New NeuroDevNet cross-disciplinary course training the best and brightest in developmental neurosciences

February 15, 2016

NeuroDevNet 102, a new distance learning course for trainees across Canada is involving the country's top graduate students and post-doctoral fellows in a novel exploration of stakeholder perspectives on neurodevelopmental research.

Ten live webinars featuring discussion led by Network investigators and special guest lecturers are complemented by interaction between the 22 students within an online learning management system. The course is a key element in the new national training program in developmental neurosciences championed by NeuroDevNet, Brain Canada, and the many Canadian universities and institutes supporting and training individual students.

A NeuroDevNet 101 student participates in a discussion entitled "From Biosignatures to Behavioural Profiles in ASD."

"We're encouraging the trainees to consider the research topics presented in the course from different points of view," says NeuroDevNet Research and Training Manager Doug Swanson, "so we've given it a fitting title: 'New Perspectives on Research in NeuroDevelopmental Disorders'."

New Perspectives builds on the lessons and successes of NeuroDevNet 101, the Network’s first webinar-based course launched in 2012.

NeuroDevNet 102 is diverse both in its content and its composition: basic scientists involved in genetics and animal research are collaborating with psychology students, as well as clinician-scientists in training. Parsed into four groups, trainees are investigating how children and families, health care providers, policy makers and community organizations look at neurodevelopmental research. 

Three sessions have been held to date, including the first, focusing on assessment and diagnosis in autism spectrum disorder, the second exploring genetic mutations linked with pediatric epilepsy, and the need for including measurements of quality of life when assessing the impact of treatments for children with neurodisabilities. 

This week's focus was FASD, and explored the use of eye-tracking as a screening tool, and advances in the use of animal models of FASD in providing insights into the physiology and dynamics of the condition in humans.  

Forthcoming presentations include:
Thu, April 14 1:00-2:30pm ET Sleep disorders in Neurodevelopmental disorders
Wed, April 27 1:00-2:30pm ET Childhood learning disorders
Wed, May 11 1:00-2:30pm ET Improving quality of life in neurodevelopmental disorders
Wed, May 18 1:00-2:30pm ET Maternal and neonatal stressors on brain development
Wed, June 1 1:00-2:30pm ET (Tentative) Reversal of neurodevelopmental disorders

Student Guide

Interested in sitting in on the course? Contact Dr. Doug Swanson at djswan (at)