This course explores the fascinating world of perception, within the natural world and in virtual and augmented environments. Students will understand how we use our senses - vision, sound, touch and taste - to decipher information about the objects, scenes and social cues around us.
There is a focus on applications: for example, the challenges and benefits of virtual reality - why and when it makes people feel sick, and how it can be used to treat pain, as a clinical tool for delivering therapy, or to create out-of-body experiences.
We explore individual differences in perception, including the effects of eating disorders, cultural experience and synaesthesia.
Some of the questions we will consider include:
Do babies recognise faces?
Can people that are blind from birth learn to see?
When does touching and hearing change our visual perception?
Why do some people taste egg when they hear the letter 'k'?
How can augmented and virtual reality help people who have lost a sense, or be used in ‘keyhole’ surgery?
Why do illusions occur?
The module is open to students who have taken PSYC2018, or visiting students who have taken an equivalent at their home institution.