Neuroscience and Cognitive Science

Neuroscience is the scientific study of the nervous system, which developed as a branch of biology but quickly became an interdisciplinary science that includes disciplines such as psychology, computer science, statistics, physics, philosophy, and medicine. As a result, the scope of neuroscience has broadened to include different approaches used to study the molecular, developmental, structural, functional, evolutionary, computational, and medical aspects of the nervous system.

Cognitive Science is the interdisciplinary study of how information is represented and transformed in the human brain. It consists of multiple research disciplines, including psychology, artificial intelligence, philosophy, neuroscience, learning sciences, linguistics, anthropology, sociology, and education. It spans many levels of analysis, from low-level learning and decision mechanisms to high-level logic and planning; from neural circuitry to modular brain organization.

Recent technological advances are moving these areas even closer together. The pairing of Neuroscience and Cognitive Science into a single major reflects this, and while a number of universities offer majors in either Neuroscience or Cognitive Science, we are unique in offering a program that combines the two.

Undergraduate Degree Offered

  • Bachelor of Science (B.S.)

The program is designed on a strong science foundation and a set of core courses that expose students to the breadth of concepts and methods of scientific inquiry in the highly interdisciplinary fields of Neuroscience and Cognitive Science. In addition, students choose electives that enhance their understanding of core concepts and that allow them to delve into specific sub-areas in accord with their personal interest.

To streamline the elective selection process, we have constructed several emphases, each comprising a set of courses or course options that together constitute serious study of one area. These are:

  • Communication Science
  • Neurobiology
  • Neuroscience of Aging
  • Computational Neuroscience
  • Thematic (individualized to meet student's interests)

Career Options

The major comprises a rigorous program of coursework that prepares students to enter graduate or professional school in one of several disciplines (e.g., speech and hearing, psychology, neuroscience, cognitive science, medicine, pharmacology, nursing, veterinary science), to be competitive for entry-level positions in the pharmaceutical and health care industries and in industries using medically or biologically related technologies, to be a high school or middle school science teacher, or to enter other disciplines that increasingly interact with the Science, Technology Engineering and Math (STEM) disciplines, such as law and government policy-making.

Related Web Site
Undergraduate Program in Neuroscience & Cognitive Science


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