|Dates||Departure from U.S.:||Fri., June 30, 2017|
|Arrival:||Sun., July 2, 2017|
|Mandatory Orientation:||Sun., July 2, 2017|
|First Day of Class:||Mon., July 3, 2017|
|Last Day of Class:||Fri., Aug. 4, 2017|
|Departure for the U.S.
(or personal travel):
|Sat., Aug. 5, 2017|
Significant work on mirror neurons has been conducted in Australia, especially in the important area of neuroethology, the evolution of mirror neurons, and their relationship to language. Australia has an amazing diversity of birds, some of which have been found to have mirror neurons similar to humans. Being in the center of a region where active research is ongoing will allow the class to explore that aspect of this very interesting field. Students will have the opportunity to visit labs at the University of Sydney and Macquarie University who have done this important work. Mirror neurons have also been linked to our aesthetic experience in art appreciation – a topic that we discuss in class. Therefore, it will also be significant to visit museums and art galleries in Sydney and nearby Brisbane to engage students in that discussion.
The COGS 174GS class is a study of the history, drug policy, and pharmacology of drugs, both legal and illegal in the US. This version of the course would offer the opportunity to compare the US with another country’s history, drug policy and substance abuse problems. Students will visit to the Justice and Police Museum in Sydney to foster discussion of drug policies and problems related to drug use and abuse.
Students should have a broad interest in the psychopharmacological and cognitive science perspectives on drugs, brain, and culture, as well as interest in the neural basis of their effects, particularly on social behaviors. These courses are taught so they do not require specific prerequisites, but students are encouraged to have prior exposure to cognitive science, neurobiology, or neuroscience.
Dr. Pineda is Professor of Cognitive Science and Neuroscience at UCSD. His research includes the neuroetiology of autism, the role of mirror neurons in social cognition, neuronal plasticity, and brain-computer interfaces. He is the author of over 100 articles, books, and reviews on the interdependency between brain and mind. In his research, Dr. Pineda uses brain imaging techniques, as well as behavioral, psychological and pharmacological methods to understand normal and abnormal cognition. He looks forwarding to sharing this Australian adventure with students.