CSC 33939 - Summer Service Learning Program Neuroscience Course: Plasticity and Compassion

This course is exclusively for Neuroscience and Behavior majors who have completed SC 20450/NSBH 20450 seeking to apply the SSLP course towards the NSBH major and have been admitted to the Summer Service Learning Program (SSLP) who participate in eight-week summer service learning placements sponsored by the Center for Social Concerns and domestic Notre Dame Clubs. The application period for the SSLP is open from November 1 to February 1 and can be found online at All students in the SSLP must register for an SSLP-specific course. Most students take THEO 33936: Kinship on the Margins, a three-credit course graded Satisfactory/Unsatisfactory. In lieu of THEO 33936, NSBH majors who fulfill the prerequisites may elect to take this three-credit letter-graded (A-F) course with additional academic requirements. Students enroll in the course for the semester when they return to campus following their summer immersion, but the academic work of the three-credit course takes place before, during, and after student participation in the eight consecutive week summer immersion. The goals of the Neuroscience SSLP course are threefold: 1) Reflect on one's daily service experiences using assigned course readings drawn from neuroscience and from theology; 2) understand how neuroscientific concepts help to explain human behavior and how one's current state is affected by one's past experiences; 3) apply neuroscientific understanding to cultivate greater compassion in responding to individuals who exhibit non-typical behaviors. Coursework includes: four mandatory class sessions in April (large group class with all SSLP students 5-6:30 pm on April 9 or 10, April 16 or 17, and April 23 or 24; AND one additional small group class session with students in NSBH 3xxxx); weekly assigned readings; daily writing assignments throughout eight-week summer immersion; completion of SSLP Final Project and neuroscience essay, and participating in three follow-up class sessions on campus following the immersion at a time to be determined. All coursework is completed within the first five weeks of the fall semester. COMMENTS: Permission required to enroll. Must apply to the SSLP online at and be accepted to the SSLP before enrolling. After your SSLP placement is determined and prior to March 10, contact Ben Wilson, SSLP Director, at to request permission to register for Neuroscience SSLP course. Course is capped at 25 students.
CSTE - CST Elective, NSBH - Neuroscience elective, PSCE-Povrty Studies Experientl, PSIM - Poverty Studies Elect., ZCSC-Commnty Engagmnt Course
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