Neuroscience program

Undergrad minor

Do you want to learn about the brain?

It has been said that more neuronal connections exist in the human brain than there are known stars in the universe, and that the brain remains the final frontier of human exploration.

UW-La Crosse's Neuroscience Interdisciplinary Minor is a joint program between the departments of Biology, Philosophy, and Psychology, designed to help prepare students to explore that frontier. Although the Psychology Department is the administrative home, the minor integrates expertise across all three core departments and other UWL departments offering elective coursework. A neuroscience minor is ideal for students planning to pursue doctoral training in neuroscience, medicine, psychology, neurology, neuropsychology or philosophy.

Neuroscience jobs

Most of the fields associated with neuroscience require doctorate-level education, but some careers are also available to people with master’s and bachelor’s degrees. Like in many fields, the more practical experience you can get, the more likely it is that you can find a job in your field. Students pursuing the Neuroscience Interdisciplinary Minor who do not go on to graduate training should find internships, part-time jobs, or volunteer experiences that help them find work in a neuroscience-related field.

Entry level careers

  • Laboratory technician
  • EEG technologist
  • Clinical research assistant
  • Science writer

Further education

  • Medicine (MD, DO)
  • Research scientist
  • Neuropsychologist
  • Clinical psychologist
  • Careers requiring a master’s degree
  • Neural engineer
  • Physician’s assistant
  • Neuroimaging technician
  • Biostatistician

What distinguishes UWL's neuroscience program?

Undergraduate research opportunities

UWL offers opportunities for undergraduate research with faculty who teach in the minor, and it ends with a Capstone Seminar in Neuroscience where students and faculty share their big ideas and excitement for the field.

Choose your path while studying the brain

Love to learn about brain structure and biochemistry? Take electives in Biology. Interested in how brain functioning translates into thoughts and emotions? Take electives in Psychology. Do you want to ask the deep questions about meaning and human experience? Take electives in Philosophy.

Competitive admissions requirements

Graduate programs where a neuroscience minor would be helpful are very competitive. We want our Neuroscience Interdisciplinary Minors to be successful in the applications process, so we have competitive admission requirements for the minor. 

Sample courses

NEU 200 Introductory Neuroscience This course will introduce the student to the interdisciplinary study of neuroscience through an investigation of the contributions made by biology, philosophy, and psychology. In so doing, the student will come to see the unique methodological and theoretical approaches each discipline brings to the discussion, and why it is that these different perspectives matter. The course will address the relevant introductory concepts associated with these discussions and engage a number of pertinent topics including learning, memory, attention, and perception, and the interrelationship between these processes. Prerequisite: grades of "C" or better in BIO 105 and PSY 100. Offered Annually.

BIO 465 Neurophysiology An examination of the nervous system beginning at the cellular level and working up to neuronal systems. Topics covered include the ionic basis of membrane potentials, synaptic communication, organization of functional circuits of neurons, and systems within the brain and/or spinal cord which control learning and memory, vision and motor function. Exploration of these fundamental neurophysiology topics from the basis for understanding a variety of student-selected topics which will be covered later in the semester. Late-semester topics often include higher-order aspects of brain function or challenges to the nervous system, such as the repair of brain or spinal cord injury, degenerative disease states, dyslexia, or consciousness. BIO 467 is an optional laboratory course which can be taken concurrently. This course is taught largely at an undergraduate level. Graduate students will have additional course requirements/expectations. Prerequisite: BIO 105, CHM 103, and either BIO 312 or NEU 200; junior standing. Offered Annually.

NEU 490 Capstone Seminar in Neuroscience A seminar-style course designed for students to review and discuss primary literature on current subjects of importance in neuroscience. Students are expected to participate and lead discussions of research literature, develop and write novel review articles, and actively participate in the assessment of the neuroscience interdisciplinary minor. This course should follow the completion of the other courses in the core curriculum of the neuroscience interdisciplinary minor. Prerequisite: NEU 200; PHL/PSY 333; BIO 415 or BIO 446; BIO 465. Pass/Fail grading. Offered Fall, Spring.