psy240 - Computation in Neuroscience (Complete module description)

psy240 - Computation in Neuroscience (Complete module description)

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Module label Computation in Neuroscience
Modulkürzel psy240
Credit points 9.0 KP
Workload 270 h
Institute directory Department of Psychology
Verwendbarkeit des Moduls
  • Master's Programme Neurocognitive Psychology (Master) > Mastermodule
Zuständige Personen
  • Stecher, Heiko (module responsibility)
  • Stecher, Heiko (Prüfungsberechtigt)

Enrolment in Master's programme Neurocognitive Psychology.

Skills to be acquired in this module
Goals of module:
Students will acquire scientific programming skills as well as specific knowledge of
computational methods in neuroscience and cognition. They will learn to judge the
appropriateness and complexity of computational problems and solutions.

+ Neuropsychological / neurophysiological knowledge
+ experimental methods
++ statistics & scientific programming
+ critical & analytical thinking
+ knowledge transfer
+ group work
Module contents

Part 1: Introduction to scientific programming I (lecture): winter
Basic data types and structures
Flow control (conditions, loops, errors)
Testing and debugging

Part 2: Introduction to scientific programming II (lecture): summer

Complex data structures
EEG processing
Frequency analysis methods
Introduction to toolboxes

Part 3: Scientific programming I (excercise): winter
Implementation of examples from part 1

Part 4: Scientific programming II (exercise): summer
Implementation of examples from part 2

Part 5: Computer-controlled experimentation (hands-on seminar): summer
Computer hardware basics
Scripting and programming experiments
Combining stimulus delivery with EEG, Eyetracking, etc.
Temporal precision

  • Mathworks (2009): MATLAB online documentation
  • Wallisch P., et al. (2009): MATLAB for Neuroscientists: An Introduction to Scientific Computing in MATLAB. Elsevier/Academic
Language of instruction English
Duration (semesters) 2 Semester
Module frequency The module will start every winter term.
Module capacity unlimited
Reference text

Important note:
Passing the exam of psy240 is mandatory for starting a Practical Project (psy260) and the Master's thesis.

Type of module Pflicht / Mandatory
Module level MM (Mastermodul / Master module)
Teaching/Learning method Part 1 and 2: lectures; Part 3 and 4: excercises; Part 5: seminar; additional tutorials
Form of instruction Comment SWS Frequency Workload of compulsory attendance
2h/week in winter and summer term
4 SoSe und WiSe 56
Seminar 2 SoSe 28
1h/week in winter and summer term
2 SoSe und WiSe 28
SoSe und WiSe 0
Präsenzzeit Modul insgesamt 112 h
Examination Prüfungszeiten Type of examination
Final exam of module

exam period at the end of the summer term

In a 120-minute written exam the participants will have to program MATLAB-scripts for a selection of neuroscientific data-analysis problems, demonstrating their skills in the different topics. The scripts and comments will be written on university-provided laptops and handed in via email or USB-drive.

Students need to hand in 1-2 programming tasks in the exercises to be allowed to take part in the exam.

Required active participation for gaining credits:
script for the presentation of experimental stimuli in part 5
attendance of at least 70% in the seminar 'computer-controlled experimentation', part 5 within one semester (will be checked in StudIP).