Simulation Neuroscience

Learn how to digitally reconstruct a single neuron to better study the biological mechanisms of brain function, behaviour and disease.

Simulation Neuroscience is an emerging approach to integrate the knowledge dispersed throughout the field of neuroscience.

The aim is to build a unified empirical picture of the brain, to study the biological mechanisms of brain function, behaviour and disease. This is achieved by integrating diverse data sources across the various scales of experimental neuroscience, from molecular to clinical, into computer simulations.

This is a unique, massive open online course taught by a multi-disciplinary team of world-renowned scientists. In this first course, you will gain the knowledge and skills needed to create simulations of biological neurons and synapses.

This course is part of a series of three courses, where you will learn to use state-of-the-art modeling tools to simulate neurons, build neural networks, and perform your own simulation experiments.  These tools include the latest Blue Brain data management tools including Blue Brain Nexus. We invite you to join us and share in our passion to reconstruct, simulate and understand the brain!

What you’ll learn

  • Discuss the different types of data for simulation neuroscience

  • How to collect, annotate and register different types of neuroscience data

  • Describe the simulation neuroscience strategies

  • Categorize different classification features of neurons

  • List different characteristics of synapses and behavioural aspects

  • Model a neuron with all its parts (soma, dendrites, axon, synapse) and its behavior

  • Use experimental data on neuronal activity to constrain a model

View the full Course Syllabus

Meet the instructors

  • Prof. Henry Markram Professor EPFL, Founder and Director of the Blue Brain Project

  • Prof. Idan Segev David & Inez Myers Professor in Computational Neuroscience at Hebrew University Jerusalem, and Adjunct Professor EPFL.

  • Prof. Sean Hill Adjunct Professor EPFL, Blue Brain Project, Director of the Krembil Centre of Neuroinformatics at the Centre of Addiction and Mental Health in Toronto, Canada

  • Prof. Felix Schürmann Adjunct Professor EPFL, Director Blue Brain Project

  • Dr. Srikanth Ramaswamy Computational neuroscientist, Principal Investigator at Newcastle University

  • Werner Van Geit Group Leader of the Cells team within the Simulation Neuroscience Division, Blue Brain Project

  • Samuel Kerrien Section Manager, Neuroinformatics Software Engineering, Computing, Blue Brain Project

  • Lida Kanari Postdoctoral fellow and Neuromathematics Junior Group Leader in the Simulation Neuroscience Division, Blue Brain Project

  • Anna-Kristin Kaufmann Data Integration Programmer, Blue Brain Project

The course is targeted at senior bachelor, master or PhD students in science or engineering fields looking for an introduction to Simulation Neuroscience.

It is a six-week course, with an estimated course load of 5-7 hours per week.

Suggested requirements

Knowledge of ordinary differential equations, and their numerical solution. Knowledge of programming in one of: Python (preferred), C/C++, Java, MATLAB, R.

Register for the MOOC