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Neuroscience

Research Opportunities

Research is a constant in the life of a neuroscience major and it can come in many forms. At Hamilton, senior neuroscience majors do an intensive research project and there is also opportunity to conduct collaborative summer research with a faculty member.

Students and faculty members often co-author papers that are presented at national conferences and published in leading scholarly journals. In recent years students have published in such journals as “Behavioral Neuroscience” and “Experimental Brain Research,” and they have been authors of presentations at the annual meetings of the Society of Neuroscience, Cognitive Neuroscience Society, Psychonomic Society, Organization for Human Brain Mapping and the Neurobiology of Language Conference.

Top neuroscience majors may be selected for the Senior Fellowship Program, in which up to seven Hamilton students undertake a major research project under the supervision of two or more faculty members. Recent senior fellows in neuroscience have studied octopamine and single neurons.

Sarah Izzo '15
Sarah Izzo ’15 Examines Judicial System through Neuroscience Lens

For her Levitt Summer Research Fellowship Grant, Sarah Izzo ’15 is working on a project with Professor of Philosophy Rick Werner titled “Brains on the Stand: The Implications of Emerging Neuroscience Research on our Judicial System.” Izzo is examining new neuroscience research on topics like decision-making and free will as well as associated technological advances (such as improved precision in lie detection).   More ...

Nine Students Awarded Class of '79 Travel Grant

Nine Hamilton seniors have been selected to receive the Class of 1979 Student Travel Award. The award, established by the alumni of Hamilton's Class of 1979, offers financial assistance to Hamilton students who wish to pursue extensive research projects in different parts of the world.  More ...

Student researchers in the lab.
Got Calcium?

“Got milk?” For a group of Hamilton student researchers, the well-known slogan might be modified to “Got calcium?” The most abundant metal in our bodies and a valuable component of milk, calcium serves functions well beyond building strong teeth and bones. Hamilton research students, working with Douglas Weldon, the Stone Professor of Psychology, are examining how our mental processes depend on calcium.  The compound performs lesser known, but essential, roles in blood clotting, chemical signaling and action potential firing.  More ...

Sandhya Rao '15, Gretchen Walker '14, Rebecca Gaines '15, Sarah Mehrotra '14, Noah Levinson '14.
L.A.B. Lab Crew Helps Support New Model of the Brain

Everyone uses language on a daily basis, but few question exactly how we understand what another person is saying.  Interpreting gestures and sounds seems natural to us, yet there is a much deeper and more scientific explanation to it all.  More ...

Sarah Mandel '15, Carrie Cabush '15, (Alex Cates '15 pictured on monitor), Summer Bottini '14, Mahima Karki '14
Tracking Movements to Find Answers

Picking up a spoon to stir your morning coffee seems uncomplicated enough, right? We simply see the object and move our hand until it is close enough to grab it. But how much harder does it become if the object gets smaller or farther away from us? Or what happens when we start using our non-dominant hand? Perhaps most of us could make an educated guess at how much harder it would make the task, but Paul Fitts took it one step further beyond just estimating.  More ...

Allison Reeder '14
Reeder '14 Undertakes Neurological Disorder Research

Reserach has found that it’s more startling to hear a single loud sound than a soft sound followed by a loud sound. This neurological phenomenon is called pre-pulse inhibition and exists so that the body can adapt to loud stimuli when it is supplied with a warning. Allison Reeder ’14 has been awarded a science summer research grant to study pre-pulse inhibition in rats under the direction of Stone Professor of Psychology Douglas Weldon.  More ...

Scott Pillette, Liza Gergenti, Hallie Brown and Summer Bottini with the Skinner boxes.
Students Conduct Trials on Drug That Could Help OCD, ADHD

Pharmaceutical research is usually dominated by corporations and large research universities, but student researchers Hallie Brown ’13, Summer Bottini ’14, Scott Pillette ’14 and Liza Gergenti ’14 are conducting preliminary animal trials on the psychoactive drug Quinpirole as Hamilton undergraduates. They’re studying Quinpirole’s effect on contrafreeloading under the direction of Visiting Assistant Professor of Psychology Michael Frederick.  More ...

Sarah Andrews, John Wildman and Emma Geduldig.
Student Researchers Seek Answers to Human Movement

The ability to pick up an object without knocking it over is something that most people take for granted, but Emma Geduldig ’13, Sarah Andrews ’14 and John Wildman ’15 are more inquisitive when it comes to movement and motor control. Why, they ask, do we move to pick up a coffee cup from the side as opposed to the front? Such simple questions on human motion have yet to be entirely answered, and these researchers hope to shed more light on this seldom- researched subject.  More ...

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