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Online course

Good Brain, Bad Brain: Parkinson's Disease

Learn the fundamentals of Parkinson's disease with this online course. What causes it and what we can do to treat it?

Good Brain, Bad Brain: Parkinson's Disease

This course is part of the Good Brain, Bad Brain program, which will enable you to explore the human brain, for CPD or as a gateway to further study.

Understand Parkinson’s disease

As one of the most prevalent neurodegenerative diseases, most people at least know of one person who has Parkinson’s disease. We will consider how the normal principles of how neurones work and communicate are altered in the Parkinsonian brain, and why this leads to the symptoms that we see. We can then apply this knowledge to thinking about how current therapies for Parkinson’s disease work. Finally, we can think about where the holes in our knowledge are and the importance of this for improving our ability to alleviate the symptoms of the disease.

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What topics will you cover?

  • Neurobiology of movement
  • Pathology of Parkinson’s disease
  • Symptoms of Parkinson’s disease
  • Treatments for Parkinson’s disease
  • Current research for Parkinson’s disease

When would you like to start?

Who is the course for?

The course is aimed at anyone who wants to find out the fundamentals of Parkinson’s disease.

You will need to have a basic knowledge of what the brain is made of, how these component cellular parts are organised and the principles of how these cells function normally. It will be suitable if you have taken the Good Brain, Bad Brain: Basics course or who studied neuroscience in the early years of an undergraduate degree.

What do people say about this course?

Thank you to Dr Alison Cooper for your very prompt and active support of us participants in this course. Thanks also to the many participants who contributed, and especially to the PD sufferers who openly and freely posted about their personal experiences. You gave this course a depth and authenticity that other courses rarely achieve.

Anonymous learner

A very interesting course, well presented, very informative and with prompts for us to do some looking up of information ourselves. I found week 3 became a bit more technical and as a complete beginner I felt a bit out of my depth. However, I still managed to complete the quiz, almost all questions right first time so I must have learnt something! It was a really useful introduction to Parkinson's and the complexity of the human body. Thank you.

Sue Partridge

Who will you learn with?

Alison Cooper

Alison Cooper is a senior lecturer at the University of Birmingham, where she teaches neuroscience and pharmacology.

Who developed the course?

The University of Birmingham is a public research university, consistently listed as a leading UK university and ranked among the top 100 in the world.

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Join this course


  • Access to this course for 5 weeks
  • Includes any articles, videos, peer reviews and quizzes


  • Unlimited access to this course
  • Includes any articles, videos, peer reviews and quizzes
  • Certificate of Achievement to prove your success when you're eligible
  • Download and print your Certificate of Achievement anytime
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