NEU Concentration Course of Study (15 courses)

[last modified January 31, 2017]

Prerequisites (3 courses): These are the courses needed to enter the NEU concentration.

  • NEU 201 - Fundamentals of Neuroscience (Fall)
  • NEU 202 - Intro to Cognitive Neuroscience (Spring)
  • MAT 103 - Calculus I
Note 1: You must earn at least "C" in each of the prerequisite courses in order to enter the NEU concentration.
Note 2: Your placement in (or out of) MAT 103 is decided by the Department of Mathematics.
Note 3: You do not need to take NEU 201 before NEU 202

Core (2 courses): These are the NEU courses you must take.

This course aims to provide a comprehensive yet intuitive grasp of the mathematical and computational tools central to the analysis of neural systems and neural data. The course will introduce students to topics in linear algebra, differential equations, and probability & statistics, with a heavy emphasis on applications to neurobiology. Coursework will focus primarily on problem sets requiring the use of a simple computer programming language (e.g., Matlab, Python). The course will seek to develop intuition and achieve a practical mastery of the methods introduced, and will equip students with programming and data visualization skills that are increasingly important to scientific inquiry in general, and neuroscience in particular.

This course is designed to introduce undergraduate students to modern methods of analysis applied to single neurons, the synaptic connections between neurons and the dynamics of networks of neurons underlying learning and decision making. The course will include mammalian cellular and system neuroanatomy and the influence of experience on the production of new neurons. Students will learn modern methods of microscopy and the application of optogenetic approaches to analysis of neuronal function. Basic neuroscience concepts will be studied using both invertebrate and mammalian CNS preparations.

Cognates (2 courses): not taught by NEU, but required.

  • PHY 101 - Introductory Physics I
  • PHY 102 - Introductory Physics II

Electives (5 NEU + 3 Cognate courses)

I. Five NEU courses:

Students must take 5 NEU courses from 3 out of 4 subject areas. The areas are Molecular/Cellular/Disease, Neural Computation, Systems & Circuits  and Social & Cognitive Neuroscience. Here’s the list of current NEU electives:

Molecular/Cellular/Disease

  • NEU 301 - Cellular Neurobiology
  • EEB/NEU 403 - Genes and Neurons Underlying Behavioral Evolution
  • PSY/NEU 413 - Stress, Resilience and Illness
  • MOL/NEU 447 - Neuroimmunology
  • MOL/NEU 451 - Genes, Brains, Minds
  • MOL 459 - Basic Virology
  • MOL 458 - Psychopharmacology
  • NEU 501 - Molecules to Systems

Circuits & Systems

  • PSY/NEU 260 - Life Cycle of Behaviors
  • PSY/NEU 316 - Cognitive Neuroscience of Selective Attention
  • NEU 301 - Cellular Neurobiology
  • PSY/NEU 336 - Diversity of Brains
  • PSY 345/NEU 325 - Sensation & Perception
  • PSY/NEU 413 - Stress, Resilience and Illness
  • NEU 427 - Systems Neuroscience
  • NEU 457 - Measurement and Analysis of Neural Circuit Dynamics
  • NEU 501 - Molecules to Systems
  • NEU 502 - Systems to Behavior

Computation

  • PSY/NEU 330 - Connectionist Modeling
  • PSY/NEU 338 - Animal Learning & Decision-making
  • PSY/NEU 340 - Neuroeconomics
  • NEU 437 - Computational Neuroscience
  • NEU 457 - Measurement and Analysis of Neural Circuit Dynamics
  • COS 402 - Artificial Intelligence
  • COS 424/SML 302 - Fundamentals of Machine Learning
  • COS 495 - Special Topics in Computer Science: Neural Networks: Theory and Applications

Cognitive & Social Neuroscience

  • PSY/NEU 306 - Memory and Cognition
  • PSY/NEU 316 - Cog. Neuroscience of Selective Attention
  • PSY/NEU 330 - Connectionist Modeling
  • PSY/NEU 331 - Introduction to Clinical Neuropsychology
  • PSY/NEU 337 - Neuroscience of Social Cognition and Emotion
  • PSY/NEU 338 - Animal Learning & Decision-making
  • PSY/NEU 340 - Neuroeconomics
  • PSY/NEU 405 - Developmental Cognitive Neuroscience
  • MOL/NEU 451 - Genes, Brains, Minds
  • PSY/NEU 480 - fMRI Decoding
  • PSY/NEU 516 - Brain Imaging in Cognitive Neuroscience Research
  • NEU 502 - Systems to Behavior

 

II. Three additional courses:

A. Students must take one 200-level or higher course in cell biology from the following list:

  • MOL 214 - Introduction to Cellular and Molecular Biology
  • MOL 215/EEB 215 - Quantitative Principles in Cell and Molecular Biology
  • MOL 342 - Genetics
  • EEB 211/MOL 211 - The Biology of Organisms

B. Students must take one 200-level or higher course in behavior from the following list:

  • PSY 255 - Cognitive Psychology
  • PSY 252 - Social Psychology
  • PSY/NEU 345 - Sensation & Perception*
  • PSY 254 - Developmental Psychology
  • PSY/NEU 338 - Animal Learning & Decision Making*
  • EEB 311 - Animal Behavior
  • EEB 323 - Integrative Dynamics of Animal Behavior
*Note: crosslisted NEU courses will not count twice in the elective total.

C. Students must take one course in quantitative thinking from the following list:

  • SML 201 – Intro to Statistics and Machine Learning
  • COS 126 – General computer science

Entry through the ISC program

The first year ISC sequence (ISC 231, 232, 233, 234) offers an alternative to the combination of MOL 214 or 215 (biology elective), COS 126 (a quantitative thinking elective), and PHY 101-102 (required courses).

  • ISC 236 - Biochemistry and Neuroscience offers an alternative to NEU 201 (formerly NEU 258) (a prerequisite).
  • ISC 235 - Genetics and Genomics offers an alternative to MOL 342 Genetics (and will thus count as a “biology” elective).