Summer SAVY 2016 (Session 4AM, Day 4) – Neuroscience of the Senses
We began our day by working in groups to build concept maps that represent knowledge gained so far in the course. It is exciting to see the connections that the students make between concepts! As we transitioned into our unit on the visual system, we tackled the internet phenomenon known as “The Dress” in which perception of an image varies from person to person. After starting with this fun entry point for our vision unit, we went back to basics and discussed the parts of visual pathway, starting at the anterior portion of the eye and working our way toward the visual cortex in the brain. We took this knowledge and applied it by working as groups to dissect a cow eye. This was fun (and, to a few, maybe a little on the gross side!) and we enjoyed having a chance to see the inner workings of the eye. The class claimed that the tapetum lucidum, a light reflecting structure, looked a bit like the inside of a colorful seashell! We also had a chance to see the physical location of the blind spot, which is the region of the retina where the optic nerve begins. Before wrapping up for the day, the students spent time testing their own visual fields for the blind spot location. Time feels like it’s flying by in Neuroscience of the Senses, and it’s hard to believe tomorrow will be the end of our first week!