Undergraduate Information

Getting started at the 3000 level

Getting serious at 4000/5000 levels

Getting started at the 3000 level

EXP 3104, EXP 3604, PSB 3004, and CBH 3003, have General Psychology (PSY 2012) as a prerequisite. However, PSB 3340 requires BSC 2010 as a prerequisite in lieu of PSY 2012, and MAC 1140 is an additional prerequisite to EXP 3104.

EXP 3104 Sensory Processes

An introductory survey of the human senses and their role in perception, considering how we sense the physical environment and what factors influence our perception of it. (Fall, Spring)

EXP 3604 Cognitive Psychology

An introductory survey of human cognitive abilities, including perceptual and motor skills, attention, learning and memory, language, and thinking, and the methods used to study these abilities. (Fall, Spring)

PSB 3002 Physiological Psychology

Essentials of the biological bases of behavior, with special relevance to psychology (e.g., structural and functional correlates of sensation, movement, motivation, and learning). (offered Fall, Spring, Summer A, Summer B)

CBH 3003 Basic Comparative Psychology

Survey of the approaches to and concepts of the study of animal behavior as related to psychology. (Fall, Spring, occasionally Summer)

PSB 3340 Behavioral Neuroscience

More in-depth survey of the neuroanatomical, chemical, and electrophysiological studies of mechanisms of behavior (this alternative to PSB 3004 is for students with some prior biology). (Fall, Spring)

PSB 3002, rather than PSB 3340, is recommended for students whose interests lie in the social scientific aspects of psychology. No prior biology coursework is assumed, and PSY 2012 is the only prerequisite. If instead you think you are seriously interested in the Neurobehavioral Sciences, and plan to take advanced (4000 and above) courses, you are strongly recommended to register for PSB 3340 (Behavioral Neuroscience).

You may not receive credit for both PSB 3004 and PSB 3340. 🙁

The difference between these classes is in emphasis rather than content: PSB 3340 assumes a stronger biology or chemistry background and has BSC 2010 as a prerequisite. PSB 3340 is recommended for students who wish to enter the Interdisciplinary Studies (IDS) major in Neurobiological Sciences major (see below) or plan to pursue a career in medicine or neuroscience research, but PSB 3002 can be used as a substitute.

This photomicrograph illustrates glyoxylic acid immunofluorescence for cells in the ventral tegmental area of the rat brain. The bright green cell bodies are dopaminergic neurons, which project to various sites in the forebrain. These cells are implicated in many of the behaviors that are studied by members of the Behavioral Neuroscience program.

Advanced Study at the 4000 and 5000 levels:

Unless otherwise noted, either PSB 3004 or PSB 3340 is a prerequisite for courses with a PSB prefix.

EXP 4174C Laboratory in Sensory Processes

Students collect, analyze and evaluate data on specific problems related to sensory and perceptual abilities. (Sp)

PSY 4930 Special Topics in Psychology

This is a “rotating topics” course whose content is dependent on the faculty member teaching the course. Check each semester’s course listings for courses relevant to cognitive psychology.

PSB 4065 Psychobiology of Abnormal Behavior

Biological theories and models of mental retardation, schizophrenia, affective disorders, and others. Treatments of these conditions. (F or Sp)

PSB 4434 Neurochemistry, Pharmacology, and Behavior

Advanced discussion of neurotransmitters, neuromodulators, and action of neuroactive drugs, in relation to behavior. (Sp; students may be admitted with biochemistry or zoology 3000 level courses, with permission of instructor).

PSB 4342 Introduction to Cognitive Neuroscience

This course examines the biological foundations of human cognition.

PSB 4504 Developmental Psychobiology

Principles of neural and behavioral development stressing the correlations among structural, chemical, endocrine, and behavioral events during maturation. (Sp)

PSB 4654 Chemical Senses and Behavior

Discussion of neural mechanisms and function of chemical senses, interaction with physiologic state, and motivational aspects (F or Sp).

PSB 4810 Neurobiology of Learning and Memory

Advanced undergraduate seminar on neurobiological mechanisms of learning and memory, with concepts applied to neuroadaptations in many aspects of neurophysiology.

PSB 4823 Principles of Integrative Physiological Psychology

Discussion of the problem of how reflexes become transformed into operant behaviors. Focus on drug and disease states as a way of getting insights into this problem in animals and humans. (F, Sp)

PSB 4934 Special Topics in Physiological Psychology

This is a “rotating topics” course whose content is dependent on the faculty member teaching the course. Contact the faculty member teaching the course for further information and permission to enroll.

PSB 5445 Drug use and abuse

Objective informational approach to the commonly used and abused drugs. Psychological, physiological, social, medical, legal and historical aspects. This course is open to both undergraduate and graduate students. (F or Sp)
plusmaze CPP
A wide variety of techniques are used in this department to test behavioural responses to various manipulations (e.g. stress, pharmacological interventions). The elevated plus maze (pictured at left) and the light/dark box (pictured at right) are used to assess anxiety states.
Undergraduate and Graduate students in the Behavioral Neuroscience program have the opportunity to work with the Faculty to characterize the neurobiological basis of behavior. Here, students are assaying hormones from samples of rat plasma.

IDS Major in Neurobiological Sciences

Students who want to specialize in neuroscience often elect to take an interdisciplinary (IDS) major in Neurobiological Sciences rather than a Psychology major. How do you decide which is right for you? If you are already a Psychology major, and are well on the way to fulfilling the requirement for the major, there is usually little advantage in switching majors. If you are not a Psychology major, or are only just starting, then IDS NBS may be right for you. IDS allows you to create your own program of study (with some constraints!) for your major. The IDS major has high academic standards and requires students to conduct research that culminates in a senior thesis.

Many students IDS NBS theses have been recognized with awards at the local level (e.g., Undergraduate Scholar’s Program), or have had their work presented at national meetings or published in scientific journals. This recognition of your research can be very important when you apply to do postgraduate work either in professional school (e.g. Medicine) or graduate school (e.g. Neuroscience or Psychology).

The undergraduate IDS program is administered through the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. For more information about the major and how and when to apply, click on IDS Neurobiological Sciences.