Psychology | Drugs and the Nervous System
P407 | 3468 | G. Rebec
Introduction to the major psychoactive drugs and how they act upon the
brain to influence behavior. Discussion of the role of drugs as
therapeutic agents for various clinical disorders and as probes to
provide insight into brain function.
This course focuses on the neural mechanisms and processes underlying
the behavioral response to psychoactive drugs. A basic understanding
of neural function is required. Some background in chemistry is
helpful, but not essential. The first portion of the course will
cover basic material in pharmacology, neurophysiology, and synaptic
transmission. The second portion of the course will focus on specific
clinical disorders and their treatment with various drugs. In either
case, course material will be based on in-class lectures and assigned
readings from either the text or an outside source.
Grades will be based on the results of three exams and four assigned
papers. Exams will be based on class materials and reading
assignments. Three of the four papers will cover a topic assigned in
class; the final paper will cover a topic of your choice, approved in
advance by the instructor.
Text: Stahl, Essential Psychopharmacology: Neuroscientific Basis and
Practical Applications, Cambridge University Press, 1996.