What Professor Higgins is teaching

NSCS 495 Spring 2014

Intriguing Topics in Neuroscience and Cognitive Science

This course is new in 2014, and is a student-led discussion course, where NSCS students offer all of the content, and I just kibitz from the back.

NROS 215 Spring 2014

Introduction to Electrophysiology

This course introduces freshmen and sophomores to the electrophysiology lab. It was taught for the first time in 2013. You can learn about everything, and see pictures and videos, at nros215.com.

NSCS 315 Spring 2014

Methods in Neuroscience and Cognitive Science

This course is half computer lab (where we mostly have long discussions), and half cognitive science methods. This course will be split into two parts in 2015, so congratulations to those of you who are taking it now, in complete form for the last time. Here's the syllabus from 2012.

HNRS 195i Fall 2013

Searching for the mind: From humans to robots

This course is an honors seminar for first-semester undergraduate honors students.
We will start by debating the assumption that humans are simply biochemical machines. Do humans truly have "free will", and what does it mean if they do not? What is "the mind", and how do you know if it exists? What inherent rights do humans have, and why? If machines were "intelligent", would they have these rights, too? How would you design a machine that thinks it has a "mind" and "free will"? In this seminar, we will connect the latest research in neuroscience with ideas about the mind from psychology and cognitive science, using examples such as depression and neuro-degenerative diseases. We will further connect these ideas to research in robotics, prosthetics, and artificial intelligence. We will discuss the meaning of scientific inquiry. We will tour relevant scientific labs, and make connections between individual students and future lab research experiences. We will discuss how to read scientific papers, and each student will write their own guided scientific paper.