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Course Catalog
Courses Taught in NBB NBB Home

NBB Courses (Fall 2014)

Important: Always confirm offerings with appropriate Course and Time Roster
from the University Registrar.

Detailed course offerings are listed below
(subject to change).

BIONB 1220 – Freshman Writing Seminar – Sex and the Wild: How Animals Find a Mate #TBA

3 credits. Letter grades only. Permission of Knight Writing Program required. Enrollment limited to freshmen.  M. Modanu. 
Why are male spiders cannibalized by the female during sex? How do male anglerfish find a female in the deep ocean? And
does a lone swan really mourn when its mate perishes? To understand the basis of mating decisions, we will tackle topics
such as male and female sexual strategies, monogamy, polygamy, and promiscuity, and survey the animal kingdom for
bizarre ways of finding and keeping a mate. Readings will be drawn primarily from biology and prior knowledge is not
required. Writing assignments and class discussions will focus on communicating science effectively to multiple audiences,
building well-supported critiques of the topics presented, and proposing a research study
Day/Time TBA.

BIONB 1220 – Freshman Writing Seminar – Addiction Unwoven: Exploring Drugs, the Brain, and Behavior #TBA

3 credits. Letter grades only. Permission of Knight Writing Program required. Enrollment limited to freshmen.  E. Johnson.  What
makes an addict’s brain different from a non-addict’s brain? How quickly can you become addicted? To address
these questions, this course will explore modern society’s view of addiction and will introduce students to the neurobiological
basis of addictive behaviors. We will explore the history of addiction in society, discuss the various models of addiction and
examine the neural, behavioral and cognitive processes of the drug user. Using movies, books, scientific research articles and
personal narratives, this course will seek to encourage students to develop a deeper understanding of how psychoactive drugs
alter human behavior and cognition. Through reflective exercises and formal essays, students will engage in effective writing
strategies and become better practitioners of written communication.
  Day/Time TBA.

BIONB 2210 - Introduction to Behavior #1535 (3cr), #1536/1538 (4cr), #1537/1539 (5 cr)

3-5 credits, variable. Prerequisite: two majors-level biology courses. Priority is given to students studying neurobiology and
behavior. Not open to freshmen. May be taken independently of BIONB 2220. 3 credits with no discussion section; 4 credits with

one disc per week; 5 credits with one or two disc per week and participation in Writing in the Majors program; 4- or 5-credit

option required of students in neurobiology and behavior program of study.. Limited to 12 students in 5-credit option (students

may not preregister for 5-credit option; interested students complete application form on first day of class). The 5-credit writing

section is not offered in the summer. K. L. Shaw, staff. General introduction to the field of animal behavior. Topics include evolution and behavior, behavioral ecology, sociobiology, chemical ecology, communication, orientation and navigation, and hormonal mechanisms
of behavior.  MWF 12:20.


BIONB 3220 - Hormones and Behavior #4922

3 credits. Letter grades only. Prerequisite: any one of the following: PSYCH 2230 or BIONB 2210 or BIONB 2220 or two majors-level biology courses plus psychology course. Enrollment limited to: juniors and seniors. Co-meets with  PSYCH 7220. E. Adkins-Regan. See PSYCH 3220 for details. MWF 11:15.

BIONB 3950 - Molecular and Genetic Approaches to Neuroscience #15579

3 credits. Letter grades only. Prerequisite: BIONB 2220 or BIOMG 3300 or BIOMG 3320. Offered alternate years. Enrollment limited

to 25 students. D. L. Deitcher. Focuses on how different molecular and genetic approaches have led to major advances in neuroscience. Lectures, student presentations, and discussions examine original research articles. Topics include ligand-gated channels, potassium channels, seven membrane spanning receptors, development of the neuromuscular junction, neurotransmitter release, learning and

memory, neurodiseases, and optogenetics.
TR 2:55-4:10.

BIONB 4230 - Cognitive Neuroscience #4050

4 credits. Prerequisite: 2 majors-level biology courses or biopsychology or neurobiology (e.g., PSYCH 2230 or BIONB 2210, BIONB 2220) and introductory course in perception, cognition, or language (e.g., PSYCH 1102, PSYCH 2090, PSYCH 3140, or PSYCH

2150). Co-meets with PSYCH 6250. One lab in sheep brain dissection. B. L. Finlay. See PSYCH 4250
for details. MWF 9:05.

BIONB 4280 - Clinical Neurobiology #15581

3 credits. Prerequisite: two courses from BIONB 2220, BIOMG 2800, BIOMG 3300 or BIOMG 3310; co-registration in one of

the courses is acceptable by permission of instructor. Offered alternate years. Open to advanced undergraduates. Enrollment

limited to 25 students.  R. Booker. The goal of this course is to provide students with an appreciation of the current challenges

facing researchers studying neurodiseases. The focus is on the etiology, epidemiology, cellular and molecular basis, and strategies

for treating of a number of neurodiseases, including but not limited to Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, neural ischemia,

depression, ADHD, eating disorders, and AIDS-related dementia. The course provides a health context that enriches the student’s

learning experience in other advanced courses in the biological sciences.  MW 2:30-4:25.

BIONB 4310 - Genes and Behavior #15586

3 credits. Prerequisite: BIONB 2220. Offered alternate years (fall offering 2014 only; next offered spring 2016). Enrollment limited

to 50 students. J. R. Fetcho. Our genes influence how we behave. This lecture course explores the current understanding of how

genes influence the behavior of a variety of animals, including humans. Topics include the genetic basis of hearing, movement,

learning, memory, intelligence, sexual behavior, aggression, sleep, and diseases of behavior. The focus is on the unprecedented

insight that modern molecular and genetic tools are providing into the genetic basis of behavior. TR 2:55-4:10.

BIONB 4320 - Neural Circuits for Motor Control in Health and Disease #15583

3 credits. Prerequisite: BIONB 2220 or ECE 2100 or instructor consent. Offered alternate years. Enrollment limited to 25 students. 

J. H. Goldberg. Almost all behaviors-from speech to a cross court forehand-are mediated by the contraction of muscles. This

course examines the neural origins of motor behavior, from simple reflexes to complex learnedmotor sequences. Ascending the

motor hierarchy, we will study the neuromuscular junction, spinal cord, brainstem, cerebellum, basal ganglia and cerebral cortex.

At each level, we will examine the structure and function of the local microcircuit, as well as diseases-such as myasthenia gravis,

stroke, ALS, ataxia and Parkinson’s-that result from that circuit’s dysfunction. Each week we will discuss a topic relating to the

neurobiology of motor control, with a lecture on Tuesday, followed by a student-led presentation of relevant research papers

on the following Thursday. Students will be evaluated on the basis of their participation, their presentation of an original research

article, their final project (a 5 page grant proposal on a research question relevant to the course), and a final exam. TR 10:10-11:25.

BIONB 4330 – Consciousness and Free Will #16829

4 credits. Prerequisite: COGST 3140 or COGST 6140. S. Edelman, H. Segal. See COGST 4310 for details. M 2:00-4:25.

BIONB 4340 - Advanced Behavioral Ecology #15584 (lec), #15585 (dis)

4 credits. Prerequisite: BIONB 2210, BIOEE 1610 or BIOEE 1780, permission of instructor. Participation in the Writing-in-the-Majors program.  Offered alternate years.  Enrollment limited to 25 students. W. D. Koenig. An intensive course for upper-division students interested in behavorial ecology and sociobiology. Lectures, discussions, and student presentations examine topics including

adaptation, communication, mating systems, sexual selection, sex ratios, inbreeding and outbreeding, altruism, kin recognition, and

conflict and cooperation in animal societies. TR 10:10-11:25; Dis TBA.

BIONB 4700 - Biophysical Methods #4414

3 credits. Letter grades only. Prerequisite: solid knowledge of basic physics and mathematics through sophomore level.
Recommended prerequisite: knowledge of cellular biology. M. Lindau.
See AEP 4700 for details. MW 2:55-4:10.

BIONB 4900 - Molecular, Cellular, and Integrative Neurophysiology #5001 (lec), #5002 (lab)

4 credits. Letter grades only. Prerequisite: BIONB 2220 or equivalent, or permission of instructor.  Enrollment limited to 12 students.
 D. P. McCobb. Hands-on lab
with lecture/discussions introducing cellular and integrative electrophysiological concepts and methods.
Intra- and extracellular recording of action
potentials, synaptic transmission, voltage clamp and ion channel gating, and interactions
between autonomic function and cognition in humans.
Lectures will discuss concepts, recent discoveries, and future prospects.
Written and oral presentations required.
TR 10:10-11:25. Lab W 1:25-4:25. B150 CMS.

BIONB 4970 - The Brain - Its Evolution and Development #15587

3 credits. Prerequisite: BIONB 2220 or equivalent. Offered alternate years. Intended for juniors, seniors, and graduate students.
Enrollment limited to 50 students.
I. Ballagh, A. H. Bass. How does the brain evolve? One of the fastest-growing areas of study in neuroscience is the evolution of developmental mechanisms that have shaped the remarkable diversity in brain organization
observed among vertebrates. This lecture course will consider the
evolutionary and developmental origins (“evo-devo”) of
vertebrate brains from phylogenetic, molecular, anatomical, physiological, and behavioral
perspectives. Topics include the
evo-devo of brain regions such as the cerebral hemispheres and brainstem; sensory systems ranging from
olfaction to vision

and hearing; motor systems for posture, locomotion and speech; and mechanisms of social and sexual plasticity. TR 2:55-4:10.

BIONB 7210 - Introductory Graduate Survey in Neurobiology and Behavior #1583

2 credits. S-U grades only. Corequisite: BIONB 2210. Requirement for first-year graduate students in the Field of Neurobiology
and Behavior. H. K. Reeve, staff. A
graduate-level seminar with presentations from lecturers in BIONB 2210 and BIONB 2220.

Discussions of current research in the area of neurobiology or behavior that have been presented in the lecture class. A lab

project and/or a writing component each week could be assigned to ensure engagement with the material. W 4:30-6:00. A305 CMH.

BIONB 7640 - Plant-Insect Interactions Seminar #4398

1 credit. (May be repeated for credit) S-U grades only. Permission of instructor or graduate standing required. A. Agrawal, A. Kessler,

R. Raguso, J. Thaler. See BIOEE 7640 for details. TBA.


BIONB 4200, Lec 001 – Animal Behavior and Conservation Biology #16448

2 credits. Letter grades only.  Prerequisite: BIONB 2210 or permission of instructor. Enrollment limited to 12 students. T. D. Seeley.

The field of conservation biology was formed to conserve biodiversity in the face of widespread human impacts on the environment.  

The disciplines of animal behavior and behavioral ecology can provide valuable guidance to conservation biology by contributing

scientific knowledge (theories, methods, and evidence) to biodiversity conservation efforts.   In this course, we will explore the linkage between the fields of behavior and conservation, to see how behavioral research can inform, and already has informed, conservation

efforts.  We will examine studies of communication, foraging, predation, nesting behavior, social behavior, and mating systems that are contributing to a greater understanding of conservation problems. M 2:55-4:10. W358 CMH.

BIONB 4200, Lec 002 – Topics in Computational Neuroscience #16449

3 credits. Prerequisite: Intro to Computational Neuroscience or permission of instructor. Enrollment limited to 15 students. C. Linster.

This seminar course will allow students to do hands on computational modeling in neuroscience. Each student will choose a topic and programming language that suits them best after consultation with the instructor. The class will meet weekly to discuss each project,

learn about modeling concepts and brainstorm. T 12:20-2:15. B160 CMS.

BIONB 4200, Lec 003 – The Evolution of Conflict and its Limits #16719

2 credits. Prerequisite: BIONB 2210. Enrollment limited to 15 students. H. K. Reeve. We will discuss the possiblity of a unified

theoretical approach to the evolution of conflict and its resolution (e.g., between group members, between mates, between

competitors, between hosts and parasites, between mothers and fetuses, between genes within a genome). We will read and

learn about game-theoretic approaches to conflict, especially tug-of-war theory, and discuss whether and how to extend this

theory to novel contexts involving biological conflict.  A few lectures will intersperse our discussions, and the class may work

together on an original paper intended for publication in a scientific journal. R 2:30-4:10. W358 CMH.

BIONB 7201 - Research Design in the Study of Animal Social Behavior (Lunch Bunch: T 12:20) #1540

BIONB 7202 - Topics in Neural Basis of Behavior (Journal Club: F 10:30) #1541


POST-A GRADS:  Please register for GRAD 9001 – Graduate Dissertation Research (0 cr., S/U, RSC 799)  #13452



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