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Skidmore College

BA in Neuroscience

To fulfill the major, students must complete the following:

  1. Core courses: NS 101: Neuroscience: Mind and Behavior; NS 201: Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience; BI 107: Molecular and Cellular Foundations of Life; BI 108: Organismal Behavior; CH 125: Principles of Chemistry; and PS 202: Research Methods in Psychology I
  2. One Advanced Research Methods course.
  3. Integrative course: NS 277 Integrative Seminar In Neuroscience Research
  4. Three 200-level electives.
  5. Four 300-level electives.
  6. Note: There are five projected paths through the major, each with recommended courses: Biobehavioral Neuroscience, Cellular/Molecular, Cognitive Neuroscience, Cognitive Science, and Health Professions.

For complete details on requirements for the major, please go here.

Contact Information

Neuroscience Program

Program Director: Sarita Lagalwar, Ph.D.

Administrative Assistant: Debra Mock

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About Neuroscience

Neuroscience is the scientific study of the nervous system. But more than that, neuroscience is an effort to understand the mechanisms that give rise to human thought, emotion, and behavior. The study of the nervous system can be pursued from multiple perspectives, using a host of techniques. As such, neuroscience is a thoroughly interdisciplinary endeavor that blurs the traditional barriers between specializations like biology, psychology, and chemistry. Neuroscience faculty at Skidmore are interested in a diverse array of issues, including neurodegeneration and Alzheimer's disease, genetic regulation of circadian rhythms, hemispheric specialization in emotional processing, and the impact of adolescent cannabinoid use on brain development. (For more details, see here)

Interesting Classes I Might Take

  • Neuroscience: Mind & Behavior
  • Cellular & Molecular Neuroscience
  • Psychopharmacology
  • Neuropsychology
  • Mechanisms of Alzheimer's Disease
  • Neurodevelopment
  • Computational Methods in Psychology & Neuroscience

Full course list here

Beyond the Classroom

Research presentations:Neuroscience students present their research annually at the regional NEURON conference in Connecticut and the international Society for Neuroscience meeting held in Washington, D.C., Chicago or San Diego. Additionally, neuroscience students participate in outreach through Brain Awareness Week and Brain Bee events with local elementary and high school students in the Capital Region.  

Recent faculty-student research projects: The role of serotonergic signaling in the anticonvulsant properties of cannabidiol; Mitochondrial dysfunction in Spinocerebellar Ataxia: a therapeutic approach; Cellular propagation of Spinocerebellar Ataxia; the effect of symmetry and abstraction on aesthetic judgment and gaze patterns; and visual cues that aid 3D object perception in 2D space       

Recent funded internships: Molecular neuroscience research, Institute of Neuroscience, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Shanghai, China; Summer Research program, Letwin-Zucker Center for Research on Alzheimer's Disease, Feinstein Institute for Medical Research, Manhasset, N.Y.; and lab research on the neuropharmacology of opiate addiction, Center for Excellence in the Neurosciences, University of New England.

Popular study abroad programs: Danish Institute for Study Abroad, Copenhagen; Skidmore in Spain: Madrid and Alcala; and Skidmore in London, University College London (England)

Success After Skidmore

The neuroscience major prepares students for career paths that include graduate school, the health professions, research, and clinical work. 

Careers: A sampler of what our alumni do

  • Software engineer, ActionX, NYC
  • Formulating chemist, Bio-Botanica, Hauppauge, N.Y.
  • Research assistant/associate:
    • Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Boston, Mass.
    • Boston Children's Hospital, Boston, Mass.
    • Albany Medical Center, Albany, N.Y.
    • Boston Neuropsychological Services, Needham, Mass.
    • Boston VA Medical Center, Boston, Mass.
    • Brigham & Womens Hospital, Boston, Mass.
    • Children's Hospital, Regional Autism Clinic, Philadelphia, Pa.
    • Cleveland Clinic, Cleveland, Ohio
    • Salk Institute for Biological Studies, La Jolla, Calif.
    • Vanderbilt University Medical Center, Nashville, Tenn.
    • Weill Cornell Medical College, NYC
  • Assistant professor, Department of Psychiatry, BU School of Medicine, Boston, Mass.
  • Pediatric hematology/oncology fellow, Children's Healthcare of Atlanta, Ga.
  • Laboratory technician, Harvard University, Stem Cell Institute, Cambridge, Mass.
  • AmeriCorps member, Clinton County Health Deptartment, Clinton, N.Y.
  • Clinical research auditor, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Boston, Mass.
  • Data quality manager, Forrester Research, Boston, Mass.
  • Veterinarian, Genesee Valley Equine Clinic, Scottsville, N.Y.
  • ER nurse/RN, Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, Pa.
  • Clinical researcher, Johns Hopkins Bayview Medical Center, Baltimore, Md.
  • Nurse/midwife, Midwives at Mount Auburn/Arlington, Arlington, Mass.
  • Lab manager (research technologist II), Northwestern University, Chicago, Ill.
  • Biology teacher, Notre Dame School, NYC
  • Quality improvement and standards manager, NYU Langone Medical Center, NYC
  • Senior associate scientist, Pfizer, Groton, Conn.
  • Quality control analyst, Regeneron Pharmaceuticals, Rensselaer, N.Y.
  • Physician, St. Luke's Roosevelt Hospital, NYC
  • Nurse practitioner, Pediatric Group, Crofton, Md.
  • Mental health worker, Western Psychiatric Institute, Pittsburgh, Pa.

Graduate Schools:A sampler of where our alumni go

  • Brown University, Ph.D., biology
  • BU/Princeton/NYU/Columbia/York University, Ph.D., visual neuroscience
  • Yale University, nursing
  • Case Western Reserve University, M.D.
  • Boston University, clinical psychology
  • University of Pennsylvania, veterinary school
  • SUNY Downstate Medical Center, M.D.
  • Virginia College of Osteopathic Medicine, osteopathy
  • Fordham University, Ph.D., conservation genetics
  • Ohio State, M.S., cognitive engineering
  • Cornell Medical College, Ph.D., pharmacology
  • University of Pennsylvania, M.D.
  • SUNY College at New Paltz, M.A.-M.A.T., biology
  • Ohio State, Ph.D., visual psychophysics
  • Tufts University, veterinary school
  • University of California, Davis, Ph.D., behavioral neuroscience/primatology
  • Emory University, Ph.D., animal behavior
  • Boston University, Ph.D., computational neuroscience
  • Medical College of Wisconsin, M.D./Ph.D., molecular neuroscience
  • Mount Sinai, Ph.D., molecular neuroscience
  • Johns Hopkins University, Ph.D., public health
  • University of California, Santa Barbara, Ph.D., evolutionary psychology
  • Columbia University, Ph.D., genetics
  • University of Colorado, Denver, Ph.D., neuroscience


Meet the Neuroscience faculty members.