Pre-College Programs

Biology & Chemistry Courses (71)

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Introduction to Human Physiology

An introduction to human physiology aimed primarily at undergraduates who have minimal to no Biology background or who are not concentrating in biology. Acquire a basic understanding of the physiological mechanisms that allow for the running of each major organ systems. Topics include basic cardiovascular, respiratory, urinary, digestive, endocrine, and neuromuscular function,...

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Cell and Molecular Biology

This course examines the structure and function of the basic unit of an organism, the cell. An experimental approach is used to examine cellular functions, ranging from gene transcription, cell division and protein secretion, to cell motility, and signal transduction. Relevance to health and disease will be considered.

Prerequisite: BIOL 0200 or AP Biology score of 4 or 5.

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Principles of Immunology

Introduction to experimental and theoretical foundations of immunology. Focuses on concepts, landmark experiments and recent advances. Topics include innate and adaptive immunity; structure/function of antibody molecules and T cell receptors; regulation of immune responses through cellular interactions. Applications of concepts to medically significant issues (vaccines,...

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Principles of Physiology

Introduction to the function and integration of animal systems with an emphasis on mammals. Includes basic concepts in cell and organ system physiology as well as fundamentals of modern trends in physiological science. Emphasizes the application of physical and chemical principles to animal function at both the cellular and systemic levels.

Prerequisite: BIOL 0200 or AP Biology score of 4 or 5.

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So You Want to be a Laboratory Scientist?

Have you ever wondered what DNA looks like? Are you curious about what it is like in a laboratory, working to solve problems in the medical field? Have you ever wanted to solve a crime?

This course is designed to expose middle school students to basic laboratory research in the fields of biotechnology, microbiology, medicine, forensics and general laboratory techniques....

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Conservation in Action: A Field Study Experience

We always hear about endangered species all over the world. What exactly is being done to protect these animals and their habitats? Most people do not realize it, but every endangered species has a recovery plan that maps the road to successfully increasing populations and saving habitats. Zoos are a huge part of these recovery plans by being a place for breeding and increasing...

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Introduction to the Human Body

Have you ever wondered how your body does all the things that it does?
Our bodies contain 206 bones and over 600 muscles, all coordinated by a central
computer called the brain. In this course, you will learn how your body’s components
work as one to keep you going every day.

This exciting hands-on course will provide an opportunity to answer your questions about
the...

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DNA Science and Biotechnology

Are you curious as to what it is like to be in a laboratory, working to solve problems in the medical field? Have you wondered how scientists work to provide breakthrough products and technologies to improve our environment? This course will immerse you in the laboratory as you learn the basics of biotechnology and gain experience conducting advanced laboratory techniques....

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Fatal Infections: How Scientists Combat Disease

Medicine is losing the fight against emerging infectious diseases. The microorganisms that cause infections can out maneuver and genetically transform to combat our best medicines to date. In this course, students will learn the microbiology behind the most fatal "diseases" facing our world today, such as ebola, toxoplasmosis and mad cow disease. We will also explore...

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Forensic Science: CSI Providence

Forensics is the application of science to answer questions pertaining to the law. Methods used to solve criminal investigations have progressed significantly over the past thirty years. Investigators and scientists now collaborate and use forensic technologies to uncover facts associated with criminal cases. This course will uncover the truth behind criminal investigations...

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Unravel the Mysteries of Human Diseases in a Worm!

Have you ever wondered how scientists study human diseases? The nematode (roundworm) Ceanorhabditis elegans is an outstanding genetic model to study biological problems related to human disease.In this project-based laboratory course, students will be introduced to one of the most widely used model organisms in research laboratories, the free-living...

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Techniques in DNA-Based Biotechnology

The development of powerful tools in molecular biology has led to an explosion in our understanding of genes and the factors controlling their expression. Illuminating research, including recent Nobel Prize winning work, is beginning to reveal the significant role of RNA, a molecule long thought to be merely a "messenger."Through extensive laboratory work,...

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The Body: An Introduction to Human Anatomy and Physiology

This course explores the structure and function of the human body at multiple levels: individual cells, their coming together to form tissues, the organization of tissues into organs, organs working together as parts of organ systems, and finally how those organ systems support one another to maintain the body. Normal structure and function are presented as a starting point,...

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Scholar-Athlete: Sport Physiology

The goal of the course is to understand the organ systems’ integrated response and adaptations to the stress of exercise. This topic is interesting to anyone who wants to understand what their body is actually doing at the biological level during exercise and post exercise. The course will introduce and demystify training regimens and diets and sciences' evolving...

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Research Techniques in Biomedical Fields

Doctors work to treat diseases, but scientists work to cure them. Have you ever wondered about the work that goes on behind the scenes in Medicine? Do you want to find out what it is like to work in a laboratory and be a real "lab rat"? This laboratory intensive course is designed to expose students to basic laboratory research, current topics, and techniques in...

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Bacteriology: The Good, the Bad, and the Deadly

Did you know that the bubonic plague killed approximate 50% of Europe’s population in the middle ages? Did you know that the bacterium that causes leprosy lives inside of the American Armadillo? Bacteria floating miles high in the atmosphere can cause meningitis. Bacteria even contribute to obesity and heart attacks. Come learn about the amazing world of bacteria!Bacteria...

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Principles of Human Physiology - Part A

Physiology is the critical study of how living things function. It is not anatomy, but as one of the most fundamental disciplines in the biomedical sciences, it depends heavily on anatomical and biological concepts. An understanding of the basic principles of physiology, especially in regard to our own bodies, is an invaluable part of any budding physicians' or scientists'...

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So You Want to Be a Doctor?

Is a career in medicine right for you? This course is designed to help you answer that question. Experience the study of medicine in a whole new way and get a taste of what medical school and practicing medicine in a variety of different medical specialties would be like. Participants in this class will:
Study gross anatomy, histology, physiology, and...

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Principles of Human Physiology - Part B

Physiology is the critical study of how living things function. It is not anatomy, but as one of the most fundamental disciplines in the biomedical sciences, it depends heavily on anatomical and biological concepts. An understanding of the basic principles of physiology, especially in regards to our own bodies, is an invaluable part of any budding physicians’ or scientists’...

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Molecular Biology and Biochemistry: From DNA to Enzymes

Molecular biology and biochemistry are two closely related fields where the properties of key biological molecules, such as proteins and DNA, and how they interact with each other in living organisms are studied. Research in these areas has become so successful at explaining living processes that it is used in almost all areas of the life sciences from medicine to the study...

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Organic and Biochemistry: Key Pathways to Success for the Pre-Med Student

Organic and biochemistry are the foundation sciences for the life sciences discipline. Students hoping to have a medical career need to have a strong foundation in chemistry. The MCAT exams given to college students hoping to enter medical, dental, or veterinary schools contain a number of sections devoted to general, organic, and biochemistry.The course begins with...

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Body at Work: Anatomy, Physiology, and Disease

In this course, you will study the major organ systems of the body, investigate normal and pathologic anatomy and physiology, and examine common diseases and injuries and their effect on the body’s organ systems.

One of the main objectives of this course is to provide students considering a career in the health professions a foundation in the study of human form...

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DNA Science: Forensics, Food, and Medicine

DNA can solve a crime, identify a future disease, and distinguish our common ancestors. A remarkable molecule, it has often been referred to as the “building block of life.”

Advances in molecular biology and biotechnology have led to an explosion in our understanding of DNA and how it impacts us, both as individuals and as a society. This course will introduce...

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Laboratory Research in Biomedicine

Topics to be covered in this laboratory intensive course include the structure and function of biomolecules such as proteins, enzymes, carbohydrates, and DNA, as well as the structure and function of cellular components. In the laboratory, students will carry out several introductory and advanced experimental techniques utilizing both DNA and proteins. Experiments will include...

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Leadership and Global Health

Despite world-wide advances in technology and development, providing basic health care to people in resource-poor settings continues to pose enormous challenges. Now more than ever, the global community is focused on overcoming inequities in health care and reducing poverty as a means of curbing the spread of disease and improving lives. Building on this momentum, this course...

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Infectious and Epidemic Disease

Understanding how pathogens are transmitted, lead to illness, and how they can be controlled or cured is the cornerstone of medical science. We will explore a variety of pathogenic organisms by examining their life cycle, transmission from host to host, and why some pathogens result in to epidemics. Students will discover not only the treatment of epidemic disease, but also...

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Forensic Science - CSI Providence

What makes an expert witness an expert? What would the perfect crime look like? These are but a couple of the many questions we will explore during this course. Forensic science is an exciting field that combines scientific principles from many different science disciplines with technology and math resulting in new, sometimes surprising outcomes!This integrated course...

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Using Pharmacology To Help Us Study The Nervous System

Have you ever thought about how nerve cells in your brain talk to each other, and how psychoactive drugs can affect this process? In this class, you will learn the latest ideas concerning how nerves use chemicals and electricity to communicate with each other, and how drugs such as marijuana, cocaine, LSD, caffeine, and nicotine can alter brain communication.Pharmacology...

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Drugs, Alcohol & Behavior

Drugs and alcohol have been part of the human experience since prehistory. Why are drugs and alcohol so thoroughly entrenched in human society? How do different drug classes affect human behavior? Why do some people abuse drugs, while others never become addicted? In this course, we will attempt to answer these questions. This course will cover the function of drugs in human...

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Drug Discovery: Treating Human Disease Through Medicine

The main objective of this course is to introduce students to the way that diseases are treated on a physiological level and how drugs are discovered and created. Students will gain an understanding of how the pharmaceutical industry approaches drug discovery, balancing patient quality of life and treatment regimen, as well as how drugs interact with the human body to elicit...

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The Great Diseases: Cancer, Heart Disease, Diabetes, and Infections

This course will explore the big killers of mankind. Students will gain a better understanding of the history of disease and the biological reasons diseases occur.In examining the major diseases that afflict man, we will explore cancer, heart disease, stroke, diabetes, neurodegenerative diseases, like Multiple Sclerosis and Alzheimer’s, autoimmune diseases,...

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Cancer Biology: An Evolving Puzzle

Have you ever questioned why certain types of cancer are so difficult to treat or how basic science discoveries translate into clinical practice? This course will provide an introduction to cancer biology through hands-on laboratory exercises and interactive lectures. Students will have the opportunity to develop an independent research project and learn about the daily...

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Viruses: Ancient Machines in a Modern World

Have you ever had a really bad cold? Maybe the flu? Do you know a polio survivor? Someone with AIDS?

Do you ever wonder exactly how these illnesses occur? It turns out we are merely guests in a fascinating microscopic world. Among the bacteria, parasites, prions, and other microbes are tiny, lifeless, parasitic beings that have been on earth long before we ever were:...

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Stem Cell Biology and Regenerative Medicine

There's a lot of controversy surrounding embryonic stem cells, but did you know that there are many types of stem cells in the body and that some are already being used to treat diseases? In this course, you'll learn about what stem cells are, what they do, and their importance to research and medicine. You’ll even learn how to culture mammalian cells. Discover...

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Scholar-Athlete: Back From the Bench: Sports Injury Prevention & Rehabilitation

Approximately 80% of high school athletes will experience a significant sport-related injury at some point in their athletic career. In this interactive course we will explore the relationship between injury, injury prevention and improving sports performance. This course offers clarity on what really matters in prevention, rehabilitation, and return to sport to enjoy a...

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Biomedical Informatics and Data Science for Biomedicine and Health Care

Modern health care relies on the ability to best interpret available data that may originate from a number of sources, including healthcare professionals, patients, and medical devices. Data science is the process of interpreting data for use within specific contexts. Biomedical informatics is the scientific discipline that is focused on transforming data for providing biomedical...

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From Molecular Aging to the Bicentennial Man: Why We Age and How Science Will Change Everything

"Everyone gets old". There's no law of nature that says that aging is immutable. On the contrary. What we know now is that aging is surprisingly plastic: it can be effectively manipulated. Why we age, what drives the process of aging from a cell or molecular perspective is still relatively poorly understood. We will focus on the different molecular hypothesis...

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Modeling Living Systems: The Principles of Life

Why can some cancer types elude treatments? How come we still haven't found a vaccine for HIV? Why do antibiotics sometimes work and sometimes don't? Adaptation, while providing quite a general answer to these questions, is not at all illustrative. This one simple principle governs many very different phenomena that we encounter in everyday life. The key to understanding...

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Disease Control: Biotechnology versus Microbes

Study with Brown University in Atlanta, Georgia at the United States' Centers for Disease Control (CDC)!

Scientists at the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) are the last line of defense against a worldwide pandemic. Are you up for the challenge to fight emerging drug-resistant infections alongside the CDC?The microorganisms that infect us can outmaneuver and...

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Behind the Breakthroughs: Using Laboratory Organisms in Biomedical Research

Groundbreaking advancements in our understanding of human health and disease could not be accomplished without the help of some interesting creatures. In this laboratory-intensive course we will work with several model organisms as well as mammalian cells grown in culture. Students will gain practical laboratory experience in the context of published biomedical research.Medicine...

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Moral Medicine: Questions in Bioethics at the Cutting Edge

Medical science has brought enormous advantages in the 21st century: cloned sheep, life-prolonging technology, cognitive and physical enhancement, widespread vaccination, and organ transplants for example. Just because we can do something, however, doesn't necessarily mean we should. What are the major issues that arise with scientific progress? How do we frame, re-frame,...

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Black Lives Matter Less: How Structural Racism Affects the Health of Black Lives and Communities

Black people in the US have shorter life expectancies, live with more physical and mental illness, and have more disability than White people. This course will help students connect health inequities to systematic racism in our society and its institutions, with a particular focus on the criminal justice and law enforcement system.Using a public health lens, this...

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Me, Myself and My Microbiome: Meet the trillions of microbes you've unknowingly been living with

Not all microbes are bad. Our body houses trillions of microbes that help keep us healthy. Come explore this microbial world inside us; discover your unique microbial signature and how it affects everything from your immunity to your behavior!Have you ever wondered what makes you “You”? Is it just your unique DNA? Would you believe it, if you were...

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Biochemistry, The Magic that Keeps Us Alive

In this course, we will unveil the chemical “magic” that dictates when and how the human body behaves, in its everyday grind to keep us alive. Every biological process in our body, from the most basic function of glucose utilization to complicated pathways of drug metabolism, heavily depends on basic concepts of chemistry in order to function. Without...

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From Brain to Sensation: The Neurobiology of Your Five Senses

Taste! Smell! Sound! Sight! Touch! Our world is alive with stimuli and these are just some of the many senses we use to explore and interact with our environment. But how are all of these senses transformed into our everyday perceptions and how do we respond?Using a combination of individual and small group experiments, students will learn about the brain and how...

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The Secret Lives of Animals: A View into their Brains and Behaviors

Humans have the ability to learn, communicate and problem-solve. But are we alone? This hands-on, field trip and lab-based course will change the way you think about nature. We will investigate innate and learned behaviors, including but not limited to imprinting, social structures and animal communication. This course provides an introduction and overview of animal behavior....

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Introduction to Animal Behavior

Have you ever wondered how animals communicate? Do they express emotions like humans? Can they learn to solve problems? This activity- and field trip-based course will explore these questions and more.

This course will change the way you think about nature. We will investigate numerous innate and learned behaviors, including but not limited to imprinting, chemical signaling,...

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Brain Basics: From Biology to Behavior

The study of the brain as a biological structure is very different from the study of any other organ in the body. The cells that make up the brain, neurons, share many of the same fundamental characteristics with other cells of the body (exocytosis, manufacturing of proteins, metabolism, growth). However, the functions of these cells result in products that are quite unique...

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Psychoactive Drugs: Brain, Body, Society

Have you ever wondered about the difference between recreational and medicinal usage of psychoactive drugs (drugs that alter mood and behavior)? Are there basic differences in the action of psychoactive drugs when they are taken for recreational versus medicinal purposes? And how does society decide how to categorize psychoactive drugs: which ones to make legal and which...

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Neuroscience in Health and Disease

Neuroscience is the study of the nervous system, including the brain, spinal cord, and networks of nerve cells, or neurons, that travel throughout the body. Although the field of neuroscience is relatively new, being recognized only in recent decades as a formal discipline, it is growing and expanding at a very rapid rate. The rapid growth of neuroscience and the pace of...

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Computer Modeling of the Brain

The human brain is one of the most complicated and mysterious systems on the planet. In recent decades, a huge push has been made to understand the brain through computer modeling. A large number of scientists have been involved in the development of these models not only to advance our understanding and treatments of neurological and psychiatric illnesses, but also to help...

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Neuroscience in Action: Understanding Our Brains and Nervous Systems

The human brain has more than 85 billion nerve cells, also known as neurons. Ever since the original description of the neuron by Santiago Ramón y Cajal in the 19th century, neuroscientists have known that understanding the neuron is key toward understanding how the brain works. This course is an introduction to neuroscience in which we will examine the inner...

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Brain and Behavior: Biological Perspectives and Therapeutic Approaches to Mental Illness

Taught by a practicing mental health counselor, "Brain and Behavior" will provide students with a multifactorial perspective on psychopathology. We will delve into illnesses such as depression, schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder, and substance use disorders … exploring the biological, social and cognitive causes of mental illness.
Students...

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The Adaptable Mind - How Neural Plasticity Shapes our Brains

We all know that our lives are shaped by the experiences we have in the world, but how are these adaptations physically manifested in our brains? The answer - neural plasticity. In this course students will discover the molecular underpinnings of plasticity, which allow us to learn, remember, and adapt.Plasticity is an essential mechanism of the normal functioning...

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How our experiences shape our brains: an experimental approach

Our brains are the driving force of our actions but our environment and past decisions can greatly shape our brains. In this hands-on and lab-based course we will examine the bidirectional link between brain and behavior. We will take advantage of innate and learned behaviors to experiment and ultimately attempt to understand how our past experiences can change our brains,...

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Visualizing Your Data: Graphical Programming in R

We will use the statistical programming language R to graphically represent data. Students will be able to present their data in a compelling way. This will be useful for many fast-growing fields of study including public health and biomedical sciences.Advances in computing power have enabled scientists to amass huge amounts of data on everything from genetics to...

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Engineering Design Studio: Learning by Making in the Brown Design Workshop

The importance of design practice and developing hands on approaches to solving engineering projects is becoming increasingly important in industry and academia. Multidisciplinary projects are pioneering the way we think and engage with technology. From MIT’s prestigious Media Lab to Google and Space-X, the future of innovation relies on students with equally...

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Biomedical Engineering: The Smart Design of Medical Implants and Devices

Are you passionate about innovative approaches to improving human health? Biomedical engineers apply principles of biology, medicine, and science, along with problem-solving skills and critical thinking, to a broad spectrum of problems, from designing regenerative medicine and new methods of drug delivery to micro-devices and gene therapy.

In this course, you will explore...

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Materials Science and Engineering: Designing for Society's Needs

Are you interested in learning more about the materials that surround our everyday lives? How might newly developed, advanced materials positively impact society? In this course, you will explore the mathematical and scientific fundamentals behind the field of materials science and engineering. You will explore the current state of the art in engineering design as you test...

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Engineering Biomedical Systems

Have you ever wondered how scientists make pacemakers or grow cartilage for joint repair? In this course, you will learn how these scientists, called biomedical engineers, develop devices and tissue-engineered technologies that often times save lives!The aim of this course is to provide an introduction to biomedical engineering analysis, specifically relating to device...

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Materials Science and Engineering: Where Would the World Be Without Them?

Virtually every segment of our everyday lives - be it transportation, housing, clothing, communications, recreation, sports, and so on - is influenced by materials in one way or another. In our contemporary era, sophisticated electronic devices, such as laptops and cell phones, rely on components that are made of semiconducting materials. Automobiles would not have been...

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Exploring the World of Marine Science

Have you ever wanted to be a marine biologist? How about exploring the ocean and understanding the world of marine science? Come join us and learn about Narragansett Bay in-depth by using Save The Bay’s waterfront Bay Center laboratory, classroom, shoreline and dock space. Conduct field work aboard Save The Bay’s education vessels.Serving directly as...

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Global Climate Change: Fact or Fiction?

So what's really going on? Climate change is an important issue that affects many aspects of our lives, including politics, science, the economy, and more. How can we understand what's happening? How do we gauge how important it is to us? How do we make sense of everything we hear from the media, or from our families and friends?This is a topic that we can't...

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Introduction to Nanotechnology

Introduction to Nanotechnology provides a broad overview of nanotechnology, discussing the fundamental science of nanotechnology and its applications to engineering, biomedical, and environmental fields. We will discuss the interdisciplinary nature of nanotechnology and how the different basic sciences merge to create the field.The course provides a background of...

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Genetics and Human Behavior

The completion of the Human Genome Project may be the most important scientific achievement of our lifetime, but how much can genes tell us about complex human behavior? How much does the environment impact human behavior? What kind of research techniques can be used to identify specific genes and specific environments that influence behavior?Behavioral genetics is...

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Psychology and Health: Emotions, Behaviors, and Disease

Have you ever wondered where the terms “cold feet” or “butterflies in your stomach” come from? Have you ever wondered why zebras and other animals don’t get ulcers? This course will answer these and other questions related to the role of psychology in the onset, course, and treatment of physical health conditions.

This course will provide...

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Becoming You: Human Development Across the Lifespan

What made you who you are? How do you see yourself changing in the future? Human development is brought to life in this course through the use of online simulations and engaging class discussion. You will create a "virtual self" and see how your decisions impact your simulated future self over time. You will also raise a "virtual child" from birth to...

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The Mind, Brain, and Behavior

Psychology - the study of the mind, the brain, and behavior - is relevant to every aspect of your life! How does personality form? How does society and culture impact an individual's behavior? How are mental illnesses diagnosed and treated? These are just some of the questions we will attempt to answer in this course. This course will provide an introduction to a broad...

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Introduction to Neuropsychology

This course will provide an introduction to the principles of neuropsychology, the study of brain-behavior relationships. The goal of this course will be to introduce the student to the role that specific brain regions and networks play in producing behavior. The course will focus on the tools neuropsychologists use to detect behavioral and cognitive deficits cause by brain...

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Moral Psychology

In everyday life, whether they may be trivial or significant, people often encounter situations that fall under the purview of morality. Sometimes people are tempted to commit a norm violation, such as telling a lie to obtain immediate rewards or avoid undesirable outcomes. Other times, people become a victim of or witness someone else's bad behaviors. Under such...

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The Brain: An Introduction to Neuroscience

Introduction to the mammalian nervous system with emphasis on the structure and function of the human brain. Topics include the function of nerve cells, sensory systems, control of movement and speech, learning and memory, emotion, and diseases of the brain.

No prerequisites, but knowledge of biology and chemistry at the high school level is assumed.

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