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How do I Choose the Best Neuroscience Center?

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  • Written By: Carol Francois
  • Edited By: Heather Bailey
  • Last Modified Date: 27 November 2016
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There are four items to consider when choosing the best neuroscience center: research opportunities, equipment, reputation or ranking, and faculty. A neuroscience center can be part of a larger university or can be an independent research center. The best neuroscience centers are affiliated with well-known research programs and universities. The field of neuroscience is expanding, but there are a very small number of centers worldwide.

Neuroscience is the study of the functions of the brain. This topic is studied to increase understanding of how the brain works, the impact of brain and cognitive diseases, and how to treat those diseases. Some specific areas of study include spatial navigation, sleep and the brain, how the brain processes sound and language, and the impact of genetics on drug addiction in the brain.

Selecting the best center for research should be based on your own goals, achievements, and skill levels. For many top researchers, the primary decision-making factor is based on the aspects of life outside of work. This may include availability of affordable housing, day care for their children, or employment opportunities for spouses.

A neuroscience center must provide access and support services to grant and research funding opportunities. This is a critical aspect of this program, and it is very important to investigate when looking for which center to join. Talk with the research services department about the level of support they provide, and the role they play within the institution.

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The best neuroscience center will have a wide range of equipment available for use. This includes a fully stocked laboratory, a small office, and access to powerful computers. Talk to the administrator about the space available, lab sharing arrangements, and any other services that are required for your particular field of study or research.

In order to qualify for admission to a neuroscience program, you must have a doctorate degree in neuroscience or closely related field. Many candidates have many years of published research in this area, and are looking for an institute where they can be completely dedicated to research. Talk with the administrative staff to find out exactly what academic credentials are required.

All neuroscience centers provide the biographies of their top researchers on their website. The information listed typically includes the academic credentials, work experience, published articles, speaking engagements, and the current area of research. It is expected that all candidates will have invested the time to determine the exact area of research in the center and determined that this is in line with their own expertise and interests before applying.

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