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Tentative Course Offerings

These are tentative schedules. Classes and/or instructors may change or be canceled. Please consult the official Schedule of Classes on TritonLink each quarter.

Featured Courses

COGS 87: Freshman Seminar - Fall 2021

COGS 87 (A00): How Minds and Groups Make Religion and Superstition | Professor Gedeon Deak

Why do humans, individually and in groups, attribute natural events to supernatural agents? How does the human brain accept religious beliefs, even in the face of contradictory evidence? We will examine how cognitive, developmental, and cultural factors work together to cause humans to believe in the supernatural.

COGS 126: Thinking with Computers - Fall 2021

COGS 126: Thinking with Computers | Amy Fox

You'll learn about the history of Human-Computer Interaction, and its through lines to modern HCI research.  But this is not the 'boring' history of high school; you'll learn how fundamental aspects of modern computing like the mouse and graphical user interface and even the WWW were first conceptualized, and most importantly, you’ll imagine alternatives.  What might an operating system for a computer look like that doesn't rely on the idea of windows?  What if we didn't interact with computers via keyboard and mouse?  Each week you'll complete 2-3 required readings (combination of chapters from a book on history of HCI + classic & modern research papers).  On Tuesdays I will give a lecture, and we'll discuss the readings in class.  On Thursdays we'll have a laboratory where we collect real-world data about our own use of computer technology, and consider how it shapes the way we think while working. What kinds of tools do we use for reading, for writing, or searching? How does the nature of the tools that we use affect the kinds of thinking we're able to do while we're reading and writing or searching?  The aim here is to give you hands-on experience collecting and analyzing data for empirical HCI research.  In the final project, you will use the data you've collected during labs to write a research project proposal suitable for application for a senior honors thesis or independent research project.

Prerequisites: Instructor will override prerequisites (Cogs 120 or Cogs 121 or CSE 170), to request the override at

COGS 137: Practical Data Science in R - Fall 2021

COGS 137: Practical Data Science in R | Professor Shannon Ellis

Learn coding for data analysis using the R programming language. Course focus will be on practical and applied skills in asking data-informed questions, data wrangling, data visualization, building statistical learning models, and communicating your findings to advance your career.

Prerequisites: COGS14B or MATH11 or PSYC60

COGS 160: Seminars in Special Topics - Fall 2021

COGS 160 (A00): Social Cognitive Development | Professor Gedeon Deák

This course is a mixed Practicum/Seminar course designed to provide hands-on experience in research on infancy and early childhood. Students learn skills and are assigned responsibilities based on the project to which they are assigned. Students also participate in a journal club and prepare brief end-of-quarter presentations and reports. It is a 3-quarter sequence. Content, skills, and responsibilities evolve and expand every quarter. Students work with a supervisor who oversees training and task progress. 

Prerequisites: GPA of 3.3 or better; commitment to this COGS 160 for 3-quarters; permission of instructor based on interview and availability. 

Request enrollment by contacting Dr. Deak (

DSGN 118: Design for Future Creativity and Productivity - Fall 2021

DSGN 118: Design for Future Creativity and Productivity | Professor Haijun Xia

This course covers fundamentals of the design of creativity support tools for various types of digital content, including images, videos, animations, information visualization, augmented/mixed/virtual reality. We will also explore how novel interaction techniques, such as gestural interaction, speech input, and artificial intelligence can be used to support people's creativity and productivity.

Prerequisites: (COGS18 or CSE11 or CSE8B or DSC30) and (COGS1 or COGS187A or DSGN1)

DSGN 119: Design at Large Seminar - Fall 2021

DSGN 119: Design at Large (course information) | Professor P. Keolu Fox

New societal challenges, cultural values, and technological opportunities are changing design, and vice versa. The seminar explores this increased scale, real-world engagement, and disruptive impact. Invited speakers from UC San Diego and beyond share cutting-edge research on interaction, design, and learning. 2 units, P/NP grades only.

Meets Wednesdays 4:00pm-5:00pm (Design and Innovation Building (DIB), 2nd Floor Large Event Room #202). Due to COVID restrictions, only UCSD students and employees will be allowed to attend the class in person. All others must attend remotely via Zoom. Capacity is limited to first-come first-serve.

Prerequisites: COMM 124A or COGS 10 or DSGN 1

Course Pre-Authorizations

All COGS course pre-authorizations and prerequisite override requests must be made through the UC San Diego Enrollment Authorization System (EASy).