Please define in layman’s terms, “neuroscience”.

January 2021

Answered by: Hilary Sweatman, PhD Student, Integrated Program in Neuroscience

Neuroscience, in general, is the study of the nervous system and its related functions and dysfunctions. The nervous system is made up of the brain, the spinal cord, and the nerves, and neuroscientists study them anywhere from the microscopic (ie. cells and their components) to macroscopic (ie. whole brain networks) level.

Neuroscience has contributed to society in countless ways and continues to do so. By studying the function of the nervous system, we have addressed questions about learning, memory, language, emotion, cognition, sensation, and more. By studying the dysfunction, we are working towards understanding, prevention, and treatment of numerous diseases and disorders including mental health disorders, addiction, autism spectrum disorder, epilepsy, dementia, Parkinson’s disease, and many more.