Is The Mind Modular?

Inside The Brain
3 min readMar 24, 2022

Mind — n. the human consciousness that originates in the brain and is manifested especially in thought, perception, emotion, will, memory, and imagination.

Image Credit: Canva

No robot can solve a crossword, or engage in a conversation, with anything like the facility the average human being can.

Somehow or other we humans are capable of performing complex cognitive tasks with minimal effort.

Trying to understand how this could be is the central explanatory problem of the discipline known as cognitive psychology.

There is an old but ongoing debate among cognitive psychologists concerning the architecture of the human mind.

The ‘general-purpose problem-solver’ mind

According to one view the human mind is a’ general-purpose problem-solver’. This means that the mind contains a general set of problem-solving skills or ‘general intelligence’ which it applies to an infinitely large number of different tasks. So the same set of cognitive capacities is employed, whether you are trying to count marbles, deciding what movie to see, or learning a foreign language — these tasks represent different applications of the human’s general intelligence.

The modular mind



Inside The Brain

Professor Billy O'Connor. Neuroscientist. Medical Educator. University of Limerick Graduate Medical School