Part II Neuroscience sets out to capture the excitement of a field that is advancing rapidly on many fronts by drawing on the resources of several departments. The course is offered jointly by three departments: Physiology, Development and Neuroscience (PDN), Psychology and Zoology, with input from the medical and veterinary clinical departments. The course takes a broad approach to the Neurosciences, covering the subject at many levels, from the molecular, through cellular, developmental and integrative, to the cognitive, behavioural and clinical. This range accurately reflects the true interdisciplinary nature of modern Neuroscience and is made possible by being interdepartmental. The lectures are also offered for the Neuroscience BBS major subject
Who can apply for the course?
The course is taken by Natural Sciences and Medical & Veterinary students in approximately equal numbers. In principle any NST or MVST student can apply, and lecturers are asked to cater for varying backgrounds; however, the majority of students will have had exposure to a certain amount of Neuroscience, either from MVST IB or from NST options such as Neurobiology, Physiology, Pharmacology, Animal Biology and Experimental Psychology. Students without such a background should consider their choice carefully and discuss it with course representatives and their Director of Studies. If accepted, they would be expected to do substantial background reading during the long vacation.
There are four parts to the course
1. Lectures (and associated seminars) - leading practitioners cover the most significant contemporary approaches to understanding the organisation and function of nervous systems.
2. Seminars ('journal clubs') and critical analysis - In the Michaelmas term you develop core analytical and presentational skills; evaluating, summarising and presenting published research papers.
3. Research project - you spend the Lent term working on an original problem in one of the many laboratories contributing to this inter-departmental course.
4. Technical workshops - held in the Michaelmas term, introduce major techniques and their applications to ongoing research and clinical treatments. Again, we draw on a wide range of research laboratories in several departments and research units.
Dr David Parker, Department of Physiology, Development and Neuroscience