Neuroscience is a multidisciplinary science dedicated to understanding how nervous systems are built and function at different scales, from molecules and cells to circuits and systems. Neuroscientists are involved in work to improve the human condition with new discoveries that could prevent or treat neurodevelopmental defects and disorders, psychiatric disorders, and neurodegenerative diseases.
A neuroscience major is an excellent starting point for a career in human or animal medicine, psychology, medical research, pharmaceuticals, public health or science writing. Entry level jobs for students with a bachelor’s degree include positions as assistants in hospitals and private healthcare clinics; as technicians in academic, governmental, or commercial research laboratories; in pharmaceutical sales and marketing; and in government agencies and nonprofits in roles related to grant writing, regulatory management, or technical assistance. Many of these occupational areas are projected to grow faster than average in the next decade. The average annual salary in Wisconsin for a neuroscientist with a graduate degree is $97,202 in 2021 (source: ZipRecruiter.com ). The major is also excellent preparation for students pursuing doctoral degrees in medicine, medical research, or professional counseling.
The courses for the major come primarily from the Department of Biological Sciences and the Department of Psychology. Students will learn about the structure and function of nervous systems, from the cellular level to the systems level; the connections between the brain and behavior; experimental design and research methods; and data analysis, interpretation, and use. Within the major students can take coursework in neuroscience subdisciplines such as cognitive, cellular and molecular, or computational neuroscience.