Explore the biology and psychology of the nervous system.

Featured photo: Composite fluorescent confocal microscopy images of Purkinje cells (green), specific cell body markers (blue), and granule cell layer (red) of the cerebellum.

Neuroscience encompasses the discipline’s foundations and frontiers—from molecules to behavior.

Neuroscience majors and minors receive a rigorous introduction to the study of the nervous system and the diverse methodologies that make up neuroscience inquiry.

Following core courses in neuroscience, students explore subdisciplines such as cognitive neuroscience, neuroanatomy, neurophysiology, learning and behavior, and perception. All neuroscience students engage in experiential learning in research or community settings and learn how to effectively write about and present their neuroscience findings.

Why major in neuroscience at Macalester?

Macalester’s location means you can study neuroscience as part of a broad liberal arts education, while taking advantage of other opportunities in the science-rich Twin Cities. Our students regularly conduct research in labs at the nearby University of Minnesota, Mayo Clinic, HealthPartners Neuroscience Institute, and a variety of biotech companies, such as Medtronic.

Our faculty members are also active researchers, studying topics such as neuropharmacology, functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), neuroimmunology, and addiction. Students have ample opportunities to conduct research with our faculty as well as with faculty at other institutions. For example, the image above shows a series of brain images generated by Macalester students using our confocal microscope.

Neuroscience in the cities


Fortune 500 companies in Minnesota and a wealth of industries and research facilities for neuroscience-focused internships and experiences.

Access to the University of Minnesota’s top research labs.


Internships within 8 miles of campus.

Join our community

  • Talk and Tacos. Each year we invite speakers to talk about their research in neuroscience, followed by tacos and conversation for the neuroscience community.
  • Capstone Poster Session. Each semester, neuroscience seniors take part in a poster session to share their research with classmates and faculty members, followed by food (a common theme for us!).