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NROB60H3 (90)

Lecture 1.docx

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University of Toronto Scarborough
Le Boutillier

Lecture 1: Past, Present, and Future Introduction:  Various aspects of human nature o Curiosity, pain, pleasure, movement, reasoning, learning, memory, emotion, and madness  Neuroscience o Study of the brain o What disciplines are involved  The Society for Neuroscience o 1970s Why We Can Use Animal Models:  Nervous systems of different species evolved from common ancestors o Therefore they have common mechanisms o BUT many behavioural traits are specialized for the environment (niche) a species normally occupies The Sheep Brain:  Why use a sheep brain in this course? o Large o Accessible o Not human o Many of the same structures o Less cost Neuroscience Today:  Reductionist approach o Levels of analysis  Molecular  Cellular  Systems  Behavioural  Cognitive  The neuroscientist o Education, training, research experience o Clinical vs. experimental research  Scientific process o Observation o Replication o Interpretation o Verification The Scientific Process:  Observation o To test a specific hypothesis o Made during experiments  Replication o Observation cannot be accepted unless it can be replicated o Repetition with the same results o Often enough to rule out chance  Interpretation o Educated guess about the observations o Based on knowledge (or lack thereof) and preconceived notions  Verification o Like replication
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