lucy lai

neuroscience ph.d. student

research | teaching | art | links


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“Docendo discimus…By teaching, we learn.” - Seneca

Teaching is one of my greatest joys :-)


This Spring (‘22), I am the Head Teaching Fellow for GENED 1125: Artificial and Natural Intelligence (website by yours truly!)

I also TF’ed the same course last year and gave a guest lecture on machine consciousness.

Course Evaluations

I am yearly mentor for HPREP, a ten-week science enrichment and mentorship program for underserved and underrepresented high school students in the Boston area.

NB314QC / NB212: Math Tools for Neuroscience

Alex Chen and I designed and taught a new January-term course for the Harvard Program in Neuroscience. We condensed the fundamentals of linear algebra, dynamical systems theory, and probability theory (as applied to neuroscience) into a one-month crash course.

All course materials (including the syllabus, lecture notes, and problem sets) are publicly available on our course Canvas site.

Update (Sept 2020): Math Tools has been converted into a full-semester course and was added as a foundational requirement for the PiN Certificate in Computational Neuroscience. Much thanks to Ella Batty for helping push this effort :-) A complete syllabus, YouTube video lectures, and Google Colab notebook assignments are freely available here. Much of this course was modeled after the amazing Neuromatch Academy online computational neuroscience course.

Course Evaluations


At Rice, I was a teaching assistant for:

I was also a mentor at BrainSTEM, an after-school neuroscience program at KIPP Sunnyside High School. The program serves to promote interest in STEM and neuroscience in underserved areas of Houston.

COLL 158: How Music Plays The Brain

By far, my favorite teaching endeavor has been bringing COLL 158: How Music Plays the Brain to life! I designed and taught 3 semesters of this seminar course on the intersection of music and neuroscience. COLL 158 won the 2017 Rice University Student-Taught Course Teaching award!

All course materials (including the syllabus and lecture slides) from the last rendition of the course (Spring 2018) are publicly available on the course Canvas site.

Visiting CAMRI

COLL 158 visits Baylor College of Medicine’s Core for Advanced Magnetic Resonance Imaging (CAMRI)

“Students will leave this course having developed a greater appreciation for the power of music through dialogues between an age-old art and a budding field of science.” - from the syllabus

Did I fulfill my promises? :-)

Course Evaluations