This introductory course will explore a range of topics and issues in the study of neuroscience. Specifically, the course will focus on the relationship between neuroscience, the arts and humanities. The course will treat the humanities and sciences as partners working together on the same problems. Usually, three topics are covered per semester. Examples of topics covered include: the neuroscience of emotions, play behavior, film, visual and artistic perspective, space, time. Other topics may be covered. Assignments will include weekly quizzes, class discussion, and a thesis paper. Prerequisite: None. NEUR 105 is a non-majors introductory course geared towards first and second year students, although others may take it. Anyone who plans to major or concentrate in Neuroscience will need to take NEUR 112/212. NEUR 105 can be paired with NEUR 112/212 in order to satisfy the Natural Science distribution requirement. This course is repeatable for credit. However, this course taken twice or with a NEUR special topic does not satisfy the natural sciences diversification.
This course begins with a definition of neuroscience as an interdisciplinary field, in the context of the philosophy of science. Consistent with this view, a number of faculty members from various departments are responsible for giving lectures and leading discussions throughout the semester. After covering the basics of cellular neurophysiology, the course examines the development and organization of the human nervous system in terms of sensory, motor, motivational, emotional, and cognitive processes. The neurological and biochemical bases of various brain and behavioral disorders are also examined. Prerequisite: BIOL 115 or 116, CHEM 121 or 122 or AP score of 5 in BIOL or CHEM.
Comparative psychology is the study of behavior and mental processes of organisms, including humans. Until Darwin published his theory of evolution, it was commonly accepted that a huge gulf exists between human and nonhuman animals. In this course we will examine human and animal behavior and mental activity from an evolutionary perspective, that is, from a perspective in which humans are part of the continuum of life forms that inhabit the planet. We will consider the notion that, in contrast to the usual anthropocentric view of behavior and mental processes, many of the same evolutionary and ecological principles explain both human and animal behavior. Prerequisite: PSYC 101 or NEUR 112/212 or PSYC 100 and PSYC 150. This course is offered at least every other year.
This course is designed to facilitate our learning about the connections and interactions among neuroanatomy, brain function, and psychological phenomena. We do this by studying neuropsychological disorders, as well as the basic psychological processes such as perceptions and memory. Through readings, discussions, and class presentations, we will learn some of the basic principles of the brain's organization and function, as well as its ability to recover function after damage. In addition, we will learn about the nature, causes, and treatment of specific neuropsychological disorders such as Parkinson's disease, Alzheimer's disease, closed head injuries, Tourette's syndrome, and stroke-induced aphasia. Further, we will learn about neuropsychological assessment and the current level of research and discovery in the neuropsychology of specific disorders through student presentations. Prerequisite: PSYC 100 or 101 or NEUR 112/212. This course is offered at least every other year. This course is cross-listed with Psychology for diversification purposes.
This course is designed to provide the student with an understanding of the physiological phenomena responsible for psychological experiences. The main focus of the course is a detailed study of the anatomy and physiology of the nervous system. This is then followed by a study of the sensory and self-regulatory systems, a study of higher cognitive processing. With each new topic, the relevant anatomical and physiological systems will be discussed as they relate to the behavior under scrutiny. Thus the biological underpinnings of vision, mood, learning,memory, motivation, and other topics will be studied. Prerequisite: PSYC 101, PSYC 111, or NEUR 112/212. This course is typically offered every year.
This course focuses on the ways in which the brain gathers, processes, and interprets information from the external environment in order to construct an internal representation that the organism perceives to be "reality." The goal is to provide students with an understanding of the evolution, structure, and function of various sensory systems as well as an understanding of how the brain interprets incoming sensations and turns them into perceptions that allow organisms to act on their environment. Prerequisite: PSYC 101 or NEUR 112/212 or PSYC 100 and PSYC 150. This course is typically offered every year.
The emphasis of this course is on the biological mechanisms of the actions and effects of both legal and illegal psychoactive drugs. The course begins with a brief discussion of the history of psychopharmacology, followed by an in-depth examination of the biological basis of drug action in the brain. This is followed by a discussion of the basis of drug classification. Specific drugs are discussed. These include illicit drugs like cocaine, amphetamines, and heroin as well as legal psychoactive drugs like caffeine, nicotine, and alcohol. The course ends with a discussion of the action of drugs used in the treatment of mental disorders such as schizophrenia (antipsychotics) and depression (antidepressants). Prerequisite: PSYC 100 or 101 or NEUR 112/212. Recommended but not required: PSYC/NEUR 305. Offered as our schedule permits. This course is cross-listed with Psychology for diversification purposes.
This combined discussion and laboratory course aims to develop abilities for asking sound research questions, designing reasonable scientific approaches to answer such questions, and performing experiments to test both the design and the question. We consider how to assess difficulties and limitations in experimental strategies due to design, equipment, system selected, and so on. The course provides a detailed understanding of selected modern research equipment. Students select their own research problems in consultation with one or more neuroscience faculty members. This course is designed both for those who plan to undertake honors research in their senior year and for those who are not doing honors but who want some practical research experience. A student can begin the research in either semester. If a year of credit is earned, it may be applied toward the Research Methods course requirement for the major in neuroscience. Prerequisite: BIOL 109Y-110Y, NEUR 112/212, and permission of instructor.
Credit: 0.5 QR
This methods course teaches students the skills necessary for conducting research in biopsychology and neuroscience. It will give students first-hand experience with a number of concepts and measurement techniques as well as an understanding of the ways in which biopsychologists investigate the brain and its relationship to behavior. Students will learn to design experiments; collect, analyze, and present data using computer software packages; and write a scientific paper. Prerequisite: NEUR 112/212 or PSYC 200 as well as permission of instructor. Offered as our schedule permits.
Credit: 0.5 QR
This is a laboratory methods course that focuses on research methods used in physiological psychology and behavioral neuroscience. The emphasis of the course will be on designing, conducting, and presenting research, as well as on mastering specific laboratory techniques. The primary goal is to examine the relationships between brain chemistry and behavior. To this end, students will engage in the designing and implementation of projects that examine these relationships using animal subjects. The course will also focus on data analysis and experimental design. Prerequisite: PSYC 101 or PSYC 100 and one of the following: NEUR/PSYC 347, NEUR/PSYC 305, or NEUR 112/212. This course is typically offered every other year.
Credit: 0.5 QR
This methods course teaches students the skills necessary for conducting research in sensation and perception. It will give students first-hand experience with a number of concepts and measurement techniques as well as an understanding of the ways in which sensory psychologists investigate how the brain gathers, processes, and interprets information from the external environment in order to construct an internal representation of reality. Students will learn to design experiments; collect, analyze, and present data using computer software packages; and write a scientific paper. Prerequisite: NEUR 112/212 or PSYC 200 and previous or concurrent enrollment in either PSYC 301, NEUR/PSYC 305, or NEUR/PSYC 307 as well as permission of instructor. This course is typically offered every other year.
This capstone seminar is required of all students who plan to graduate with a neuroscience concentration or major. The seminar is intended to bring together the knowledge acquired from courses required for, or relevant to, the concentration and major. During the course of the semester, each student will submit a critique of a published article and write a research proposal with the assistance of the instructor. Oral presentations are given in conjunction with each of these exercises. Prerequisite: NEUR 112/212, junior standing and completion of two of the three required basic science courses for the concentration.
Students conduct independent research under the supervision of one of the faculty members affiliated with the Neuroscience Program. This course is restricted to juniors or seniors who are neuroscience majors or have taken (or are concurrently enrolled in) courses required for the neuroscience concentration. Prerequisite: permission of instructor and neuroscience director, along with demonstrated special interest.
This program for senior honors students culminates in the completion of a senior honors research project. The research is expected to be on a topic of particular relevance to the student's postgraduate plans. Students must select a research advisor from the faculty members in the Neuroscience Program. They are expected to have done a thorough bibliographic search of the literature, written a short review paper, and formulated some tentative hypotheses during the spring semester of their junior year. Prerequisite: The student must have a 3.33 overall GPA and a 3.5 GPA in the neuroscience core courses and must have completed at least 5 units toward the major. Permission of neuroscience director.
See course description for NEUR 497Y.
ANTH 111: Introduction to Biological Anthropology
ANTH 321: Evolution and Human Evolution
BIOL 115: Energy in Living Systems
BIOL 116: Information in Living Systems
BIOL 243: Animal Physiology
BIOL 261: Animal Behavior
BIOL 263: Molecular Biology and Genomics
BIOL 266: Cell Biology
BIOL 321: Developmental Biology
BIOL 358: Neurobiology
BIOL 359: Experimental Neurobiology
CHEM 109: Neurochemistry
CHEM 121: Introductory Chemistry
CHEM 122: Chemical Principles
CHEM 123: Introductory Chemistry Lab I
CHEM 124: Introductory Chemistry II
CHEM 126: Introductory Chemistry Lab II
CHEM 231: Organic Chemistry I
CHEM 232: Organic Chemistry II
CHEM 233: Organic Chemistry Lab I
CHEM 234: Organic Chemistry Lab II
CHEM 256: Biochemistry
CHEM 335: Chemical Kinetics and Thermodynamics
CHEM 341: Instrumental Analysis
CHEM 371: Advanced Lab: Biochemistry
MATH 111: Calculus I
PSYC 200: Statistical Analysis in Psychology
PSYC 301: Cognitive Psychology
PSYC 303: Learning and Motivation
PSYC 310: Cognitive Neuroscience
PSYC 403: Research Methods in Learning and Motivation
PSYC 410: Research Methods in Human Neuroscience