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Methods in cognitive neuroscience: visualizing and stimulating the brain a.y. 2020/21


This course aims to provide a technical introduction to different methodological approaches used in cognitive neurosciences to investigate the neural bases of cognitive processing, and particularly functional and structural magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI, VBM) and neurostimulation [Transcranial Electrical Stimulation (tES) and transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS)]. The course will be mostly based on self-directed learning: after a minimal theoretical introduction to each of these techniques and their main potential pitfalls, attendees will be required to autonomously find solutions and develop analytic skills, for instance on related support-forums and mailing-list (e.g., also outside the classroom. Attendance is suggested to students willing to put considerable efforts in developing technical skills in the field of cognitive neuroscience.


June - September


Suggested readings:

SPM (Statistical Parametric Mapping) website:
and particularly the Documentation section:
and the email-list section:

2) tES-tDCS
Huang, Y., Datta, A., Bikson, M., & Parra, L. C. (2019). Realistic volumetric-approach to simulate transcranial electric stimulation—ROAST—a fully automated open-source pipeline. Journal of Neural Engineering, 16(5), 056006.

3) TMS
Introductory book on TMS:
On Motor-evoked potentials (MEPs):
For analysis of MEPs:
Veta, toolbox for EMG visualization and processing

Belardinelli, P., Biabani, M., Blumberger, D. M., Bortoletto, M., Casarotto, S., David, O., … Ilmoniemi, R. J. (2019). Reproducibility in TMS–EEG studies: A call for data sharing, standard procedures and effective experimental control. Brain Stimulation, 12(3), 787–790.


Credits: 5

Nicola Canessa

Professore Associato di Psicobiologia e Psicologia fisiologica

Giulia Camilla Mattavelli

Ricercatrice Senior in Psicobiologia e Psicologia Fisiologica


Tipologia corso : Laboratorio

Periodo: Semestre II

Anno accademico: 2020-2021

Durata : 36 hours