Course Identification

Methods in neuroscience- Theory

Lecturers and Teaching Assistants

Prof. Ofer Yizhar, Prof. Ilan Lampl, Prof. Nachum Ulanovsky, Prof. Yaniv Ziv, Prof. Assaf Tal, Dr. Ivo Spiegel, Prof. Menachem Segal, Dr. Yonatan Katz, Dr. Ana Parabucki, Dr. Rita Schmidt, Dr. Edna Furman-Haran, Prof. Dov Sagi
Dr. Akiva Rappaport, Dr. Noa Sadeh, Dr. Ori Roethler

Course Schedule and Location

Second Semester
Thursday, 11:15 - 13:00, FGS, Rm B

Field of Study, Course Type and Credit Points

Life Sciences: Laboratory; Elective; 1.00 points
Life Sciences (Molecular and Cellular Neuroscience Track): Laboratory; Elective; 2.00 points
Life Sciences (Brain Sciences: Systems, Computational and Cognitive Neuroscience Track): Laboratory; Obligatory; 2.00 points
Life Sciences (Computational and Systems Biology Track): Laboratory; Elective; 2.00 points


This course is obligatory for MSc students in Life Sciences - Brain Sciences, and is elective for all other Life Sciences Students. The lectures will take place throughout the second semester, and the practical part of the course will be provided after the exam period in the 2nd semester (specific dates for the practical course will be announced during the second semester).

The number of students in the lecture course is not limited. The laboratory course is limited to 12 students and participation in this part of the course is subject to approval by the course coordinator.


"Introduction to Neuroscience: Cellular and Synaptic Physiology", or equivalent Introductory course in Neuroscience.



Language of Instruction


Attendance and participation


Grade Type

Pass / Fail

Grade Breakdown (in %)


Evaluation Type

Final assignment

Scheduled date 1

The lab report(as well as the final assignment for those who don?t take the practical part) will be due on Sept. 1st.

Estimated Weekly Independent Workload (in hours)



This course is intended to familiarize the students with a wide range of methods and technologies used in state-of-the-art neuroscience research. The lecture-based part of the course will cover a range of methods, including neurophysiology, imaging, microscopy and optogenetic techniques.

The lab course will take place in the summer, and include extensive hands-on experiments in several labs, followed by data analysis and submission of written reports. The main emphasis will be given on techniques of neurophysiology. Techniques covered in the lab course will include:

  1. Extracellular recordings in vivo.
  2. Intracellular recordings in vivo.
  3. Patch clamp recording in cultured neurons.
  4. Imaging of calcium dynamics in individual cells.
  5. Optogenetics
  6. In vivo calcium imaging in freely moving mice

The final assignment will include a short written summary of the experiments performed during the laboratory course, and a written 2-page "research proposal", in which students propose the development of a novel method for neuroscience studies, based on the material presented during the lecture course and on independent reading of the course material.

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this course students should be be able to:

  1. Demonstrate knowledge in a wide range of neuroscience methods.
  2. Read and understand research papers that utilize modern molecular approaches, neurophysiology and imaging techniques.
  3. Conduct experiments, collect and analyze neural data.
  4. Demonstrate comprehension of the rules that govern the activity of central neurons.

Reading List

  • The Axon Guide (3rd edition) - available online from various sources.
  • Imaging in Neuroscience - a Laboratory Manual (Cold Spring Harbor Press)