Neuroscience and Society

Drawing of human brain, labeling functions of different regions.

Map of brain functions, by S. Polyak, 1957. (Courtesy of University of Chicago Press. Used with permission.)


MIT Course Number


As Taught In

Spring 2010



Cite This Course

Course Features

Course Description

This course explores the social relevance of neuroscience, considering how emerging areas of brain research at once reflect and reshape social attitudes and agendas. Topics include brain imaging and popular media; neuroscience of empathy, trust, and moral reasoning; new fields of neuroeconomics and neuromarketing; ethical implications of neurotechnologies such as cognitive enhancement pharmaceuticals; neuroscience in the courtroom; and neuroscientific recasting of social problems such as addiction and violence. Guest lectures by neuroscientists, class discussion, and weekly readings in neuroscience, popular media, and science studies.

Other OCW Versions

Archived versions: Question_avt logo

Schüll, Natasha. STS.010 Neuroscience and Society, Spring 2010. (MIT OpenCourseWare: Massachusetts Institute of Technology), (Accessed). License: Creative Commons BY-NC-SA

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