Cognitive Neuropsychology: From Patients to Functional Models

Course code
Course fee (excl. housing)
Course Level

As an advanced training in Cognitive Neuropsychology, the course aims to teach PhD students how to collect and interpret patient data in order to test cognitive theories and build cognitive models. The emphasis will be on 'doing research'. Candidates will get an acquaintance with standard neuropsychological testing, will be shown examples of patients cases, case statistics and will build, run and analyse their own experiment. A special training in reviewing and reporting is included.

Cognitive Neuropsychology studies the functional disorders people suffer after brain injury in order to construct and test formal models of cognitive functioning. It is strongly driven by fundamental theory but also can have implications for clinical diagnosis and therapy. Cognitive Neuropsychology gives invaluable insights in how the human mind works and forms an indispensable instrument in the modern Cognitive Neuroscience toolbox.

Cognitive Neuropsychology has strongly been inspired by fascinating reports of patients such as Broca’s mister ‘Tan’, who could only utter a single world after frontal lobe ailment, and the tragic case of Henry Molaison who, following medio-temporal lobe surgical removal to treat epilepsy, could no longer remember any new events happening in his life. Studies with comparable groups of patients have further stimulated the field of cognitive neuropsychology

The course spans 10 full days of lectures and practical work, in which cognitive neuropsychology research examples and methods are discussed. Students have to do a short research project, including setting up and trying out their own cognitive neuropsychology experiment, and complete a number of writing assignments. Senior, international cognitive neuropsychologists give lectures and supervision.

The course will address history and methodology of cognitive neuropsychology research; statistical techniques; examinations in large clinical groups; disorders such as topographical amnesia, visuospatial neglect; amnesia.

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Course director
Prof. dr. Albert Postma


  • Prof. Albert Postma
  • Dr. Teuni ten Brink

We aim to invite international guest lecturers. Names of the lecturers will be posted as soon as they have confirmed.

Target audience

Beginning and advanced PhD students. Really advanced research master students can be conditionally admitted (please contact the coordinators).

Aim of the course

After this course, PhD candidates a) will have gained new insights and skills in how to conduct cognitive neuroscience research, b) are able to read, evaluate and integrate in their own research, recent literature from the field of cognitive, clinical and applied neuropsychology, and c) can directly strengthen their own PhD projects with new analytic and experimental approaches.

Study load

A typical day starts with a two - three hours lecture in the morning, followed by an assignment for group work. There is opportunity to consult with course tutors during this assignment. The day closes with presentations, plenary discussions or self-study and writing activities.

Active student participation: Students have to conduct their own mini cognitive neuropsychology research project, requiring them to think further about the ins and outs of patient research, to design new experiments or make new combinations of neuropsychological tests, and to write a research paper and review other papers from the domain of cognitive neuropsychology. Active participation is thus highly stimulated.

This is a hybrid course. In principle, it is fully taught on location in the city of Utrecht. Attending online only is also a possibility. For the social part and the experience to be at Utrecht University we recommend to come to campus, but this is no requirement.


Course fee:
Fee covers
Course + course materials
Housing fee:
Housing cost
Housing provider:
Utrecht Summer School
Extra information about the fee

Tuition fee for PhD students from the Helmholtz Graduate school from Utrecht University will be funded by the Helmholtz Graduate School.

There are no scholarships available for this course.


Extra application information

In your application, please indicate whether you want to attend the course online or on campus. If you missed the registration deadline, you can email the course coordinators to see whether you can still attend.

More information

Prof. Dr. Albert Postma, Experimental Psychology, Helmholtz Institute, Utrecht University | E: | W:

Dr. Teuni ten Brink, Experimental Psychology, Helmholtz Institute, Utrecht University | E: | W:

Helmholtz Institute:


Application deadline: 
Registration deadline
27 May 2022