2019: Neuroaesthetics Curriculum and Module

Project Promoter: Universitatea „Stefan cel Mare“ din Suceava

Project Code: 19-COP-0024


Over the past 20 years, the increasing use of scientific and empirical methods from the field of neuroscience in the study of the arts has led to the creation of the new discipline of neuroaesthetics, currently based mostly in Scientific Psychology departments. Simultaneously, the declining number of students who choose to take courses in traditional humanities subjects, the correspondingly low funding available for research in traditional humanities fields, and the preference of new generations of students for ‘job-securing subjects’, indicates that the humanities are in decline in Universities world-wide. This project contributes to solving this problem by developing a module in neuroaesthetics to be offered to students in the humanities at the University of Suceava, Romania. The establishment of this module as part of the curricula will increase the number of humanities students by attracting students who would have chosen to study science, even if they are also attracted to humanities subjects. At the same time, we aim to increase the funding available to humanities departments by educating students in these disciplines as staff able to attract funding for research available hitherto only to science graduates, both for fundamental and exploratory research. To this end, we have begun writing the world’s first neuroaesthetics textbook for students without prior scientific training, and obtained an Open Access publication contract with Palgrave Macmillan. The manual will be written in English with an expected publication date in March 2023. Also, 10 students from the University of Suceava participated in a course in neuroaesthetics at the University of Bergen, thus becoming the first Romanian graduate of such a module, with their obtained credits recognised at the University of Suceava. We have thus laid the foundations of what we hope to become, in time, a joint study program (e.g. an Erasmus Mundus Joint master’s program).