• Class Number 6118
  • Term Code 3360
  • Class Info
  • Unit Value 6 units
  • Mode of Delivery In Person
    • AsPr Brian Billups
    • AsPr Brian Billups
    • Prof Ehsan Arabzadeh
    • Prof John Bekkers
    • Dr Riemke Aggio-Bruce
    • Prof Ted Maddess
    • Dr Adrian Cioanca
  • Class Dates
  • Class Start Date 24/07/2023
  • Class End Date 27/10/2023
  • Census Date 31/08/2023
  • Last Date to Enrol 31/07/2023
SELT Survey Results

In this course you will learn about the main neuronal systems involved in how animals interact with the environment. The course will cover the principal sensory and motor systems, focusing in particular on bridging the gap between molecular/cellular neuroscience and higher-level perception and behaviour. Topics to be covered include: anatomy, physiology and functions of the major senses, motor systems and the biological basis of behaviour. The course will also discuss the relevance of these neuronal systems to human diseases.

Note: Graduate students attend joint classes with undergraduates but will be assessed separately.

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion, students will have the knowledge and skills to:

  1. Demonstrate detailed and advanced knowledge of concepts in systems neuroscience and discuss recent advances in the field.
  2. Explain some of the current neuroscience technologies and show how these can be used to study systems neuroscience.
  3. Incorporate principles derived from different neuroscience systems to analyse how the individual components of the nervous system work together to communicate information in the brain.
  4. Discuss mechanisms involved in specific neurological diseases.
  5. Locate and critically evaluate the published literature, at a graduate level, to formulate views in writing on recent findings in the field of systems neuroscience.
  6. Acquire, evaluate and interpret experimental data relating to systems neuroscience.

Research-Led Teaching

All teaching staff are research-active members of the John Curtin School of Medical research. They are experts in the field that they lecture and incorporate aspects of their research into the teaching curriculum. In addition, in the annotated bibliography exercise, students will have the opportunity to read about and critically evaluate the latest research in their chosen field.

Examination Material or equipment

No materials are permitted in the examination

Recommended student system requirements 

ANU courses commonly use a number of online resources and activities including:

  • video material, similar to YouTube, for lectures and other instruction
  • two-way video conferencing for interactive learning
  • email and other messaging tools for communication
  • interactive web apps for formative and collaborative activities
  • print and photo/scan for handwritten work
  • home-based assessment.

To fully participate in ANU learning, students need:

  • A computer or laptop. Mobile devices may work well but in some situations a computer/laptop may be more appropriate.
  • Webcam
  • Speakers and a microphone (e.g. headset)
  • Reliable, stable internet connection. Broadband recommended. If using a mobile network or wi-fi then check performance is adequate.
  • Suitable location with minimal interruptions and adequate privacy for classes and assessments.
  • Printing, and photo/scanning equipment

For more information please see https://www.anu.edu.au/students/systems/recommended-student-system-requirements

Staff Feedback

Students will be given feedback in the following forms in this course:

  • Written comments on submitted work in Turnitin
  • Feedback to whole class
  • Verbal and written feedback to individuals when requested

Student Feedback

ANU is committed to the demonstration of educational excellence and regularly seeks feedback from students. Students are encouraged to offer feedback directly to their Course Convener or through their College and Course representatives (if applicable). Feedback can also be provided to Course Conveners and teachers via the Student Experience of Learning & Teaching (SELT) feedback program. SELT surveys are confidential and also provide the Colleges and ANU Executive with opportunities to recognise excellent teaching, and opportunities for improvement.

Class Schedule

Week/Session Summary of Activities Assessment
1 Lectures: Weeks 1-12
  • Approx 3 lectures per week.
Final exam
2 Practical classes: Weeks 3, 5, 7 Neuroanatomy test; 3 Lab reports
3 Research and write annotated bibliography: Weeks 9 -10 Annotated bibliography document
4 Research and write critical review essay: Weeks 8 - 11 Critical review essay

Tutorial Registration

ANU utilises MyTimetable to enable students to view the timetable for their enrolled courses, browse, then self-allocate to small teaching activities / tutorials so they can better plan their time. Find out more on the Timetable webpage.

Assessment Summary

Assessment task Value Due Date Return of assessment Learning Outcomes
Neuroanatomy Test 5 % * * 6
Laboratory Reports 24 % * * 6
Annotated Bibliography 11 % * * 1, 5
Critical Review Essay 15 % * * 1, 2, 3, 5
End of Semester Exam 45 % 02/11/2023 30/11/2023 1, 2, 3, 4

* If the Due Date and Return of Assessment date are blank, see the Assessment Tab for specific Assessment Task details


ANU has educational policies, procedures and guidelines , which are designed to ensure that staff and students are aware of the University’s academic standards, and implement them. Students are expected to have read the Academic Integrity Rule before the commencement of their course. Other key policies and guidelines include:

Assessment Requirements

The ANU is using Turnitin to enhance student citation and referencing techniques, and to assess assignment submissions as a component of the University's approach to managing Academic Integrity. For additional information regarding Turnitin please visit the Academic Skills website. In rare cases where online submission using Turnitin software is not technically possible; or where not using Turnitin software has been justified by the Course Convener and approved by the Associate Dean (Education) on the basis of the teaching model being employed; students shall submit assessment online via ‘Wattle’ outside of Turnitin, or failing that in hard copy, or through a combination of submission methods as approved by the Associate Dean (Education). The submission method is detailed below.

Moderation of Assessment

Marks that are allocated during Semester are to be considered provisional until formalised by the College examiners meeting at the end of each Semester. If appropriate, some moderation of marks might be applied prior to final results being released.


There is a 3 hour end of semester exam.

To pass this course you must achieve at least 50% overall and at least 45% on the final examination.

The date range in the Assessment Summary indicates the start of the end of semester exam period and the date official end of semester results are released on ISIS. Please check the ANU final Examination Timetable http://www.anu.edu.au/students/program-administration/assessments-exams/examination-timetable to confirm the date, time and location exam.

Assessment Task 1

Value: 5 %
Learning Outcomes: 6

Neuroanatomy Test

Questions will be presented as an online assessment in week 4 of semester. Approximate duration 30 mins.

Specific dates and further details can be found on the Course Wattle site.

Assessment Task 2

Value: 24 %
Learning Outcomes: 6

Laboratory Reports

Submit a report on each of the three laboratory sessions undertaken in weeks 3, 5 and 7.

Each report is worth 12% of the final course mark.

Detailed instructions will be given during the practical session or on the online learning platform.

Due date: 10 days after the practical session (17th August 2023; 31st August 2023; 28th September 2023).

Return Date: Reflexes Practical - 31st August 2023; VEP Practical - 14th September 2023; Sensory Coding practical - 13th October 2023.

NB - Assessment extensions will not be granted beyond the return date of the assessment item.

Assessment Task 3

Value: 11 %
Learning Outcomes: 1, 5

Annotated Bibliography

Students must agree an individual topic with one of the course lecturers by the end of week 6, which must be based around the material in the course.

Submitted bibliography should include a one-page summary of the topic (12 point font, single spaced, 2cm margins), plus a critical annotated bibliography of 10 references, formatted with the supplied Endnote style.

Due: Week 10. Specific dates and further details can be found on the Course Wattle site.

Return Date: 10 days after due date

Assessment Task 4

Value: 15 %
Learning Outcomes: 1, 2, 3, 5

Critical Review Essay

Students must agree an essay title with one of the course lecturers by the end of week 6, which must be based around the material in the course

Submitted essay should be a critical review of the topic.

Word limit: 2000 words (including in-text citations, but not including bibliography at the end).

Due Date: Week 12. Specific dates and further details can be found on the Course Wattle site.

Return Date: 10 days after due date

Assessment Task 5

Value: 45 %
Due Date: 02/11/2023
Return of Assessment: 30/11/2023
Learning Outcomes: 1, 2, 3, 4

End of Semester Exam

A 3 hour exam covering all aspects of the course conducted during the end of semester examination period.

To pass this course you must achieve at least 50% overall and at least 45% on the final examination.

Academic Integrity

Academic integrity is a core part of the ANU culture as a community of scholars. The University’s students are an integral part of that community. The academic integrity principle commits all students to engage in academic work in ways that are consistent with, and actively support, academic integrity, and to uphold this commitment by behaving honestly, responsibly and ethically, and with respect and fairness, in scholarly practice.

The University expects all staff and students to be familiar with the academic integrity principle, the Academic Integrity Rule 2021, the Policy: Student Academic Integrity and Procedure: Student Academic Integrity, and to uphold high standards of academic integrity to ensure the quality and value of our qualifications.

The Academic Integrity Rule 2021 is a legal document that the University uses to promote academic integrity, and manage breaches of the academic integrity principle. The Policy and Procedure support the Rule by outlining overarching principles, responsibilities and processes. The Academic Integrity Rule 2021 commences on 1 December 2021 and applies to courses commencing on or after that date, as well as to research conduct occurring on or after that date. Prior to this, the Academic Misconduct Rule 2015 applies.


The University commits to assisting all students to understand how to engage in academic work in ways that are consistent with, and actively support academic integrity. All coursework students must complete the online Academic Integrity Module (Epigeum), and Higher Degree Research (HDR) students are required to complete research integrity training. The Academic Integrity website provides information about services available to assist students with their assignments, examinations and other learning activities, as well as understanding and upholding academic integrity.

Online Submission

You will be required to electronically sign a declaration as part of the submission of your assignment. Please keep a copy of the assignment for your records. Unless an exemption has been approved by the Associate Dean (Education) submission must be through Turnitin.

Hardcopy Submission

For some forms of assessment (hand written assignments, art works, laboratory notes, etc.) hard copy submission is appropriate when approved by the Associate Dean (Education). Hard copy submissions must utilise the Assignment Cover Sheet. Please keep a copy of tasks completed for your records.

Late Submission

Late submission of assessment tasks without an extension are penalised at the rate of 5% of the possible marks available per working day or part thereof. Late submission of assessment tasks is not accepted after 10 working days after the due date, or on or after the date specified in the course outline for the return of the assessment item. Late submission is not accepted for take-home examinations.

Referencing Requirements

The Academic Skills website has information to assist you with your writing and assessments. The website includes information about Academic Integrity including referencing requirements for different disciplines. There is also information on Plagiarism and different ways to use source material.

Returning Assignments

Student assignments will be returned online.

Extensions and Penalties

Extensions and late submission of assessment pieces are covered by the Student Assessment (Coursework) Policy and Procedure. Extensions may be granted for assessment pieces that are not examinations or take-home examinations. If you need an extension, you must request an extension in writing on or before the due date. If you have documented and appropriate medical evidence that demonstrates you were not able to request an extension on or before the due date, you may be able to request it after the due date.

Resubmission of Assignments

Assignments cannot be resubmitted.

Privacy Notice

The ANU has made a number of third party, online, databases available for students to use. Use of each online database is conditional on student end users first agreeing to the database licensor’s terms of service and/or privacy policy. Students should read these carefully. In some cases student end users will be required to register an account with the database licensor and submit personal information, including their: first name; last name; ANU email address; and other information.
In cases where student end users are asked to submit ‘content’ to a database, such as an assignment or short answers, the database licensor may only use the student’s ‘content’ in accordance with the terms of service – including any (copyright) licence the student grants to the database licensor. Any personal information or content a student submits may be stored by the licensor, potentially offshore, and will be used to process the database service in accordance with the licensors terms of service and/or privacy policy.
If any student chooses not to agree to the database licensor’s terms of service or privacy policy, the student will not be able to access and use the database. In these circumstances students should contact their lecturer to enquire about alternative arrangements that are available.

Distribution of grades policy

Academic Quality Assurance Committee monitors the performance of students, including attrition, further study and employment rates and grade distribution, and College reports on quality assurance processes for assessment activities, including alignment with national and international disciplinary and interdisciplinary standards, as well as qualification type learning outcomes.

Since first semester 1994, ANU uses a grading scale for all courses. This grading scale is used by all academic areas of the University.

Support for students

The University offers students support through several different services. You may contact the services listed below directly or seek advice from your Course Convener, Student Administrators, or your College and Course representatives (if applicable).

AsPr Brian Billups

Research Interests

Cellular Neuroscience

AsPr Brian Billups

AsPr Brian Billups

Research Interests

AsPr Brian Billups

Prof Ehsan Arabzadeh

Research Interests

Cellular Neuroscience

Prof Ehsan Arabzadeh

Prof John Bekkers

Research Interests

Cellular Neuroscience

Prof John Bekkers

Dr Riemke Aggio-Bruce

Research Interests

Cellular Neuroscience

Dr Riemke Aggio-Bruce

Prof Ted Maddess

Research Interests

Cellular Neuroscience

Prof Ted Maddess

Dr Adrian Cioanca

Research Interests

Cellular Neuroscience

Dr Adrian Cioanca


Responsible Officer: Registrar, Student Administration / Page Contact: Website Administrator / Frequently Asked Questions