Neuroscience, the study of the brain, spinal cord, and peripheral nervous system in health and disease, has emerged since the 1960’s as one of the most vigorous and exciting fields of modern science. The brisk pace of progress in neuroscience has been powered by at least four key factors:
- The challenge of understanding the development, functioning, and diseases of the brain.
- The invention and application of powerful new methods from many scientific disciplines, permitting dramatic leaps of understanding of the organization, operation, development, and disorders of the nervous system.
- The creative energies and collaborations of scientists from many other fields of science.
- The conviction that the complex problems of the nervous system are best addressed by scientists working in an interdisciplinary mode, unfettered by the prejudices and limitations of a traditional, technique-bound perspective.
At the University of Arizona, teaching and research in neuroscience are distributed in the Colleges of Science, Social and Behavioral Sciences, Engineering and Mines, Medicine, Nursing, and Pharmacy, as well as the Arizona Research Laboratories. Sixty-four faculty members from 21 departments or equivalent units, primarily or exclusively engaged in research and teaching in the field of neuroscience, constitute the University’s Committee on Neuroscience (CN).
Many of these faculty collaborate through strong research and training clusters in cognitive neuroscience, developmental neurobiology, insect neurobiology, motor control, neuropharmacology, and speech and hearing sciences. Along with other scientists in the university who are interested in the field, the faculty members of the CN bring the excitement of exploration and discovery in the nervous system to their undergraduate, graduate, and postdoctoral students.
The Graduate Program in Neuroscience is designed to give students a thorough base of knowledge in the many facets of neuroscience as well as depth in chosen areas of specialization, and to enhance their abilities to think creatively, to express themselves clearly, and to be effective both as individual researchers and as members of research teams. The Program in Neuroscience prepares students for careers in academic science, industry, or independent or government research or research-policy centers.