Neuroscience Major

The interdisciplinary nature of the neuroscience major requires familiarity with multiple disciplines. The curriculum begins with foundational science and mathematics courses in biology, chemistry, physics, and calculus and an orientation course in neuroscience that serves as a common starting point. 

In the second and third year, students begin to complete a series of core neuroscience courses that provide majors with a deep understanding of how the components of the nervous system work together to coordinate physiological and cognitive functions and how changes in regulation can impact thought and action.  Neuroscience students add breadth to their major by exploring electives within multiple fields of study (e.g., biology, computer science, data science, pharmacology, physics, psychology), that extend disciplinary boundaries and provide opportunities to explore areas of interest. A series of introductory and advanced research core courses, labs, and elective experiences “cap” the program, enabling students to demonstrate expertise with techniques and topics.

  1. Knowledge Base: Students will demonstrate familiarity with the major concepts, theoretical perspectives, empirical findings, and historical trends in neuroscience.
  2. Critical Thinking: Students will demonstrate the ability to read, interpret, and analyze scientific literature.
  3. Communication: Students will demonstrate the ability to communicate effectively in a variety of formats including written and oral communication.
  4. Scientific Reasoning: Students will demonstrate the ability to use scientific reasoning to systematically explore ideas, issues, objects or works through the collection and analysis of evidence that results in informed conclusions or judgments.
  5. Professional and Personal Development: Students will emerge from the major with realistic ideas about how to implement their knowledge, skills, and values in occupational pursuits in a variety of settings.

Assessment of select program learning objectives is completed during required senior seminar and capstone course experiences through written work, including programmatic reflection, and oral presentations. 

The traditional undergraduate programs includes a minimum of 120 credits distributed across three components: A General Education component divided into Signature Courses, Variable Courses, and an Integrative Learning requirement; a Major and Divisional component; and Free Electives. In addition to course requirements as specified in each area, students must complete one certified course in each of the following overlay areas1:

  1. Diversity, Globalization or Non-western Area Studies,
  2. Ethics Intensive
  3. Writing Intensive, and
  4. Diversity

Overlay requirements are part of the 120 credit requirements

General Education Signature Courses

See this page about Signature courses

General Education Variable Courses

See this page about Variable courses. Six to Nine courses

Fundamentals of Calculus
Calculus I
Bio I: Cells
and Bio I: Cells Lab
Introductory Psychology
Intro Psychology Seminar
Philosophy of Mental Illness (Suggested)

General Education Overlays

See this page about Overlays.

General Education Integrative Learning Component

See this page about Integrative Learning Component. Three courses:

CHM 125
General Chemistry II
and General Chemistry Lab II
CHM 215
Organic Chemistry II
and Organic Chemistry Lab II
PHY 102
General Physics II
and General Physics Laboratory II
Total Hours12

Major Requirements 

Required Courses:
NSC 190Neuroscience Orientation0
BIO 102
Bio II: Genetics
and Bio II: Genetics Lab
CHM 340Biochemistry3
or CHM 341 Molecular Structure Biochemist
or CHM 346 Biochemistry
NSC 205Introduction to Neuroscience3
NSC 206Intro. to Neuroscience II3
NSC 490Seminar in Neuroscience1
NSC 491Neuroscience Capstone1
Core Electives (select four)12
Intro: Neuropsychopharmacology
Intro Neuropsychopharmacology
Developmental Cognitive Neuros
Neurodevelopment Disorders
Neurocognitive Development
Biophysics of the Brain
Biophysics of the Brain
Genes and Brains
Molec Basis Neuro Disorders
Molecular Basis Neuro Disorder
Neurological Disorders
Special Topics in Neuroscience
Drug Disc Neurodegenerative
Track Electives (select five, one from each area)15
Clinical Health Track (select at least one)
Personality Psychology
Cognitive Neuroscience
Animal Learning and Memory
Health Psychology
Comparative Animal Behavior
Psychology of Emotion
Cognitive Psychology
Science of Creativity
Adv. Psychological Disorders
Developmental Cognitive Neuros
Molecular & Medicinal Track (select at least one)
Animal Behavior
Animal Behavior
Human Molecular & Cellular Bio
Advanced Cell Biology
Systemic Physiology
Anat&Physiol Nurs/Al Hlth I
Human Structure and Function I
Anatomy and Physiology I
Techniques in Pharmacol & Tox
Biology of Aging
Intro: Neuropsychopharmacology
Intro Neuropsychopharmacology
Genes and Brains
Molec Basis Neuro Disorders
Neurological Disorders
Drug Disc Neurodegenerative
Theoretical Track (select at least one)
Intro to Computer Science
Computer Science I
Python Programming for All
Comp’l Thinking & Data Sci
Computer Science II
Artificial Intellig for All
Data Structures
Intro. to Network Science
Biophysics of the Brain
Biophysics of the Brain
Total Hours42