Adrian Russian 7 min read Academic Tips and Info, College Lists

List of All U.S. Colleges with a Neuroscience Major

Whether you’re a STEM or humanities person, loved or hated the ending of Game of Thrones, or thought the dress was black and blue or gold and white, there’s one thing every person on the planet has in common: a brain.

 

If you want to learn more about this most mysterious organ, you’re not alone. Neuroscience, and related fields such as cognitive science, is one of the fastest growing areas of study in the world. And because everyone has a brain, the skills you learn as a neuroscience major will be applicable to just about any career you hope to pursue.

 

Overview of the Neuroscience Major

 

Neuroscience courses cover a wide range of topics, spanning from sensory perception to mental illness, animal cognition, and artificial intelligence.

 

While there will be some required classes, you will also have flexibility to choose electives in the areas of neuroscience you are most interested in. Keep in mind that you will have to complete more hard science courses than you would as a Psychology major. If that doesn’t appeal to you, Psych might be a better option.

 

Students who succeed in neuroscience courses typically have strong memorization skills, can synthesize complex information, and know how to self-advocate. As a neuroscience major, you will have to remember details like what certain neurotransmitters do, which ions open which channels, and the functions of various neural networks.

 

Neuroscience is also a rapidly growing field, and the research does not always point to an obvious answer. Particularly in more advanced classes, your professors will expect you to draw your own conclusions from contradictory data. Additionally, neuroscience classes are typically on the larger side, so you should feel confident identifying points of confusion and reaching out to the professor on your own, since you will receive less individual attention than you would in some other majors.

 

Because you can take neuroscience classes on many different topics, you will also be able to utilize your degree in just about any field. Some of the classes that will likely be required, such as behavioral neuroscience or social cognition, will teach you skills that apply to a wide range of jobs, from business to social work. 

 

Neuroscience is also a popular major for pre-meds, along with chemistry and biology. You will still have to take classes in these other departments to fulfill your requirements, but majoring in neuroscience will give you a solid knowledge base going into med school.

 

What to Look for in a College as a Neuroscience Major

 

Course Offerings

 

If you already know there’s one area of neuroscience that you’re particularly interested in, you should check a school’s website to make sure they offer courses in that area before you decide to apply. For example, Harvard and MIT both offer specialized computational neuroscience majors, whereas Columbia’s program, while still incredibly strong and well-regarded, is more general.

 

If you don’t know how to find this information, we recommend simply googling “neuroscience courses school X,” rather than trying to navigate the school’s website. The first result will likely be either the major requirements or a list of all the neuroscience courses offered at that school, both of which will be useful resources for you.

 

Specialized Neuroscience Labs

 

One of the most exciting things about being a neuroscience major is that the field is expanding and evolving so rapidly. There are many fundamental questions that researchers have thus far been unable to answer, such as “Why does the brain need sleep?” or “What is the best treatment for depression?

 

As a neuroscience major, you may have the opportunity to help find the answers to some of these questions, whether you are working with a professor or participating in a study yourself. And if your school has labs dedicated to just neuroscience, you will have more chances to engage in research. 

 

For example, Dartmouth offers extra credit in some neuroscience classes if you volunteer to participate in studies, and also has fellowships that pay students to conduct research during an off-term.

 

Extracurricular Lectures

 

Another great way to engage with the ongoing research in neuroscience is to listen to neuroscientists describe their work. These lectures will not only enhance what you have learned in the classroom, but also give you an idea of just how many ways there are to utilize a neuroscience major.

 

For example, Columbia’s fall lecture series included talks on subjects ranging from “Developmental Science through the Lens of the Events of 2020” (given by Columbia Professor Dima Amso) to “Past, Present, & Future of American Psychology’s Role in Changing the Current Structures that Support Racial Injustice” (given by Brown Professor Malik Boykin and Yale Professor Edmund Gordon).

Discover your chances at hundreds of schools

Our free chancing engine takes into account your history, background, test scores, and extracurricular activities to show you your real chances of admission—and how to improve them.

List of All U.S. Colleges With a Neuroscience Major

 

School

Location

University of Alabama at Birmingham | UAB

Birmingham, Alabama

Arizona State University | ASU

Tempe, Arizona

University of Arizona

Tucson, Arizona

Hendrix College

Conway, Arkansas

California Institute of Technology | Caltech

Pasadena, California

Claremont McKenna College | CMC

Claremont, California

University of California, Los Angeles | UCLA

Los Angeles, California

Pitzer College

Claremont, California

Pomona College

Claremont, California

University of California, Riverside | UC Riverside

Riverside, California

University of San Diego | USD

San Diego, California

Santa Clara University

Santa Clara, California

University of California, Santa Cruz | UCSC

Santa Cruz, California

Scripps College

Claremont, California

University of Southern California | USC

Los Angeles, California

University of Colorado Boulder | CU Boulder

Boulder, Colorado

Colorado College

Colorado Springs, Colorado

Colorado State University | CSU

Fort Collins, Colorado

Connecticut College

New London, Connecticut

Fairfield University

Fairfield, Connecticut

Sacred Heart University | SHU

Fairfield, Connecticut

Trinity College

Hartford, Connecticut

American University

Washington, D.C.

University of Delaware

Newark, Delaware

University of Miami

Coral Gables, Florida

Nova Southeastern University | NSU

Fort Lauderdale, Florida

Agnes Scott College

Decatur, Georgia

Emory University

Atlanta, Georgia

Georgia Institute of Technology | Georgia Tech

Atlanta, Georgia

Georgia State University

Atlanta, Georgia

Mercer University

Macon, Georgia

Augustana College

Rock Island, Illinois

University of Chicago

Chicago, Illinois

University of Illinois at Chicago | UIC

Chicago, Illinois

DePaul University

Chicago, Illinois

Knox College

Galesburg, Illinois

Lake Forest College

Lake Forest, Illinois

Northwestern University

Evanston, Illinois

Indiana University Bloomington | Indiana

Bloomington, Indiana

DePauw University

Greencastle, Indiana

Earlham College

Richmond, Indiana

University of Notre Dame

Notre Dame, Indiana

Indiana University, Purdue University Indianapolis | IUPUI

Indianapolis, Indiana

University of Evansville

Evansville, Indiana

Coe College

Cedar Rapids, Iowa

Drake University

Des Moines, Iowa

University of Iowa

Iowa City, Iowa

Luther College

Decorah, Iowa

University of Kentucky

Lexington, Kentucky

Transylvania University

Lexington, Kentucky

Xavier University of Louisiana

New Orleans, Louisiana

Bates College

Lewiston, Maine

Bowdoin College

Brunswick, Maine

Colby College

Waterville, Maine

Johns Hopkins University | JHU

Baltimore, Maryland

Amherst College

Amherst, Massachusetts

Assumption College

Worcester, Massachusetts

Boston University | BU

Boston, Massachusetts

Brandeis University

Waltham, Massachusetts

Emmanuel College (Massachusetts)

Boston, Massachusetts

Harvard University

Cambridge, Massachusetts

College of the Holy Cross | Holy Cross

Worcester, Massachusetts

Massachusetts Institute of Technology | MIT

Cambridge, Massachusetts

Mount Holyoke College

South Hadley, Massachusetts

Northeastern University

Boston, Massachusetts

Smith College

Northampton, Massachusetts

Stonehill College

Easton, Massachusetts

Wellesley College

Wellesley, Massachusetts

Western New England University | WNE

Springfield, Massachusetts

Wheaton College (Massachusetts)

Norton, Massachusetts

Central Michigan University | CMU

Mount Pleasant, Michigan

Eastern Michigan University | EMU

Ypsilanti, Michigan

Grand Valley State University | GVSU

Allendale, Michigan

University of Michigan

Ann Arbor, Michigan

Michigan State University

East Lansing, Michigan

Carleton College

Northfield, Minnesota

Macalester College

Saint Paul, Minnesota

University of Minnesota, Twin Cities | Minnesota

Minneapolis, Minnesota

University of St. Thomas (Minnesota)

Saint Paul, Minnesota

Millsaps College

Jackson, Mississippi

Saint Louis University | SLU

Saint Louis, Missouri

Washington University in St. Louis | WashU

Saint Louis, Missouri

University of Montana

Missoula, Montana

Creighton University

Omaha, Nebraska

University of Nebraska Omaha | UNO

Omaha, Nebraska

University of Nevada, Reno

Reno, Nevada

Dartmouth College

Hanover, New Hampshire

University of New Hampshire | UNH

Durham, New Hampshire

St. Anselm College

Manchester, New Hampshire

Drew University

Madison, New Jersey

Princeton University

Princeton, New Jersey

Adelphi University

Garden City, New York

Barnard College

New York, New York

The State University of New York at Binghamton | SUNY Binghamton

Vestal, New York

Colgate University

Hamilton, New York

Columbia University

New York, New York

Fordham University

Bronx, New York

The State University of New York at Geneseo | SUNY Geneseo

Geneseo, New York

Hamilton College

Clinton, New York

Marymount Manhattan College

New York, New York

New York University | NYU

New York, New York

University of Rochester

Rochester, New York

Skidmore College

Saratoga Springs, New York

St. Lawrence University

Canton, New York

Syracuse University

Syracuse, New York

Union College (New York)

Schenectady, New York

Utica College

Utica, New York

Vassar College

Poughkeepsie, New York

Duke University

Durham, North Carolina

High Point University

High Point, North Carolina

University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill | UNC

Chapel Hill, North Carolina

Baldwin Wallace University | BW

Berea, Ohio

Bowling Green State University | BGSU

Bowling Green, Ohio

University of Cincinnati

Cincinnati, Ohio

Kenyon College

Gambier, Ohio

Miami University

Oxford, Ohio

University of Mount Union

Alliance, Ohio

Oberlin College

Oberlin, Ohio

Ohio University

Athens, Ohio

Ohio State University | OSU

Columbus, Ohio

Ohio Wesleyan University

Delaware, Ohio

College of Wooster

Wooster, Ohio

Reed College

Portland, Oregon

Willamette University

Salem, Oregon

Allegheny College

Meadville, Pennsylvania

Bucknell University

Lewisburg, Pennsylvania

Carnegie Mellon University | CMU

Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

Cedar Crest College

Allentown, Pennsylvania

Dickinson College

Carlisle, Pennsylvania

Franklin and Marshall College | F&M

Lancaster, Pennsylvania

Lafayette College

Easton, Pennsylvania

Lehigh University

Bethlehem, Pennsylvania

Muhlenberg College

Allentown, Pennsylvania

University of Pennsylvania | UPenn

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

University of Pittsburgh | Pitt

Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

University of Scranton

Scranton, Pennsylvania

Swarthmore College

Swarthmore, Pennsylvania

Temple University

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Ursinus College

Collegeville, Pennsylvania

Washington and Jefferson College | W&J

Washington, Pennsylvania

Westminster College (Pennsylvania)

New Wilmington, Pennsylvania

Brown University

Providence, Rhode Island

Furman University

Greenville, South Carolina

Belmont University

Nashville, Tennessee

Rhodes College

Memphis, Tennessee

Vanderbilt University

Nashville, Tennessee

University of Texas at Austin | UT Austin

Austin, Texas

Baylor University

Waco, Texas

University of Texas at Dallas | UT Dallas

Richardson, Texas

Rice University

Houston, Texas

Texas Christian University | TCU

Fort Worth, Texas

Trinity University

San Antonio, Texas

Brigham Young University | BYU

Provo, Utah

Westminster College (Utah)

Salt Lake City, Utah

St. Michael’s College

Colchester, Vermont

Middlebury College

Middlebury, Vermont

Norwich University

Northfield, Vermont

University of Vermont | UVM

Burlington, Vermont

George Mason University

Fairfax, Virginia

Virginia Tech

Blacksburg, Virginia

Washington and Lee University

Lexington, Virginia

College of William & Mary | William & Mary

Williamsburg, Virginia

Washington State University | WSU

Pullman, Washington

Western Washington University | WWU

Bellingham, Washington

Carthage College

Kenosha, Wisconsin

Edgewood College

Madison, Wisconsin

Lawrence University

Appleton, Wisconsin

University of Wisconsin-Madison | Wisconsin

Madison, Wisconsin

 

Notice a school that’s missing? Email us and let us know!

 

What Are Your Chances of Acceptance?

 

Because most colleges receive thousands of applications more than the number of available spots, the most important thing is to be academically comparable to the average student at a school you are applying to. 

 

This is because many schools use the Academic Index as an initial filter on applications, and if your test scores and GPA are well below those of the average accepted student, you are unlikely to be accepted. You can find out what the academic profile of an accepted class is at a particular school by googling “class profile school X,” or searching for each school’s Common Data Set. To make things easier, we also have this info in our free college search tool.

 

Once you get through this initial round of admissions, the more qualitative parts of your application, such as your extracurriculars and essays, become extremely important. While academics will be considered at every stage, as admissions officers make their final decisions about applicants they will also be thinking about what kind of roommate someone would be, or what they would add to their school’s community outside the classroom.

 

Potential Neuroscience majors may strengthen their profile by taking advanced STEM classes, and by participating in science- and health-related extracurriculars, like HOSA, Science Olympiad, and volunteering at a hospital.

 

If you are wondering what your chance of acceptance is at a specific school, we recommend using our free Chancing Engine. Unlike other admissions calculators, it accounts for both objective metrics, like GPA, and more qualitative parts of your profile, such as your extracurriculars.

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Adrian Russian
Blogger at CollegeVine
Short bio
Adrian is a current senior at Dartmouth College, originally from Seattle, WA. At Dartmouth, she studies philosophy and neuroscience, and has been involved with research in the philosophy department, sexual assault prevention on campus, and mentorship programs for first year students. She spent her junior fall studying abroad at the University of Edinburgh in Scotland.