Course of Study

The most up-to-date information on the major can be found through the Yale College Programs of Study page, here:

http://catalog.yale.edu/ycps/subjects-of-instruction/neuroscience

See visual roadmap of the requirements.  

Prerequisites

The foundational biology courses required of all Neuroscience majors are BIOL 101, 102, 103, and 104. All majors must also complete one of the following S&DS 103, 105, 230, 238, or PSYC 200.

Placement Procedures

To join the major, students should submit an unoffical transcript and a completed Neuroscience major worksheet to the department registrar.  We accept students on a rolling basis

Requirements of the Major

Both the B.S. and B.A. Neuroscience degrees require a minimum of 18.5 credits, including the three prerequisites, 15 lecture or seminar courses (which include the senior requirement), and one laboratory, as follows:

1. Two neuroscience foundation courses, NSCI 160 and NSCI 320.

2. One neuroscience lab chosen from NSCI 229L, 258, 260, 270, 321L.

3. Eleven electives from the following core groupings, with a minimum of: two from the Systems/Circuits/Behavior Core, two from the Molecular/Cellular/Biological Core, one from the Quantitative Core, one from the Computational Core (previously Advanced Allied Core), and one from the Basic Allied Core.  No more than two credits may be taken from the Other Allied Core.

Systems/Circuits/Behavior Core: NSCI 340, 341, 346, 352, 355, 360, 440, 441, 442, 445, 449, PSYC 238

Molecular/Cellular/Biological Core: NSCI 324, 325, 329; MCDB 200, 202, 205, 210, 300, 310,  370, 450, 452; MB&B 300

Quantitative Core: MATH 112, 115, 116, 120, 121, 222, 225, 230, 231, 244, 246, 247; ENAS 151; NSCI 324, 325; CPSC 202

Computational Core (previously Advanced Allied Core):  CPSC 100, 112, 201, 223, 323, 365, 470, 475, 476; ENAS 130, S&DS 123, 262, 355, 361, NSCI 453

Basic Allied Core: PHYS 170, 171, 180, 181, 200, 201, 260, 261; CHEM 161, 163, 165, 167, 174, 175, 220, 221

Other Allied Core: NSCI 141, 161, 240, 419, 455, 479; BENG 485; MCDB 250; CGSC 110; PSYC 110; one additional lab course from the list above

Credit/D/Fail No course taken Credit/D/Fail may be counted toward the major, including prerequisites.

Senior Requirement

In addition to the course requirements described above, all students must satisfy a senior requirement undertaken during the senior year. All students must fill out a checklist of requirements and go over it with the undergraduate registrar by the spring term of the junior year.

B.A. degree program The B.A. degree program requires two course credits in non-empirical research, NSCI 480 and 481; or one credit in non-empirical research, NSCI 480 or NSCI 481, and one credit in empirical research, NSCI 490 or 491. These courses are only open to Neuroscience seniors and receive a letter grade. Under faculty supervision,  for NSCI 480 or 481, students are required to conduct original research for at least 10 hours per week that does not involve direct interaction with data, such as developing a theory or conducting a meta-analysis to synthesize existing findings. A literature review without novel intellectual contribution is not adequate. Written assignments include a short research plan due at the beginning of the fall term, a literature review due at the end of the fall term, and a theoretical paper due at the end of the spring term. Seniors are also required to present their research in the spring term at the Poster Session. To register, students must submit a form and the research plan with bibliography, approved by the faculty adviser and a DUS, by the end of the first week of classes.

B.S. degree program The B.S. degree program requires two course credits of empirical research, NSCI 490 and 491. These courses are only available to Neuroscience seniors and receive a letter grade. Students are expected to spend at least 10 hours per week in the laboratory, to complete written assignments, and to give a presentation. In addition to time in the lab, and as part of NSCI 490 and 491, students are expected to attend semi-regular captsone seminar, to hear guest speakers and to discuss senior work progress with their peers and the directors of undergraduate studies (DUSes). Research can be conducted over original, archival, or consortium data sets. Written assignments include a short research plan due at the beginning of the fall term, a grant proposal due at the end of the fall term, and a final report due at the end of the spring term. Students should pursue the same research project for two terms, with the grant proposal guiding and serving as the background for the research and final report. Seniors are also required to present their research in the spring term at a Poster Session. Students should find a research laboratory during the term preceding the research. Yale College does not grant academic credit for summer research unless the student is enrolled in an independent research course in Yale Summer Session. To register for NSCI 490 and 491, students must submit a form and the research plan with bibliography, approved by the faculty research adviser and a DUS, by the end of the first week of classes.

More detailed guidelines, forms and deadline information can be obtained from a link in the navigation bar.

Advising

Departmental advisers Each term, students should update their Neuroscience major worksheet and then meet with their assigned faculty adviser to discuss their schedule and review their worksheet. These documents should then be submitted to the Neuroscience registrar for DUS review and approval. Only then may a schedule be submitted to the residential college dean’s office. For questions concerning credits for courses taken at other institutions, or courses not listed in the YCPS bulletin, students should contact the Neuroscience registrar.

REQUIREMENTS OF THE MAJOR

Prerequisites BIOL 101, 102, 103, and 104; and one of PSYC 200, S&DS 103, 105, 230, 238

Number of courses 18.5 courses (including prereqs and senior req)

Specific courses required 2 neuroscience foundation courses, NSCI 160 and 320

Distribution of courses B.A. or B.S.—1 lab course; 11 electives including at least: 2 Systems/Circuits/Behavior Core courses, 2 Molecular/Cellular/Biological Core courses, 1 Quantitative Core course, 1 Computational Core course, 1 Basic Allied Core course, and no more than 2 Other Allied Core courses

Senior requirement B.A.—2 non-empirical research courses, NSCI 480 and 481, or 1 empirical research course  (NSCI 490 or 491) and 1 non-empirical research course (NSCI 480 or 481); B.S.—2 empirical research courses, NSCI 490 and 491