Best data for a class?


Hi all–my cognitive neuroscience methods class next semester I am trying to walk them through VBM/Freesurfer, fmri analyses, and DTI. Ideally, I wanted to have a single dataset they can work with over and over again all semester, if possible. I have multi-modal data like that from FBIRN or others big datasets, but I wasn’t sure if with subsets of 20-30 Ss they would find anything in the structure or resting state or DTI, and analyzing data all semester with no results is never fun. They won’t have the resources to analyze more than 20-30 subjects at a time. Anyone have experience trying to do this, and/or suggestions for a single dataset that would be good to work with?



I have been using ds000114 from (full disclosure - I have collected this dataset).

  • Includes simple block fMRI designs such as finger tapping and word repetition
  • Effects in fMRI are strong even in single subject cases
  • Due to low resolution the data is small
  • It includes DWI (in addition to T1w)
  • It’s test-retest so you can also teach longitudinal analyses
  • There are analyses out there you can compare your results to
  • Preprocesed version of the dataset is available on (useful if you just want to teach modelling and skip preprocessing)


I’m sure there are better (larger, higher quality) datasets in, but this is the only one I used for teaching in the past. Would love to hear what others use.