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UConn Neuroscience in Salamanca, Spain (Faculty-led) (summer)

This 5 week program typically runs from the third week in May through the third week in June.

The Program

UConn Neuroscience in Salamanca, Spain will introduce students to Neuroscience at an international level. Sponsored by the Honors Program and the Department of Neuroscience, this five week program will be taught by a team of international scientists. It is a joint effort by the University of Connecticut, the Institute of Neuroscience of Castilla y Leon, and the University of Salamanca. The program is designed for Honors students, upper class Pre-med, Neuroscience, Biomedical Engineering, Psychology, and Audiology Communication Science majors.

The program will take place at the University of Salamanca (USAL), founded in 1218. A college town that is both medieval and modern, Salamanca was founded by the Romans in the 4th century, and it teems with cafes, tapas bars, shops, night life, and a rich mix of locals, students, and European tourists. Students will learn about Neuroscience and Spanish culture by becoming immersed in the vibrant life of this truly unique city.


This program is open to both graduate, post-graduate, and undergraduate students from any University or College. Since this is a summer program, admission to the program is handled by the Study Abroad Office at UCONN. Students enroll in one Neurosciencecourse and one Spanish class to earn 6 credits. All students receive credits and a transcript from the University of Connecticut. You should get credit at your home university for these courses, and we can send information to your advisor to facilitate your getting credit. The program is limited to a total of 50 students.

MEDS 5377: The Neurobiology of Hearing. Offered each year. (Dr. Oliver and Invited Faculty, 3 Credits, Honors; 20 students maximum ) A graduate school course on the basis of sound processing. Become familiar with current research topics in Auditory Neuroscience, including synaptic physiology, neural circuitry, acoustics, physiology, and behavior. This course is taught by UCONN, Johns Hopkins, UK and Spanish faculty and will expose you to research in an international context. This course is for upper-level undergraduate neurobiology majors, pre-med students, psychology majors, communication science majors and graduate students. Undergraduate students should have completed an introductory neuroscience course (e.g., Biology of the Brain) or courses in physiological psychology, sensation and perception, or communication science. Some combination of these prerequisites is preferred. Permission of the instructor is required for registration. Undergraduate students (Honors and non-Honors students) with a grade of B- or above receive Honors credit for MEDS5377. Students from Johns Hopkins and Purdue will receive credit from their home university for this course.

Click here for more details on the Neurobiology of Hearing course (

PSYC 2201: Drugs and Behavior. Offered in 2017 (Dr. Salamone, 3 credits, Honors; 5 student minimum) This course is an overview of drug effects on chemical transmission in the nervous system, with an emphasis on the behavioral/psychological effects of drugs. The first half of the course provides an introduction to basic principles of psychopharmacology, with emphasis on the neurochemistry of drug action, chemical signaling in the nervous system, and the anatomy of several neurotransmitter systems, as well as the behavioral assessment of drug effects. The second half of the class builds upon the first, with a survey of drugs belonging to various classes (e.g., stimulants, antipsychotics, antidepressants, antianxiety agents), and a focus on drugs of abuse. In addition, the course matter extends beyond the discussion of drugs themselves, and considers the question of what our knowledge of drug action tells us about the brain, normal and pathological psychological processes, and the tendency to consume drugs. The text book will beDrugs, the Brain, and Behavior (Grilly and Salamone, 2011). The course generally follows the outline of the textbook. Prerequisites: Psyc 1100, Bio 1107, or consent of instructor.

PSYC 2200: Physiological Psychology. Offered in 2017 (Dr. Chrobak, 3 credits, Honors) Introduction to how distinct levels of neurobiology (from genes, molecules, proteins to neural circuits and neural systems) influence behavior and cognition. Emphasis is on forebrain systems that support movement, attention, decision-making, and memory as well as the neural changes associated with psychological (ADHD), psychiatric (depression, schizophrenia) and neurological dysfunction (Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s disease).Format: PowerPoint lecture; films; optional student presentations
Requirements: 5 short, multiple-choice exams plus final exam
Text/Materials: 1 text; supplemental online readings

Click here to download the syllabus for PSYCH 2200.

PNB 3251: Biology of the Brain. Offered in 2018 (Dr. Filipovic, 3 credits, Honors) Brain functions, from molecular to cellular and overall central nervous system organization. Topics of current interest. This course is for upper-level undergraduate physiology & neurobiology majors and is suitable for majors in the neurosciences, biological sciences, and psychology. Biology of the Brain presents provides students with a detailed foundation of cellular neuroscience that includes the ionic basis of resting and action potentials, synaptic transmission, sensory and motor systems neuroscience and plasticity. The required text for the course is Purves, et al, Neuroscience, 5th Edition. Students will be assessed on their classroom participation and examinations. Prerequisites: One 2000-level course in PNB or consent of instructor.

Click here to download the syllabus for Biology of the Brain

SPANISH: Beginner, Intermediate, Medical, and Advanced Scientific Spanish.(USAL staff, 3 credits) All student have instruction in Spanish language and elements of Spanish culture at a level matched to their level. Beginner and intermediate Spanish are for students with no previous Spanish or High School Spanish, respectively. Medical Spanish is for non-native Spanish Speakers. Advanced Scientific Spanish is a Neuroscience special topics course offered for native Spanish speakers by Dr. Saldana in the Neuroscience Faculty.

Click here to download the syllabus for Spanish – Beginner

Click here to download the syllabus for Spanish – Intermediate

Click here to download the syllabus for Spanish – Medical

Click here to download the syllabus for Spanish – Advanced Scientific


Neuroscience Methods in Prague, Czech Republic: This is a short course on neuroscience methods at the Institute of Experimental Medicine at the Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic. The course will use research in the auditory system to illustrate these general neuroscience methods. Laboratory visits and demos will introduce evoked potential recordings, extracellular recording in vivo, patch clamp recording in brain slices, neuroanatomy methods, two photon calcium imaging in cortex in vivo, prepulse inhibition behavior, acoustic startle, operant conditioning, anesthesia and surgery, acoustic measurements and signals, and audiological examination methods in humans. All students in the Neurobiology of Hearing class are expected to attend. Other students are encouraged to attend if interested in laboratory research. This is a 5 day, 4 night trip to Prague where the students will have two days of instructions and ample time to tour the city.  Housing in Prague will be arranged only for students participating in the course.

Enrollment in the Neuroscience Methods course is limited to 30 students in 2017.


The Experience

The University of Salamanca offers dormitory accommodations with a meal plan. There will be many opportunities for socializing with Spanish students as the University of Salamanca will be in session during the program. In addition, UConn students will interact with the Ph.D. students in the Institute for Neuroscience who will act as hosts and guides.

As stated above, Salamanca is one of the most exciting cities in Spain! The Plaza Mayor is perhaps the most beautiful in the country and is the site of concerts, public events, and round-the-clock social gatherings. Students can travel easily from Salamanca to the walled city of Avila (home of the Spanish Inquisition), the museums of Madrid, and the narrow streets of Segovia and Toledo. Portugal is approximately a seventy-five mile drive away.  Classes will be held on Mondays through Thursdays for the duration of the five week program, allowing students time to travel, study and socialize during three day weekends.

May 20-21 – Arrive in Salamanca; Saturday arrivals will travel to Salamanca together by bus
May 22 – (Monday) – Post-arrival meeting and first day of classes
May 31-June 4 – Prague short course on neuroscience methods
June 22 – (Thursday) Last day of classes (final exams); Farewell party
June 25 – Latest departure from dormitory

For more information, visit  or contact:

Dr. Douglas Oliver
Professor of Neuroscience
UConn Health
(860) 679-2241


Please note that the only type of financial aid that can be applied to the cost of this program, other than scholarships, are Federal Stafford Loans. Click the link below for this program’s budget sheet and contact the UConn Office of Financial Aid Services for information regarding your individual financial aid package.

Budget Sheets: Summer
The Details

Dates / Deadlines:

Term Year App Deadline Decision Date Start Date End Date
Summer 2017 03/15/2017 03/25/2017 05/20/2017 06/24/2017

Fact Sheet:

Class status: 3rd Year, 4th+ Year, 5th Year, Graduate Student Academic area: Audiology Communication Science, Biomedical Engineering, Neuroscience, Pre-Med, Psychology
Language of instruction: English Prior language study required: None
Open to non-UConn students: Yes Required GPA: 3