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Psychology

(For 2013–2014 academic year)

Professors Bagwell, Braaten, Keating, S. Kraly, R. Shiner, Tierney
Associate Professors Conti, Hansen, D. Johnson, Kelly (Chair), Yoshino
Assistant Professors Ho, Martinez
Visiting Assistant Professors Foy, Kreiss, Ludeke, Tomlinson

Psychology is a scientific approach to the understanding of covert and overt human and animal behavior. It is concerned with such processes as learning, memory, thought, perception, motivation, psychopathology, and development, and their physiological and neurophysiological bases. Psychological principles are applied to the understanding of the behavior of individuals, groups, and societies, and to the solution of a wide range of practical human problems.

The Department of Psychology offers a number of courses that may be taken by students who want an introduction to some major concepts in the field but who are not planning to major in psychology: PSYC 109, 150, and 170. Passing PSYC 150 and PSYC 200 with a C– or better is expected for admission to the major. Students not meeting this expectation must consult with the department chairperson before continuing in the major.

The department offers a wide range of courses and advanced seminars for majors, covering most of the topical areas in the field. Majors are encouraged to select, in consultation with their departmental advisers, a variety of 200-level and 300-level courses which assures breadth of exposure rather than specialization in only one area of interest. All majors, especially those planning graduate study in psychology, are urged to take more courses in the department than minimally required for the major.

Major and Minor Programs in Psychology for the Class of 2014

Students in the Class of 2014 have the option to follow the psychology major requirements listed below or follow the psychology major requirements listed on their major declaration forms.

Program in Psychology for the Class of 2015 and beyond

The program (at least nine courses) required of majors is as follows:
1. PSYC 150, Introduction to Psychology, which must be passed with a grade of C– or better, should be taken by the end of the sophomore year.
2. PSYC 170, Brain and Behavior should ideally be taken by the end of the junior year.
3. PSYC 200, Research Methods, which must be passed with a grade of C– or better, should be taken by the end of the sophomore year.
4. PSYC 309, Quantitative Methods should ideally be taken by the end of the junior year.
5. Four additional courses meeting the following requirements:
a. These courses must be selected from the following list:
Cognitive Psychology (PSYC 250-259, PSYC 350–359)
Social/Personality/Clinical Psychology (PSYC 260-269, PSYC 340–349, PSYC 360-369)
Neuroscience (PSYC 370–379, 380-389)
b. At least one of the courses must be taken at the 200 level, and at least two of the courses must be taken at the 300 level.
c. Students must take at least one course in the area of Cognitive and at least one course in the area of Social/Personality/Clinical.
d. Note that PSYC 291, 391, 491, and 499 do not count as one of these four additional courses.
6. PSYC 498

Thesis

PSYC 498 (Senior Research) must be taken in the fall or spring term of the senior year. During the spring term of the junior year, students identify several areas of interest for their senior-year research experience. Students are then assigned to faculty research supervisors and assigned to the fall or spring semester sections based upon students’ interests and the availability of resources. Most students will take PSYC 498; on the rare occasions when PSYC 450, PSYC 460, and PSYC 470 may be offered students may substitute that seminar for PSYC 498. Students planning honors research are required to enroll in PSYC 498 in the fall of the senior year, followed by PSYC 499 in the spring of the senior year. On occasion, students who are not pursuing honors or high honors may complete two semesters of senior research by taking PSYC 498 in the fall and PSYC 491 in the spring.
The minimum grade requirement to complete the major is a 2.00 average calculated for all courses counting toward the psychology major. A passing grade must be received for a course to satisfy a major requirement.

Minor Program in Psychology for the Class of 2014 and 2015

The requirements are PSYC 150, Introduction to Psychology (which should be taken by the end of the sophomore year), passed with a C– or better; PSYC 200, Research Methods (normally taken in the sophomore year) passed with a C– or better; PSYC 309, Quantitative Methods (which should be taken by the end of the junior year); and three additional courses, one of which must be at the 300 level or higher (excluding PSYC 291, 391, and 491), for which the student has the appropriate prerequisites.

Program in Psychology for the Class of 2016 and beyond

The requirements are PSYC 150, Introduction to Psychology (which should be taken by the end of the sophomore year), passed with a C– or better; PSYC 170, Introduction to Brain and Behavior; PSYC 200, Research Methods (normally taken in the sophomore year) passed with a C– or better; PSYC 309, Quantitative Methods (which should be taken by the end of the junior year); and two additional courses, one of which must be at the 300 level or higher (excluding PSYC 291, 391, and 491), for which the student has the appropriate prerequisites.

The minimum grade requirement to complete the minor is a 2.00 average calculated for all courses counting toward the psychology minor. A passing grade must be received in all courses taken to satisfy the requirements for successful completion of a minor.

Honors and High Honors

The requirements for achieving honors and high honors in psychology are as follows:

Honors
1. Overall GPA of 3.30 or better
2. Major GPA of 3.50 or better, calculated across all psychology courses except PSYC 150, PSYC 291, and 391
3. A two-semester independent research project of high quality
4. Satisfactory oral examination performance on the subject matter of the senior thesis and related fields.

High Honors
1. Overall GPA of 3.40 or better
2. Major GPA of 3.70 or better, calculated across all psychology courses except PSYC 150, PSYC 291 and 391
3. A two-semester independent research project of very high quality
4. An oral examination performance that demonstrates mastery of the senior thesis and related fields.

Awards

See Honors and Awards: Psychology in Chapter VI.

Advanced Placement

Entering students who receive scores of 5 on the Advanced Placement examination in psychology are eligible to receive one psychology course credit toward graduation, which will be recorded as PSYC 150, Introduction to Psychology.

Transfer Credit and Study Groups Transfer

Transfer of psychology credit from other institutions by students already matriculated at Colgate requires prior written permission from the registrar and the department. Colgate sponsors study-abroad programs in the natural sciences and mathematics at the University of Wales in Cardiff and at the University of Wollongong near Sydney in Australia. See Off-Campus Study Group Programs. Normally, no more than one transfer course from another institution or one Colgate Study Group course, with prior approval of the psychology department, may count toward the major/minor.

Course Offerings

109  Contemporary Issues in Psychology
Staff
A course in specific topics offered by various staff members. Students should contact the department regarding the topics offered during any given term. This course does not fulfill the prerequisite for PSYC 200.

150  Introduction to Psychology
Staff
This course introduces students to the scientific study of human behavior. Topics include biological foundations of behavior, learning, cognition, sensation and perception, development over the life span, emotion and personality, social thinking and behavior, and the causes and treatment of psychological disorders. Psychology majors should complete this course by the end of the sophomore year. Open to first-year students and sophomores; open to juniors and seniors by permission only. This course fulfills the prerequisite for PSYC 200.

170  Introduction to Brain and Behavior
B. Hansen, S. Kelly, S. Kraly, A.J. Tierney, J. Yoshino
Relationships between brain and behavior are examined at a variety of levels, including neurochemical, neurophysiological, physiological, and cognitive functioning. Psychology majors should complete this course by the end of the junior year. Because this course is a prerequisite for all other neuroscience courses, neuroscience majors should complete it by the end of the sophomore year. Open to first-year students, sophomores, and juniors; open to seniors by permission of instructor. (Formerly PSYC 270.) This course is crosslisted as NEUR 170.

200  Research Methods in Psychology
Staff
This course, required of majors, is an introduction to methods of psychological research. The goals of the course are to give students experience in developing the following skills: formulating testable research hypotheses, critically reviewing the scientific literature, designing experiments, measuring behavior, interpreting research results, and writing research reports. Psychology majors should take this course during the sophomore year. Permission required for first-year students. Prerequisite: PSYC 150 or PSYC/NEUR 170 (formerly PSYC 270/NEUR 170), or permission of instructor.

250  Human Cognition
B. Hansen, D. Johnson
Cognitive psychology is a scientific approach to understanding the functioning of the human mind and its relationship to behavior. This course explores recent empirical work in both the theoretical and practical aspects of a variety of issues related to cognition. Topics covered include pattern recognition, attention, mental representation, memory, problem solving, and development of expertise, reasoning, and intelligence. Prerequisite: PSYC 150 or permission of instructor.

251  Learning and Cognition
R. Braaten
One of the most fundamental influences on thoughts, behaviors, and attitudes is learning. This course addresses major topics in learning and cognition including learning through association, reinforcement and punishment, the role of evolution in learning, and learning in human and non-human animals. Students explore the cognitive processes of attention, memory, and concept formation, and their role in learning, and various applications of learning, including education, advertising, and addictions. Prerequisite: PSYC 150 or PSYC/NEUR 170 (formerly PSYC 270/NEUR 170) or permission of instructor.

261  Personality Psychology
R. Conti, R. Shiner
The study of personality explores approaches to understanding the emotional, social, and behavioral functioning of the individual person. This course traces the study of personality from classic theories based on clinical observations to contemporary theories based on empirical research. Students learn about the field’s major debates and research findings and analyze individual cases as a means of illustrating and applying each theory. The ultimate goal of the course is to have students integrate the knowledge they have gained to form a coherent understanding of the person. Prerequisite: PSYC 150 or permission of instructor. Note: This course is not open to students who have received credit for PSYC 260, Personality and Social Psychology.

262  Psychopathology
J. Martinez
Our understanding of mental health issues and disorders is consistently growing and changing. This course aims to broaden students’ understanding of psychopathology and current mental health disorders, to strengthen students’ abilities to recognize problematic behaviors and to determine what to do in the face of them, and to encourage critical interpretation as consumers of current theories and findings in psychopathology. This last aim is achieved via consideration of multicultural issues and a heavy emphasis on current empirical research on mental health disorders. Prerequisite: PSYC 150 or permission of instructor.

263  Social Psychology
A. Ho
This course provides a survey of social psychology, the scientific study of human feeling, thinking, and behavior in social contexts. The course considers both proximate (immediate) influences on behavior, such as the immediate social situation as well as distal (more remote) influences on behavior, such as human evolution. Topics include social attitudes, judgment and decision making, persuasion, conformity, close relationships, altruism, aggression, prejudice, and intergroup conflict. The application of social psychology to education, health, and economics is also examined. Prerequisite: PSYC 150 or permission of instructor. Note: This course is not open to students who have received credit for PSYC 260, Personality and Social Psychology.

264  Child Psychology
C. Bagwell
How do humans grow and change from the prenatal period through adolescence? What factors influence development, and how do the contexts in which children spend their time help to determine development? These are the major questions considered in this survey of the various domains of development — primarily social, emotional, and cognitive — and the settings in which development occurs — with family, with peers, in schools, for example. Students learn about theory and empirical research on human development, and they also consider how this research can be applied in working with children. Prerequisite: PSYC 150 or permission of instructor. Note: This course is not open to students who have taken EDUC 204, Child and Adolescent Development.

300, 301  Topics in Psychology
Staff
An intermediate-level course in specific psychology topics offered by various staff members. Students should contact the department regarding the topics offered during any given term. Prerequisite: PSYC 200 or permission of instructor.

309  Quantitative Methods in Behavioral Research
D. Johnson, J. Martinez
An introduction to statistical procedures and quantitative concepts used in psychology, this course emphasizes principles of research design and analysis in the behavioral sciences. Three class meetings and one computer laboratory per week. Psychology majors should complete this course by the end of the junior year.

310  Advanced Statistical Methods
Staff
This advanced course extends quantitative and methodological concepts studied in PSYC 200 and 309. Emphasis is on the design and analysis of multifactor studies, with special attention on the analysis of variance and related procedures. Other topics include multiple regression, multiple correlation, and an introduction to factor analysis. Recommended to be taken by students pursing honors in psychology following PSYC 498, concurrently with PSYC 499. Prerequisite: PSYC 309.

341  Psychological Criminology
J. Martinez
This course is an introduction to concepts of psychological criminology. The primary aim is to understand the factors that make a person a criminal. A number of such factors are examined, from evolutionary, biological, personality, developmental, environmental, cognitive, and behavioral perspectives. Interactions between individual differences and environmental influences are also examined. Related topics, such as psychopathology and substance use, are discussed. The course includes the analysis of individual cases, and special consideration is given to prevention and treatment initiatives. Prerequisite: PSYC 200 or permission of instructor.

351  Attention and Memory
D. Johnson
Attention and memory are at the core of how humans come to know and act on the world as well as forming the basis of who they are as individuals. This course is not a survey as it focuses on a few areas within attention and memory and studies these areas in depth, exploring seminal and current theories and empirical findings in human attention and memory from a cognitive perspective. Examples of problems which may be addressed include bottom-up vs. top-down attention allocation, dual-task performance, inhibition and attention control, attention and working memory, memory for skills, autobiographical and emotional memories, memory impairments, and memory in everyday life (e.g., memory loss with age, Alzheimer’s dementia, alcoholic dementia). Prerequisites: PSYC 200 and PSYC 250 or PSYC 251, or permission of instructor.

352  Origins of Human Thought
R. Braaten
This course studies the origins of human thought from a variety of perspectives, including developmental, cross-cultural, and comparative. Each of these perspectives provides unique evidence concerning “origins.” Developmental psychology examines the origins of thought within the lifespan of the individual within a particular culture; cross-cultural psychology examines the degree to which ways of thinking originate culturally; comparative psychology studies the evolutionary origins of thinking by making comparisons among species. Each term, these different approaches to studying “origins” are applied to a few focused topics in human cognition, such as origins of speech, concepts and categories, perception of objects, and perception of music. Prerequisite: PSYC 200 or permission of instructor.

353  Visual Perception and Cognition
This course is crosslisted as NEUR 353. For course description, please see “Neuroscience: Course Offerings,” below.

355  Language and Thought
S. Kelly
Language is a distinctive human ability that distances humans from the rest of the animal kingdom — including chimpanzees, with whom people share 98 percent of the same genetic inheritance. Although language is considered as primarily serving communication in its advanced form, it is also an important vehicle for thought, with the potential to extend, refine, and direct thinking. The interaction of language with other cognitive abilities is the central focus of the course. Students compare the communication systems of other species with human language, examine efforts to teach human language to apes, learn how psycholinguists conceptualize and investigate language-mind relationships, and inquire into the cognitive abilities of the deaf and other language-impaired individuals, as well as of bilinguals. Attention also is given to evolutionary changes in the neural structures implicated in human language and to neural processes constraining the developmental course of language acquisition. Prerequisite: PSYC/NEUR 170 (formerly PSYC 270/NEUR 170) or PSYC 250 or PSYC 251 or permission of instructor.

360  Bonding across Boundaries: A Service Learning Experience
R. Conti
This course explores relationship and group process among school-aged children with and without disabilities. First, students review normative and atypical social development and examine the ways in which children typically include and exclude one another in their social groups. Students then review interventions that have been used to encourage cooperation and facilitate positive relationships among children from different backgrounds. Finally, the class explores the use of music and drama to facilitate the development of social connection in children. With this background, students participate in an extensive service-learning project where they are directly responsible for the development and implementation of a 6-week drama and music workshop for local children with and without disabilities. The final weeks of the seminar are devoted to evaluating the project both empirically and qualitatively. Prerequisite: EDUC 307 or PSYC 363, and permission of instructor.

361  Psychotherapy and Behavior Change
R. Shiner
This course explores the major models of psychological treatment in adults and children. Each treatment model is examined in terms of its perspective on human behavior and psychopathology, its mechanisms and techniques of therapeutic change, and its empirical evidence. Also addressed are some of the recurring controversies in the field of clinical psychology: Should clinical research and practice inform each other and, if so, how? Can the disparate treatment models and their implicit worldviews be integrated? To what extent is lasting behavior change possible? Prerequisite: PSYC 200 or permission of instructor.

362  Social Bonds
C. Bagwell, C. Keating
This course explores the ontogenetic (developmental) and phylogenetic (evolutionary) roots underlying human social relationships. Social bonds are traced through the lifespan, beginning with parent-infant attachments, moving next to peer relationships, and ending with pair bonds. Students examine the interplay of social cognition, social perception, emotion, and communication in human sociability. Patterns underlying human social bonds are deciphered using research from child, social, cross-cultural, evolutionary, biological, and comparative psychology. Prerequisite: PSYC 200 or permission of instructor.

363  Developmental Psychopathology
C. Bagwell, R. Shiner
This seminar introduces the study of psychological problems in the context of human development. Using a broad, integrative framework, the course examines childhood psychological problems from a variety of perspectives (genetic, biological, temperament, socioemotional, family, and cultural). Syndromes that often first appear in childhood and adolescence are discussed, including autism, attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder, conduct disorder and youth violence, depression and suicide, anxiety disorders, and eating disorders. The course also examines developmental resilience, environments that place children at risk for poor outcomes, and prevention. Prerequisite: PSYC 200 or permission of instructor.

364  Human Motivation
R. Conti
Motivation is the energy behind human actions. Can people control their own desires? How do emotions energize behavior? What satisfactions contribute to a happy life? These questions are of interest to psychologists studying human motivation. This seminar begins by examining basic biological motives, such as hunger and aggression, and progresses toward the study of more complex motivational phenomena such as curiosity, striving for success, and falling in love. By drawing from physiological, cognitive, social, and personality psychology, this course provides a unique opportunity to examine some of the most interesting questions in psychology from a variety of perspectives. Prerequisite: PSYC 200 or permission of instructor.

365  Cross-Cultural Human Development
C. Keating
To what degree does culture shape and constrain the development of human ability, thought, and behavior? What features of human behavior lie beyond culture’s reach? In pursuing these questions, students study how sensorimotor, perceptual, emotional, cognitive, social, and personality development proceed in diverse cultural contexts. Theories of human development and the cross-cultural methodologies used to test them are critiqued in detail. Inquiry is framed by an understanding of cultural and biological evolution and incorporates readings from developmental and cross-cultural psychology, anthropology, and sociology. PSYC 309 is recommended. Prerequisites: PSYC 200 or permission of instructor.

366  The Psychology of Leadership
C. Keating
This course comprises an exploration of the psychological forces that give root to human dominance, hierarchy, and leadership. Guided by evolutionary, developmental, and cross-cultural perspectives, questions about social power and leadership are addressed: To what degree are motives for social dominance — and social docility — embedded in human nature and traceable throughout primate evolution? What traits and competencies distinguish leaders from followers, how early do these differences develop, and is the pattern the same for girls and boys, women and men across the globe? How do some leaders and groups cultivate followers so devoted that they adhere to destructive directives? Contemporary problems in leadership provide illustrations. Prerequisite: PSYC 200 or permission of instructor.

367  Advanced Social Psychology
A. Ho
This course offers an in-depth analysis of selected topics and theories in social psychology. Topics may include social cognition, conformity, altruism, aggression, love, prejudice and stereotyping, intergroup relations, and political psychology. Prerequisite: PSYC 200 or permission of instructor.

368  Prejudice and Racism
A. Ho
This course provides a survey of the psychology of prejudice and racism, the scientific study of human feeling, thinking, and behavior in situations involving conflict between groups. More broadly, the course examines the psychological factors that contribute to the perpetuation of inequality and discrimination. The course considers both proximate (immediate) influences on behavior, such as the immediate social situation as well as distal (more remote) influences on behavior, such as human evolution. Both motivational approaches to understanding prejudice (e.g., explaining prejudice as a consequence of the desire for social dominance) as well as cognitive approaches (e.g., explaining prejudice as a byproduct of automatic associations people learn) are examined. Prerequisite: PSYC 200 or permission of instructor.

369  Industrial/Organizational Psychology
R. Conti
Most adults spend the majority of their waking hours working. This is a greater investment of time and energy than is made into any other single endeavor. Thus, understanding the reasons why people work, the psychological dynamics of the workplace, and the potential benefits and costs of various work situations is of considerable practical importance. This course introduces students to the field of industrial/organizational (I/O) psychology, with an emphasis on studying the workplace as an important context for human interaction, the realization of personal goals, and the development of competencies. Students also discuss the role that I/O psychologists play in organizations. Prerequisites: PSYC 200 or permission of instructor.

372  Health Psychology
A.J. Tierney
Health psychologists seek to understand the relationships among psychological factors, behavior, and physical health. Topics covered in this course include the effects of stress, depression, and personality characteristics on people’s susceptibility to and recovery from illness; the role of psychotherapy, social support, and meditation in helping people with chronic illnesses survive longer; and the significance of psychological factors in alternative medical treatments such as acupuncture. The course also considers in detail how the nervous, endocrine, and immune systems interact to mediate the relationship between psychological processes and physical health. Prerequisite: PSYC/NEUR 170 (formerly PSYC 270/NEUR 170), or permission of instructor.

373  Brain, Physiology, and Behavior
This course is crosslisted as NEUR 373. For course description, please see “Neuroscience: Course Offerings,” below.

375  Cognitive Neuroscience
This course is crosslisted as NEUR 375. For course description, please see “Neuroscience: Course Offerings,” below.

376  Functional Neuroanatomy and Neural Development
This course is crosslisted as NEUR 376. For course description, please see “Neuroscience: Course Offerings,” below.

377  Psychopharmacology
This course is crosslisted as NEUR 377. For course description, please see “Neuroscience: Course Offerings,” below.

379  Fundamentals of Neurochemistry/Neuropharmacology
This course is crosslisted as NEUR 379 (formerly NEUR 383). For course description, please see “Neuroscience: Course Offerings,” below. (Formerly PSYC 383.)

384  Fundamentals of Neurophysiology
This course is crosslisted as NEUR 384 and BIOL 384. For course description, please see “Neuroscience: Course Offerings,” below.

385/385L  Neuroethology
This course is crosslisted as NEUR 385/385L and BIOL 385/385L. For course description, please see “Neuroscience: Course Offerings,” below.

450  Research Seminar in Cognitive Psychology
R. Braaten, B. Hansen, D. Johnson, S. Kelly
This seminar focuses on a specific research topic in the area of human cognition, perception, psycholinguistics, or human or animal learning. The topic varies from term to term. Students are expected to study a topic in depth and to participate in original empirical work in this area. This course is open to junior and senior psychology majors and to others by permission. Prerequisites: PSYC 200, 309, and one course from 250–259 or 350–359.

460  Research Seminar in Social/Personality/Clinical Psychology
R. Conti, A. Ho, C. Keating, J. Martinez, R. Shiner
This seminar focuses on a specific research topic in the area of social psychology, clinical psychology, personality, or human motivation. The topic varies from term to term. Students are expected to study a topic in depth and to participate in original empirical work in this area. This course is open to junior and senior psychology majors and to others by permission. Prerequisites: PSYC 200, 309, and one course from 260–269 or 340–349 or 360–369.

470  Research Seminar in Physiological Psychology and Neuroscience
This course is crosslisted as NEUR 470. For course description, please see “Neuroscience: Course Offerings,” below.

291, 391, 491  Independent Study
Staff
Independent studies may be arranged in consultation with individual instructors.

498, 499  Senior Research
Staff
Psychology majors plan and carry out one-term research projects under the guidance of faculty members in the Psychology and Neuroscience programs. For those who wish to be considered for honors or high honors, two-term thesis projects are required. Honors students may fulfill the requirement for two semesters of research by enrolling in PSYC 498 in the fall and PSYC 499 in the spring semester. On occasion, students who are not pursuing honors or high honors may complete two semesters of senior research by taking PSYC 498 in the fall and PSYC 491 in the spring. With permission, PSYC 450, PSYC 460, or PSYC 470, when offered, may be substituted for PSYC 498. Prerequisites: PSYC 150, 200, 309, and one other 300-level course, or permission of instructor.

Neuroscience Program

Coordinator S. Kelly

Neuroscience is the study of brain-behavior relationships. The Neuroscience Program at Colgate is one of the first two established at undergraduate institutions in the U.S. While a growing number of institutions now offer an undergraduate major in neuroscience, a distinctive feature of Colgate’s neuroscience program is its interdisciplinary faculty having appointments in the Department of Psychology, which includes a cell biologist/neurochemist, a zoologist/neurophysiologist, a physiological psychologist, a vision scientist, and a cognitive neuropsychologist. Majors also take courses in the fields of chemistry, biology, physics, and psychology. In addition to a broad education, the program offers students the opportunity to focus their research interests on a variety of levels of nervous system functioning, ranging from the activity of single neurons to the behavior of complex organisms.

Major Program

Students should achieve a C– in NEUR 170 (crosslisted as PSYC 170) in order to enter the major. Students not meeting this expectation must consult with the coordinator of the program before continuing in the major. Students may elect one of two routes to a major in neuroscience: behavioral neuroscience or cellular neuroscience.

Behavioral neuroscience examines the relationship of the brain to complex behaviors of the organism, and cellular neuroscience focuses on the structure and function of cells and molecules in the nervous system. Although emphasizing different levels of the nervous system, the two areas of study have a common core curriculum consisting of the following eight requirements:
1. NEUR 170, Introduction to Brain and Behavior
2. CHEM 101, General Chemistry I
3. CHEM 102, General Chemistry II
4. PSYC 309, Quantitative Methods or BIOL 220, Biostatistics
5. NEUR 373, Brain, Physiology, and Behavior, or NEUR 376, Neural Development and Functional Neuroanatomy, or NEUR 377, Psychopharmacology
6. NEUR 375, Cognitive Neuroscience, or NEUR 353, Visual Perception and Cognition, or PSYC 355, Language and Thought
7. NEUR 379, Fundamentals of Neurochemistry/Neuropharmacology, or NEUR 384, Fundamentals of Neurophysiology, or BIOL 385/385L, Neuroethology, or NEUR 389, Molecular Neurobiology
8. NEUR 498, Senior Thesis
In addition to the preceding eight requirements, students must take three additional courses to fulfill requirements for each area of study.

Behavioral Neuroscience

1. PSYC 200, Research Methods
2. One course chosen from PSYC 250–259 or 350–359 (any single course from this range of courses in cognitive psychology)
3. One elective chosen from the following:
a. Any 200-level or 300-level biology course
b. NEUR 379 or NEUR 384.

Cellular Neuroscience

1. BIOL 212, Molecules, Cells, and Genes
2. CHEM 263, Organic Chemistry I
3. One elective chosen from the following:
a. NEUR 373, 375, 376, 377, 379, or 384
b. PHYS 350, Biophysics
c. Any 300-level biology course.

Senior Thesis

NEUR 498, Senior Thesis (one term) must be taken in the fall or spring of the senior year. During the spring term of the junior year students identify several areas of interest for their senior-year research experience. Students are then assigned to faculty research supervisors and assigned to the fall or spring semester sections based upon students’ interests and the availability of resources. On the rare occasions when PSYC 450 or PSYC 470 may be offered, students may substitute that seminar for NEUR 498.

Students planning honors research are required to enroll in NEUR 498 in the fall of the senior year, followed by NEUR 499 in the spring of the senior year. On occasion, students who are not pursuing honors or high honors may complete two semesters of senior research by taking NEUR 498 in the fall and NEUR 491 in the spring.

The minimum grade requirement to complete the major is a 2.00 average calculated for all courses counting toward the neuroscience major. A passing grade must be received for a course to satisfy a major requirement.

Honors and High Honors  

The requirements for achieving honors and high honors in neuroscience are as follows:

Honors
1.  Overall GPA of 3.30 or better
2.  Major GPA of 3.50 or better, calculated across all major courses at the 200 level and above except NEUR 291 and 391
3.  A two-semester independent research project of high quality
4.  Satisfactory oral examination performance on the subject matter of the senior thesis and related fields.

High Honors
1.  Overall GPA of 3.50 or better
2.  Major GPA of 3.70 or better, calculated across all major courses at the 200 level and above except NEUR 291 and 391
3.  A two-semester independent research project of very high quality
4.  An oral examination performance that demonstrates mastery of the senior thesis and related fields.

Awards

See “Honors and Awards: Neuroscience” in Chapter VI.

Transfer Credit  

Transfer of major credit from other institutions for students already matriculated at Colgate requires prior written permission from the registrar and the coordinator of the neuroscience program.

Study Group  

Majors may spend a semester at the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, Maryland, to carry out biomedical research and take courses. See Off-Campus Study Group Programs: United States. In addition, Colgate sponsors a study-abroad program in the natural sciences and mathematics at the University of Wales in Cardiff, and at the University of Wollongong near Sydney in Australia. See Off-Campus Study Group Programs.

Course Offerings

NEUR courses count toward the Natural Sciences and Mathematics area of inquiry requirement, unless otherwise noted.

170  Introduction to Brain and Behavior
B. Hansen, S. Kelly, S. Kraly, A.J. Tierney, J. Yoshino
Relationships between brain and behavior are examined at a variety of levels, including neurochemical, neurophysiological, physiological, and cognitive functioning. Psychology majors should complete this course by the end of the junior year. Because this course is a prerequisite for all other neuroscience courses, neuroscience majors should complete it by the end of the sophomore year. Open to first-year students, sophomores, and juniors; open to seniors by permission of instructor. This course is crosslisted as PSYC 170 (formerly PSYC 270).

353  Visual Perception and Cognition
B. Hansen, D. Johnson
This course focuses on the visual sensory and cognitive processes that enable humans to elaborate a mental model of the physical world. The course examines the ways humans internally represent external objects and how events in turn influence their perceptions. Readings are from journal articles that focus on the behavioral and neurophysiological aspects of low-level vision and face recognition, visual awareness and attention, and mental imagery. PSYC 200 is recommended. Prerequisite: PSYC 250 or 251, or permission of instructor. This course is crosslisted as PSYC 353.

373  Brain, Physiology, and Behavior
S. Kraly
What is the relationship among brain, physiology, and behavior in humans and animals? What can we learn about the relationship of brain and behavior that can be useful for understanding and treatment of psychological and behavioral disorders in humans? This course uses readings in the published literature to examine a wide variety of research strategies used in the contemporary study of brain, physiology, and behavior. Prerequisite: NEUR/PSYC 170 (formerly NEUR 170/PSYC 270), or permission of instructor. This course is crosslisted as PSYC 373.

375  Cognitive Neuroscience
S. Kelly
Cognitive neuroscience is an interdisciplinary field — drawing from chemistry, biology, medicine, neuroscience, psychology, and philosophy — that explores the relationship between the mind and the brain. Like the field of cognitive neuroscience, the scope of this course is broad, focusing on brain mechanisms for such diverse processes as sensation and perception, attention, memory, emotion, language, and even consciousness. Students read primary journal articles on case studies from the clinical literature of patients with localized brain damage and reports from the experimental and neuroimaging literature on the effects of invasive and noninvasive manipulations in normal subjects. Mind-brain relationships are considered in the context of cognitive theories, evolutionary comparisons, and human development. PSYC 200 is recommended. Prerequisite: NEUR/PSYC 170 (formerly NEUR 170/PSYC 270) or permission of instructor. This course is crosslisted as PSYC 375.

376  Functional Neuroanatomy and Neural Development
J. Yoshino
The first quarter of the course focuses on mechanisms of neural development including proliferation of stem cells, migration, differentiation, and synapse formation. The latter portion of the class examines the function of neuroanatomical regions and their relationship to the variety of symptoms associated with schizophrenia. As the more overt symptoms of schizophrenia do not appear until late adolescence, knowing how and when various regions of the brain develop is essential for understanding the emergence of various neurological deficits in this disease. Prerequisite: NEUR/PSYC 170 (formerly NEUR 170/PSYC 270) and BIOL 212, or permission of instructor. This course is crosslisted as PSYC 376.

377  Psychopharmacology
S. Kraly
In this seminar, students and the instructor discuss the effects of drugs upon psychological processes and behavior in humans. Readings in the textbook treat the mechanisms of action (physiological and neurochemical) of various classes of drugs used in therapy or “on the street.” Readings in professional journals illustrate the experimental study of drug effects in humans and in animals. Prerequisite: NEUR/PSYC 170 (formerly NEUR 170/PSYC 270) and PSYC 200, or permission of instructor. This course is crosslisted as PSYC 377.

378  Topics in Neuroscience
Staff
Courses in specific neuroscience topics offered by various staff members. Inquiries about the topics offered any given term should be directed to the coordinator of the Neuroscience Program.

379  Fundamentals of Neurochemistry/Neuropharmacology
J. Yoshino
The class focuses on two diseases: relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis and idiopathic Alzheimer’s disease. The initial portion of the course examines the various methods neurochemists utilize to answer questions about these two diseases. The remainder of the course focuses on the epidemiological, neuroanatomical, cellular, biochemical, and molecular aspects of the two diseases. Multiple sclerosis is a more intercellular question examining the interaction of immune cells and the glia of the nervous system whereas Alzheimer’s disease tends to focus more on intracellular mechanisms leading to the synthesis of beta-amyloid and the formation of neurofibrillary tangles, the two hallmarks of this disease. (Formerly NEUR 383.) Prerequisites: NEUR/PSYC 170 (formerly NEUR 170/PSYC 270), BIOL 212, and CHEM 263. This course is crosslisted as PSYC 379 (formerly PSYC 383).

384  Fundamentals of Neurophysiology
A.J. Tierney
This seminar and laboratory course examines the physiology of the nervous system. Lecture and class discussion topics include ion channel structure and function, synaptic transmission, second messenger systems, neuromodulation, the neurophysiological basis of behavior in “simple” animals, the evolution of neural circuits, the cellular basis of learning and memory, and the cellular basis of selected human nervous system diseases. Laboratory exercises teach dissection and electrophysiological recording techniques. Prerequisite: BIOL 212 or NEUR/PSYC 170 (formerly NEUR 170/PSYC 270), or permission of instructor. This course is crosslisted as BIOL 384 and PSYC 384.

385/385L  Neuroethology
A.J. Tierney
Neuroethology is a sub-field of neuroscience focused on the study of the neural basis of natural behavior. Many types of behavior and a wide array of animals are studied, and the approach is often comparative and evolutionary. In this course, students delve into the neuroethological literature, examining the neural basis of animal communication, navigation, movement, sensory processing, feeding, aggression, and learning. Laboratory exercises teach methods of behavioral analysis and electrophysiological recording techniques. The 0.25 credit-bearing laboratory course NEUR 385L must be taken concurrently with NEUR 385 and may not be taken as a stand-alone course. PSYC 309 or BIOL 220 is recommended. Prerequisite: NEUR/PSYC 170 (formerly NEUR 170/PSYC 270) or BIOL 212 or permission of instructor. This course is crosslisted as PSYC 385/385L and BIOL 385/385L.

389  Molecular Neurobiology
This course is crosslisted as BIOL 389. For course description, see “Biology: Course Offerings.”

470  Research Seminar in Physiological Psychology and Neuroscience
S. Kelly, S. Kraly, A.J. Tierney, J. Yoshino
This seminar focuses on a specific research topic in the areas related to the neurological, neurochemical, and/or physiological bases of behavior. The topic varies from term to term. Students are expected to study a topic in depth and to participate in original empirical work in this area. This course is open to junior and senior psychology and neuroscience majors and to others by permission. Prerequisite: a course from NEUR/PSYC 370–389. This course is crosslisted as PSYC 470.

291, 391, 491  Independent Study
Staff
Advanced independent studies may be arranged in consultation with individual instructors.

498, 499  Senior Thesis
Staff
Neuroscience majors plan and carry out one-term experimental research projects under the guidance of faculty members in the neuroscience program. For students who wish to be considered for honors, two-term thesis projects are required; such students enroll in NEUR 498 in the fall and NEUR 499 in the spring. On occasion, students who are not pursuing honors or high honors may complete two semesters of senior research by taking NEUR 498 in the fall and NEUR 491 in the spring. With permission, NEUR/PSYC 470 or PSYC 450, when appropriate, may be substituted for 498.