About the program
- Augustana's major in the emerging field of neuroscience combines perspectives and practices of psychology, biology, philosophy, chemistry and computer science — among others. It appeals to students who wish to understand the biological bases of our thoughts, perceptions, emotions, motivations, decisions and actions.
- At a liberal arts college with a mission "to develop qualities of mind, spirit and body," the neuroscience major challenges students to question their assumptions about the interactions of mind, spirit and body.
- Augustana's major prepares students for admission to a wide variety of graduate programs in neuroscience and other fields related to the brain sciences. Major coursework is flexible, allowing students to pursue their interests within the field. Neuroscience students often have interests in psychology, biology, chemistry and philosophy — individually or in combination. The neuroscience major is a truly interdisciplinary experience.
- The two full-time neuroscience faculty have the Ph.D. in psychology, and expertise in the areas of learning, pain and drug-seeking behavior, and the neural bases of sensation and perception. Faculty from the biology, chemistry, philosophy and religion departments also teach courses in the major.
- Students of neuroscience will begin the major sequence with an introduction to the questions, language, principles, methods and history of the discipline, through courses like Brain & Behavior and Philosophy of Mind. Intermediate students will learn content and practices in greater depth, through courses like Neuroanatomy, Drugs & Behavior and Physiological Psychology. The advanced level will promote students' independence, often through supervised research related to the discipline. As is common in most Augustana programs, the neuroscience major culminates in a Senior Inquiry capstone experience, which will give the students the opportunity to conduct research in neuroscience on or off campus.
Outside the classroom
- Augustana participates in several undergraduate, graduate and professional research conferences and encourages students to present their research as part of their professional development. Examples for neuroscientists include Midbrains: The Undergraduate Neuroscience Conference of the Upper Midwest, and the Undergraduate Research Symposium in the Biological Sciences and Psychology sponsored by the Midstates Consortium for Math and Science.
- Students of neuroscience at Augustana will have options to participate in the prestigious Texas Medical Center Summer Research Internship Program, as well as other high-quality internships and opportunities to practice empirical research.
- Augustana offers more than 150 student organizations and interest groups on campus-including special clubs and honor societies in all academic fields related to neuroscience. Students introduce new groups on campus every year.