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 should be able to:

  • Explain the basic principles of information processing in neural circuits
  • Define coding information and reconstruction of stimuli based on neural information
  • Quantify the information content of a spike train
  • Analyze the fundamental constraints arising from noise on neural circuit function
  • Perform basic mathematical analysis to characterize neural signals and noise
  • Explain the basic requirements for fidelity and specificity of neural circuit function
  • Give examples of neural circuit computations and neural codes in well-defined neural circuits.

Credits: 5

Schedule: 13.01.2021 - 03.06.2021

Teacher in charge (valid 01.08.2020-31.07.2022): Petri Ala-Laurila

Teacher in charge (applies in this implementation): Petri Ala-Laurila

Contact information for the course (applies in this implementation):

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:

    • Basic building blocks of the neural circuits
    • Neural wiring vs. neural circuit function
    • Basic principles of neural information transfer
    • Signal and noise in neural circuits
    • Quantifying information in neural circuits
    • Fidelity and specificity of neural circuit function
    • Examples of neural circuit computations.

Assessment Methods and Criteria
  • Valid 01.08.2020-31.07.2022:

    Teaching Methods: Lectures, exercises and exam.

    Requirements, Assessment Methods and Criteria:

    • Active participation in teaching and exercises
    • Exam

  • Valid 01.08.2020-31.07.2022:

    • Lectures: 20 24 hours
    • Exercises: 20 24 hours
    • Preparations for exercises: 30 hours
    • Independent (self) study and preparation for lectures: 43 hours
    • Preparing for the exam: 10 hours
      Exam: 3 hours.


Study Material
  • Valid 01.08.2020-31.07.2022:


  • Valid 01.08.2020-31.07.2022:

    Basic knowledge of biophysics and cellular electrophysiology (recommended courses: NBE-C2102 Biophysics, NBE-E4120 Cellular Electrophysiology)



Registration and further information