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Understanding the Brain

Understanding the Brain takes you inside the astonishingly complex brain and shows you how it works, from the gross level of its organization to the molecular level of how cells communicate. With its combination of neurology, biology, and psychology, this course helps you understand how we perceive the world through our senses, how we move, how we learn and remember, and how emotions affect our thoughts and actions.
Average Customer Rating:
4.634 out of 5
4.6
 out of 
5
(134 Reviews) 125
Open Ratings Snapshot
Rating Snapshot (134 reviews)
5 stars
112
4 stars
7
3 stars
7
2 stars
4
1 star
4
"111 of 124(90%)reviewers would recommend the course to a friend."
Customer Questions & Answers:
4 Questions | 5 Answers
Customer Reviews for Understanding the Brain
Review 41 for Understanding the Brain
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5 out of 5
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5 out of 5
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Location:West Coast
Delightful Presenter
Date:January 8, 2009
" This coarse serves it's purpose very well, primarily because of the attitude, enthusiasm, and teaching style of the presenter. Unfamiliar concepts and terminology are reinforced through comfortable and appropriate repetition. Each section can almost stand alone as testimony to it's completeness. "
+3points
3out of 3found this review helpful.
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Review 42 for Understanding the Brain
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5 out of 5
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Location:Michigan
really great
Date:December 26, 2008
" I rank this as one of the top 5 courses I have ever had and I have been buying and listening to these tapes for many years now. You will listen to this course over and over again and learn something new each time. They will leave you wishing for a part II. "
+3points
3out of 3found this review helpful.
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Review 43 for Understanding the Brain
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5 out of 5
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5 out of 5
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5 out of 5
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5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Location:Santa Barbara, CA
The Brain discussing itself in intimate detail
Date:July 23, 2014
" Giving five stars across the board to Jeanette Norden may appear as if I am possibly biased. In reality, however, it is just my axonal pathways having been repeatedly invigorated by listening to her absolutely superb lectures.
Many of the lectures were so well presented and so full of informative material that I listened to them several times over -- not because I couldn't follow or couldn't understand what was being taught but because I desired to thoroughly learn the material (I do a lot of note taking while listening and I certainly cannot do that while driving which is where I do most of my listening). "
+2points
2out of 2found this review helpful.
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Review 44 for Understanding the Brain
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5 out of 5
5 out of 5
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5 out of 5
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5 out of 5
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5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Location:Minot, ND
My Favorite So Far
Date:June 11, 2012
" My daughter is under a neurologists care and I purchased this course to have some basic knowledge of the brain.
I would take any courses taught by Dr Norden. She seems to be a very warm and concerned human being and I was sorry to see the class end.
"
+2points
2out of 2found this review helpful.
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Review 45 for Understanding the Brain
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5 out of 5
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Location:Boston, MA
Understanding the Brain
Date:May 25, 2011
" Dr. Norden is an extraordinary instructor. Not only is the course content fascinating, she presents it in such a way that the viewer retains the information. She also illustrates the lecture content through patient case studies that are exceptionally well-chosen. I have enjoyed many Teaching Company courses but I believe this is the best one I have taken, thanks to Dr. Norden. She certainly deserves all the teaching awards she has received. "
+2points
2out of 2found this review helpful.
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Review 46 for Understanding the Brain
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5 out of 5
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5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Location:Michigan.
Fascinating
Date:May 6, 2011
" I completely enjoy Prof. Norden. I think she presents things very clearly, very well-paced, and on the right level. After each lecture, I feel more and more amazed by the brain and all that it does.
I really think that those people who've given this course bad reviews don't understand the difference between neuroscience and psychology. This is not a psychology course - it's biology!
"
+2points
2out of 2found this review helpful.
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Review 47 for Understanding the Brain
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5 out of 5
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5 out of 5
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Location:Ottawa, Ont
Didn't want the course to end
Date:September 12, 2010
" Professor Norden promised that this course would amaze and she was right. There is so much information to absorb about the brain that the journey would have been bewildering without such a gracious and well-organized introduction. By the time the course reached midway I was astonished to realize that all the arcane language that neuroscientists use to describe the location, structure and functioning of the brain had become familiar and I was following along for insights into the clinical pathology of the most common disorders. I understand much better now about Alzheimer's disease. The information about the role of emotion guidance and moral choice and the limbic system was fascinating.
Professor Norden's extensive experience and passion come through in these lectures. I wish there were 36 more to go! "
+2points
2out of 2found this review helpful.
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Review 48 for Understanding the Brain
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5 out of 5
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After all these years, it's coming together
Date:August 28, 2010
" In 1972 I took a neuropharmacology class in the last semester of pharmacy school and was graciously awarded a good grade for some material I quite frankly did not understand very well. The main thing I learned in the class was the complexity of the subject. Dr. Norden is an exceptional teacher and vastly enlightened my understanding of a number of topics. I have read Elegy for Iris and Aging with Grace as suggested companion reading. Soon, I will be using this newly acquired information in working with cardiac rehab patients and nurses. This is about the 15th Teaching Company course I have done and it is certainly one of the best ones. "
+2points
2out of 2found this review helpful.
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Review 49 for Understanding the Brain
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5 out of 5
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Location:Los Angeles
Superb
Date:June 6, 2010
" I have bought and enjoyed many teaching company videos and this is my favorite so far. Jeanette Norden is a wonderful teacher and the subject is fascinating. The pace is perfect and the content is presented well. "
+2points
2out of 2found this review helpful.
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Review 50 for Understanding the Brain
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5 out of 5
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4 out of 5
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Location:Dallas, Tx
A Fresh Approach
Date:May 6, 2010
" After completing Dr. Goodman's course on Anatomy and Physiologly, I desired to know more about the inner workings of the brain itself. He did a great job of giving an overview of the inner workings of the brain, but his approach left me wanting to know more.
With that in mind, I decided to give Dr. Norden's course a try. I have completed about 10 Teaching Company Couses, and I have to say that this is one of the very best that I have seen. It is clear that she is very knowledgable and passionate about the material, but she presents her material with compassion as well. For example when she presents topics such as Stroke, Depression, and Parkinson's disease, she is very carefull to present sensitive material in a non-offensive manner. One can see her human compassion for needless suffering in her presentations.
The interest level is always well maintained. She does this by a variety of methods, including visual examples, real life clinical examples, and everyday practical examples that ensure a great retention of the material.
Some of the material is complex by the very nature of the material, but the on-screen graphics, as well as the material in the guidebook are of great assistance. In addition, Dr. Norden is always reviewing prior material, as it relates to the subject at hand. The over-all organization that was chosen is excellent in my opinion, and helps one to asorb the material more effectively.
From reading this professor's credintials, I would love to see her teach a course on cellular biology. I am sure it would be equally informative. "
+2points
2out of 2found this review helpful.
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Review 51 for Understanding the Brain
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5 out of 5
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Location:San Francisco
Excellent Course
Date:April 9, 2010
" I purchased this class to help me understand the functions of the brain when I was enrolled in a college-level anatomy and physiology class. I have to say that this program helped me extensivly, enabling me to get a good grade on my exam, which enabled me to get into a very competitive master's program.
The professor takes what can be a very difficult subject and explains it in a way that is easy to understand. The visuals she uses are helpful in explaining the lesson and she explains recent research and changes in the study of the brain. In fact, my parents [who don't have an education beyond elementary school] loved this professor's DVDs and found her lessons fascinating. The lesson dealing with Alzheimer's Disease is especially interesting. The workbook also helps with the learning process.
Also, her use of and mentioning of her dachshund was fun and made the lesson interesting and gave her personality.
These are great lessons for anyone who wants to go into the health field. "
+2points
2out of 2found this review helpful.
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Review 52 for Understanding the Brain
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5 out of 5
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5 out of 5
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Location:Frederick MD
Amazing
Date:December 7, 2009
" 5 stars all the way. Fascinating material, gifted teacher. "
+2points
2out of 2found this review helpful.
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Review 53 for Understanding the Brain
Overall Rating
5 out of 5
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5 out of 5
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Location:Houston, Texas
Challenged and Amazed
Date:November 20, 2009
" Dr. Norden's enthusiasm for the subject matter of this class is infectious. She is an excellent teacher, and states at the beginning of the class that she wants her students to be both challenged and amazed by the material in this class. She achieves this goal splendidly. Thank you, Dr. Norden! "
+2points
2out of 2found this review helpful.
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Review 54 for Understanding the Brain
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5 out of 5
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5 out of 5
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Location:Pismo Beach, CA
Understanding The Brain
Date:September 24, 2009
" Dr. Norden presented this course in a manner that was pleasing to my brain! It didn't all come clear, but I understand so much more than I did at the beginning. The lectures were well organized and kept my attention. Even her pets added a delightful touch! Having worked for a neurosurgeon, much of this had a note of familiarity. I've enjoyed all of the courses from The Teaching Company, but this one is a definite favorite! "
+2points
2out of 2found this review helpful.
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Review 55 for Understanding the Brain
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5 out of 5
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5 out of 5
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Location:Centreville, Virginia
Understanding the Brain
Date:August 6, 2009
" A wonderful course. Dr. Norden was careful to explain -- and provided -- a wealth of material. It is a fascinating area and I was intrigued throughout the sessions. I was impressed with the instructor's humanity and enthusiasm for her field. "
+2points
2out of 2found this review helpful.
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Review 56 for Understanding the Brain
Overall Rating
5 out of 5
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5 out of 5
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4 out of 5
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5 out of 5
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Location:Canada
Excellent intro for the educated layman
Date:May 31, 2009
" Do not expect an effortless learning : the topic is complex in itself. Professor Jeanette Norden does a very good job at making it understandable. She has facts to convey, and for this, she relies on very good teaching aids. She is at her best when can take some distance from the nitty gritty of science and marvel with us at what we discover together. Highly recommended. "
+2points
2out of 2found this review helpful.
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Review 57 for Understanding the Brain
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5 out of 5
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5 out of 5
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5 out of 5
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Location:Clinton Corners, NY
Absolutely amazing!
Date:May 21, 2009
" My first impression was how Jeanette Nordon LOVES her field of study and teaching. Her enthusiasm is infectuous, and her disarming smile at the beginning and end of each lecture never failed to likewise elicit a smile from me. (I guess my hippocampus is fully functioning.)
The brain is very complex, bur Dr. Norden was very adept at engendering understanding of this multi-faceted organ, even for non-brainiacs like myself. It was sometimes difficult to relate to content in earlier lectures, because of the complexity of structure and interaction of the various nuclei of the brain, but Dr. Norden was very diligent in offering review information to allow me to more grasp the relationship of the current concepts to the earlier ones.
I can't wait to go through this course again, but I'll have to wait, because I was so excited about it all my friends and family want to take the course.
By the way, I got an "A" on the course. "
+2points
2out of 2found this review helpful.
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Review 58 for Understanding the Brain
Overall Rating
5 out of 5
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Location:Roanoke VA
Absolutely Wonderful
Date:April 16, 2009
" This was an absolutely wonderful course! It held my interest to the point of completing the lectures in just a few days instead of the usual 1 to 2 lectures an evening I've been working on.
I'm a new fan of the Teaching Company; only discovering this treasure house of gems last fall. After ordering and watching a variety of subjects, I have to say that I found "Understanding the Brain" especially interesting in subject matter, presentation and the empathy professor Norden shows toward the victims and families of various disorders.
Being a graphic designer (visual learner), I especially appreciated the graphics presentation and models.
Although I have enjoyed ALL the professors and variety of courses over the past 6 months or so, I found it particularly delightful and refreshing to see some diversity with a woman at the helm this time around. "
+2points
2out of 2found this review helpful.
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Review 59 for Understanding the Brain
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5 out of 5
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Location:PA
Wonderful Overview
Date:March 10, 2009
" Well worth the cost.
A great introduction to the brain and what we know. Good overview of everday issues too (unfortunately, I had to learn about strokes).
The professor is very personable and fashionable and enjoyable to watch. "
+2points
2out of 2found this review helpful.
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Review 60 for Understanding the Brain
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4 out of 5
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yes this course is worth it
Date:January 13, 2009
" I am psychologist with biological interests, and I found this course to be quite worthwhile. Even though I am familar with a lot of the material, I found this quite informative. Professor Norden presents the material very effectively and has a very nice manner about her. I am lending this course to some of friends who are mental health professionals. While there is a lot of information, it is not tedious at all "
+2points
2out of 2found this review helpful.
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