Hiram College

the Program

To major in Neuroscience, a student must complete at least 52 hours of coursework in the program and maintain a cumulative grade point average of 3.0 or higher. Students must take four core courses, two correlative courses in chemistry, one course from each of four areas of concentration available within Neuroscience, two electives outside the departments of Biology and Psychology, and other electives from within the curriculum. All students must complete a Senior Capstone project, and present their results to the general public.

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Core Requirements

The four core requirements will introduce students to the breadth of subjects studied in neuroscience, and equip them for advanced courses in the curriculum. Every student must pass each of the following core courses (16 semester hours) with a grade of C or better:

  • Psych 101: General Psychology (MM)
  • Neur 227: Introduction to Neuroscience (or BIO/PSYCH 327)
  • Methods Course: Psych 215, or CPSC 172, or Math 108
  • Biol 326: Animal Physiology

Correlative Courses

In addition to mastering the basics of psychology, physiology, and neuroscience, it is necessary for all students to gain a basic understanding of general chemistry. Therefore, Neuroscience majors must also complete the following correlative courses (8 semester hours) with a grade of C or better:

  • Chem 120: General chemistry I: Structure and Bonding (SM)
  • Chem 121: General chemistry II: Introduction to Chemical Analysis (SM)

Breadth Requirement

Neuroscience as a discipline spans many different research areas, including the Cellular and Molecular, Cognitive and Behavioral, Computational, Developmental and Evolutionary, and Ethical and Philosophical domains. To gain a full understanding of how each of these areas contributes to the discipline of neuroscience, all students in the program must take one course from each of three of these areas of concentration (9-12 semester hours).

Areas of Concentration

Students majoring in Neuroscience must declare their area of concentration within one of the many domains outlined above by the end of their Sophomore year, and complete a minimum of three courses (9-12 semester hours) within that concentration. Below is a list of the areas and the courses within each.

Cellular and Molecular Concentration

  • Biol 230 1 † Molecular and Cellular Biology
  • Biol 265 1 * Human Genetics
  • Biol/Psych 280/380 1 * Topical Courses
  • Biol 365 1 † Genetics
  • Bchm 366 1 † Basic Biochemistry
  • Biol/Psych 430 3 Behavioral Endocrinology

Developmental and Evolutionary Concentration

  • Psych 2612 Psychology of Childhood
  • Psych 2622 Psychology of Adolescence and Young Adulthood
  • Biol 2231 Vertebrate Biology
  • Biol/Psych 280/3801 * Topical Courses
  • Biol 3202 Invertebrate Zoology
  • Biol 3353 Evolution
  • Biol 3402 Developmental Biology
  • Biol/Psych 4303 Behavioral Endocrinology

Cognitive and Behavioral Concentration

  • Psych 2161 Learning
  • Psych 2171 Psychological Testing
  • Psych 2182 Personality
  • Psych 2542 Abnormal Psychology
  • Biol/Psych 2/3801,* Topical Courses
  • Biol 3282 Animal Behavior
  • Psych 3441 Social Psychology
  • Psych 3651 Perception and Cognition
  • Biol/Psych 4303 Behavioral Endocrinology

Philosophy and Ethics Concentration

  • Phil 118 Introduction to Ethics
  • Phil 212 Early Modern Philosophy
  • Phil 264/5 History and Philosophy of Science
  • INTD 302-3 Narrative Bioethics
  • INTD 341 The Nature of Intelligence
  • Phil 375 Phenomenology
  • Phil xxx Philosophy of Mind
  • INTD 381 Narrative Applications Biomed Ethics

Computational Concentration

  • Philosophy 121 Elementary Logic
  • Physics 208 2,† Electronics
  • Math 243 Differential Equations
  • CPSC 320 3 Computer Vision
  • Math 357 Introduction to Chaotic Dynamical Systems
  • CPSC 361 3 Computer Simulation
  • CPSC 367 3 Parallel Computing
  • CPSC 381 3 * Topical Courses
  • Math 381 Equations
  • CPSC 386 3 Artificial Intelligence

1 – runs annually
2 – runs every other year
3 – runs approximately every three years
* – requires permission of the Neuroscience Program Coordinator.
† – has additional prerequisites

Senior Capstone

Before graduation, each student must complete an approved senior capstone project. Each student must present a project proposal to a member of the Neuroscience faculty and receive approval by the end of their Junior year to receive credit towards the major for their capstone project. Students MUST have approval before they can carry out their project. Students must present their project during a seminar open to the general public. Capstone seminars run in both the fall and spring semesters.

Elective Courses

Finally, to complete the Neuroscience major, students must complete 52 semester hours of coursework in the major. The following courses can be taken for credit towards the Neuroscience major, provided all other requirements outlined above have been met:

BIOL 152, Intro to Biology II: How Life Works (SM)

CHEM 220, Introduction to Organic Chemistry
CHEM 320, Intermediate Organic Chemistry

CPSC 171, Introduction to Computer Science

MATH 199, Calculus II (MM)
MATH 200, Calculus III

Physics 213, 214 Fundamentals of Physics (SM)

WRIT 205: Style and Grammar for Writers
WRIT 214: Writing about Nature
WRIT 314/324: Writing for Science
EVST 245: Introduction to Grant Writing


Students majoring in Neuroscience must declare one of the following concentrations by the end of their sophomore year:

  • Cellular and Molecular Concentration
  • Developmental and Evolutionary Concentration
  • Cognitive and Behavioral Concentration
  • Philosophy and Ethics Concentration
  • Computational Concentration