Vanderbilt’s Neuroscience Major
Before coming to college, I had known that I wanted to study the brain. As a result, I chose to pursue the neuroscience major at Vanderbilt, despite not having much experience taking similar classes in high school. Neuroscience seems to be a college-specific line of coursework in many cases, so I wanted to provide some information about what the neuroscience major here looks like for readers who may be interested in pursuing it!
The neuroscience major here is, in many ways, similar to the pre-medical track for undergraduates who are hoping to someday be doctors. In order to complete the major, it is required that you take the classes that medical schools generally require: organic chemistry, biology, physics, and your choice of math classes. Though these classes can often be difficult, there are so many resources available for help and everyone fosters a collaborative academic environment on campus.
Alongside core science requirements, the neuroscience major allows you to take a number of different neuroscience and related courses of your choosing. While the introductory neuroscience course is required, there are several other classes that you can choose from in order to meet requirements regarding the type of classes you’re taking (ex. Molecular and Cellular Neuroscience, Systems and Integrative/Cognitive Neuroscience).
Additionally, the neuroscience major requires that you participate in research for credit in a neuroscience or related biological sciences laboratory. This allows you to gain hands-on experience in the field and nicely complements the neuroscience coursework you complete in classes. Doing research in my lab has been very helpful in informing potential career goals and allowing me to develop academically and professionally.
If you have any questions about the neuroscience major, any specific classes, or life at Vanderbilt, feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.