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There are more connections in a human brain than there are stars in the universe. This subject focuses on the brain as an integrated system and looks at how its many connected networks achieve coordinated effects, linking the mind to the brain and the body.
In exploring integration across the nervous system, this subject will examine topics such as the effects of neurotransmitters on emotions and behaviour, the nature of sleep and wakeful states and transitions between them, and mechanisms underlying the control of body movement. The connections between social factors and brain function will also be explored, as well as current ethical dilemmas in the field, such as the ethical consequences associated with recent technologies designed to alter our minds, or enhance brain function beyond normal healthy ranges.
Intended learning outcomes
On completion of the subject students will demonstrate knowledge of:
- the connectivity that exists between the mind and body and the implications of this connectivity in understanding individual aspects of brain function;
- the mechanisms that ensure coordinated activity and function across the integrated brain.
On completion of the subject students will have developed skills to:
- evaluate and draw conclusions from experimental research findings.
- analyse and interpret experimental data accurately on the basis of appropriate analytical methods;
Application of knowledge and skills
On completion of this subject students will be able to apply their knowledge and skills to:
- critically consider ethical consequences of neuroscientific advances that extend beyond the individual to society;
- critically analyse scientific research papers.
Students will be given opportunity to develop skills:
- in oral and written communication of scientific research.
- to critically evaluate research findings.
- to present and develop arguments for a position on a given topic.
Last updated: 1 March 2024