College of Veterinary Medicine

Neuroscience Program

Computational Neuroscience Undergraduate Curriculum

Computational Neuroscience links the information processing features of the nervous system with information processing of computer systems.  Accordingly, the Computational Neuroscience track supplements the neuroscience core curriculum with information technology courses.  In this way, students learn not only of the brain and its information processing mechanisms but also of modern computer hardware and software technologies. Courses in science and engineering have been selected to give as broad an exposure as possible to subjects that underlie the basic neural and computational sciences with an emphasis on the organisms and the machine as information processing entities.  Upon completion of the four-year curriculum, a B.S. degree in Neuroscience will be awarded.  Furthermore, the program is designed to allow students to acquire breadth in computational subjects or, alternatively, to focus on either software or hardware aspects of computation.  Students choosing to acquire breadth in computational subjects will be well prepared for graduate study in most areas of neural and biomedical science, including bioengineering.  Students choosing a software focus may obtain a minor in either computer science or computer engineering.  All subject requirements for entry into medical school are met by completion of the program of study in Computational Neuroscience.
Certification Requirements

To certify a major in Computational Neuroscience, students must complete a minimum of 24 credit hours and have a cumulative 3.0 minimum grade point average (GPA) in the following math and science courses:

3.0 minimum GPA in the following:

Biol 106 and 107
Chem 105 and106
Math 171 and 172
Neuro 301 or 302
Phys 201

Once a student has completed 60 hours, the university requires certification in a major as a condition for further enrollment (usually by the end of the sophomore year).  The Neuroscience baccalaureate degree program currently has a cap of 40 majors.  Thus, we may be unable to certify all qualified students. In this situation, the most highly qualified students who apply will be selected for certification up to the enrollment limit.

Students who have certified must continue to maintain a 3.0 minimum GPA in courses required to fulfill the degree or they may be de-certified from the major and their folders returned to the Student Advising and Learning Center (SALC) for reassignment.

Core Prerequisites

Years 1 and 2
Prefix Course No. [GER] Title Credits
Biol 106, 107 (L) [B] Introduction to Biology 4/4
Chem 105, 106 (L) [P] Principles of Chemistry 4/4
Chem 345   Elementary Organic Chemistry 4
Cpt S 121, 122   Program Design and Development,
Data Structures
EE 214 Design of Logic Circuits 4
Math 171, 172, 216 [N] Calculus I & II, Discrete Structures 4/4/3
Physics 201, 202 [P] Physics for Scientists & Engineers 4/4
Psych 105 [S] Introduction to Psychology 3
Total Credits for Years 1 & 2 50

Major Core Courses

Years 3 and 4
Prefix Course No. [GER] Title Credits
Biol 353   Mammalian Physiology 4
Engl 402 [M] Technical and Professional Writing 3
MBioS 301   General Genetics 4
MBioS 303   Introductory Biochemistry 4
Neuro 301 or 302   Exploring the Brain or Honors 3
Neuro 403 [M] Cellular Neurobiology 3
Neuro 404   Neuroanatomy 3
Neuro 430 [M] Principles of Neurophysiology 4
495 or
  Directed Research or
Special Problems

2 credits total from 495 or 499

Neuro 490   Senior Project 1
Phil 201 [H] Elementary Logic 3

Total Credits for Years 3 & 4


Plus select one of the three tracks below:

1. Breadth-of-field Track (No Minor)
The Breadth of Field Track allows the student to balance software and hardware courses and, in addition, include the modeling aspects of computation in their course of study.  This track is recommended for students who wish to maximize the opportunities for advanced study following the BS degree.
Prefix Course No. Title Credits
BE 340 Unified Bioengineering I 4
EE 261/262 Electrical Circuits 3/1
Math 220, 273, 315 Linear Algebra, Calculus III, Differential Equations 2/2/3
Electives (see below)1 Select nine (9) credits from elective courses list below 9
    Total 24
2. Software Emphasis Track (Computer Science Minor)
Programmed instructions are the basis of machine intelligence. Through the software emphasis track, the student acquires a thorough background in machine instructions leading to intelligent operations. The two courses that culminate this sequence (one in artificial intelligence, the other in human cognition) provide contrast between machine and human intelligence.
Prefix Course No. Title Credits
CptS 223 Advanced Data Structures 3
CptS 224 Programming Tools 2
CptS 322 Software Engineering Principles 3
CptS 440 Intro to Artificial  Intelligence 3
Psych 490 Cognition and Memory 3
Electives (see below)1 Select five (5) credits from elective courses list below. At least three (3) credits must be from the upper division CptS courses. 5
    Total 19
3. Hardware Emphasis Track (Computer Engineering Minor)
Neural circuitry and neural system components are both similar and different from electronic circuitry and computational system components.  These similarities and differences are fundamental to the link between neurosciences and computational science. The hardware emphasis track provides the neuroscience student the opportunity to explore these similarities and differences.
Prefix Course No. Title Credits
EE 261/262 Electrical Circuits 3/1
EE 234 Microprocessor Systems 4
EE 324 Fundamentals of Digital Systems 4
EE/CptS 300/400 level Select three  (3) credits of upper division EE or CptS from the elective course list below.1 3
Math 220, 273, 315 Linear Algebra, Calculus III, Differential Equations 2/2/3
Electives (see below)1 Select two (2) credits from elective courses list below. 2
Total 24
1 Elective Courses  
(Other science courses may be substituted based on advisor approval.)
Prefix Course No. Title Credits
Biol 315 Gross and Microanatomy 4
Biol 321 Principles of Animal Development 4
Biol 352 Cell Physiology 3
Biol 438 [M] Animal Behavior 3
Cpt S 422 Software Engineering Principles 3
Cpt S 423 Software Engineering Laboratory 3
Cpt S 434 Neural Network Design and Application 3
Cpt S 440 Introduction to Artificial Intelligence 3
Cpt S 443 Computer-Human Interaction 3
Cpt S 445 Digital Image Processing 3
Cpt S 446 Animation Programming 3
Cpt S 450 Design and Analysis of Algorithms 3
EE 311 Electronics 3
EE 321 Electrical Circuits II 3
EE 324 Fundamentals of Digital Systems 4
EE 341 Signals and Systems 3
EE 441 Digital Control 3
EE 442 Robotics 3
EE 451 Digital Communication Systems 3
EE 464 Digital Signal Processing 3
MBioS 378 Intro to Molecular Biology Computer Techniques 3
MBios 401 Introductory Cell Biology 3
Neuro 409/509 Affective Neuroscience 3
Neuro 506* Generation, Degeneration, Regeneration in the Nervous System 2
Neuro 520* Fundamental Neuroscience 4
Neuro 526* Domestic and Exotic Animal Behavior 2
Neuro 529* Cellular and Molecular Neurobiology 4
Neuro 540* Special Topics in Integrative Neuroscience 3
Neuro 541* Special Topics in Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience 3
Neuro 542* Special Topics in Disciplinary Neuroscience 3
Neuro 543* Special Topics in Behavioral/Clinical Neuroscience 3
Psych 490 Cognition and Memory 3

*Graduate Study By Seniors:
Seniors who have at least a 3.00 grade point average in the last half of their undergraduate coursework at Washington State University may register for up to six semester hours of work in the Graduate School in excess of the number of hours required to complete the bachelor's degree.  Graduate School approval is required at the time of registration.  Only grades of "B" or higher may be applied toward an advanced degree. Seniors who wish to enroll in 500-level courses for undergraduate credit must obtain the approval of their major advisor and the Chair of the department or program in which the course is offered.
Suggested Course of Study for Computational Neuroscience
Last Edited: Mar 29, 2013 9:03 AM   

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