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COURSE TITLE: Brain and Behavior
CREDIT WEIGHT AND WEEKLY TIME DISTRIBUTION: credits 3 (hrs lect 3 - hrs sem 0 - hrs lab 0)
CALENDAR DESCRIPTION: A study of the relation between biology and behavior in humans. Topics include mind/brain issues, brain development, genes and behavior, structure and function of the nervous system, brain disorders, biopsychology of motivated disorders, drug abuse and lateralization. Foundational issues as well as biological details will be emphasized.

Prerequisites: One of BIOL 200, 210, 211, PSYC 250 or 251

Same as PSYC 375.
REQUIRED TEXTS: Kalat, J. W. (2016).  Biological psychology (12th ed.).  Toronto: Thomson-Wadsworth.
Online quizzes 10%
Midterm 1 35%
Written Assignment 15%
Final 40%
  • Define and use the language of neuroanatomy and physiological to label brain structures and systems, describe neural function (resting potential, action potential, synaptic communication).
  • Apply the language and concepts of neuroanatomy, physiology, and development to explain the impact of experiences, natural healing processes, drugs, and rehabilitation on the brain and related behaviour.
  • Describe and explain basic methods of brain/behaviour research, including which method is appropriate for which type of question.
  • Explain the limitations of common methods of brain/behaviour research and of the interpretation of the results obtained from these methods.
  • Articulate knowledge of the basic controversies in, and challenges of, a biological perspective on human experience and behaviour, including questions of mind-soul/body-brain, localization versus whole-brain/network models of brain function, plasticity versus stability, biological determinism and reductionism.
  • Critique media reports of neuroscientific research in light of knowledge of research methods as well as common distortions and limitations of interpretations of this research.
COURSE OUTLINE: We will initially cover the first five chapters in Kalat:
  • The Major Issues
  • Nerve Cells and Impulses
  • Synapses & Drugs
  • Anatomy of the Nervous System & Brain Research Methods
  • Development and Plasticity of the Brain
Then we will cover a selection (which you get some input into) of some of the following chapters/topics:
  • Movement
  • Circadian Rhythms and Sleep
  • Eating Behavior & Hunger
  • Reproductive Behaviors
  • Emotions
  • Learning and Memory
  • Lateralization of Function
  • Language

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