There have been many other threads that discuss a possible name change.

The Community Team has suggested we focus on growing our community first before considering a name change. This logic seems to ignore the fact that our site's name has consequences for the audience we attract and participation rates.

This thread is for voting. If we can show that there is strong support for a name change, we may be able to convince the powers that be to change our name. If there is no consensus, then we will not change our name.

I will try to list all the names I have seen proposed on meta, but feel free to add your own--one per post, though. I have also listed our current name, so if you do not support a name change you may vote for that.

This will be a form of approval voting:

  • Upvote any and all name changes you would agree to
  • Downvote any and all name changes you strongly dislike
  • Do not vote for names to which you are indifferent
  • 1
    Note most of these titles are "X and Y"-- I would suggest voting for a title even if you prefer "Y and X". We'll hash out the details later.
    – Jeff
    Commented Mar 30, 2013 at 4:16
  • While I would prefer a few of the below listed names to the current, it's worth mentioning that I think it's unlikely the title is driving any of our less desirable metrics, such as the expert:layman ratio. The problem with Cognitive Sciences is not that it yields too many laymen, but that it's somewhat biased against some important minority views of the mind. Management's objection has merit, but it would still be good to resolve this so Meta can focus on more immediate, less divisive problems. Commented Mar 30, 2013 at 13:22
  • 1
    It would also be worthwhile to summarize objections to the suggestions as comments. Perhaps link to the related topics.
    – Steven Jeuris Mod
    Commented Mar 30, 2013 at 15:18
  • 1
    To facilitate reaching a consensus, I want to say I am committing to whatever name gets the most votes in this thread, even if it's one I voted against. Commented Mar 30, 2013 at 17:08
  • 2
    A name change would be so good! I don't think the current name covers the vast range of topics included. For example, given the inclusion of basic neuroscience questions, 'Cognitive Sciences' is so not covering the topics discussed here.
    – AliceD Mod
    Commented Aug 3, 2015 at 12:14
  • @Jeff is this still ongoing? I also agree that we're accidentally 'out-of-scope'ing valuable neuroscience questions with the name.
    – j6m8
    Commented Aug 17, 2015 at 15:14
  • @j6m8 I haven't been active on the site recently. It looks like the name has stuck, but I suspect it could be changed up through the beta period
    – Jeff
    Commented Aug 17, 2015 at 15:53
  • Upcoming Monday there will be a community chat discussing this issue, as well as a broader 'CogSci reboot' discussion. Hope you can make it as well @Jeff!
    – Steven Jeuris Mod
    Commented Jul 12, 2017 at 14:05

13 Answers 13


Psychology and Neuroscience



Mind and Brain



Brain, Mind and Behavior



Cognitive Science and Psychology


Brain and Behavior



Cognitive Sciences

(leave the name as is)


fyi - an exchange like site has arisen for neuroscience, i bet partially because neuroscientists could not find this one. it is here: https://neurostars.org/

  • 1
    I think that one is specific to neuroinformatics, and I think its founders are aware of the existence of CogSci, since they explicitly link to this question on our meta from their about page. I think it is good that they started their own site, a lot of their questions are informatics and programming specific, and would have a hard time finding answers on this site. Commented Apr 14, 2016 at 22:30

Given that site names with ampersands aren't allowed, I will bring forth:


This was suggested as an url before in between a broader discussion, thus seemingly got lost since.

Following Jeromy's guidelines it is:

  • Short (thus good for a URL)
  • Accurate in communicating scope: "The processes are analyzed from different perspectives within different contexts, notably in the fields of linguistics, anesthesia, neuroscience, psychiatry, psychology, education, philosophy, anthropology, biology, systemics, logic, and computer science."
  • Rather unique.

Just like Music: Theory & Practice, hopefully we can argue we would be better off using a combination with the currently top voted name:

Cognition: Psychology and Neuroscience

  • it's 'unique' because nobody who wants to know about mind, brain, neuroscience or psychology would search for or find "cognition". hope this helps. Commented May 31, 2016 at 17:51
  • True, but neither would you look for Cross Validated. It's just to find common ground which is not a field.
    – Steven Jeuris Mod
    Commented May 31, 2016 at 18:05
  • I guess if we pick an option that neither appeals to or offends anyone, it's technically common ground. The Starbucks strategy! Commented May 31, 2016 at 18:10
  • seriously though, we should just leave it because SE has made it clear they don't want us to call ourselves anything we actually identify as Commented May 31, 2016 at 18:12
  • It was mainly 'we don't want ampersands', which might be getting outdated actually: English Language & Usage, Personal Finance & Money, Board & Card Games, Unix & Linux, Science Fiction & Fantasy, Movies & TV, Music: Practice & Theory, .........
    – Steven Jeuris Mod
    Commented May 31, 2016 at 18:53
  • the ostensible justification doesn't matter at all, because policy is within SE's control anyway. we need a joined name, which is why every real contender was a joined name. It's not on us to choose a half assed name in response to their arbitrary whims, it's on them to bring policy in line with the reality of our field. Commented Jun 1, 2016 at 4:03
  • 1
    @ChristianHummeluhr I believe we could make a case for the need for a joined name, but we still need to address the URL issue. Just like "Music: Practice & Theory" is "music.stackexchange.com", we could potentially do, "Cognition: Psychology and Neuroscience". This would at least address the URL concern.
    – Steven Jeuris Mod
    Commented Jun 1, 2016 at 9:48
  • There's only three people who can make the case, so I assume by "we", that's what you mean. If we can get the name we actually wanted by prepending a generic umbrella name, whatever. No skin off my nose. I didn't get the impression the URL was the issue, so ultimately it comes down to what the SECT (interesting ...) says when you propose the format. Commented Jun 1, 2016 at 10:39
  • 1
    Honestly, the problem of our name is dwarfed by the problem of our moderators delaying decision-making indefinitely while waiting for a non-existent community to reach an undefined consensus criterion. Just do it. Commented Jun 1, 2016 at 10:42
  • @ChristianHummeluhr It is not true that "[t]here's only three people who can make the case". One of the other reasons was that we still had to grow our community first. But the URL issue was also part of it. We can not 'just do it'. The point is that you (the community) has as much power as the moderators in this regard. They won't listen to just the moderators, they need to see a community behind it.
    – Steven Jeuris Mod
    Commented Jun 1, 2016 at 10:42
  • There's only three people who can make the case, and I'm not going to hound you for three months until you actually do it this time. You're on your own, Al Capone. Commented Jun 1, 2016 at 10:44

Behavioral Sciences

What I like of the current name, Cognitive Sciences, is the word Sciences. We want high quality well referenced questions and answers that are interesting for people that work in/with science.

The problem with the current name, though catchy, is that not all psychology is cognitive. However, as we start to see on this website, not all questions are about psychology either. There are countless of question that are focused on the body and its movements, instead of the mind. Therefore, we should focus on the behavior of humans and animals.

Finally, the name has everything discussed in this answer; It's short, accurate in its scope and relatively unique. Moreover, the site will be filled with BS topics, which made me grin a little bit (a).


Brain and Cognitive Sciences

  • MIT's department, not my favorite, but an option Commented Apr 1, 2013 at 3:17

Mind and Behavior




  • A bit off the reservation, but quirky and catchy Commented Apr 1, 2013 at 3:20
  • Permutations also accepted Commented Apr 1, 2013 at 3:21
  • 5
    super-cogni-fragilistic-neuro-alidocious (even though the sound of it is something quite atrocious, if you say it loud enough you'll always sound precocious!)
    – Jeff
    Commented Apr 1, 2013 at 3:23
  • 1
    It's pronounced "Newyogt", based on all of the silent letters. Commented Apr 1, 2013 at 3:25
  • lmao @Jeff, that's hysterical
    – Josh
    Commented Apr 3, 2013 at 12:14



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