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Neuroscience

Neuroscience

Integrating outstanding research and education in a wide range of basic and clinical disciplines in order to help students prepare for successful careers in academia, education, and industry

Application Deadline: December 31, 2013

 

Neuroscience, scientific study of the nervous system, is an exciting and growing field involving researchers from the physical, chemical, biological, computational, anthropological and social sciences. Some of the most interesting and fruitful research areas of the future are likely to require scientists with an understanding of, and expertise in, a variety of disciplines. Recognizing this, Penn State's Neuroscience graduate program specifically encourages students to:

  • Take multidisciplinary approaches to tackling research problems
  • Gain a good basic understanding of certain core fields, through coursework and colloquia; exactly which courses are required depends on the campus you are based at (more about the degree requirements and curriculum)

Program faculty come from several colleges and departments on two Penn State campuses. Their collective research interests are extremely varied, and include:

  • Molecular neurobiology and developmental neuroscience: investigating how and why the nervous system develops and functions as it does, at genetic, molecular and cellular levels
  • Cognitive neuroscience and behavioral neurobiology: exploring how the nervous system processes information, controls autonomic functions, regulates states of consciousness, or determines behavior
  • Neuroendocrinology and neurotoxicology: how hormones and other chemicals affect nerve cells and their interactions
  • Neural engineering: using computer engineering, robotics and other technical disciplines to investigate how the nervous system works, and how it can be manipulated
  • Systems neuroscience: how neural circuits function, coordinate and are controlled
  • Clinical neuroscience: seeking means of diagnosing, treating and preventing diseases and dysfunctions of the brain and nerves, such as malignant brain tumors, congenital and acquired brain diseases and neurodegenerative diseases.

Research programs are well-supported by grants from private and public funds, particularly from the National Institutes of Health. Students are usually admitted with the intent of obtaining a PhD degree in Neuroscience but the MS degree may be sought as part of the doctoral program. All students admitteed to the program receive financial aid (stipends and paid tuition costs), allowing full time for graduate studies. More information about admission requirements.

Faculty Spotlight
Assistant Professor of Psychology
News
The Rolls Lab discovers a new neuron repair pathway that could one day help people suffering from nerve damage. Existence of new neuron repair pathway discovered - Full article
For the first time, a team of Penn State chemists and engineers – including Huck Institutes faculty scientist Tony Jun Huang – has placed tiny synthetic motors inside live human cells, propelled them with ultrasonic waves and steered them magnetically. Nanomotors are controlled, for the first time, inside living cells - Full article
A team of researchers including Huck Institutes affiliates Aimin Liu and Gang (Greg) Ning has discovered a protein required for the growth of tiny, but critical, hair-like structures called cilia on cell surfaces. Critical protein discovered for healthy cell growth in mammals - Full article
Upcoming events
Apr 23, 2014 Wednesday 4:00 PM
Christopher Moore (Brown University)
Neocortical Dynamics: From Mechanism to Meaning
Sep 17, 2014 Wednesday 4:00 PM
Hui Zheng (Baylor College of Medicine)
Biology and Pathophysiology of the Amyloid Precursor Protein