Master's Degree


Area of Concentration: Neuroscience and Behavior


1. Mandatory Disciplines 


Teaching Internship (2 credit units, 30 credit hours)

Syllabus: Development of undergraduate teaching activities under the guidance of the professor responsible for the undergraduate discipline. Elaboration of the graduation discipline program. Planning of didactic activities. Learning assessment. Use of teaching support equipment and tools.


Research Internship I (4 credit units, 60 credit hours)

Syllabus: Development of research in a laboratory and research line different from that of the advisor, under the guidance of a professor.


Scientific Research Methodology I (4 credit units, 60 credit hours)

Syllabus: Science, theories and paradigms. The production of scientific knowledge. Modern science and models. Nature of multidisciplinary research. Research problems and hypotheses. Problems of causal inference. Measurement of phenomena and measurement criteria. Definition of scientific concepts and construct validity. Operational definition. Research strategies. Internal and external validity. Data analysis techniques. Organization and analysis of research data. Preparation of papers, monographs and research reports.


Principles of Neuroscience and Behavior (6 credit units, 90 credit hours)

Syllabus: The organism in interaction with the environment. Types of explanation of behavior: proximal and distal causes, levels of selection and determination. Phylogenetic, Ontogenetic and Cultural Behavior and Evolution. Complex behaviors: concept formation, problem solving and verbal behavior. The brain and its relationship to behavior. Perceptual and motor processes, learning and memory. The interpretation of behavior based on the integration of functional analyzes at the behavioral and neurophysiological levels. Neurobiology of behavior: neural mechanisms.


Seminars on Neuroscience of Behavior (3 credit units, 45 credit hours)

Syllabus: Training of evaluation and issuing of opinion in research projects presented by students and published articles. Variable content depending on the projects presented and the articles selected by the teacher.


2. Elective Discipline


Data Analysis (2 credit units, 30 credit hours)

Syllabus: Hypothesis; Method and Science; Population; Sample; Variables; Dice; Central tendency and dispersion measures; Samples: mean, median, mode and variance with pure data. Samples: mean, median, mode and variance with classified data. Spreadsheet: median in samples. Descriptive statistics: mean, variance and standard deviation, probability, sample space, and or or theorems, complex cases. Hypothesis Tests; Meaningfulness; Chi Square; The Chi calculation; Test exercises on contingency tables; Special worksheets. Normal curve, normal and standard normal distributions, Z distribution. Exercises standard error of the mean. Confidence interval and fiducial limits. Binomial and Normal. Averages test for paired data, mono and two-tailed tests. Smallest detectable difference. Test sensitivity. Estimating the number of pairs. Do two samples belong to the same population? Analysis of Variance, Fully randomized model. Curve adjustment and statistical evaluation of curve adjustment using polynomials, Gaussians and splines.


Behavioral Assessment of Primate Color Vision (2 credit units, 30 credit hours)

Syllabus: An overview of color vision; the biology of color vision in primates; behavioral implications of varying forms of color vision in primates; the design of color discrimination tests.


Control by rules I (2 credit units, 30 credit hours)

Syllabus: Definition of rules and contingencies. Distinction between behavior controlled by rules and behavior controlled by contingencies. Procedures used in the investigation of rule control. Variables responsible for following rules.


Control by Rules II (2 credit units, 30 credit hours)

Syllabus: Functions of rules and self-rules. Learning in the absence and presence of a verbal environment. Cultural rules and practices. Rules as an instrument of analysis. Rules as a controlling variable.


Elaboration of Scientific Articles (4 credit units, 60 credit hours)

Syllabus: Introduction to the bases for preparing scientific articles; search tools; planning and writing articles; submission, review and evaluation of scientific articles.


Non-Invasive Visual Electrophysiology (2 credit units, 30 credit hours)

Syllabus: Electroencephalography; event-related electroencephalography; electroretinography; visual provoked cortical potential; applications.


Behavior Engineering and Stimulus Control (2 credit units, 30 credit hours)

Syllabus: Free operator and discreet attempts. Premack principle. Adjustment of parameters in simple discriminations, reversals, conditional discriminations. Schedule contingencies of choice and change of repertoire. Coherence of stimulus control topographies. Arbitrary relations and generativity: necessary and sufficient conditions.


Stimulus equivalence: research history and recent questions (3 credit units, 45 credit hours)

Syllabus: Origin of research on stimulus equivalence. Sidman's (1982) descriptive model of stimulus equivalence. Initial research on equivalence with humans and non-humans. The explanatory model of Sidman's stimulus equivalence (2000) and its implications for the current descriptive model. Recent research in the area that followed the new explanatory model.


Computer Programming Studies for the Development of Behavioral Experiments (2 credit units, 30 credit hours)

Syllabus: Logic and programming structure, operators, program controllers, introduction to functions, development of programs to evaluate behavior.


Phylogenetic Foundations of Human Sexuality (4 credit units, 60 credit hours)

Syllabus: Distal variables: phylogenetic adaptations of human sexuality; Bipedia; encephalization. Proximal variables: ontogenic adaptability of human sexuality; attractiveness and selection of partners; Maintenance tactics partners. Serial monogamy.


Introduction to Computational Neuroscience (2 credit units, 30 credit hours)

Syllabus: Neurons. Membrane potentials and conductance models. Synapses. The generation of action potentials: the Hodgkin-Huxley equations. Simplified neuron and population models. Extracellular and intracellular electrophysiological recording of neurons and groups of neurons. Population dynamics: modeling the average behavior of neurons. Cortical organization and simple networks. Transmission of information in random networks. Inferences about behavior from analysis of neural information.


Animal Communication Behavior Models (2 credit units, 30 credit hours)

Syllabus: Production, transmission and reception of sound communication signals, discussing biological, evolutionary and sociological aspects of communication. Chemical, visual and audible signals will be studied, citing examples from invertebrates to humans. The topics covered in seminars will be: ontogenesis of sound communication in vertebrates; Vocal learning in birds; Vocal learning in mammals; Description of repertoire of behavioral context calls in vertebrates; Evolution of duet songs in Aves; FOXP2 action; Dysfunctions of vocal behavior - dysphasias; Motor dysfunctions of vocal behavior.


Spatial Orientation (2 credit units, 30 credit hours)

Syllabus: Phylogenetic and ontogenetic hypotheses of spatially oriented behavior; Types of orientation (Orientation towards a source of stimulation; axial orientation or orientation towards unknown locations; orientation towards a known place); Neurobiology of Proprioception; Human genres and spatial orientation; Culture, development and guidance mechanisms (geocentric and egocentric).


Conceptual Questions in Behavioral and Brain Sciences (3 credit units, 45 credit hours)

Syllabus: Brief history of the study of behavior and the brain; Causes and explanations of behavior; Dualism versus Monism; Relationships between brain, mind and behavior; Relationships between different levels of analysis; Conceptual errors in the interpretation of behavioral and neuroscientific data: mereological fallacy, nominal fallacy, category errors. Alternatives to dualistic explanations of behavior; Explanation as a description of functional relationships; Mental predicates as a product, not a cause.


Theory of Relational Frames (RFT) (2 credit units, 30 credit hours)

Syllabus: Respond arbitrarily applicable relational. Relational frames and their properties. Verbal behavior and problem solving from the perspective of the RFT. The IRAP (Implicit Relational Assessment Protocol). Investigations of neural correlates. Applications to education and psychotherapy. RFT limitations and shortcomings. Conducting an experiment.