During your first year, you will gain a thorough and ‘hands-on’ grounding in the core principles and techniques used in neuroscience through a mixture of lecture and practical experience.
Modules will include:
- Introduction to Cellular Neurophysiology: You will study: the physiology of action potential generation and conduction in nerve and muscle cells, central and peripheral synaptic transmission, the concept of homeostasis, the structures of the brain and basic function, functional anatomy and physiology of spinal reflex arcs and neuronal pathways in the central nervous system.
- Development and Human Anatomy: An introductory review of human anatomy in relation to function. Introduction to histology and cellular pathology, which can be used as a basis for subsequent study of cellular pathology.
- Research Methods and Statistics: Teaches students about the different types of research methods used in psychological research and issues associated with them. Also covers students a variety of descriptive statistics and non-parametric statistical tests and when it is appropriate to use them.
- Key Skills in Neurosciences 1: Covers basic mathematical, statistical and ethical concepts in neuroscience. Develops proficiency in searching the literature, the ability to critically analyse research and present arguments in both oral and written formats. Demonstrates the ability to work in teams.
- Biochemistry for Neuroscience: The main aim of this module is to ensure that students are familiar with those aspects of biochemistry that are most relevant to a study of neuroscience. The applications of these will be explored in subsequent years in the course.
- Abnormal Psychology: Provides an introduction to the concept of psychopathology and an overview of the different models of abnormal behaviour. To provide an outline of the aetiology and treatment of a number of key psychological disorders.
- Cell Biology: Provides a basic introduction to cellular components and processes involved in the birth, life and death of cells. This will include the identity, nature and properties of important cellular organelles and how these organelles function in the physiology and replication of cells. In this module a range of biological analytical techniques used for elucidating cellular structure and function are described. Furthermore the role of abnormal cellular function in pathology is highlighted.
- Inheritance and Population Genetics: A classical genetics course which examines modes of inheritance of 'the gene' as described in Molecular Biology. The relationship between inheritance and human disease is addressed, to give an appreciation of congenital disorders and their prevalence within different populations.
- Psychology of Attention and Perception: The module introduces students to the field of cognitive psychology and familiarises them with the information-processing approach to the study of attention and perception.
- Neuroscience Practicals: Learn how psycho-physical measurements can be taken and interpreted using Biopac and how to design and program experiments using Superlab. To be able to write up experiments in a lab report.
Your second year will involve building upon the knowledge that you gained in your first year. You will study in great depth the foundations of Neuroscience from both research and theoretical perspectives.
Modules will include:
- Brain and Behaviour: covers the neural basis of more specific functions: low-level visual perception, emotions and higher order cognitive function.
- Cognitive and Behavioural Neuroscience Research Methods: Learn about modern neuroscience research including research methods with children and special populations, neuropsychology, Eye tracking, Neurostimulation techniques, Electrophysiology/Neurophysiology, Magnetic resonance based techniques.
- Systems Neuropharmacology: Fundamentals of synpatic transmission in the CNS. Biological basis of drug actions in the CNS, including drugs of abuse and common prescription drugs. Biological basis of common neurological disorders such as epilepsy, stroke, Parkinson's, schizophrenia and Alzheimer's disease. Pharmacotherapeutic approaches to neurological disease. Drug interactions in CNS disease.
- Cellular and Developmental Neuroscience: To equip the student with understanding of neuroscience and neurodevelopment from a cellular perspective, giving insight into how cortical structure develops and how synaptic and cytorchitectural features are subject to change during development. Teaches a broad working knowledge of the cellular elements of the brain, with special reference to inhibitory interneurones, local circuits, pyramidal and stellate cells, dendrites, synapses, presynaptic function and biophysical aspects including ion channel function, membrane properties and compartmentalisation.
- Advanced Statistics: develops proficiency in statistical analysis for a variety of research designs.
- Key Skills in Neurosciences 2: Focuses on development of professional, intellectual and transferable skills used in the field of neuroscience. Develops key research skills from the theoretical conception of the project, through stimulus design and implementation, through to analysis and interpretation of results.
The placement year is an opportunity for you to set your undergraduate studies in context by taking a neuroscience placement in the UK or abroad. Discover more below.
During the final year of the course you will expand and specify your knowledge through a series of core and optional modules of your choice, and through the completion of an original piece of neuroscience research as a final year project.
- Advanced topics in Cellular Neuroscience: By the end of this module the student will be able to: 1. Analyse how neuronal network dynamics reflect brain function in health and disease 2. Appraise advanced aspects of pharmacodynamics. 3. Critically evaluate new research techniques such as optogenetics and new philosphical approaches e.g. "causal neuroscience".
- Final Year Project (choice between cognitive neuroscience or cellular research): You will receive individual project supervision to undertake a project of mutual interest between you and your supervisor.
Choose two modules from:
And choose four from:
Please note that not all modules are available every year and some may be subject to change. Final year modules are based on staff expertise.