Study abroad with the CSNE

Eleanor Cummins

Studying abroad isn’t just for undergraduates looking for a good time.

Engineers, neuroscientists and others can study abroad in India or Germany, all while conducting cutting-edge research in neural engineering through two summer exchange programs offered by the CSNE.

The first program provides opportunities for students at all CSNE core partner institutions (University of Washington, San Diego State University, Massachusetts Institute of Technology) and students at the BrainLinks-BrainTools Center of Excellence at the University of Freiburg (Germany). This exchange program, which was formed in 2014, sends students from the UW, MIT and SDSU to University of Freiburg labs during the summer. Students at the University of Freiburg can also travel to CSNE-affiliated labs in Seattle, Boston and San Diego to conduct research.

In the summer of 2014, five CSNE students and one postdoctoral researcher spent time in laboratories at the University of Freiburg. Dr. Jeff Ojemann, a CSNE faculty member, also spent part of his sabbatical at the University of Freiburg that summer, where he collaborated on electrocorticography (ECoG) studies. In 2015, a student from BrainLinks-BrainTools worked in a CSNE lab in Seattle while a student from SDSU traveled to the University of Freiburg.

The second international exchange program is between the CSNE and the Indian Institute of Science (IISc) in Bangalore, India. The two organizations developed a strategic partnership aimed to advance systems that interact with or are inspired by neural systems. The first student from the IISc traveled to Seattle in the summer of 2015 to work in the laboratory of CSNE Director Dr. Rajesh Rao. This year, the UW plans to send students to study in India as well.

Both exchange programs are designed to give students the opportunity to learn new techniques, work in a novel research environment, and form collaborations with investigators from around the world.

The programs are open to students at all stages of their academic careers, from undergraduates to postdoctoral researchers. For the BrainLinks-BrainTools exchange, preference is given to students and researchers who already receive a CSNE stipend.

The best applications will come from students who already have a project and lab in mind when they apply. Applications for both programs are due March 1, 2016.  Students interested in the summer exchange program should contact Dr. Eric Chudler (email: