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Masters Degrees (Cerebrovascular)

We have 3 Masters Degrees (Cerebrovascular)

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This is the first programme in stroke medicine in the UK to provide a comprehensive education and training for the next generation of researchers and clinical providers of expert stroke care. Read more
This is the first programme in stroke medicine in the UK to provide a comprehensive education and training for the next generation of researchers and clinical providers of expert stroke care. Students will be taught by clinical and research experts in the field of stroke medicine at Queen Square.

Degree information

Students will study modules in the pathophysiology and neuroimaging relating to cerebrovascular disease; clinical manifestations of stroke; treatment and service delivery; neurorehabilitation; epidemiology and prevention of stroke and statistical methods in health research.

Students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits.

The programme consists of six core modules (120 credits), and a research project/dissertation (60 credits). A Postgraduate Diploma, six core taught modules (120 credits) is available. A Postgraduate Certificate, four core taught modules (60 credits) is available. There are no optional modules for this programme.

Core modules
-Clinical Manifestations of Stroke
-Epidemiology and Prevention of Stroke
-Pathophysiology and Neuroimaging relating to Cerebrovascular Disease
-Statistical Methods in Health Research
-Treatment and Service Delivery

All MSc students undertake an independent research project which culminates in a dissertation of 10,000 words.

Teaching and learning
The programme is delivered through a combination of lectures, workshops/practical sessions, journal clubs, presentations and supervisory meetings. Taught modules are assessed by short answer, multiple choice question examinations and timed essays. The research project requires a written dissertation, an oral and a poster presentation at the Queen Square Symposium or similar conference.


The portfolio of taught graduate programmes at the UCL Institute of Neurology offers research-embedded clinical teaching to enhance and expand the career progression and opportunities of our students. All of our graduates have reported that their degree enhanced their careers. Many of our graduates have gone on to further PhD-level study, or successfully applied to medical school. Clinicians who took time out to obtain an MSc have returned to training and scientists have gone on to obtain research assistant posts. Those already established in their career have been promoted.

Whatever your chosen career pathway, this programme in stroke medicine will help you become more established in your career, or help you change career direction into this specialised field. As well as gaining knowledge through the taught modules offered by experts in this field, the research project will enable you to gain many transferable skills relevant to conducting research in clinical and medical science. Exposure to the cutting-edge research being carried out in this area at UCL will give you an up-to-date perspective on trends in the causality, diagnosis, management, rehabilitation and innovative treatment of stroke.

Why study this degree at UCL?

UCL has a world-class reputation in stroke research and treatment and hosts the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) North Thames Stroke Research Network. Our service treats over 2,500 suspected strokes per year in our Hyperacute Stroke Unit (HASU). Areas of excellence include carotid disease, stroke recovery and neurorehabilitation, neuroimaging cerebral haemorrhage and small vessel disease.

We are a major endovascular centre at the forefront of stroke treatment with a highly developed multidisciplinary neuro-critical care pathway.

Whatever your anticipated career goals this MSc will provide opportunities to carry out research with global experts in the field of stroke and network with world-renowned clinicians.

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Lead academic 2016. Dr Thomas Jenkins. Read more

About the course

Lead academic 2016: Dr Thomas Jenkins

This course, offering practical clinical exposure, enables you to apply the fundamentals of neuroanatomy and physiology to better understand the clinical features of patients with neurological disease and learn how insights from the laboratory are translated into benefits for patients.

In small group teaching sessions and clinics, you’ll have the opportunity to apply theoretical knowledge to patients with neurological disease. In the final term you may take a research option (Route A) or a Clinical Neurology Experiential Learning Module (Route B).

Students opting for Route A will choose from a range of clinical research projects based at SITraN or within the Royal Hallamshire Hospital. Students opting for Route B will attend additional specialist clinics with patient-centred teaching from experts in the field who will emphasise recent advances in clinical practice.

Our study environment

You’ll be based in teaching hospitals that serve a population of over half a million people and refer a further two million. We also have close links with the University’s other health-related departments.

Our research funding comes from many sources including the NIHR, MRC, BBSRC, EPSRC, the Department of Health, EU, and prominent charities such as the Wellcome Trust, ARC, YCR, Cancer Research UK and BHF. Our partners and sponsors include Novartis, GlaxoSmithKline, Pfizer, Astra Zeneca and Eli Lilly.

You’ll also benefit from our collaboration with the Department of Biomedical Sciences.

How we teach

Classes are kept small (15–20 students) to make sure you get the best possible experience in laboratories and in clinical settings.

Our resources

We have a state-of-the-art biorepository and a £30m stem cell laboratory. The Sheffield Institute of Translational Neuroscience (SITraN) opened in November 2010. We also have microarray, genetics, histology, flow cytometry and high-throughput screening technology, and the latest equipment for bone and oncology research.

At our Clinical Research Facility, you’ll be able to conduct studies with adult patients and volunteers. The Sheffield Children’s Hospital houses a complementary facility for paediatric experimental medical research.

Hepatitis B policy

If your course involves a significant risk of exposure to human blood or other body fluids and tissue, you’ll need to complete a course of Hepatitis B immunisation before starting. We conform to national guidelines that are in place to protect patients, health care workers and students.

Core modules

During the autumn and spring terms, you’ll take four taught modules worth 30 credits each: Applied Neuroanatomy and Clinical Neuroscience; Cerebrovascular Disease and Disorders of Consciousness; Neuroinflammation (CNS) and diseases of the PNS; Neurodegeneration.

Complementing the taught modules is a comprehensive programme of clinical demonstrations, integrated learning activities, themed clinics and neuro-anatomy dissection (autumn term) where students will be able to apply the taught theory and further substantiate their understanding of the topic area being studied.

Examples of optional modules

Either a research project (Route A) or a Clinical Neurology Experiential Learning Module (CNELM) (Route B) worth 60 credits is completed in the summer term.

Teaching and assessment

The taught component of the MSc is delivered through lectures, seminars, tutorials, practical demonstrations and student-led group work. Each of the 30-credit modules is assessed using a formal examination (15 credits) and ongoing assessments during the module (15 credits), including essays and oral presentations.

The research project (Route A) is assessed from the written dissertation and research presentation examination. The CNELM (Route B) is assessed by means of a portfolio (30 credits) and a 6,000-word dissertation (30 credits) on an aspect of the sub-speciality chosen for the module. The portfolio will contain a reflective log, anonymised details of cases seen, and work-based assessments.

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Research profile. Read more

Research profile

The scientific goal of the Centre of Cognitive and Neural Systems (CCNS) is to understand information processing by the central and peripheral nervous systems, at several different levels of analysis, from cognitive psychology through cognitive neuroscience and brain imaging, behavioural neuroscience and neuropharmacology, and extending to theoretical models of neuronal networks.

Members of the CCNS are divided into different research groups with a focus on:

  • human cognitive neuroscience (including ageing)
  • the neurobiology of learning, memory and plasticity (focusing on hippocampus and cortex)
  • the processing of nociceptive somatosensory information, cerebrovascular physiology and pharmacology
  • the consequences of drug action, including drugs of abuse

Although the CCNS is hosted by the School of Biomedical Sciences, its membership is drawn from several different Schools across all three Colleges.

Training and support

During their studies, postgraduate students are assigned a personal thesis committee, which monitors progress.

Students attend seminars and the generic skills training programme provided by the Life Sciences Graduate Programme.

Postgraduates can often act as demonstrators for undergraduate teaching.

Students are strongly encouraged to present their findings at national and international conferences and to publish their findings in international journals during their postgraduate training.


The CCNS is based at the Central Campus, and has excellent facilities for cognitive and systems neuroscience, including human cognitive neuroscience and functional MRI facilities, rodent surgical facilities, testing rooms for water mazes, event arenas, single unit recording in freely moving rodents, in vivo and in vitro (slice) electrophysiological recording, histology, confocal microscopy and wet-lab facilities.

We also offer expertise and facilities for functional imaging in animals and excellent genetic models of CNS diseases. Molecular and cellular analysis of cell death and plasticity underpin in vivo investigating.

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