Please note! Course description is confirmed for two academic years (1.8.2018-31.7.2020), which means that in general, e.g. Learning outcomes, assessment methods and key content stays unchanged. However, via course syllabus, it is possible to specify or change the course execution in each realization of the course, such as how the contact sessions are organized, assessment methods weighted or materials used.


After completing the course, the student will be familiar with

  • designing basic neuroimaging experiments
  • conducting fMRI and MEG experiments
  • basic analysis of fMRI and MEG data
  • writing a report on neuroimaging results

Credits: 5

Schedule: 08.09.2020 - 01.12.2020

Teacher in charge (valid 01.08.2020-31.07.2022): Lauri Parkkonen

Teacher in charge (applies in this implementation): Lauri Parkkonen

Contact information for the course (valid 21.08.2020-21.12.2112):

Responsible teacher: Lauri Parkkonen (

Additional teachers: Linda Henriksson ( and Mia Liljeström (

Course assistant: Silvia Cotroneo (

CEFR level (applies in this implementation):

Language of instruction and studies (valid 01.08.2020-31.07.2022):

Teaching language: English

Languages of study attainment: English


  • Valid 01.08.2020-31.07.2022:

    This course comprises lectures on physiological basis of functional brain imaging methods, data analysis, and experimental design as well as a practical part where the students design a neuroscientific experiment (under the guidance of the lecturers), carry out the fMRI and/or MEG measurements, analyse the acquired data and write a report of the results.

  • Applies in this implementation:

    In Autumn 2020, this course will be organized mostly on-line with Zoom. For the neuroimaging measurements, the students are required to be on campus (see the schedule for those weeks). Please note that the course has a rather tight schedule and there are several deadlines particularly in the early part of the course. This is necessary to allow for sufficient time for data analysis.

Assessment Methods and Criteria
  • Valid 01.08.2020-31.07.2022:

    Teaching Methods: Lectures, group presentations and discussions, hands-on neuroimaging experimentation, data analysis in a computer classroom.

    Assessment Methods and Criteria: Students are required to actively participate the group work, measurements and data analysis throughout the course. Assessment is based on the quality of the research plan and its execution as well as on the quality and depth of the analysis and reporting of the results. No exam.

  • Valid 01.08.2020-31.07.2022:

    • contact teaching (lectures, presentations, measurements, analysis clinics):  26 h
    • individual study of background material: 20 h
    • group work for planning and implementing the experiments: 18 h
    • group work for data analysis: 50 h
    • group work for compiling the report: 21 h


Study Material
  • Valid 01.08.2020-31.07.2022:

    Lecture notes

Substitutes for Courses
  • Valid 01.08.2020-31.07.2022:

    Replaces courses NBE-E4040, BECS-E5972 and Becs-114.5792

  • Valid 01.08.2020-31.07.2022:

    NBE-E4210 Structure and operation of the human brain OR NBE-E4225 Cognitive Neuroscience

    NBE-E4000 Principles of Biomedical Imaging


Details on the schedule
  • Applies in this implementation:

    Lectures and presentations on line (weeks 1–3)

    • 3.9.2020 Deadline: Mini-CV + optional wish for groupmates (max 4 persons/group)
    • 8.9.2020 Lecture 1: Introduction, Basics of MEG & fMRI
    • 11.9.2020 Deadline: Research questions (three questions per group)
    • 15.9.2020 Lecture 2: Experimental design
    • 18.9.2020 Deadline: Experimental designs
    • 22.9.2020 Presentation of experiments
      • Each group presents their research question and
        the plan for the experiment to others
      • Feedback by the faculty and other groups

    Measurements on campus (weeks 4 & 5; 28.9.–11.10.2020)

    1. Testing of stimulus scripts (Aalto Behavioural Lab, Otakaari 5)
    2. MEG measurements (MEG Core, Puumiehenkuja 2)
    3. MRI/fMRI measurements (AMI Centre, Otakaari 5)

    Data analysis on line (weeks 6–11)

    • 13.10.2020 Lecture: Analysis environment, pre-processing and MEG forward modeling
    • 20.10.2020 Exam week, no teaching
    • 27.10.2020 Lecture + hands-on analysis
    • 3.11.2020 Lecture + hands-on analysis
    • 10.11.2020 Lecture + hands-on analysis
    • 17.11.2020 Lecture + hands-on analysis

    Reporting and presentations on line (weeks 12–14)

    • 20.11.2020 Deadline: First version of the report
    • 24.11.2020 Q&A session on the first version of the report
    • 1.12.2020 Presentation of results
      • Each group presents their experiment and results to others
      • Feedback by the faculty and other groups
    • 11.12.2020 Deadline: Final version of the report


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