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Since it's getting closer to the end of semester, I thought I'd better get thinking about how I should present the reading/ investigation I've done in a report-style format.

Here are my initial thoughts - I imagine that the structure will improve once the written drafts get underway.

1) Introduce the topic

  • Give a brief overview of the project statement - what was the project about?
  • How can one differentiate between a 'good' and 'bad' explanation of consciousness? Discuss some of the major philosophical models of scientific explanation and their relevance to the 'hard problem' of consciousness, i.e. the problem of explaining subjective experience.
  • Explain the scope of the investigation - what issues were covered, which issues will be ignored
  • Why are these problems important/ relevant? (Might not include this; I don't think it is essential to the content of the report, but then again it might provide context.)

2) Scientific explanation

  • Outline the DN model of scientific explanation
  • Outline the Causal-Mechanical model of scientific explanation
  • Mention briefly that scientific explanation of consciousness is a difficult issue to tackle and why this is so (e.g. issues with observation/ evidence in the study of consciousness)

3) What is the 'hard problem' of consciousness (as opposed to the easy problem)?

  • Give a brief outline of these two approaches to consciousness

4) The role of scientific explanation in explaining the 'easy problem' of consciousness

  • Discuss whether science might be able to explain the 'easy problem' of consciousness (explain why science might be able to play a role in explaining this problem)

5) The role of scientific explanation in explaining the 'hard problem' of consciousness

  • Discuss whether science might be able to explain the 'hard problem' of consciousness (explain why it probably can't explain this)

6) Explaining subjective experience

  • Science cannot definitely explain subjective experience (the 'hard problem' of consciousness) for reasons x, y and z...
  • But this is not to say that science cannot be useful in developing better explanations of consciousness
  • In what ways might science be able to help us reach better models of consciousness in terms of the 'hard problem'?

7) Summarise and conclude

Would be interested to hear your thoughts on this plan!