Neuropsychology Students' Society (NSS)
The NSS is an independent, not for profit, student-run society operating out of the University of Melbourne. We have three broad aims:
- to provide members with a regular forum for academic and professional development,
- to foster discussion of broader philosophical and practical issues within the field of neuropsychology, and
- to promote socialising and networking amongst members across Melbourne.
Our activities are designed to cater to the needs of clinical neuropsychology postgraduates from a wide variety of institutions but undergraduates and early career clinicians also attend. We are proud to offer free membership as well as free or low cost entry to our events.
We feel that having access to a network of sympathetic peers in a relaxed environment is important for supporting initial and ongoing development of neuropsychological knowledge and clinical skills. The NSS provides a unique opportunity to form invaluable contacts both within Australia and abroad.
The program of activities organised by the NSS each year includes fortnightly seminars held at the University of Melbourne as well as evening events which are both informative and social. The scope of our events range from practical skills workshops through to didactic lectures. We advertise upcoming events and distribute relevant reference material via email to registered members and through our Facebook group.
If you would like to join the society, become involved with the committee, or just want further information, please contact us on the email address below. We also welcome any feedback you may have in order to help us develop an informative and relevant program of activities. Given our status as an independent student society, we are free to evolve as required to meet the needs of our members.
We hope to see you at future NSS events!
List of Texts Previous Students Have Found Helpful Over the Years
Don’t feel that you need to necessarily buy all your books right now. Try and get a feel for what you think you need first, and you can always get more books later in the year.
Darby, D., & Walsh, K. (2005). Walsh’s Neuropsychology: A Clinical Approach. (5th Edition).
This is a good overview of numerous concepts within neuropsychology to ‘keep the postgraduate trainee in a position to understand much of what transpires in complex case discussions’ (Darby & Walsh, 2005).
Heilman, K., & Valenstein, E. (Eds.). Clinical Neuropsychology (3rd Edition; NY: OUP).
A more detailed investigation of neuropsychological phenomena.
Adams and Victor’s (2005). Principles of Neurology. 8th ed. McGraw Publishing
This book is essential for your neuropsychological career. It is a bit complicated to read because of its medical basis. It goes into key areas in detail that you will need to look at in your 1st year such as dementia, epilepsy, traumatic brain injury, and vascular problems.
Note: you can get this book, and numerous others, online via UniMelb library > Supersearch > Find database > ‘Access Medicine’, so no need to pay money!
A good medical dictionary is vital. Try to get one with the Latin roots of the words included. Dorland’s Illustrated Medical Dictionary is recommended.
Nolte & Angevine, The Human Brain in Photographs and Diagrams.
A good brain atlas
Strauss, Sherman & Spreen. A Compendium of Neuropsychological Tests.
This is very useful for understanding the specific tests employed by neuropsychologists and providing normative data. This is a text that you will require more and more as you progress through the course. Essential for placement and very useful in 1st year for understanding the test findings pages in presentations at the Austin. You will get experience with the tests in both 1st and 2nd semesters but this doesn’t often prepare you for placement in second year. Practice and familiarity is essential before you get to second year placement.
Other useful texts/references
Kandel, Schwartz & Jessell, Principles of Neural Science.
Lezak, Neuropsychological Assessment.
Anderson et al., Developmental Neuropsychology.
Shum, Gorman & Myors, Psychological Testing and Assessment.
A Neuropathology Textbook such as Greenfield’s Neuropathology.
Lishman, Organic Psychiatry.
Lerner & Zaidat, The Little Black Book of Neurology.
Luria, Higher Cortical Functions in Man.
Luria, The Working Brain.
Meehl, Why I Do Not Attend Case Conferences.
MacMillan, An Odd Kind of Fame: The Story of Phineas Gage.
Psychological Testing & Assessment (Shum, Gorman, and Myors)
Abbreviations used in Case Conferences
Ax – Assessment
Dx – Diagnosis
Hx – History
Tx – Treatment
ADLs – Activities of daily living
PADLs – Personal activities of daily living
RS – raw score (germane to the task)
SS – scaled score (0 – 20 with a mean of 10 and SD of 3)
MMSE – Mini mental state examination, scored /30
NAD – No abnormality detected
Commonly used neurocognitive tasks at the Austin (more detail in Strauss, Sherman and Spreen):
RAVLT – Rey Auditory Verbal Learning Task
Rey – Rey-Osterrieth Complex Figure
Trails – Trails A and Trails B
COWAT – Controlled Auditory Word Association. This is commonly separated into two tasks being the FAS task and the Animals task.
BNT – Boston Naming Task
Subtests from the WAIS (Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale), all with their own abbreviations such as DS (digit span).
Any other questions you might have about getting to grips with the course and postgraduate life, feel free to chat to anyone from the NSS and we’d be happy to help.
- All things anatomy, imaging, symptoms and signs: http://radiopaedia.org
- A great 3-D anatomy tutorial program you can download: http://www.brainvoyager.com/braintutor.html
- Great resource for slices and neuroethology: http://www.msu.edu/~brains/
- Books from Booko.com - they will list the cheapest books (with shipping!) from seller to your front door: http://www.booko.com.au
- The 'Access Medicine' database (UniMelb library > Supersearch > Find database > type 'Access Medicine')