Brain Bee at MSU

The 2017 Brain Bee at MSU will take place on Sunday, February 5. The Brain Bee at MSU is a competition for high school students and test their knowledge of neuroscience facts based on the free PDF Brain Facts. Registration is now open for all Michigan high school students between the ages of 13-18. The winner of the competition at MSU moves on to compete at the National Brain Bee, and possibly the International Brain Bee. Participation is also great for college applications.

This is the seventh year we have ran the competition. We usually have about 30-40 participants. The students start with a 50 choice multiple choice exam. The top students then move on to an oral round where all the students are asked the same question at the same time, and they respond on a white board. The final round consists of the top 2 students in a spelling-bee-style oral round.

The students who compete are so impressive. Every year they wow me with their knowledge, especially given they are working on the content on their free time and do not have school resources helping them. These students have great futures ahead of them.

Outreach T-shirt Designs

Outreach T-shirt Designs

For 2015 and 2016, I created the designs for the MSU Neuroscience Program Outreach t-shirt. I am always interested in sharing the design love, so if anyone out there would be interested in submitting a design suggestion for our shirts, please email it to MSUNeuroscienceOutreach at gmail dot com.

2015 Outreach t-shirt design2016 Outreach t-shirt design

Brain Awareness Week Online 2016

Brain Awareness Week (BAW) is an international campaign to promote the importance of neuroscience education and research to the public. It occurs in Mid-March, and during BAW the Neuroscience Program students and faculty travel to local schools with activities and presentations. We finish the week with our annual Neuroscience Fair, which is free to the public, and hundreds of visitors engage with our volunteers, learn some neuroscience, and always have a great time. But obviously not every classroom can be visited, and not everyone lives close enough to attend events like ours. So this year, the folks at asked if we would participate in a webinar designed to share neuroscience with everyone.

I am lucky enough to work with amazing collaborators who also value outreach, and with the help of Zachary Grieb, a graduate student in the Neuroscience Program, and Nicholas Hobbs, a post-doctoral researcher, we created a three part presentation that covered the human brain, animal brain, and at home (or in the classroom) activities. You can watch the videos below, and visit for lots of great neuroscience information.

At home activities (by Casey)

Human brains (by Zach)

Animal brains (by Nick)