NYU Neuroscience Doctoral Program Shanghai Track

The NYU-Shanghai Doctoral Program in Neuroscience is a sub-program of the NYU Center for Neural Science (CNS) Doctoral Program, based in New York. This website is for informational purposes only; for more details on the Doctoral program, please visit the NYU CNS website here.

About NYU Shanghai

NYU Shanghai, part of New York University’s Global Network University, is the first Sino-US higher education joint venture. The NYU-ECNU Institute of Brain and Cognitive Science at NYU Shanghai seeks to advance our understanding of brain function with the primary goal of understanding the neural circuits in the brain that generate higher cognition and flexible behavior and how their impairments are associated with brain diseases.

The Institute leverages our existing significant strength of neuroscience research in systems and cognitive neuroscience, using a range of tools including the development of transgenic primates, molecular and physiological studies of neural circuits, experimental analysis of behavior, microcircuit and large-scale neural circuit modeling, and human brain imaging. The Institute will have more than twenty, collaborating research groups and bring together faculty from New York, Shanghai, and the world.

NYU Neuroscience Doctoral Education

At NYU-Shanghai, neuroscience graduate education provides integrated training that encompasses molecular, developmental, cellular, systems, cognitive, behavioral, and computational approaches to address the most important questions in the field. Our doctoral training program in neural science builds on the diversity and strength of research across many interrelated departments and multiple campuses. The Shanghai track is a specialized track combining the long-standing strength of NYU’s neural science program based in New York with the unique environment for research and training in the newly established NYU-ECNU Institute of Brain and Cognitive Science at NYU Shanghai. Students who participate in the track will benefit from NYU’s global vision of transformative teaching and innovative research. Interested students should apply to the NYU Doctoral Program in Neural Science and select Shanghai on their application. 

Students in the Shanghai track will spend one and half years at NYU in New York for course work and laboratory rotations, before joining a laboratory in Shanghai for thesis research. They will maintain a close tie with New York, and they will receive an NYU Ph.D.

Key Components and Timeline of Study

Students in the Shanghai track of the Doctoral Program in Neural Science will spend one and a half years at NYU in New York for coursework and laboratory rotations, before joining a laboratory in Shanghai for thesis research. They will maintain a close tie with New York, and they will receive an NYU PhD, typically within 6 years.

Core Graduate Components

Research Training
We strongly emphasize research at the highest level throughout graduate school, and students on the Shanghai track participate in research from the very beginning of graduate training, working in both Shanghai and New York. At the outset of training, students will spend two consecutive summers rotating with faculty in Shanghai and the intervening academic year rotating with a lab in New York. By the beginning of the second year, students typically select a lab and primary advisor in Shanghai for their thesis work as well as a co-mentor in New York. Students continue to have opportunities to work and collaborate with colleagues in New York throughout their training.

A core curriculum in neuroscience, taken during the academic year spent in New York, gives students a broad and in depth understanding of the nervous system, from molecules to systems. The three core courses – Cellular Neuroscience, Neuroanatomy, and Sensory and Motor Systems – include lectures, student-led discussions, and hands-on components. In addition, all students take a course in biostatistics as well as advanced electives. Students also benefit directly from the interactive, collegial communities in both New York and Shanghai and become active participants in shaping the rich, intellectual environment – including seminars, retreats, and colloquia – that complements formal training.

Mentoring and Milestones
Students are advised by the graduate program director and additional faculty advisors in the first year of the program. Once a primary research mentor in Shanghai and co-mentor in New York are selected, they advise students together with a thesis committee. In the third year, students write and defend a qualifying exam (thesis proposal). The dissertation defense typically occurs in the fifth year in front of the thesis committee and additional faculty, including an outside expert.

Shanghai Track Neuroscience Doctoral Program Brochure:

For more information about the program, please download the brochure.