2015 Summer Workshop for Teachers

"Neuroanatomy, Brain Imaging and Cognition", July 20 - 24, 2015

The 2015 workshop focused on current brain research. Distinguished speakers from leading academic laboratories discussed novel approaches and findings ranging from optogenetics to sleep, updates from autism research, and brain modifications in response to stress and disease. The laboratory component of this workshop covered (among other things) mammalian brain anatomy and dissection, eye gaze tracking tools in autism, electrophysiology experiments with live cockroaches, and hands-on demonstration of neuroimaging methods and data analysis including fMRI and MEG. The teachers were encouraged to view the following TED talks (some of which are by our speakers) prior to attending the workshop:

Talks included:

  • Prof. Ed Boyden, MIT Media Lab, and Dept. of Brain & Cognitive Sciences - "Tools for Mapping and Repairing the Brain"
  • Prof. Nancy Kanwisher, McGovern Institute and Dept. of Brain & Cognitive Sciences - “Brain functional specialization”
  • Prof. Mark F. Bear, Picower Institute for Learning & Memory, and Dept. of Brain & Cognitive Sciences - “How life experiences modify the brain”
  • Neuroimaging, Athinoula A. Martinos Imaging Center - McGovern Institute for Brain Research
  • Prof. Matthew Frosch, Director of the Neuropathology Service, MGH - "Brain anatomy and disease”

Laboratory activities included:

  • Sheep brain Dissection – Dr. Sonal Jhaveri
  • Eye tracking – Dr. Matthew Peterson (Kanwisher lab)
  • Electrophysiology- Dr. Carmen Varela & Praneeth Namburi
  • Brain Imaging: fMRI, MEG
  • NIRS - Dr. Lindsey Powell
  • Curriculum development - Dr. Mandana Sassanfar