Brain and Behaviour

Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam

Course Description

  • Course Name

    Brain and Behaviour

  • Host University

    Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam

  • Location

    Amsterdam, The Netherlands

  • Area of Study


  • Language Level

    Taught In English

    Hours & Credits

  • ECTS Credits

  • Recommended U.S. Semester Credits
  • Recommended U.S. Quarter Units
  • Overview

    The course is concerned with human behavior and its underlying neural structure. The course is relevant to students majoring in biology, business, law, sociology, criminology, movement sciences, artificial intelligence, medicine, health sciences, and other disciplines in which human behavior is important.

    Brain and Behavior is a course that is specifically designed to permit integration of information derived experimentally from many disciplines to gain a better understanding of human behavior and how this behavior is linked to brain functioning. Through this course you will learn how we perceive the world, how we learn and think, how our emotions and motives influence our behavior, and how behavior can be linked to the functioning of our brain. The course consists of eight lectures an excursion and an exam. Below is outlined the content of the meetings.

    • Introduction to Brain and Behavior
    • Brain imaging techniques (Heslenfeld): Which tools do we have to measure brain activity?
    • Excursion to the brain imaging facilities and EEG lab (Heslenfeld)
    • Lesion studies and Perception: How do we perceive the world and what can we learn from brain lesions?
    • Attention and Action: What determines what we attend and how we act?
    • Memory: How does our memory work and why do we forget things?
    • Language: How can we speak and understand one another?
    • Decision-making: How do we make decisions and what kind of decision errors do we tend to make?
    • Social and Emotional Cognition: What is the neural basis of social interaction and emotion?

    This course is an introduction to the science of experimental psychology - the investigation of how people perceive, attend, learn, remember, and think. Specific topics include: attention, perception, memory, and decision-making. Students are expected to actively participate in discussions. There will an excursion to the VU imaging facilities. Students will learn how they can apply knowledge of brain and behavior to solve every-life problems. Applications will be discussed such as driver distraction and multitasking, decision-making in real life situations, eye-witness testimony, and psychological issues in judicial reasoning.

    Students are evaluated by means of an exam and a group presentation.

Course Disclaimer

Courses and course hours of instruction are subject to change.

Some courses may require additional fees.


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