In this class, we will investigate both classic and recent findings on the neural mechanisms that are responsible for the neverending background activity within our brains. We will cover and discuss insights into the spatiotemporal organization of ongoing, spontaneous neural activity ranging from the first descriptions of the electroencephalogram to the latest finding on resting state functional connectivity, the default network, graph theory and connectomics, including the Brain Activity Map (BAM) and the Human Connectome Project.

The course is a discussion-oriented, graduate-level seminar. Each class will focus on the discussion of a weekly topic that gets introduced in the form of a seminar talk by one of the students.

Neuroscience Graduate Seminar

Course Number: PSY 344

Title: ‘The Resting Brain’

When: W, 9:10AM-12:00

Where: Wilson Hall 316

Instructor: Prof. Maier

Topics, Readings and Lecture Slides:

The Brain’s Default Network:

Ongoing Neuronal Activity:


functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging:

The Link between fMRI BOLD and local neural activity:

Functional Connectivity:

Effective Connectivity:

Independent Component Analysis:

Diffusion Tensor Imaging:

1/f, Fractality and Scale-Free Distributions:

Clinical Applications of rsMRI:

MEG in the Resting State:

EEG/fMRI in the Resting State:

TMS/fMRI in the Resting State:


The Human Connectome Project and BAM:

Voodoo Correlations and Dead Salmons:'

“Rest” versus “Sleep”:

Cortical Traveling Waves and Neural Avalanches:

fMRI Phenotyping:

Long-Range Coherence, Neural Entrainment and Cross-Frequency Coupling: