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Twin Cities Campus

Neuroscience Minor

Neuroscience
College of Biological Sciences
  • Program Type: Undergraduate minor related to major
  • Requirements for this program are current for Spring 2018
  • Required credits in this minor: 12 to 15
The neuroscience minor provides an in-depth contemporary understanding of how the nervous system functions in both health and disease. The goal of the minor is to provide instruction that will enrich the curriculum through an array of academic majors. As we will all experience the impact of nervous system disease ourselves or through family members and/or friends, instruction in this minor will offer insights into the nervous system that students can utilize throughout their lifetimes. Note: Students pursuing an individualized degree program (IDP) may be ineligible to pursue the neuroscience minor if IDP and minor coursework overlap more than 3 credits. These requests will be reviewed on an individual basis.
Program Delivery
This program is available:
  • via classroom (the majority of instruction is face-to-face)
Admission Requirements
A GPA above 2.0 is preferred for the following:
  • 2.50 already admitted to the degree-granting college
  • 2.50 transferring from another University of Minnesota college
  • 2.50 transferring from outside the University
For information about University of Minnesota admission requirements, visit the Office of Admissions website.
Required prerequisites
Neuroscience Minor Prerequisite
NSCI 1001 - Fundamental Neuroscience: Understanding Ourselves [TS] (3.0 cr)
Minor Requirements
Neuroscience Minor
NSCI 1002 - Social Neuroscience: Understanding Others (3.0 cr)
or NSCI 2100 - Human Neuroanatomy [BIOL] (4.0 cr)
or NSCI 2001 - Human Neuroanatomy (without a lab) (3.0 cr)
NSCI 3001W - Neuroscience and Society [CIV, WI] (4.0 cr)
or NSCI 3100 - Mind and Brain (3.0 cr)
Additional Elective
Courses listed as neuroscience minor requirement options (NSCI 1002, 3001W, and 3100) that are also elective options may count for one requirement or the other, but not both.
Take 1 or more course(s) from the following:
· ANTH 1001 - Human Evolution [BIOL] (4.0 cr)
· KIN 4133 - Perceptual-Motor Control and Learning (3.0 cr)
· NSCI 1002 - Social Neuroscience: Understanding Others (3.0 cr)
· NSCI 3001W - Neuroscience and Society [CIV, WI] (4.0 cr)
· NSCI 3100 - Mind and Brain (3.0 cr)
· PSY 3061 - Introduction to Biological Psychology (3.0 cr)
· SLHS 3302 - Anatomy and Physiology of the Speech and Hearing Mechanisms (3.0 cr)
 
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NSCI 1001 - Fundamental Neuroscience: Understanding Ourselves (TS)
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Grading Basis: A-F only
Typically offered: Every Fall & Spring
Assessing objectively the neuroscience information presented to public at-large across various media outlets. Explaining the potential importance of these discoveries.
NSCI 1002 - Social Neuroscience: Understanding Others
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Prerequisites: None
Grading Basis: A-F only
Typically offered: Every Spring
The field of neuroscience makes a special contribution to our understanding of the human condition, as it can both help us understand ourselves and also how we interact in a world of other individuals. Historically, there has been a dichotomy between disciplines that identify the abstract principles of the social world we live in and the biology of the organ (i.e., the central nervous system) we use to identify and coordinate those abstract principles as we function in our daily lives. By merging these disciplines and studying our interactions with the world on many layers of analysis, from genes to social dynamics, we can develop a richer understanding of who we are as people. prereq: None
NSCI 2100 - Human Neuroanatomy (BIOL)
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Typically offered: Every Fall
Introduction to the nervous system. Structure/function of neurons and the major anatomical parts of the nervous system. Processes that underlie many bodily functions and diseases. Lectures/lab exercises.
NSCI 2001 - Human Neuroanatomy (without a lab)
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Course Equivalencies: 02571 - NSci 2001/NSci 2100
Typically offered: Every Spring
The material covered in Nsci 2001 and 2100 is very similar. 2100 is taught only fall semester. It is a traditional lecture course that includes a weekly laboratory. The faculty believe that the laboratory is a valuable part of the course. 2001 is taught only spring semester for those who cannot take the fall course. It does not have a lab, but has the advantage of a flipped format. Students will be expected to watch the assigned lectures prior to coming to class. Class time will be spent on exercises and discussions that use the material presented in the online lectures. Students who take one of these two courses will not be allowed to take the other course. The vertebrate nervous system is possibly the most complex, highly evolved biological system. The functional unit of the nervous system is the nerve cell or neuron, and the human nervous system has approximately 10,000 unique types of neurons. Most neurons have a wire-like process, the axon. Neurons carry information to other cells via their axons and communicate with those cells via a transfer of chemicals at synapses. The connections among neurons are organized into functional systems. Disease affecting a small number of cells can affect the function of many parts of the nervous system. This course will provide a broad introduction to the nervous system with an emphasis on the human nervous system. The course will introduce the structure and function of neurons, the major anatomical parts of the nervous system and the main functional systems. Functional systems will be approached through an understanding of the anatomical circuitry. The fundamental concepts of neurochemical communication studied in general terms in the first part of the course will be re-examined relative to specific functional systems later in the course. Although the major focus of the course will be on the normal nervous system, common diseases will be introduced for each main topic. Students will gain an understanding of the nature of many common neurological diseases, which will provide further insight into how the normal nervous system functions. The anatomical substrates of learning/memory, emotions and drug actions will be examined. Through the assigned readings, lectures, and discussions, students are expected to gain an understanding of the neural circuitry and information processing responsible for the diverse range of human behaviors. See http://mcloonlab.neuroscience.umn.edu/2001/index.htm for more information.
NSCI 3001W - Neuroscience and Society (CIV, WI)
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Grading Basis: A-F only
Typically offered: Every Spring
Ethical implications. Readings, personal reflections, class discussions, debates, and formal writing. Development of logical arguments, writing skills, oral presentation skills, and teamwork. Students present/argue both their own personal views and those of others. What it is like to have altered mentation, i.e. a brain disease or disability. Readings/multimedia reports from primary neuroscience literature as well as philosophy, policy, and law literature and popular media.
NSCI 3100 - Mind and Brain
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Typically offered: Every Spring
New view of cognition that has recently emerged based on how neuroscience instantiates mental processes in physical process of brain. Topics range from the mechanisms of decision-making, to topics of emotion, memory, imagination, self-control, addiction, morality, consciousness. prereq: no prereq (1001, 1100, or other broad neuroscience course recommended)
ANTH 1001 - Human Evolution (BIOL)
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Typically offered: Every Fall, Spring & Summer
The principles of evolutionary theory, behavioral biology, comparative anatomy, and Paleolithic archaeology are used to reconstruct the major events in human evolution. The course allows us to understand the behavior of our ancestors as well as ourselves.
KIN 4133 - Perceptual-Motor Control and Learning
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Every Fall & Spring
Concepts/principles of coordination/control of perceptually guided movement. Constraints imposed by properties of environment, body (including the nervous system), and goals of behavior. Why we move the way that we do. prereq: [3112, 3132, 3135, KIN major] or instr consent
NSCI 1002 - Social Neuroscience: Understanding Others
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Prerequisites: None
Grading Basis: A-F only
Typically offered: Every Spring
The field of neuroscience makes a special contribution to our understanding of the human condition, as it can both help us understand ourselves and also how we interact in a world of other individuals. Historically, there has been a dichotomy between disciplines that identify the abstract principles of the social world we live in and the biology of the organ (i.e., the central nervous system) we use to identify and coordinate those abstract principles as we function in our daily lives. By merging these disciplines and studying our interactions with the world on many layers of analysis, from genes to social dynamics, we can develop a richer understanding of who we are as people. prereq: None
NSCI 3001W - Neuroscience and Society (CIV, WI)
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Grading Basis: A-F only
Typically offered: Every Spring
Ethical implications. Readings, personal reflections, class discussions, debates, and formal writing. Development of logical arguments, writing skills, oral presentation skills, and teamwork. Students present/argue both their own personal views and those of others. What it is like to have altered mentation, i.e. a brain disease or disability. Readings/multimedia reports from primary neuroscience literature as well as philosophy, policy, and law literature and popular media.
NSCI 3100 - Mind and Brain
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Typically offered: Every Spring
New view of cognition that has recently emerged based on how neuroscience instantiates mental processes in physical process of brain. Topics range from the mechanisms of decision-making, to topics of emotion, memory, imagination, self-control, addiction, morality, consciousness. prereq: no prereq (1001, 1100, or other broad neuroscience course recommended)
PSY 3061 - Introduction to Biological Psychology
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Course Equivalencies: Psy 3061/5061
Typically offered: Every Fall, Spring & Summer
Neurophysiology/neuroanatomy, neural mechanisms of motivation, emotion, sleep-wakefulness cycle, learning/memory in animals/humans. Neural basis of abnormal behavior, drug abuse. prereq: 1001 or BIOL 1009 or NSci 1100
SLHS 3302 - Anatomy and Physiology of the Speech and Hearing Mechanisms
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Typically offered: Every Fall
Survey of anatomy and physiology of the auditory and speech production systems, including the nervous, respiratory, laryngeal, velopharyngeal and orofacial subsystems. Emphasis on normal processes and functions.