Anita

Recent Posts

How Does the Brain Work Anyway? A Look Back on the Study of Neuroscience

Posted by Anita on 8/8/18 7:35 PM

The brain continues to fascinate scientists and non-scientists alike because it takes up so much real estate in our body and controls virtually everything we do from talking to breathing, thinking and moving. It is probably not surprising that reports about the nervous system (made up of our brain, spinal cord, and nerves spanning our whole body) date back to around 1700 B.C. with the ancient Egyptian document—the Edwin Smith surgical papyrus. The study of nervous system, or neuroscience, began when philosophers and medical practitioners began asking about the origin of emotions, intelligence, sensory perception, and diseases of the mind. Throughout its early history, neuroscience developed from being mostly theoretical to systematically testing ideas that have laid the foundation for understanding how the brain works.

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Tags: biology

A Brief History of Neuroscience and the Field Today

Posted by Anita on 7/16/18 5:41 PM

The discoveries about the brain over the past hundred years have only spurred more questions about how the brain works. These questions have captivated scientists, the public and policymakers alike. In the past 30 years, two Presidents of the United States have introduced large scale initiatives to study the brain. In 1990, President Bush declared the 90s as the “decade of the brain” to increase brain research awareness, and then again in 2013, President Barack Obama announced the Brain Initiative, which increased research funding to create new tools for improving our understanding of the brain. So what have we learned about the brain in the last few decades, and what are scientists currently trying to figure out?

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Tags: biology

How does the brain work anyway? A short overview on the future of neuroscience

Posted by Anita on 6/18/18 5:18 PM

If the ultimate goal of neuroscience is to understand how the brain works, how will scientists know when that goal has been reached? Is it by our ability to build artificial intelligence matching human capabilities? Our ability to treat or completely prevent neurodegenerative diseases like Parkinson’s, or mental disorders like schizophrenia? Creating machines that can read our thoughts and actions? Neuroscience has made tremendous strides, but the goal of understanding the brain might be more of a moving target because the more we find out about the brain, the more questions we have. The following questions are the ones likely to be addressed in the next 50 years, but it is also possible that the most interesting questions have not even been asked yet because we lack the technology or need the future generation of scientists to look at old questions from a new angle.

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Tags: biology

How to Ace Interview Weekend for your PhD Biomedical Science Programs

Posted by Anita on 12/11/17 9:00 AM

If you read my previous post, “What to expect during interview weekend for PhD Biomedical programs” you know exactly what you are in for during interview weekend. Now the question is, how do you prepare? You have two goals during interview weekend: 1) Convince the graduate students and faculty members that you would be an excellent fit for their program, and 2) Making sure that the program is actually an excellent fit for you. Remember that this is an important decision for you too! Don’t be distracted by number of Nobel laureates or big names, make sure that the program meets your needs, and is a place where you see yourself supported and doing some of your best research.

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What to expect during interview weekend for PhD Biomedical programs

Posted by Anita on 11/13/17 5:44 PM

Congratulations! If you have been selected to interview at a Biomedical PhD program (e.g. Biology, Neuroscience, Biophysics) that means you were selected from a pile of hundreds of applicants. The program is willing to fly you in for interview weekend and take the time to show off its program and city. Let that act as a confidence booster, but you still have to survive interviews!

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Tags: biology, graduate admissions