Neurobiology and Genetics of Language
Course infoSchedule
Course moduleSOW-DGCN43
Credits (ECTS)6
Language of instructionEnglish
Offered byRadboud University; Faculty of Social Sciences; Cognitive Neuroscience;
Contactperson for the course
prof. dr. C. Francks
Other course modules lecturer
prof. dr. C. Francks
Other course modules lecturer
dr. R.M. Willems
Other course modules lecturer
Academic year2017
SEM2  (05/02/2018 to 13/07/2018)
Starting block
Course mode
Registration using OSIRISYes
Course open to students from other facultiesNo
Waiting listNo
Placement procedure-

This course will provide up-to-date insights into the neurobiological basis of language, including the neuronal and genetic infrastructure of the language-ready brain.. The course will be given by internationally leading researchers in the field. Students will learn how state-of-the-art methods and approaches are currently being applied, and what are the next big questions for the field.


Neurobiology of language. In this part of the course students will get a thorough overview of the neural processes involved in the understanding as well as production of language. Topics covered are: Connectivity of the language network, insights from lesion studies, the neural infrastructure for speech processing, the neurobiology of syntax, the neural basis of semantics, the neurobiology of pragmatics and the interface between language and other cognitive systems.

Genetics of language. The topics in this part of the course will include:An introduction to genetics. The gene FOXP2 - a window into the molecular neurobiological basis of language. The concept of heritability. The genetics of dyslexia and complex forms of language impairment. Genetics of human brain asymmetry.

Additional comments
COURSE: February 9 – June 29, 2018; Friday 10.45-12.30
LOCATION: t.b.a.

Test information
EXAM: Tuesday July 10, 2018; 15.45-17.30
TYPE OF EXAM: written exam
NOTE: enrollment for a course automatically registers you for its exam. If you don't want to do the first exam you have to deregister for the exam in OSIRIS, but do not forget to sign up for the retake in OSIRIS.

Contact information
dr. C. Francks and dr. R. Willems

Required materials
Course material
Lecture notes
Syllabus containing relevant articles from top-quality journals.

Recommended materials
Fisher, S. E., & Vernes, S. C. (2015). Genetics and the Language Sciences. Annual Review of Linguistics, 1, 289-310. doi:10.1146/annurev-linguist-030514-125024
Hagoort, P. (2005). On Broca, brain, and binding: a new framework. Trends in Cognitive Sciences, 9(9): 416-423

Instructional modes
Attendance MandatoryYes

Attendance MandatoryYes

Attendance MandatoryYes

written exam
Test weight1
OpportunitiesBlock HER, Block SEM2