Module Provider: School of Biological Sciences
Number of credits: 10 [5 ECTS credits]
Terms in which taught: Autumn / Spring term module
Non-modular pre-requisites:
Modules excluded:
Module version for: 2016/7

Module Convenor: Dr Etienne Roesch


Summary module description:

The module aims to discuss the basic principles underlying the functionality of the human nervous system which has inspired a mode of computation, namely artificial neural networks.

Assessable learning outcomes:
By the end of the module the student should be able to describe the organisation of the human nervous system and explain how it operates in order to solve complex cognitive tasks.

Additional outcomes:

Outline content:
Nervous systems allow animals to cope with various aspects of the environment, respond to external stimuli, maintain the overall functionality, and regulate interaction with external world including other members of the same species. This part of the module provides a comprehensive overview of these fundamental systems starting with description of single neurons and the way they generate signals and interneuron interactions. The course will systematically cover sensory systems and higher level functions like motor system, sleep-wake cycle and homeostasis and will go on to higher cognitive functions like emotions, memory and language. At each stage, current knowledge about the basic mechanisms used for maintaining particular functionality will be reviewed.

Brief description of teaching and learning methods:
The module comprises 1 lecture per week.

Contact hours:
  Autumn Spring Summer
Lectures 10 10
Tutorials 1
Guided independent study 38 38 3
Total hours by term 48.00 48.00 4.00
Total hours for module 100.00

Summative Assessment Methods:
Method Percentage
Written exam 70
Written assignment including essay 30

Other information on summative assessment:

Formative assessment methods:

Penalties for late submission:
The Module Convenor will apply the following penalties for work submitted late, in accordance with the University policy.

  • where the piece of work is submitted up to one calendar week after the original deadline (or any formally agreed extension to the deadline): 10% of the total marks available for the piece of work will be deducted from the mark for each working day (or part thereof) following the deadline up to a total of five working days;
  • where the piece of work is submitted more than five working days after the original deadline (or any formally agreed extension to the deadline): a mark of zero will be recorded.

  • The University policy statement on penalties for late submission can be found at:
    You are strongly advised to ensure that coursework is submitted by the relevant deadline. You should note that it is advisable to submit work in an unfinished state rather than to fail to submit any work.

    Length of examination:
    One 2-hour examination paper in May/June.

    Requirements for a pass:

    Reassessment arrangements:
    Examination only.
    One 2-hour examination paper in August/September.

    Additional Costs (specified where applicable):
    1) Required text books:
    2) Specialist equipment or materials:
    3) Specialist clothing, footwear or headgear:
    4) Printing and binding:
    5) Computers and devices with a particular specification:
    6) Travel, accommodation and subsistence:

    Last updated: 21 December 2016

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