Research Programs

Research Programs

We believe that the key to understanding the mind lies in a fundamental understanding of the brain. That is why we bring cognitive science and neuroscience together under the same intellectual roof. With top-notch faculty and research disciplines that range from molecular, cellular and systems neuroscience to computation and cognitive science, our students are seeking answers to tough but critically important questions.

Our comprehensive, interdisciplinary approach and truly collaborative environment gives students the freedom to shape their research work across disciplines, departments, and research centers. 

Our students have access to the McGovern Institute for Brain Research, the Picower Institute for Learning and Memory, other research institutes, and on-site facilities for fMRI and MEG imaging. This gives them access to world-class technology and resources. 

Perhaps most importantly, our students find a creative, passionate, and diverse community that truly supports the work of each of its members. 

Clinical Rotation Opportunity

New for Fall 2016: BCS Clinical Experience at MGH for Graduate Students

Course Description: Attend clinical neurology and neuropsychiatry conferences at Massachusetts General Hospital where students learn about the pathogenesis, diagnosis, management and therapeutic clinical trials of diseases of the nervous system. Conducted by clinical and basic science faculty of Harvard Medical School and attended by Harvard faculty, fellows, residents and medical students at MGH, the conference subjects include: Neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s dementia; Neuropsychiatry conferences and Psychiatry Grand Rounds; Epilepsy both medical and surgical treatments; Movement Disorders such as Parkinson’s disease, dystonia, Huntington’s; Neuro-Oncology; Brain cutting in Neuropathology; Neuroradiology; and Functional Neurosurgery for movement disorders and psychiatric diseases. Dr. Thomas N. Byrne, Professor of Neurology at Harvard Medical School and Senior Lecturer in the Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences at MIT, will attend the conferences and discuss the material with the students.

Each student will attend four (4) conferences in one week. Two of these are “core” conferences, one from neuroradiology or neuropathology and one from neuropsychiatry or psychiatry. The other two conferences selected are elective. The two core conferences and the two elective conferences should be selected from the list below. Each conference lasts ~ an hour and is followed by a discussion of the material with Tom Byrne. In this first year, there will be 20 students who can sign up for this program.

Priority will be given to training grant trainees and first and second year graduate students. It will be open to upper level graduate students based on availability. Interested students should contact Meredith Canode. Two weeks per month from September through June are offered; specific weeks within the month will be determined once a student selects the month based on the availability of the conferences, the schedules of the student and Tom Byrne. Once 20 students have signed up other students will be placed on a wait-list in the event that a student must cancel.

The Conferences available with the days and times are as follows:

Monday 12:00 Alzheimer’s disease Monday once/month dates to be determined
5:00-6:00 Functional Neurosurgery Wednesday
1:00 Neuroradiology (core) First Wednesday of month
1:00 (except March) Neuropsychiatry multidisciplinary seminar.
Thursday 8:00 Didactic seminar for neuropsychiatry (core)
Thursday 9:00 Neurology Grand Rounds
Thursday 8:30 Neuropsychiatry (core)
Thursday 11:00 Neuro-oncology Thursday
11:00 Neuropsychiatry Fellowship Conference (core)
Thursday 12:00 Psychiatry Grand Rounds (core)
Thursday 12:00 (2nd and 4th week of the month) Movement Disorders
Thursday 1:00 Neuroradiology (core)
Thursday 2:00 in Navy Yard, Charlestown Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation discussion of candidates (core)
Friday 7:30 or 8:30 (core) Brain Cutting Friday Begins after clinic beginning between
12:30 and 1:00 Epilepsy

We are hoping this new experience will provide students with a clinical translational perspective and may lead to collaborations.

BrainLunch and CogLunch Seminars

BrainLunch and CogLunch are weekly, student-organized seminar series at which MIT Brain and Cognitive Sciences graduate students (and occasionally postdoctoral or non-BCS students) present their research on brain and cognitive science related issues. These sessions — both informal and informative — are a long-standing department tradition. Announcements with information time and location are sent weekly.