07th September 2020 - 12th September 2020


This course is designed to provide students across fields (neuroscience, psychiatry, physics, biology, psychology....) with the necessary toolkit to master challenges in computational psychiatry research.

The CPC is meant to be practically useful for students at all levels (MDs, Master, PhD, Postdoc, PI) coming from diverse backgrounds (neuroscience, psychology, medicine, engineering, physics, etc.), who would like to apply modeling techniques to study learning, decision-making or brain physiology in patients with psychiatric disorders. The course will teach not only the theory of computational modeling, but also demonstrate software in application to example data sets.
You can find detailed information on our website or follow us on twitter and facebook.



The CPC is divided into two parts: The main course (day 1-5) and in-depth practical tutorials (day 6)

ETH Zurich and UZH students can get 3 ECTS for participating in this course (performance assessment: Oral examination on 18th September 2020.
This course is part of the HS (fall term) 2020 and will be available on ETH MyStudies and the UZH course catalogue in due time. For ECTS you will need to sign up in ETH myStudies in addition to registering here. UZH students must register and sign up in ETH myStudies ( as "UZH Fachstudent/in".


Registration is open:

Due to the current situation caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, the CPC will be held fully online (between 8am MESZ and 6pm MESZ):

  • There will be NO registration fee.
  • There will be additional means to interact with each other virtually.
  • Number of places might be limited depending on the capacity of our technical setup. Students from the host institutions (UZH & ETH Zurich) will be prioritized.


Main Course

The main course consists of lectures (day 1 until day 5) on psychiatry, modelling and model applications in computational psychiatry.

The first day will cover topics in psychiatry providing a conceptual basis for the type of questions that computational psychiatry will need to address.

The second day will explain basic modelling principles (basic mathematical terminology, step-by-step guide on how to build a model, model fitting, model inversion and model selection) and will finish with a first introduction to a possible learning model (Reinforcement Learning).

The third day will include models of perception (Psychophysics, Bayesian Models of Perception, Predictive Coding) and action selection (Markov Decision Processes, Active Inference, Drift Diffusion Models).

The fourth day (only half a day) will include Machine Learning (basics and advanced) and models of connectivity (Dynamic Causal Modelling and Advanced Models of Connectivity).

The fifth day will feature a series of talks on practical applications of computational models to problems from psychiatry.


Practical Tutorial Sessions

The sixth day of the course will provide in-depth practical sessions of a subset of the presented models for a smaller fraction of students (separate registration).


Practical Session A: Bayesian Learning using the Hierarchical Gaussian Filter (HGF, TNU Tapas) with Tore Erdmann & Sandra Iglesias

Practical Session B: Active Inference using the Active Inference Toolbox with Thomas Parr & Philipp Schwartenbeck

Practical Session C: Reinforcement Learning & Decision-Making using the hBayesDM Package with Woo-Young Ahn, Nathaniel Haines & Jaeyeong Jayce Yang

Practical Session D: Model Inversion using the Variational Bayes Toolbox with Lionel Rigoux & Eduardo A. Aponte

Practical Session E:Machine Learning using NISPAT with Thomas Wolfers & Saige Rutherford

Practical Session F: Dynamic Causal Modelling using SPM with Jakob Heinzle & Herman Galioulline

Practical Session G: Regression DCM - An Advanced Model of Connectivity for fMRI using Tapas rDCM with Stefan Frässle & Cao Tri Do

Practical Session H: Hierarchical Unsupervised Generative Embedding - An Advanced Model of Connectivity for fMRI using Tapas HUGE with Yu Yao & Matthias Müller-Schrader

Detailed information and more material can be found on the course website.









Woo-Young Ahn, Seoul National University, South Korea

Eduardo A. Aponte, Pharma Research & Early Development Informatics, Roche Innovation Center Basel, Switzerland

Sonia Bishop, UC Berkeley, USA

Michael Breakspear, University of Newcastle, Australia

Jean Daunizeau, Brain and Spine Institute, ICM, France

Cao Tri Do, University of Zurich & ETH Zurich, Switzerland

Tore Erdmann, Scuola Internazionale Superiore di Studi Avanzati, Italy

Stefan Frässle, University of Zurich & ETH Zurich, Switzerland

Marta Garrido, University of Melbourne, Australia

Herman Galioulline, University of Zurich & ETH Zurich, Switzerland

Nathaniel Haines, Ohio State University, USA

Jakob Heinzle, University of Zurich & ETH Zurich, Switzerland

Marcus Herdener, University of Zurich, Switzerland

Philipp Homan, University Hospital of Psychiatry Zurich, Switzerland

Sandra Iglesias, University of Zurich & ETH Zurich, Switzerland

Sahib Khalsa, Laureate Institute for Brain Research, USA

Roland von Känel, University Hospital Zurich, Switzerland

Andre Marquand, Donders Institute, Netherlands

Christoph Mathys, SISSA, Italy

Matthias Müller-Schrader, University of Zurich & ETH Zurich, Switzerland

Gina Paolini,  Klinik für Psychiatrie und Psychotherapie, Clienia Schlössli AG, Switzerland

Thomas Parr, UCL London, UK

Mads Lund Pedersen, University of Oslo, Norway

Frederike Petzschner, Brown University, USA

Lionel Rigoux, Max Planck Institute for Metabolism Research Cologne, Germany

Saige Rutherford, Donders Institute, Netherlands

Helen Schmidt, University of Zurich & ETH Zurich, Switzerland

Philipp Schwartenbeck, UCL London, UK

Jakob Siemerkus, University of Zurich & ETH Zurich, Switzerland

Klaas Enno Stephan, University of Zurich & ETH Zurich, Switzerland

Lilian Weber, University of Zurich & ETH Zurich, Switzerlan

Katja Wiech, University of Oxford, UK

Thomas Wolfers, Donders Institute, Netherlands

Jaeyeong Jayce Yang, Seoul National University, South Korea

Yu Yao, University of Zurich & ETH Zurich, Switzerland

The Computational Psychiatry Course does not receive any sponsoring from the pharmaceutical industry.



Translational Neuromodeling Unit
University & ETH Zurich




Klaas Enno Stephan
Frederike Petzschner
Katharina V. Wellstein

Administration: Heidi Brunner
Contact: Nicole Jessica ZahndInês Perreira