Center of Excellence for Learning in Education, Science and Technology A National Science Foundation Science of Learning Center

Initiative 1. A New Generation of Experimental Modelers and Technologists

Led by CELEST board member Ennio Mingolla

CELEST prides itself on the successes of its interdisciplinary education program, in which a new generation of graduate and undergraduate students is trained in the nexus of computational, experimental, and technological aspects of the neuroscience of learning. CELEST graduate students are encouraged to choose courses that span experimental, modeling, and technological aspects of neuroscience. CELEST’s main strategy to ensure comprehensive training at the PhD level is to require that every graduate or postdoctoral assistant supported by a CELEST project have at least two faculty mentors with complementary interests and skills. Because each project must span at least two of the three areas of experimentation, modeling, and technological application, each graduate student or postdoctoral assistant is assured of direct experience in at least two of the three modalities on every project.

CELEST is helping to shape a vibrant new undergraduate curriculum by developing and offering interdisciplinary undergraduate courses that span computational and experimental approaches to the neuroscience of learning. CELEST also offers summer lab research experiences and tutorial workshops to undergraduates who are selected predominately from groups underrepresented in the sciences.