Frequently Asked Questions
Where do I apply?
All applications for the Brown Neuroscience Graduate Program must be submitted online at the Brown Graduate School website. Candidates interested in applying for the Brown-NIH Partnership Program must complete an online application at the NIH Graduate Partnership Program website.
Where do I send my application materials?
Any material that cannot be submitted online should be mailed to:
Brown University Graduate School
47 George Street
Providence, RI 02912
What is the application deadline?
All applications materials must be submitted by Monday, December 5, 2011
Is there an application fee?
The application fee is $75. However, US Citizens or permanent residents who can demonstrate either financial need or participation in certain specialized programs may apply for an application waiver.
What test scores are required with the application?
Applicants must submit scores for the general aptitude sections of the Graduate Record Examination. Foreign students must also submit scores on the Test of English as a Foreign Language.
What are the Brown University Institution and Department codes for the GRE and TOEFL?
The GRE reporting code for Brown University is 3094 and the Neuroscience Department code for Neuroscience is 0213. The TOEFL reporting code for Brown University is 3094 and the Neuroscience Department code is 30
What are the academic prerequisites?
Applicants are expected to have an undergraduate degree in a component discipline of neuroscience such as biology, psychology, neurobiology, chemistry, physics, applied mathematics, engineering, or computer science. However, the Program does not have any specific course requirements for successful admission.
Are there financial aid or assistantship applications to complete?
All graduate students are fully supported during their time in graduate school. No forms for requesting financial support need to be submitted.
What is involved in the interview?
We ask competitive applicants to come to Brown for an interview visit. This visit allows candidates to meet the Program faculty trainers, see our research facilities, and interact with current graduate students. Interviews for the Neuroscience Graduate Program will be held on February 23-25, 2012. Interviews for the Brown-NIH Graduate Partnership Program will take place on February 27-28, 2012 at Brown University and February 29-March 1, 2012 at the NIH.
When are admissions decisions announced?
Admission decisions are announced in early March.
How many students enter the neuroscience program each year?
Target enrollment for the Program is 12 students.
How long does it take to complete the Ph.D degree?
On average, Neuroscience graduate students at Brown University complete their thesis work in 5.3 years.
What is the financial support?
For the 2011-2012 academic year, our students receive a stipend ($27,500/year), tuition, health insurance, and health services fee.
Where does my funding come from?
Neuroscience Graduate Program Students receive 1.5 years of support from the Division of Biology and Medicine. Additional support comes from external predoctoral fellowships, internal predoctoral fellowships, institutional predoctoral training grants, and faculty sponsorship. Brown-NIH Graduate Partnership Program students are supported by the NIH Graduate Partnership Program office for their first two semesters and subsequently by their mentors at the NIH.
What funding is available for conference travel?
All Neuroscience graduate students attend conferences each year. Financial support comes from the Neuroscience Graduate Program as well as the Division of Biology and Medicine.
What health insurance benefits are available?
Your health insurance is covered by the program. The health insurance benefits are described on the Office of Insurance and Risk website.
What courses will I take once enrolled in the Program?
In the first year of study, graduate students enroll in a set of courses designed to provide fundamental knowledge of neuroscience. In the 2011-12 Academic Year, incoming students will enroll in the following courses:
NEUR 2030 Advanced Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience I
NEUR 2040 Advanced Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience II
NEUR 2050 Advanced Systems Neuroscience
NEUR 2060 Advanced Cognitive Neuroscience
BIOL 3652 Integrated Medical Sciences II
In the second year, all Neuroscience graduate students must also enroll in a graduate level statistics course or demonstrate core competence in statistics.
What are laboratory rotations and how many are required before selecting a lab for my thesis work?
A laboratory rotation consists of a one semester research project under the supervision of a Program faculty advisor. Lab rotations allow students to experience the scientific research, environment, and mentorship style in several labs before joining a particular lab for their thesis work. Students are required to complete two lab rotations and encouraged to do a third rotation during the summer following their first year.
Are there any restrictions in choosing a thesis laboratory?
Typically, graduate students select their Thesis Advisor prior to the start of their second year of study. Only approved faculty trainers in the Neuroscience Graduate Program can serve as full time thesis advisors. New faculty members can be added to the list of approved trainers after review by the Steering Committee.
What are the teaching requirements?
Neuroscience Graduate Program students serve as teaching assistants for one semester in their second year. This teaching requirement ensures that students understand the importance of, and challenges associated with, teaching in the academic setting. Students interested in additional teaching experience may enhance their teaching capabilities by joining activities sponsored by Brown University’s Harriet W. Sheridan Center for Teaching and Learning.