Neuroscience is the study of the most complicated structure in the universe - the human nervous system. Neuroscientists seek to understand the physical principles by which the nervous system operates and how these principles enable the nervous system to process information, learn from experience, and regulate behavior. Neuroscience is distinguished by an interdisciplinary approach that integrates methods from many fields to understand the function of the brain. Undergraduate neuroscience majors frequently go on to careers in medicine, research, and/or counseling, but a wide variety of other career options are also available.
Two tracks are available:
- Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience, focusing on biological aspects of neural function
- Behavioral Neuroscience, focusing on the relationships between brain and behavior.
Due to overlap in course content, it is not possible to combine the Behavioral Neuroscience track with a psychology major or minor. Similarly, it is also not possible to combine the Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience track with a biology major or minor. Other than these two restrictions, the neuroscience track can be combined with any other major or minor.
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Neuroscience graduates are well-equipped to pursue a variety of paths:
Medical School: The cellular and molecular neuroscience track includes most of the coursework in the pre-med curriculum. Students who wish to pursue advanced degrees in the health sciences should also take additional physics, chemistry and mathematics courses. Of course, this also applies to students who wish to become dentists, pharmacists or veterinarians.
Psychology: You’ll be able to perform administrative work in social service settings with the undergraduate degree. If you wish to become a clinical psychologist, graduate school is necessary. The Psychology Department website offers extensive information about graduate schools and career options.
Research: Corporations and pharmaceutical companies employ some masters-level researchers as laboratory technicians. Your career options will be broader with a PhD in neuroscience or a related field, including both industry and academia.
General Business: Of course, some neuroscience graduates will pursue non-scientific careers in business. They will have excellent preparation for a variety of jobs and industries due to the array of subject matter covered in the neuroscience curriculum.