Our interdisciplinary science focus makes for a unique academic experience for students interested in studying neuroscience. We easily integrate this program with other sciences—chemistry, biology, physics, and more—to help students understand brain function, behavior, and consciousness.

Majors:

Faculty

Our faculty are both scholars and teachers who devote their careers to making important contributions to their disciplines through writing and research. They are committed to undergraduate education and teach everything from first-year seminars to advanced courses.

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Department Overview

Few subjects integrate the sciences as well as neuroscience, which incorporates the study of biology, chemistry, physics, psychology, physiology, mathematics, cognitive science, and medicine. Together, these fields lead to a better understanding of how the brain works and how it makes behavior and consciousness possible. Our interdisciplinary science focus makes for a distinct academic experience for an Oberlin neuroscience major.

The neuroscience major is designed for students interested in the cellular, chemical, and structural organization of the brain and the relationship between the brain’s operation and perception, thought, emotion, and behavior. Opportunities are available for students to use multiple approaches at many levels of analysis including molecular, cellular, systems, and behavioral levels.

Neuroscience News

A girl wearing a surgical mask stands with arms folded in a hallway.

A Lesson in Computational Modeling

October 29, 2020
“Computational modeling is the future of neuroscience!” raves Rochelle van der Merwe ’21. So when she had the chance to participate in a Carney Center for Computational Brain Science computational modeling workshop at Brown University, she took full advantage of the opportunity.
A student injects fluid into EEG electrodes

Pandemic Impact Award Helps Zoe Swann ’19 Continue Research on StartReact Effect

September 9, 2020
After graduating from Oberlin College with high honors in neuroscience and a concentration in linguistics, Zoe Swann ’19 immediately embarked on a PhD program at Arizona State University (ASU), where she began writing a literature review, and started developing a dissertation proposal. Then COVID-19 struck. It brought her research to a screeching halt until her lab was granted a $1,500 Pandemic Impact Award to support research expenses.

Neuroscience Facilities

Confocal Microscope

Confocal Microscope

Housed in a specially designed room of the Science Center, Oberlin’s confocal microscope provides remarkable cellular detail and resolution.

Electrophysiology Suite

This lab enables neuroscience students and faculty to work with nerve cells.
exterior view of walkway and entrance to science center

Science Center

The Science Center houses the departments of biology, chemistry, neuroscience, physics, and the science library.
two students sitting at table with backs to each other.

Science Library

Part of the Science Center complex, the college opened a spacious library with materials devoted to astronomy, biochemistry, biology, botany, chemistry, geology, neuroscience, physics, and zoology.