Visceral Mind Summer School

Date: 2023, 4th-8th September

A hands-on course in the neuroanatomy of cognition and emotion, Bangor University, Wales, UK

Apply here

  • Previous applicants will be contacted early in 2023 to see if they are able to take their place in 2023.
  • When these places have been confirmed, we will notify our priority mailing list to announce a call for applications for remaining places for Visceral Mind 2023.

There is no substitute for the life-changing experience of dissecting the human brain, and no better way to learn, by both sight and touch, the three-dimensional brain.

This course is intended for postgraduate and postdoctoral researchers studying cognitive neuroscience. Functional neuroanatomy is taught in the context of neurological patients with impairments due to focal brain lesions, and hands-on neuroanatomy classes with human brain tissue – to bring neuroanatomy to life and make it relevant to students of cognitive neuroscience

We begin with case conferences in which patients with neurological signs of lesion to a system or pathway are interviewed and examined, and in which the techniques of neurological examination and principles of localization are highlighted. The patient's scans will be reviewed for clinic-anatomical correlation relating signs and symptoms to radiological anatomy. In the dissection lab, students will gain a 3D familiarity with brain structure, by sight and touch, to be correlated with what they see in case conferences and scan reviews.

Residential Course

Course Fee: £850

Non-residential: £600

Registration includes:

  • 6 nights accommodation (B&B) in en suite rooms @ Bangor University
  • Course & Bench fees including patient conference, brain dissection and lectures
  • Conference dinner, lunches and refreshments
  • North Wales Excursion

Application timeline

  • Call for applications: Opens 26.1.23
  • Deadline for Applications: 21.4.23

What past delegates have said about the course

Paleczny, 2022

VM gave a new appreciation for neuroanatomy and its relating to clinical and practical applications. The material was presented in a holistic way with multiple teaching techniques.

Moran, 2022

Marrying the anatomy we’ve learned with lived experiences during the patient sessions was certainly my highlight.

Yanakieva, 2022

It was the best course I have attended in my 10 years of studying.

Esteban, 2019

I greatly appreciated being able to learn about the same brain structures from different points of view (drawing, dissections, explanation of function, DTI, Patient cases). It helped me integrate information, understand and retain better.

Papini, 2016

The course has been an incredible experience! Handling, manipulating and dissecting an actual brain was a privilege, and I finally managed to combine my knowledge of the brain in 3D space. I have learned so much in only one week of well-balanced theoretical and practical lessons…it would have taken one month of boring study with books!!

Markostamou, 2016

The course was well organized, the topics were very well selected, and all lecturers were excellent in delivery.

Blazevica, 2016

The course has been amazing! We’ve seen the brain from all possible perspectives: own drawings, classical book images, MRi scans, DTi, and of course THE REAL BRAIN!

Jack, Australia, 2015

“The Visceral Mind course was one of the best experiences of my life.”

Munding, France, 2014

“We were 40 students, from 18 different countries (both in and out of Europe), from diverse and focused disciplines surrounding the topics covered by the course, and for me and all those with whom I discussed it, the course was a paradigm shift in the way we thought about the brain. I am used to seeing the mind through layer after layer of computers, scanners, models and filters; seeing the brain in a very abstract way. To see and handle the actual tissue, to meet patients and pursue their pathology through behaviour, lecture, tissue dissection, anatomy, genetics was... beautiful. I left with a more holistic understanding of the brain's biological, animal, indeed visceral nature and how it might give rise to a mind.”

Dardagani, Greece, 2015

“The lectures were very comprehensive and interesting and the lecturers were very enthusiastic! The course was very useful and informative and, most importantly, it included many hours of practical work, which is something not that common in other courses or schools. It gave me the – probably one in a lifetime – experience of touching, holding and cutting on a human brain.”

Domingo, Canada, 2015

“The lectures were a great compliment to the labs. Not only did we get a refresher on brain orientation and anatomy of major brain areas for the benefit of those who are new to studying the brain, but we were also shown videos of patients with cognitive deficits due to brain lesions. It was a special experience to get to see patients and to learn human neuroanatomy from a clinical perspective. To be able to dissect whole human brains is a valuable experience that isn't offered in all neuroscience programs. Seeing parts of the brain that I have been studying for years for the first time in person is the perfect complement to my studies and research. After the end of the Summer School, I can say that my neuroanatomy understanding is much deeper.”

Schloeffel, Germany, 2015

“It was an all-around incredible experience. The course was very well organized and structured in such a way that made it easy to integrate the ‘theoretical’ knowledge transmitted during the lectures/morning sessions with the clinical aspects & directly apply that knowledge in locating structures, pathways etc. during the prosection & dissection labs. The instructor-to-student ratio during the labs was excellent as well, with plenty of time to practice orientation in the brain and locating different structures, ask questions. Instructors were knowledgeable and found different ways in explain and assist, very patient as well!

The patient case conferences were another highlight, very valuable to the understanding & critical consideration of structure-to-function relationships.

A special thank you to Becca & co for doing an excellent job in providing support and information, as well as keeping everything running smoothly and always wearing a smile - prior to, during, and even after the course!

The course exceeded all expectations – and expectations were high to begin with based on the reports of attendees from previous years!”