Description: This companion to The Human Brain: An Introduction to Its Functional Anatomy, 2nd edition, by the same author (Elsevier, 2008), provides a guide to the complex concepts of neuroscience and neuroanatomy at a level that students can understand.
Purpose: The purpose is to provide outlines and key concepts to define the core material of neuroscience in a clear and concise narrative approach. The author uses study questions and illustrations to accomplish this goal. Neuroscience and neuroanatomy are difficult subjects and this book fills an important niche. It is an excellent companion to more comprehensive textbooks that treat neuroscience and neuroanatomy of the brain in depth.
Audience: Designed for upper level anatomy and physiology students as well as premedical students, this book goes into detail that is not seen in 100 and 200 level undergraduate courses. The author is considered an expert in the area of neuroscience.
Features: A review of the nervous system begins the book and the remaining chapters focus on structural and functional aspects of the human brain and corresponding nerves. The author does a good job of highlighting key concepts and not allowing any one concept to become overwhelming. The book divides complex material up into multiple chapters to ease student anxiety. The appendixes are very useful and provide a comprehensive quiz, answers to the chapter questions, and blank drawings to aid in student learning. Unfortunately, the book relies heavily on reference to figures in the corresponding textbook instead of providing them in this book. This is particularly important because, in the preface, the author describes independent use of the student companion as one of his goals. Several of the illustrations, while accurate in their content, are poorly drawn and lack the professional appearance and artistic quality one would expect in a neuroscience textbook.
Assessment: This is a useful tool for any student studying neuroscience and neuroanatomy. The author does an excellent job of maintaining a narrative approach to the material, as well as breaking down the complex material in a manner that is conducive to student learning. The book provides a unique focus on the human brain and is an important addition to the neuroscience literature.