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Predicting Ourselves

Andy Clark

How do we think, dream and feel? Philosophy Andy Clark examines the ‘predictive brain’ approach – touted as a unifying theory for neuroscience – and explores its dramatic implications for science, psychiatry and society.

About the Course

It seems obvious that perception is a matter of our senses receiving information from the world. Yet this passive understanding of our relationship to the external world has been shown to be wildly mistaken by modern neuroscience. With this in mind, Professor Andy Clark explores the challenging new predictive theory of mind and how, with the aid of empirical evidence, it can unravel the mysteries of consciousness.

Andy Clark investigates how understanding perception as a matter of prediction, error and adaptation not only yields a theory of mind in line with scientific evidence but also unifies fragmented elements of neuroscience into one harmonious science. Perhaps, even though we build our perception of the world, this gives us no less access to what is really out there.

During this course you will learn about:

  • The insight perceptual illusions give us into our mental world.
  • Our ability to predict and create our perception of the external world.
  • Abnormal psychologies and their differences to standard psychologies.
  • The importance of harmonising neuroscience and philosophy of mind.



IAI Academy courses are designed to be challenging but accessible to the interested student. No specialist knowledge is required.

About the Instructor

  • Andy Clark

    Andy Clark is currently Professor of Philosophy at the University of Edinburgh and will soon become Professor of Philosophy and Informatics at the University of Sussex with affiliation to the Sackler Centre for Consciousness (effective January 2019). Clark is a world-leading specialist in mind extension – being one of the first to posit an extended theory of mind.



Course Syllabus

  • Part One: Prediction and Illusion
  • Part Two: Unifying Neuroscience