School of Psychology, Birkbeck College

Neuropsychology Option weeks 1 to 5 (2006) Synopsis

Week 1: Localization of function in the human brain; some history, main issues, brief review of brain anatomy, current methods and equipment, and examples of recent claims. (Main handout relating in part to all 5 weeks)

Week 2: Evidence for extremes of localization in the visual system (Zeki, 1993; 2005) and introduction to evidence for plasticity in human brain function. (Same handout as week 1)

Week 3: More detailed evidence for plasticity in the cases of early blindness and deafness and in the case of phantom limbs and related phenomena. (With separate handout, mainly for phantom limbs)

Week 4: Localization for human motivation and emotion, including social emotions (e.g. empathy) and the special case of the Neuropsychology of reward and addiction. (Separate handout)

Week 5: How are the unusual psychological capacities of the human species related to the unusual characteristics of the human brain? Obvious candidates are overall brain expansion and lateralization but claims are also made for more detailed changes in the frontal lobes. (Separate handout).