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Learner Reviews & Feedback for Medical Neuroscience by Duke University

2,290 ratings
664 reviews

About the Course

Medical Neuroscience explores the functional organization and neurophysiology of the human central nervous system, while providing a neurobiological framework for understanding human behavior. In this course, you will discover the organization of the neural systems in the brain and spinal cord that mediate sensation, motivate bodily action, and integrate sensorimotor signals with memory, emotion and related faculties of cognition. The overall goal of this course is to provide the foundation for understanding the impairments of sensation, action and cognition that accompany injury, disease or dysfunction in the central nervous system. The course will build upon knowledge acquired through prior studies of cell and molecular biology, general physiology and human anatomy, as we focus primarily on the central nervous system. This online course is designed to include all of the core concepts in neurophysiology and clinical neuroanatomy that would be presented in most first-year neuroscience courses in schools of medicine. However, there are some topics (e.g., biological psychiatry) and several learning experiences (e.g., hands-on brain dissection) that we provide in the corresponding course offered in the Duke University School of Medicine on campus that we are not attempting to reproduce in Medical Neuroscience online. Nevertheless, our aim is to faithfully present in scope and rigor a medical school caliber course experience. This course comprises six units of content organized into 12 weeks, with an additional week for a comprehensive final exam: - Unit 1 Neuroanatomy (weeks 1-2). This unit covers the surface anatomy of the human brain, its internal structure, and the overall organization of sensory and motor systems in the brainstem and spinal cord. - Unit 2 Neural signaling (weeks 3-4). This unit addresses the fundamental mechanisms of neuronal excitability, signal generation and propagation, synaptic transmission, post synaptic mechanisms of signal integration, and neural plasticity. - Unit 3 Sensory systems (weeks 5-7). Here, you will learn the overall organization and function of the sensory systems that contribute to our sense of self relative to the world around us: somatic sensory systems, proprioception, vision, audition, and balance senses. - Unit 4 Motor systems (weeks 8-9). In this unit, we will examine the organization and function of the brain and spinal mechanisms that govern bodily movement. - Unit 5 Brain Development (week 10). Next, we turn our attention to the neurobiological mechanisms for building the nervous system in embryonic development and in early postnatal life; we will also consider how the brain changes across the lifespan. - Unit 6 Cognition (weeks 11-12). The course concludes with a survey of the association systems of the cerebral hemispheres, with an emphasis on cortical networks that integrate perception, memory and emotion in organizing behavior and planning for the future; we will also consider brain systems for maintaining homeostasis and regulating brain state....

Top reviews

Jan 14, 2021

This course was a great opportunity for me to understand the world of neurology and helped me to clear all the ambiguities regarding the complex mechanisms that are happening in our beautiful brains.

Nov 21, 2018

I leant so much without even realising it until I got to the final exams and all this knowledge was making sense. Amazing lecturer with so much wisdom in the area. The course is very well delivered.

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626 - 650 of 657 Reviews for Medical Neuroscience

By Elvin M

Jul 19, 2016


By Tatyana S

Feb 20, 2018


By Roberto S

Nov 21, 2017


By Jerusha R

Nov 15, 2019

This is a really comprehensive and detailed course. There's so much material here so it's a great foundation. Beware, it's very heavy on anatomy, so pay lots of attention to the anatomy bits. You need to commit to really learning on this course - it's not easy and the multiple choice quizzes are challenging. Having done the course without an anatomy resource I can suggest that you get one (these are discussed in the course) as it would be very helpful in understanding the locations of everything that is talked about, which is really important. At times, Dr White is a little bit verbose and has a tendency to give a brief overview of something and then the overview morphs into a deeper view so it's repetitive but the structure isn't always clear. A textbook would be a helpful accompaniment to clear up some issues. Again, I didn't have this either, but Wikipedia was really helpful. Overall this is a great grounding in neuroscience and has the academic rigour you'd expect from a course offered by a university of the calibre of Duke. Don't be fooled by thinking this is easy because it's online, it's not! Be prepared to spend 6+ hours per week on this.

By Yasmine K

Jun 1, 2020

I'm suprised by how much knowledge I gained by the end of the course. The physiology and anatomy of the brain were my favourite parts and I loved learning about the functions of each part of the brain. Week 12 was my favourite. Initially, I thought the course would be full of learning about the functions of the brain but instead, there was a lot of neurology. Nonetheless, great course for understanding the fundamentals of the brain and this neurobiochem basis is what helps in understanding the bigger picture. Note/ advice: the only science I've done is AP physics and math. If you seek to understand the topics and make notes as you go along then there is no difficulty in completing the course!

Neuroscience to me is like a puzzle: you have a lesion in the brain and you locate this by using the symptoms presented in the patient. This is what makes it fun, I love researching and investigating!

By Huy T

Jun 2, 2021

I am a medical student, and with some background knowledge relating to this. Still, I find this course very difficult, if not one of the most difficult course I've ever learnt. The course provides HUGE amount of knowledge and the test is very difficult, especially for those who does not have medical background and non-native English speaker (even though I have a very good English skills). I think the handout notes should include more pictures than just reference to the book which is VERY HUGE and VERY DIFFICULT to navigate. Yes the lecture does contains those images but that's very difficult to review.

By Nicholas J

Oct 16, 2021

T​his is an excellent program; very challenging. Some of the quizzes took multiple attempts and the final quizzes were summarizing of the lessons. Thank you Prof. White for the excellent lectures, and all your crew for.the production.


Dec 22, 2019

I am so glad to successfully accomplish this intensive course which offered an in-depth knowledge about neuroanatomy of human brain alongside getting an insight into the clinical disorders of the human brain.

By Patrick H

Jan 5, 2017

Really detailed course but super medical (obviously) rather than anything too cognitive. I'd strongly recommend being very confident with biological sciences and chemistry to do this course.

By Arthur A S

Feb 19, 2021

Superb lectures and very comprehensive material.

Too much detail.

Exams are too difficult. Questions should have 4 or at most 5 answer choices and should focus more on overall concepts.

By Mauricio O

Oct 29, 2020

Excelente curso, pero demasiado largo y muy poco tiempo por semana para completar la fecha tope. Si se amplía el curso unas semanas más y es todo más espaciado sería de 5 estrellas.

By Valeria R Y

Aug 22, 2020

SOmetimes the questions where not in order, this is, there were questions in some sections about topics that were in future sections

By Deleted A

Jul 5, 2016

Lots of self study required by anyone from a non-biology/medical background. This is a very interesting topic, and is a good course.

By Daisy R D

Jan 23, 2017

Very interesting and challenging. Thank you so much Dr. White and to all the Course Management. You taught me a lot.

By Raphael

Aug 17, 2020

Good to learn but somewhat is too clinical which might be quite difficult for non-clinical student

By Sonal N

Nov 25, 2017

This course helped me get an overview of the human brain.

By Samuel T I

Jan 8, 2017

Tough but it's worth it. Neuroscience is pretty fun!!

By Vasu

Jul 14, 2021

its too difficult for an average student like me


Oct 3, 2019

good to explore new dimensions of neuroscience

By Ei E K

Jan 31, 2017

very detail teaching and very good instructor.

By genoveva g d

Nov 26, 2016

me parece un curso muy útil, completo y claro

By Shreyas P

Jun 27, 2018

hard but worth the efforts

By miguel e r g

Jun 23, 2020


By Zoila S

Nov 18, 2020

Enjoying it

By Revathy M

Aug 21, 2021

I find this course very useful.. it made me to understand about the topics ,whenever I solve the test and final exam . I can identify the most of the topics are covered .