University of Scranton

BIOLOGY 348 Ė Neurophysiology

Spring 2004



Instructor: ††††††††† Dr. Robert Waldeck†††† Office:Loyola 106††††††††††††††††

Email: ††††††††††††††††††††††††††† Phone:†††† 570-941-4324†††††††††††††††††††† ††

Office Hours: ††††††††† Tuesday and Thursday 9-10:30 AM or by Appointment.


Course Text

Purves, D., Augustine, GJ., Fitzpatrick, D., Katz, LC., LaMantia, A-S., McNamera, JO., and Williams, SM. Neuroscience 2nd edition. Sinauer Associates, Inc. Sunderland, MA 2001


Basic Information:


††††††††††† This course is a comprehensive study of the human nervous system. We will review the fundamental structures of the brain, spinal cord, and peripheral nervous system to better understand the amazing function of the nervous system. This course will include an understanding of how sensory information reaches the brain and how motor information leads to effective action. Neuroanatomy will be integrated into the functional aspects of the course. Your textbook comes with a CD which has interactive Sylvius 2.0 neuroanatomy software ( Fundamentals of Human Neural Structure) that will allow you to follow topics in class as well as review and study at home. In addition we will review clinical cases relevant to topics being discussed in class.


Course Objectives:


††††††††††† Following this course the student should have knowledge of terminology, classifications, methods and trends in neurobiology as well as a grasp of the fundamental principles and theories underlying the human nervous system. While memorization of facts will be needed, the student should begin to develop the creative capacity to use these facts in novel situations, such as clinical cases.


Course Policy

Regular lecture attendance is strongly recommended, and you are responsible for all material discussed in lectures and assigned readings and handouts, whether you are present or not. During lecture, you are encouraged to ask questions and to bring up relevant issues with the instructor.

Use of Blackboard: the course outline notes and other material will be placed on the course Blackboard web site. You can access Blackboard at www.




Grading Policy:


1. Exams: all will be comprehensive


2. Quizzes on anatomical structures using Sylvius 2.0 and text material.


3. Review research article:

You will choose a current primary research paper from the literature that deals with any of the topics listed in the syllabus. You will write a review of this paper which is to include the following items listed below. Along with your review, you must turn in a copy of the paper being reviewed. Your paper should not be more than4 pages long (double spaced). Explain in your words. Due dates for the paper will be assigned.


Paper should include:

Title of paper

Name of authors

Institution of authors

Cite journal

Concise statement of the question being asked

Brief description of the methods

Concise statement of the findings

Is there more than one interpretation of the results? If so, how do the authors discuss this.?

What is new about this topic?

Why did you pick this article?

How does this topic related to what we have been talking about in class?

Constructive criticism of the authors and their work


4. Group Talk

I will assign a topic to a group of usually three students of varying majors to give a brief talk on anatomical structures or a clinical disorder. This will be discussed in the first week of class. The talk should include at least an identification of relevant neural structures and pathways affected, as well as affected function. Talk should also include the symptoms, method of diagnosis as well as treatment if relevant to the topic. Finally an up-to-date summary should be included. You can use your text but need at least one other reference. A short summary should be placed on the Blackboard site with the list of references used.


5. Class Participation: students are encouraged to ask questions.


6. Exam Question Posting on Blackboard Discussion Board: each week each student is responsible to submit one original multiple choice question with answer and relevant text reference on a chapter discussed that week. Each question must be different so you will need to read all the questions submitted before submitting your question. Questions are due by noon Friday. Failure to meet the deadline or to submit a original question will lead to a reduction of five points each class day for the relevant exam. I will browse these questions and you may find them on your exam.


Grading Scheme

Lecture Exams: (3 x 100) = 300 points

Quizes(2 x 25)††††††††††† †††††††††† 50 points

Review Article††††††††††††† 50 points

Group Talk†††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† 50 points


Total†††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† =450 points


††††††††††† The exams will include questions on textbook figures, drawings in class, multiple choice, matching, fill-in, and short essay format. Some of the questions will come from questions posted by the students. The second and third lecture exams will be comprehensive.

††††††††††† There will be no make-up exams. If an exam is missed and you have a written excuse, the grade for that exam will not be counted in calculating the final grade. If you miss an exam and do not give an official written excuse you will receive a0for that exam and this grade will be calculated into your final grade. There will be no make-up quizzes.


††††††††††† Grading Scale:

( A ) 100-95,(A-) 94-90, B+ (89-87), B (86-83), B- (82-80), C+ (79-76), C (73-75), C- (72-70), D+ ( 69-66),D (65-60), F 59 or less.




Tips for Succeeding in Class


  1. Attend class on time. I will not always take attendance, but will notice excessive absence.
  2. Take good notes. If you have questions, please see me.
  3. Keep up with the text reading so that the material is familiar sounding to you.
  4. Ask questions- in class and in your dorm. Participation is greatly welcomed and rewarded.
  5. Please see me if you have questions!



Academic code of honestly:


I expect you to be familiar and follow the University policy.


Lecture Schedule & Reading Assignments*

*This schedule may change over the course of the semester.





January†††††† 27

Introduction/History of Neuroscience



Gross anatomy and General Organization of the Nervous System

Chapter 1

Sylvius 2.0: Surface anatomy, sectional anatomy, animations.


Degeneration & regeneration of neurons

Pages 556-561

Discussion Topic: Why we are not more like fish and frogs?

February††††† 3




Neural Signalling

Chapter 2, 3, 4



Discussion Topic: channelopathies, meningitis, encephalitis


Synaptic Transmission

Chapter 5

Discussion Topic: multiple sclerosis, Gulilian-Barre





Neurotransmitters & Receptors

Chapter6, 7



Discussion Topic: myasthenia gravis


Sensory Transduction

Chapter 9 189-202 only focus on sensory receptors not pathways





Exam 1



Somatosensory System:

Spinal Cord




Chapter 9 focus on pathways

Sylvius 2.0: spinal cord



Chapter 10

March†††††††††† 3


Discussion Topics: peripheral neuropathy, shingles



Chapter 11


Central Visual Pathways

Chapter 12

Discussion Topics: retinitis pigmentosa and macular degenertion








Auditory System


Chapter 13


Vestibular system

Chapter 14




Discussion Topics: vestibular-ocular reflex, caloric testing


Brainstem & Cranial Nerves

Chapter 1 p 15-18,

Table 1-1 and Handout

Sylvius 2.0: brainstem



Discussion Topics: Bellís Palsy and Hornerís syndrome



Handout Discussion Topics:thalamic syndrome




April†††††††††††††† 7

Exam 2



Lower Motor Control

Chapter 16



Discussion Topics: tabes dorsais & poliomyelitis; amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and spinal muscular atrophy


Upper Motor Control

Chapter 17











Basal Ganglia

Chapter 18



Chapter 19





Association Cortices

Chapter 26 Discussion Topics: Phineas Gage story

May 5





Chapter 27 Discussion Topics: Prion related illnesses; epilepsy




Final week

Exam 3