Behavioral Neuroscience Major
Behavioral neuroscience sits at the intersection of psychology and biology and studies the biological mechanisms of how the brain senses and perceives the environment, stores and retrieves memories, generates emotions, controls behavior, and produces consciousness. The major in behavioral neuroscience is excellent preparation for advanced degrees and careers in the health professions; behavioral, cognitive or affective neuroscience; experimental psychology; clinical neuropsychology; pharmacology and related areas.
The interdisciplinary major in Behavioral Neuroscience has 5 main learning objectives:
- To provide foundational knowledge in Behavioral Neuroscience and related fields (e.g., Psychology, Biology, and Chemistry).
This is accomplished with introductory course work in the Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences, and complementary foundational coursework in the Departments of Biology and Chemistry and Biochemistry.
- To build skills in statistical analysis and research methods required to conduct and understand behavioral neuroscience research.
All students will complete courses in Statistics and Research Methods, as well as a number of lab courses, to develop these skills. In advanced courses, students will read and analyze primary research articles and engage in scientific writing. Students may also participate in faculty-led or independent research projects.
- To develop effective communication skills orally and in writing.
Students will write lab and research reports in required courses across disciplines, and will refine oral and written communication in advanced courses, seminars, and/or research experiences.
- To produce ethically responsible students.
Students will complete ethical training as part of Research Methods and Supervised Research covering topics essential to understand responsible research conduct and professionalism.
- To develop students’ abilities to synthesize knowledge by thinking critically and independently.
Students will use the foundational knowledge acquired in introductory courses to make connections across fields, as they critically analyze and present research in advanced courses, seminars, and/or research experiences.
For a 63-credit major in Behavioral Neuroscience, students complete the following:
|General Biology I|
and General Biology I Lab
|General Biology II|
and General Biology II Lab
|BIOL 2262||Human Physiology||4|
|or BIOL 1107||Human Anatomy and Physiology I|
|or BIOL 3315||Anatomy: Form and Function|
|General Chemistry I|
and General Chemistry I Lab
|General Chemistry II|
and General Chemistry II Lab
|Organic Chemistry I|
and Organic Chemistry I Lab
|Organic Chemistry II|
and Organic Chemistry II Lab
|PSYC 1010||General Psychology||3|
|PSYC 1610||Behavioral Neuroscience||3|
|PSYC 2810||Statistics for the Behavioral Sciences||4|
|PSYC 2820||Research Methods in Psychology||4|
|Select six elective courses in biology and psychology from the following: 1||18|
|Human Anatomy and Physiology II|
|General Biology III|
|Fundamentals of Neurobiology|
or BIOL 3325
|Learning and Applied Behavior Analysis|
|Sensation and Perception|
|Drugs, Brain and Behavior|
|Special Topics (Shell) (with an emphasis in behavioral neuroscience)|
|Hormones and Behavior|
|Pharmacology and Mental Disorders|
|Supervised Research: Behavioral Neuroscience 2|
|PSYC 3980||Psychology Teaching Practicum||3|
|Independent Research: Behavioral Neuroscience 2|
|Select one Capstone Experience from the following:||3|
|Senior Seminar: Current Issues in Behavioral Neuroscience|
|Neuroanatomy and Behavior|
|Senior Seminar in Neuroscience of Human Memory|
|Special Topics: Senior Seminar (with an emphasis in behavioral neuroscience)|
At least two elective courses must be in biology and at least two must be in psychology.
May be taken twice; Students can count two research experiences from among PSYC 3950, PSYC 3955, PSYC 4950, and PSYC 4955, toward their required major electives. Additional courses from among those will be free electives but will count toward the major GPA.