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|Director: Alev Erisir, Associate Professor, Department of Psychology|
|Program/Course: Neuroscience |
Overview Neuroscience is the multidisciplinary study of the nervous system. In addition to focusing on basic scientific problems related to psychology, biology, and chemistry, neuroscience also forms the fundamental basis of many medical specialties, including psychiatry, neurology, and neurosurgery. The basic and applied nature of the field has attracted a large number of scientists during the past 25 years.
Increasingly, neuroscientists must be well trained in a variety of scientific disciplines to keep up with the rapid advances in the field. A successful neuroscientist must be trained in fields spanning from molecular neurobiology to cognitive neuroscience. The program in neuroscience is designed to provide majors with the necessary skills to master this highly-multidisciplinary scientific field.
The objectives of the major are:
- To provide students with a structure for coursework that assures a solid grounding in natural science and an overall familiarity with neuroscience as a discipline.
- To sponsor events that communicate neuroscience research and activities on grounds, as well as provide students with information on research careers. Such events include special lectures, symposiums and workshops on graduate school and career options.
- To foster active participation by undergraduate students in Neuroscience Graduate Program laboratories across the grounds by providing opportunities to conduct research in neuroscience laboratories in the College and in the School of Medicine.
Faculty The directorship of the program rotates among neuroscience faculty in affiliated departments. The Program’s Advisory Committee is composed of four neuroscientists. They are the current director of the Neuroscience Graduate Program and three faculty members appointed by the Chair of Psychology, the Chair of Biology, and the Chair of the Department of Neuroscience in the School of Medicine, respectively. The director and the advisory committee will select students for the major, advise majors and determine the ongoing direction of the program. The faculty primarily responsible for classroom training are neuroscientists in the Biology and Psychology departments, all of whom are also members of the Neuroscience Graduate Program. Faculty from the School of Medicine that are also members of the Neuroscience Graduate Program (in over 15 departments) will also participate in the program through teaching and through mentoring research projects.
Students The major is designed for students with a strong interest in the biology of the nervous system and a desire to conduct original research in the field with U.Va. neuroscientists. A maximum of 25 students will be selected for the program each year from a pool of applicants. Students will be chosen on the basis of prior academic performance and an essay explaining the student’s interest in neuroscience. The program will provide majors with a background for continued study in graduate and professional schools.