Bachelor of Science (BSc) in Neuroscience
USD 33,500 / per year *
Earliest start date
* annual full-time rate
Loras is the only Catholic liberal arts college in the Tri-State region that offers a major in Neuroscience. Neuroscience is the study of the nervous system and its interactions with other physiological systems in the body. At its core, neuroscience is a synergy of biological and psychological concepts based at the neuronal level. The Neuroscience major at Loras College is designed to give students a broad, interdisciplinary education of the brain and nervous system while using a systems-level approach to train students in a myriad of research and clinically relevant fields.
Neuroscience majors engage in unique experiences, both inside and outside the classroom, including exploring neuroanatomy through dissections, interactions with community-based programs, and conducting modern analytical techniques. Students enhance research skills through independent projects covering such topics as concussion symptoms, the effects of stress on time perception, and the impact of social instability in mice. In addition, students benefit from interactions with the wide array of experts who are invited to speak on campus.
Loras College houses a rodent research colony to facilitate student research projects. The rodent research colony is designed to explore investigations of central nervous system functioning and also behavioral observation techniques. In addition to serving as a research resource, the rodent colony is also utilized as an educational resource to expose students to various testing paradigms in the classroom.
Loras College Neuroscience Curriculum
The Neuroscience curriculum is designed to prepare Loras students for a multitude of careers following graduation.
The Neuroscience curriculum is designed to prepare Loras students for a multitude of careers following graduation. The majority of the required coursework comes from courses in Biology and Psychology. Students interested in pursuing post-baccalaureate education (e.g. medical school, graduate school) after leaving Loras should pay particular attention to the “recommended” courses, as many of these are prerequisites for admission to these schools. Individual admissions requirements vary, so students are encouraged to investigate these and discuss them with their advisor to make sure that they are well prepared prior to graduation.
To download a copy of the Neuroscience curriculum and a sample 4-year plan, please click here. Four-year plans are intended as a guide for students to accomplish a neuroscience degree in four years; however, classes and offerings are subject to change at any time, and students are encouraged to work closely with their advisor beginning the first year, in order to meet their goals.
Loras College Neuroscience Research
There are several opportunities for students to gain research experience during their time at Loras.
Students majoring in Neuroscience are required to participate in research.
Dr. Jarcho has research interests in how psychosocial stressors can influence everything from an individual’s emotional state to their physiology, to their immune function. He is currently working with students on two main projects. The first project investigates how people respond to a simulated social rejection event. In this project, we are interested in how people respond, both emotionally and physiologically, to being excluded from a group. The second project is using a mouse model to investigate how social instability influences anxiety-like behavior, stress physiology, and inflammatory biology. In this project, female mice experience unstable social conditions. In response to this stressor, female mice are expected to experience behavioral and physiological changes. Importantly, these changes are expected to parallel those changes that individuals suffer during chronic anxiety. By investigating the changes that occur following a stressful event, we hope to discover patterns that may be used in the prevention and treatment of patients suffering from general anxiety disorder (GAD) and other anxiety disorders.
Participation in research does not necessarily need to happen on campus, and students are encouraged to pursue opportunities elsewhere as well. The National Science Foundation offers several summer research experiences for undergraduates at various colleges and universities throughout the country. There are also research opportunities through the National Institutes of Health that offer unique research experiences to undergraduates. In addition to the opportunities at NSF and NIH, the Neuroscience faculty are working to establish and develop relationships with researchers at other colleges and universities in order to facilitate Loras students’ participation in research.
Student Learning Outcomes – Neuroscience
- Students will be able to identify core concepts of neuroscience.
- Students will be able to synthesize information to formulate hypotheses, design experiments, and engage in scientific research.
- Students will be able to communicate neuroscientific information in a clear, reasoned manner, both verbally and in writing.
“What can you do with a Neuroscience degree?”
Neuroscience is a growing and highly competitive field. Students leaving Loras College with a Neuroscience degree are well suited to join this field and add to society’s growing knowledge of the inner workings of the human body. Those interested in pursuing specialized training will leave campus well prepared for graduate or medical school in several related disciplines. A Neuroscience degree from Loras College can open the door to a career in any of a number of scientific or medical professions.
- Laboratory Technician
- Scientific Educator at Neurological Foundations
- Pharmaceutical Research Scientists
- Neurological Foundation Specialists