Course Descriptions

Neuroscience Boot Camp

The Neuroscience Boot Camp aims to engage students in college-level introductory neuroscience topics, such as neurons and neurotransmission; brain anatomy; learning, memory, and plasticity; sensory systems; motor systems; and neurological diseases. The format includes lecture and discussion, hands-on bench science in core research facilities, and some homework. Courses will be taught by Georgia State University faculty members, post-doctoral research associates, and graduate or undergraduate student teaching assistants. This is a great opportunity to learn neuroscience from experts in the field and to network with like-minded peers.

Advanced Topics in Neuroscience: Neurological Disorders

This advanced topics course examines neurological disorders, which are diseases of the brain, spinal cord, and/or peripheral nerves. Given that the nervous system controls other bodily organs, the effects of neurological disorders are often severe and sometimes devastating. We will explore mental and mood disorders (e.g. addiction, depression), movement disorders (e.g. dystonia, tremor, chorea), sensory system dysfunction (e.g. deafness, sensory processing disorder, chronic pain, phantom limb syndrome), neurodegenerative conditions (Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s, Lou Gehrig’s diseases), developmental disruptions (neural tube defects, microcephaly, autism spectrum disorder, fetal alcohol syndrome), and more. In each case, symptoms, prevalence, etiology, treatment, and research models will be introduced using text books, case studies, and research reports. This is a great opportunity to refine your interests in neuroscience and meet some local experts in clinical neuroscience.

More classroom time than lab time. While helpful to have already taken the Neuroscience Boot Camp, it is not required.

Advanced Topics in Neuroscience: Optogenetics Lab

This advanced topics course will train students in the use of optogenetics, a powerful technique that allows scientists to manipulate neurons using light. We will briefly explore the basis of this fascinating technique, then participants will use optogenetically modified fruit flies to conduct experiments on the molecular basis of cold nociception (the perception of painful cold). Participants will learn how to design an optogenetic experiment, how to perform genetics research using fruit flies, and how to compile, analyze, and report their experimental data. This course is a great opportunity for participants to conduct college-level research in a laboratory with state-of-the-art equipment.

More lab time than classroom time. While helpful to have already taken the Neuroscience Boot Camp, it is not required.