submitted piece of work, or if you wish to have some of the comments clarified, you may approach the staff member responsible for marking the assignment to arrange an appointment where you can discuss your concerns. If, after such discussion, you feel that a piece of work has not been adequately assessed, the following procedure applies:


(i)            Ask the marker to reassess your work. Before doing so, it is your responsibility to outline in writing why you think the original mark does not reflect the true worth of the work. Give this outline to the original marker.

(ii)           If the original marker agrees to reassess the work and alters the mark, and you accept this change, then the procedure ends, and you will not be eligible for any further remarking of the piece. The original marker will advise the course coordinator of the new mark so that they can ensure that the final records are accurate

(iii)         If following a discussion with the original marker, you still feel that the work has been inadequately assessed you may approach the course coordinator with a request for an independent remark. Please note that the mark that the course coordinator assigns will be the final mark. It is possible that this mark could be lower than the original mark

Privacy Notice

The ANU has made a number of third party, online, databases available for students to use. Use of each online database is conditional on student end users first agreeing to the database licensor’s terms of service and/or privacy policy. Students should read these carefully. In some cases student end users will be required to register an account with the database licensor and submit personal information, including their: first name; last name; ANU email address; and other information.
In cases where student end users are asked to submit ‘content’ to a database, such as an assignment or short answers, the database licensor may only use the student’s ‘content’ in accordance with the terms of service – including any (copyright) licence the student grants to the database licensor. Any personal information or content a student submits may be stored by the licensor, potentially offshore, and will be used to process the database service in accordance with the licensors terms of service and/or privacy policy.
If any student chooses not to agree to the database licensor’s terms of service or privacy policy, the student will not be able to access and use the database. In these circumstances students should contact their lecturer to enquire about alternative arrangements that are available.

Distribution of grades policy

Academic Quality Assurance Committee monitors the performance of students, including attrition, further study and employment rates and grade distribution, and College reports on quality assurance processes for assessment activities, including alignment with national and international disciplinary and interdisciplinary standards, as well as qualification type learning outcomes.

Since first semester 1994, ANU uses a grading scale for all courses. This grading scale is used by all academic areas of the University.

Support for students

The University offers students support through several different services. You may contact the services listed below directly or seek advice from your Course Convener, Student Administrators, or your College and Course representatives (if applicable).

AsPr Mark Edwards

Research Interests

Visual perception and cognition, specifically role of attention in visual perception, interaction of visual pathways and role emotion in visual cognition

AsPr Mark Edwards

By Appointment
AsPr Stephanie Goodhew

Research Interests

AsPr Stephanie Goodhew

By Appointment

Responsible Officer: Registrar, Student Administration / Page Contact: Website Administrator / Frequently Asked Questions