Nencki Open Lab Summer School on Behavioral Neuroscience

We strongly believe that asking important questions in neuroscience is only possible if you are not restricted by technical limitations or lack of skills necessary to design your experiment. In a world dominated by commercial, black-box equipment this intellectual freedom is hard to achieve – fortunately though, it is not the only world possible.

Thanks to a dynamic and growing society of open science, we have a huge diversity of amazing free hardware and software tools that can make us independent of thecommercially available equipment that is often expensive and hard to modify. Being a fluent user of open soure tools gives you freedom; and only the limits of your creativity mean the limits of your research.

Nencki Open Lab Summer School was designed to give you the sense of this freedom. During the school, with our teaching assistants you will develop your own behavioral paradigm from scratch and then learn how to analyze your behavioral data. The school will be organized in three modules.

In Module 1 we will focus on Arduino & electronics. You will learn basics of electronics and get acquainted with Arduino programming that will allow you to make your own lab devices. At the end of the module you will also make Arduino robot that will be used as a subject for the behavioral paragidm that you will develop in the second module.

In module 2, using Arduino, corrugated plastic, hot glue and a lot of tape you will learn how to prototype and develop your own behavioral paradigm. We will introduce you to 3D design and 3D printing; you will also be trained in Bonsai, a programming language that will allow you to combine different data streams – cameras, sensors and others – with automatic gates or stimulus delivery systems to build an open-loop experimental setup.

In Module 3 you will analyze behavioral data acquired during your experiment with robots in Python. You will learn how to import, analyze, plot and interpret behavioral tracking data and get acquainted with DeepLabCut, SEE and other software that makes analysis much more interesting.

During our school the lecturers – Yoav Benjamini (TAU), Hauður Freyja Ólafsdóttir (Donders), Ewelina Knapska and Paweł Boguszewski (Nencki) will talk about their research, different approchases to studying behavior, data analysis and reproducibility problems in science,

Each day we will also organize discussions about participant’s projects. You will have an opportunity to share your ideas & problems you met during your work; we will try to help you to design the best solutions.

The deadline for applications is July 2nd. The cost of the school is 350 Euros. and will cover costs of accomodation, food and all necessary ecquipment. Please find the application form here. Please contact us in case of any questions: nenckiopenlab@gmail.com