Dual Major in Cognitive Neuroscience

FIU Psychology launched the Cognitive Neuroscience Doctoral Program in fall 2014. Students in the Clinical Science program may explore the option of a double major. This opportunity reflects acknowledgement of the increasing importance of training in the biological bases of behavior so that students can access a broader literature relevant to their research area and develop skills necessary for participating in multidisciplinary research projects.

Eligibility

Clinical Science students pursuing a program of research related to cognitive neuroscience are welcome to apply for the double major and must have permission of their primary mentor and DCT to apply. Students are encouraged to apply prior to their matriculation, but are welcome to apply at any time during their training. Current students must be in good academic standing. Eligibility will be determined by faculty of the cognitive neuroscience program, based on review of application materials as described below.

Application Process

Clinical science students may apply to double major in Cognitive Neuroscience by completing the following steps:

  1. Submit to the Cognitive Neuroscience program director a summary describing how completing the double major aligns with their research interests, training goals, and professional trajectory. The application must be approved and signed by the student’s primary mentor and DCT.
  2. Identify a faculty mentor within Cognitive Neuroscience that agrees to serve on masters project and dissertation committees. At least one faculty member in the Cognitive Neuroscience program must serve on each committee.
  3. Provide an updated curriculum vitae to be considered along with student’s original application to the Clinical Science program.

Obtaining Approval

The faculty of the Cognitive Neuroscience program will review the student’s original application to FIU (academic transcripts, resume, letters of recommendation) and updated curriculum vitae, and will consider the extent to which the student’s proposed research interests reflects their program goals and faculty expertise. Students that are accepted for the double major will receive an official memorandum of acceptance from the Cognitive Neuroscience program director. The memorandum will be added to the student’s file and forwarded to the University Graduate School.

Requirements

In order to complete the double major in Clinical Science and Cognitive Neuroscience, students must fulfill all course requirements of both programs. Students will be able to accomplish this within the 6 year Clinical Science timeline by adding two courses to their schedule (tuition waiver covered) during their first or third year and by selecting approved Cognitive Neuroscience courses to fulfill Clinical Science breadth and elective course recruitments. In most cases, Clinical Science program milestones (Master’s Project, Candidacy Paper, Dissertation Grant Application) should fulfill those of the Cognitive Neuroscience program, though students should discuss this with their primary mentor (Clinical Science) and committee member (Cognitive Neuroscience) to be sure.

Withdrawal from the Double Major

There are three reasons why students may withdraw from the double major. First, students may determine during the course of their doctoral training that the double major no longer reflects their evolving research interests. These students should discuss this with their primary mentor and then, if deemed appropriate, request withdrawal from the Cognitive Neuroscience program. Second, students identified during the Clinical Science annual student performance review as requiring remediation may be recommended to withdraw from the Cognitive Neuroscience program. Remediation may reflect poor academic standing (grades fall below B- in required courses or overall GPA falls below 3.0), failure to meet program milestones in accordance with program timelines, or poor academic or professional conduct. Third, students identified during the Cognitive Neuroscience annual student performance review as under-performing in cognitive neuroscience courses (grades fall below B-) may be recommended to withdraw from the program.