Course # NSM522: Cranial Nerves and Higher Brain Function

Course Description

The objectives of this course are to create a comprehensive understanding of the clinical importance and functionality of the cranial nerves and associated higher functioning of the human brain. Central to this understanding is the relationship of the brainstem and its role in higher brain function. This role includes the functionality of both ascending and descending pathways that connect the brain and spinal cord. The location and the exit of the cranial nerves allow a regional understanding of the entire brainstem. Brainstem lesions presents with combinations of long and short track signs and cranial nerve deficits that promote localization of the longitudinal level of a lesion. The functional importance of the cranial nerves will be understood by a clinical methodology rather than by a strictly anatomical one. The sites of possible lesions and their etiology will be explored from both the diagnostic and therapeutic paradigm. The communication of the brainstem with the cerebral cortex involves integration and processing in the diencephalon. The role of the thalamus and its integration of visual, auditory and somatosensory information can be key in diagnostic and therapeutic applications of human neurological compromise. The visceromotor function of the hypothalamus is essential to an understanding of autonomic concomitants throughout the body. The relationships of the cranial nerves in diencephalon to the cerebral cortex will be understood specific to clinical syndromes. The functions on individual lobes of the brain and their white and gray matter syndromes will promote a global understanding of human functionality. The student will be exposed to a constellation of clinical syndromes involving specific loci of the of the brain.

Course Content

  • Cranial nerves and their functional relationship to higher brain function 
  • Localization of lesions by cranial nerve functional loss 
  • Cranial anatomy nerve and clinical syndrome by brainstem area 
  • Organization of the diencephalon 
  • Clinical syndromes of the diencephalon 
  • Thalamus, hypothalamus and epithalamus 
  • Lobes of the brain 
  • White and gray matter function and pathology in the cerebral cortex 
  • Basal ganglia 
  • Hippocampus and amygdala
John Dewey

“ Education is not preparation for life; education is life itself. ”

The Carrick Institute Master of Science in Clinical Neuroscience Degree is designed to train healthcare professionals to serve as clinical neuroscientists and conduct research into the study and function of the human nervous system.

Contact Info
Institutional Address

8910 Astronaut Blvd, Ste 102, Cape Canaveral, FL 32920, USA




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