Quantifying Naturalistic Animal Behavior

Naturalistic animal behavior is complex. Learn the practical skills of how to record and track this complex behavior using modern tools, and the pros and cons of different approaches. Discuss recent work on modeling individual and collective animal behavior while maintaining quantitative rigor, as well as the relationship between behavior and the brain. Investigate connections between behavior and neural activity in the model animal systems of nematode, fruitfly, squid, and mouse. Read and assess papers weekly. Design and complete a short project in studies of complex behavior, with support from relevant literature. Present the results of the project to the class.

Prerequisites or Prior Knowledge

Introductory neuroscience and preparation in one or more areas of linear algebra, machine learning, or behavioral ecology is recommended.