Curriculum

Spring 20134Course List

Research and teaching in the neurosciences at Iowa are consolidated in three partially overlapping research tracks:

  • Molecular / Cellular Research
  • Developmental / Systems Research
  • Cognitive / Behavioral Research

A set of core courses is required of all all students. Additional coursework is selected based upon the student's background and chosen area of expertise.

The curriculum is designed to provide a multidisciplinary foundation in the conceptual and methodological approaches to study of the nervous system, emphasizing original, independent student research. It is anticipated that most students will complete the program in four to five years (in fact, the average time to degree currently is right at 4.5 years). The first two years emphasize formal instruction, laboratory rotations, and directed research. The final two to three years emphasize research and the writing of the Ph.D. dissertation.

The comprehensive examination is typically taken in the summer of the second year.

“What convinced me to attend Iowa was the Neuroscience Program. There's a deep commitment to neuroscience research at the University of Iowa, and it's reflected in the strength of the Neuroscience Program. Annually, it's ranked as one of the highest doctoral programs at the university, and the ongoing research conducted by the faculty and students is excellent. The interdisciplinary aspect of the program is tremendous for one's graduate education. There's a conflux of molecular/cellular, cognitive, systems, and behavioral research in the program and it really allows each student in the program to gain a broad spectrum of skills and knowledge in the field of neuroscience. But, the program was also attractive to me for reasons outside of the curriculum and research. From the moment I arrived on campus, the program has felt like a family. Students help each other out, and offer a great support system. And after several years of being in the program, I can undoubtedly say, Iowa was the perfect choice for me.”