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Completing the Bachelor of Science in Neuroscience and Cognitive Science

The NSCS Program has a pre-major with a competitive admission process to gain entry to the full major. Students may declare Pre-Neuroscience and Cognitive Science upon application to the University or any time thereafter (provided they are in good academic standing). Students must then complete a set of requirements to be eligible to apply to the full NSCS major. Most students are ready to apply to the full major in the Spring semester of their Sophomore year, although this varies by student. Students should work with their NSCS Acadmeic Advisor to develop a personalized plan for progressing through the program. Admission to the NSCS major is competitive as the Program has a limited number of spots in the full major; however, from 2010-2017 all students who met the minimum eligibility requirements were conditionally accepted pending sucessful completion of the final requirements. 



Students typically spend their freshman and sophomore years in the pre-major while taking their NSCS foundation courses and their general education and  University foundation courses. Students must complete certain courses and meet certain requirements before they are eligible to apply to the full major; however students are not required to complete all of their gen ed and foundation courses before being eligible to apply to the major. These eligibility requirements vary depending on the student’s catalog year and track. Students typically take the NSCS major gateway course NSCS 200- Fundamentals of Neuroscience & Cognitive Science in the Spring semester of their Sophomore year and apply at the beginning of that semester. A small, online version of NSCS 200 is offered in the Fall semester and is reserved primarily for incoming transfer students and students who need to retake the course to improve their grade.  

PLEASE NOTE: NSCS pre-majors should not attempt to take upper-division NSCS core courses until they have completed NSCS 200.


Applying to the Major

Applications to the full major are accepted at the beginning of the Spring and Fall semesters. Students may apply to the NSCS major once they have met the eligibility requirements as listed on the NSCS website. The application period closes approximately two weeks after the start of the semester. The NSCS Admissions Committee will then review the applications and students will be notified of the results of their application mid-semester. The majority of students will be enrolled in NSCS 200 at the time of application and must complete the course with a final grade of B or higher in order to gain full admission to the major. Admission to the NSCS major is competitive; however, from the beginning of the program in 2010 through Spring applications in 2017, all students who met the admission requirements were accepted into the major.


Completing the Major

Once admitted to the full major, students will begin taking their NSCS core and elective courses. Many of the NSCS courses are offered only once per year and some are pre-requisites for others, therefore it is strongly recommended that students plan their courses with the help of an NSCS advisor. If, for some reason, students are unable to take courses in the prescribed order (leave of absence, study abroad, late change of major, etc.) the student should consult with an NSCS advisor to create an customized plan. In addition to the core courses, students select an emphasis for their major elective courses. The list of emphasis elective courses is updated often so students should refer to the most current version posted on the NSCS website when planning their classes. Students choose from the list of courses in their emphasis and must complete a minimum of 15 units. Up to 6 units of upper-division research, internship, or thesis credit can count toward the total units required for any of the emphases. Of these 6 units,  a maximum of 3 units can be preceptorship credit.

Read more about ... applying to the NSCS major



The NSCS curriculum is customizable with two different tracks in the foundation and core courses and 7 different emphases to complete the major electives. NSCS students choose one of  two tracks in the NSCS foundation and core classes: either the Neuroscience track or the Cognitive Science track. All students who complete the graduation requirements for NSCS will receive the same degree- a Bachelor of Science in Neuroscience and Cognitive Science- regardless of which track they elect to follow.

Read more about ... choosing your path: Neuroscience or Cognitive Science

Curriculum Forms


Minoring in Neuroscience and Cognitive Science

The Neuroscience & Cognitive Science program does not currently offer a minor. Students who are interested in pursuing an NSCS minor should look into the University's option to do a thematic minor. Students work with their primary major advisor to gain approval to do a thematic minor. Students are not required to seek permission from the NSCS program to do such a minor, although we are always happy to meet with students who have questions about their options in doing such a minor.

Read more about ... Thematic Minors


Certificate in Developmental Disabilities

NSCS students may be interested in completing the UA's Certificate in Developmental Disabilities, established in 2015 and offered by the Sonoran University Center for Excellence in Developmental Disabilities (UCEDD). This Certificate Program is intended for future professionals in a wide range of settings where they will have clients or patients, or where they will conduct basic science research touching on issues in the lives of individuals with developmental and other disabilities. Students in the NSCS major may apply 6 of the units required in the certificate program toward the emphasis in Development and Aging. Three units can be used toward any other NSCS emphasis.

Read more about ... the DD Certificate Program

Read more about ... the Sonoran University Center for Excellence in Developmental Disabilities