Experimental design in Neuroscience

Course content

The course will provide the students with knowledge and understanding of the principles of experimental design in neuroscience. The students will work with science theory and experimental design principles and will be exposed to both theories and concrete examples. Students will gain knowledge on how to design research projects and individual experiments broadly within neuroscience. The students will learn to critically evaluate scientific data and obtain skills in analysing, interpreting and evaluating scientific results. The students will become familiar with the theory and practice behind important techniques in basic and clinical neuroscience such as stem cells, animal models, electrophysiology, microscopy, imaging (PET, MR), genetics and epidemiology. Considerable emphasis will be given to recent advances in the different fields. The students are expected to read, present and discuss original research articles representing different subdisciplines in neuroscience and their methodologies. 

The course will provide the students with translational skills to compare datasets from animal research, human studies and clinical neuroscience. The students will have the opportunity to understand advanced methods from the individual level to large biological databases.

The focus in the course is for the students to obtain sufficient knowledge regarding experimental design and methods in neuroscience to be able to read and critically evaluate scientific papers. The structure of the course therefore evolves around selected scientific papers, that will be explained, analysed and discussed in class room lectures, journal clubs and workshops.

Education

MSc in Neuroscience - compulsory

Not open for credit transfer students or other external students

Learning outcome

After completing the course the student is expected to be able to:

Knowledge

  • Discuss and critically evaluate scientific methods applied within experimental neuroscience
  • Explain statistical principles and methods used in neuroscience
  • Describe different animal models, including zebrafish, drosophila and rodents, used in neuroscience and discuss pros and cons of each model.
  • Explain the principles and discuss the research applications of using human stem cells for modelling neurological disease
  • Explain the principles and discuss the research applications of electrophysiology
  • Explain the principles and discuss the research applications of advanced microscopy
  • Explain the principles and discuss the research applications of molecular-genetic techniques, including viral vectors, optogenetics and chemogenetics.
  • Explain the principles and discuss the research applications of magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and functional MRI
  • Explain the principles and discuss the research applications of positron emission tomography (PET)
  • Explain the principles of neurogenetics including DNA variation, genotype, haplotype, allele frequencies, Linkage Disequlibrium and heritability.
  • Discuss the basics of genetic mapping 
  • Discuss principles and methods for downstream analyses of genetic datasets
  • Explain the principles of single-cell RNA sequencing, data processing and visualization
  • Explain the principles behind epidemiological studies and the role of chance, bias and confounding in such studies

 

Skills

  • Read, understand, evaluate and discuss scientific literature within neuroscience
  • Critically evaluate scientific methods applied within experimental neuroscience
  • Evaluate research studies in basic and translational neuroscience
  • Evaluate the statistical approach used in a scientific paper
  • Design and evaluate research studies in the following disciplines: studies using live animals including transgenic animals, cell cultures including induced pluripotent stem cells, microscopy, electrophysiology, molecular-genetic tools, neuroimaging, neurogenetics.
  • Use appropriate statistical methods for the evaluation of an experimental study
  • Explain the importance of rigorous scientific technique in scientific studies.
  • Explain the importance of dissemination of the study results irrespective of the outcome

 

Competencies

  • Design and evaluate experiments using live animals 
  • Design and evaluate experiments in the subdisciplines studies using live animals including transgenic animals, cell cultures including induced pluripotent stem cells, microscopy, electrophysiology, optogenetics, chemogenetics, neuroimaging, neurogenetics.
  • Independently and critically assess neuroscientific literature
  • Independently interpret neuroscientific data and literature
  • Communicate and discuss neuroscientific knowledge and theories

There will be lectures, journal clubs, and workshops.

See Absalon.

Cell biology incl. gene transcription and translation.

Collective
Continuous feedback during the course of the semester
Peer feedback (Students give each other feedback)
ECTS
10 ECTS
Type of assessment
Oral examination, 20 minutes
Type of assessment details
The student will draw one of 15-20 predefined scientific papers. The student will explain the paper, the techniques used in the paper and the data obtained for about 10 minutes followed by a scientific discussion about the paper and its methodological approach in the broader sence for about 10 minutes.
Aid
All aids allowed
Marking scale
7-point grading scale
Censorship form
No external censorship
Internal examiners
Criteria for exam assessment

To achieve the maximum grade of 12, the student must be able to:

Knowledge

  • Discuss and critically evaluate scientific methods applied within experimental neuroscience
  • Explain statistical principles and methods used in neuroscience
  • Describe different animal models, including zebrafish, drosophila and rodents, used in neuroscience and discuss pros and cons of each model.
  • Explain the principles and discuss the research applications of using human stem cells for modelling neurological disease
  • Explain the principles and discuss the research applications of electrophysiology
  • Explain the principles and discuss the research applications of advanced microscopy
  • Explain the principles and discuss the research applications of viral vectors as tools, including optogenetics and chemogenetics.
  • Explain the principles and discuss the research applications of magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and functional MRI
  • Explain the principles and discuss the research applications of positron emission tomography (PET)
  • Explain the principles of neurogenetics including DNA variation, genotype, haplotype, allele frequencies, Linkage Disequlibrium and heritability.
  • Discuss the basics of genetic mapping including both common and rare variants
  • Discuss principles and methods for downstream analyses of genetic datasets
  • Explain the principles of single-cell RNA sequencing, data processing and visualization
  • Explain the principles behind epidemiological studies and the role of chance, bias and confounding in such studies

 

Skills

  • Read, understand, evaluate, and discuss scientific literature within neuroscience
  • Critically evaluate scientific methods applied within experimental neuroscience
  • Evaluate research studies in basic and translational neuroscience
  • Evaluate the statistical approach used in a scientific paper
  • Design and evaluate research studies in the following disciplines: studies using live animals including transgenic animals, cell cultures including induced pluripotent stem cells, microscopy, electrophysiology, optogenetics, chemogenetics, neuroimaging, neurogenetics.
  • Use appropriate statistical methods for the evaluation of an experimental study
  • Explain the importance of rigorous scientific technique in scientific studies.
  • Explain the importance of dissemination of the study results irrespective of the outcome
  • Category
  • Hours
  • Lectures
  • 54
  • Class Instruction
  • 53
  • Preparation
  • 151
  • Exercises
  • 13
  • Excursions
  • 3
  • Exam
  • 1
  • English
  • 275

Kursusinformation

Language
English
Course number
SNEU23005U
ECTS
10 ECTS
Programme level
Full Degree Master
Duration

1 semester

Placement
Autumn
Schedulegroup
See Time Table
Capacity
30
Studyboard
Study Board for Human Biology, Immunology and Neuroscience
Contracting department
  • Department of Neuroscience
Contracting faculty
  • Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences
Course Coordinator
  • Birgitte Rahbek Kornum   (6-6f73767279714477797268326f7932686f)
    Course responsible
Teacher

See Absalon

Saved on the 07-11-2023

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