Neuroscience - Spring 2014
BIOLOGY 220 – Neurobiology
5 semester hours
Prerequisites: Biology 170 and 180 or Psychology 120
This course introduces students to the intricacies of the nervous system. The course begins with the basics of neuronal communication and then moves to the organization of the nervous system (particularly the brain) into various systems as well as the visual, auditory, and motor systems. Laboratories will focus on the anatomy and current understanding of the mammalian brain. To this end, laboratories will include dissection of mammalian brains, interpretation of MRIs and an independent project.
BIOLOGY 324 - Animal Physiology
5 semester hours
Prerequisites: Biology 170, 180, and Chemistry 162
This course focuses on the function of the tissues, organs, and organ systems of multicellular organisms. We will survey membrane function, respiration, circulation, digestion, locomotion, osmoregulation, excretion, nervous function, endocrine function, and reproduction. The topics covered will be placed in an evolutionary and ecological framework and will focus on how different animals adapt and survive within their specialized niches.
MATH 337 - Statistical Design
4 semester hours
Prerequisite: MATH 227
Whereas the introductory statistics sequence focuses primarily on exploratory and formal analysis of data that have already been observed, this course focuses primarily on how to design the comparative observational and experimental studies in which data is collected for formal analysis. Students will learn: 1) to choose sound and suitable design structures, 2) to recognize the structure of any balanced design built from crossing and nesting, 3) to assess how well standard analysis assumptions fit the given data and to choose a suitable remedy or alternative when appropriate, 4) to decompose any balanced dataset into components corresponding to the factors of a design, 5) to construct appropriate interval estimates and significance tests from such data, and 6) to interpret patterns and formal inferences in relation to the relevant applied context. Students are required to collaborate on projects in which they design studies, collect and analyze data, and present their findings orally and in writing. Prerequisites: Any introductory statistics class: MATH 127, MATH 227, PSYC 107, or BUSN 110. Mathematical-reasoning intensive.
PHIL 203R - Mysteries of Self & Soul
In this course students will explore the relationships between their answers to four classic problems: (1) How does your mind relate to your body? (2) Do you have free will, or are your actions and choices determined? (3) Will you survive the death of your body? And (4) is possession by a demon or other spirit possible? The two initial prompts for our considerations will be movies such as The Matrix and The Exorcist and texts from the history of philosophy and psychology. Students will also read a book by a well known neuroscientist about findings from studies of the brain and will reflect on what these findings mean for the four questions listed above. Evaluations will be based on daily quizzes, periodic tests, and a final exam.
PSYC 207M: Experimental Design
5 semester hours
Prerequisite: Psychology 107 or another statistics course.
This laboratory course gives you hands-on experience with the basic principles of research in psychology: the logic and methodologies of collecting data in a scientific manner, and the concepts and techniques of applying statistics to collected data in order to draw conclusions. We will cover a variety of methodologies, emphasizing how you can use each of them yourself. As part of this course, you will design and implement a number of studies that involve collecting, analyzing, and interpreting original data, as well as reporting your findings. Each study will illustrate a different type of analytic tool or procedure, but the specific questions to be addressed in these studies will be determined by you.
PSYC 321B: Learning, Memory, and Cognition
5 semester hours
Prerequisites: Psychology 120 and Psychology 207
This is a course in which we study major operations of the human mind; perceiving, remembering, acting, and thinking. Specific areas of coverage include attention, visual search and object recognition, visual memory, general memory mechanisms (working and long-term), language, imagery, reasoning, and judgment. We will discuss learning and memory in other species as well, and attempt to draw parallels that inform our understanding of human cognition.
Specific proposals about how the mind accomplishes particular tasks (models) have been advanced in the short, 50-year history of modern cognitive psychology. We will see how these models have been tested, in part by participating in replications of classic cognitive psychology experiments. Data, including the data we generate ourselves, will be discussed in detail. We will write APA-style papers describing the nature of these tasks, the methods used, and the results obtained in the tasks. Finally, we will plan and execute group experiments.