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Academic Programs

Courses of special interest:

  • Behavioral Pharmacology
  • Mental Organs
  • Robotics
  • Music Cognition
  • Logic and Problem Solving
  • Animal Behavior
  • Machine Intelligence

Catalog 2014-2015

We believe that student-lead research is the best way for our students to learn to think like a scientist, work collaboratively, and develop their problem-solving skills. Because of this commitment, all of our biology classes have a laboratory component that is also taught by the faculty. In the laboratory, students are trained in modern techniques (e.g., PCR, Cell culture, physiological monitoring) and then use those techniques to explore questions they have developed.

Neuroscience Major Pattern
All students in the major will choose an emphasis: Biology, Psychology, or Computer Science.
Major
14-18.5 course units, including:
Introductory Core (4 courses)
The introductory core courses provide neuroscience majors with a basic grounding in the three subfields that comprise the major, as well as sufficient quantitative background to succeed in upper-level courses in the major.
BIO 1204 Integrated Concepts of Biology: Molecules and Cells
PSY 1004 General Psychology
PSY 2404 Cognitive Neuroscience
CS 2124 Logic and Problem Solving
MATH 1304 Calculus I
 
Intermediate Core (2 Courses)

The intermediate core courses depend on the student's chosen emphasis and will fulfill two purposes: first and foremost to provide students with the tools to examine problems in neuroscience from the perspective of their field of emphasis, and second, to allow students to complete a major in either biology, psychology, or computer science should they choose to not continue with the neuroscience major.

 
BIOLOGY Emphasis Intermediate Core:
BIO 1206 Integrated Concepts of Biology: Organisms and Ecosystems
BIO 2042 Biologist's Toolkit
COMPUTER SCIENCE Emphasis Intermediate Core
CS 1124 Foundation of Computer Science
CS 2444 Data Structures
PSYCHOLOGY Emphasis Intermediate Core
PSY 2224 Research Methods
PSY 2234 Statistical Analysis for the Social Sciences
 
Upper Level Core (4 courses)
The upper-level core in the neuroscience major allows students to use the skills acquired in their lower and intermediate courses to examine problems of mind and brain from the perspective of all three fields in the major, and to engage in cross-disciplinary dialogue about modern issues in neuroscience. Prerequisites for the upper-level courses will depend on students' area of emphasis (e.g., the prerequisite for BIO 3324 (Neurobiology) for a student with a Biology emphasis would be Cell and Molecular Biology, while the prerequisite for a student with a Psychology emphasis would be Biopsychology)
BIO 3224 Neurobiology
CS 3444 Mental Organs* (or PHIL 3444*)
PSY 3304 Biopsychology
NEUR 4044 Capstone in Neuroscience
 
Electives (3 courses)
Electives allow students to focus on an area of particular interest (or, if desired, to pursue coursework required for entrance into medical school without penalty), while requiring exposure to at least one additional course outside their area of emphasis at the sophomore level or higher.
3 courses from the following:
BIO 3026 Developmental Biology*
BIO 3065 Animal Physiology
BIO 3204 Animal Behavior
CHEM 2155 Organic Chemistry I*
CHEM 2165 Organic Chemistry II*
CS 3424 Robotics
CS 3434 Machine Intelligence (or PHIL 2434)
MUS 2304 Music Cognition
NEUR 4004 Independent Research in Neuroscience
PSY 3124 Abnormal Psychology
PSY 3324 Experimental: Sensation and Perception
PSY 3354 Behavioral Pharmacology
Notes:
At least 1 elective must be at the 3000-level or above.
Elective courses must come from at least 2 programs
* Indicates a course having a prerequisite that is exogenous to the set of required courses for the major.
Intermediate core courses from another area of emphasis may also be used as electives.  For instance if a student with a psychology emphasis wishes to take cell and molecular biology as a prerequisite for taking animal physiology, then cell and molecular biology may be used as an elective.
 
Allied Courses
Students must complete the allied courses for their department of emphasis.
BIOLOGY Emphasis Allied Courses:
CHEM 1055 Principles of Chemistry I
CHEM 1065 Principles of Chemistry II
CHEM 2155 Organic Chemistry I**
PHYS 2115 University Physics I
PHYS 2125 University Physics II
COMPUTER SCIENCE Emphasis Allied Courses:
PHYS 2115 University Physics I
Notes:

**Course may be counted as an elective but grade must be C- or better if using as elective

Neuroscience majors may minor in any of the three contributing disciplines other than their department of emphasis.  They may not have a double major with any of the three contributing departments.
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