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Masters Degrees (Clinical Embryologist)

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This one-year, full-time MSc by Research programme aims to introduce students to modern up-to-date molecular and cellular biological research in the field of reproductive sciences, reproductive health and reproductive medicine in a stimulating, challenging and vibrant research atmosphere, at the interface between basic science and clinical patient care. Read more

Research profile

This one-year, full-time MSc by Research programme aims to introduce students to modern up-to-date molecular and cellular biological research in the field of reproductive sciences, reproductive health and reproductive medicine in a stimulating, challenging and vibrant research atmosphere, at the interface between basic science and clinical patient care.

The programme is intended for high-calibre students with biological science, medical or veterinary backgrounds.

It is advised that you contact the Programme Director, Dr Simon Riley, prior to making your application to ensure this programme meets your academic aims. Email:

The main components of the programme are two 20-week research projects, performed on a very wide range of research fields within the reproductive sciences.

Topics that can be offered include using a wide range of models and in human, studying a number of important problems associated with human reproductive health and disease in testis, ovary, the uterus during the menstrual cycle and throughout pregnancy and labour, in the fetus and neonate, and in fetal programming resulting in increased risk of chronic disease in adulthood.

The MRC Centre for Reproductive Health has arranged its research under four themes:

Reproductive Resilience, Proliferation, Differentiation, Repair
Reproductive system cancers: aetiology, pathogenesis and therapy
Optimising Lifelong Health Through Pregnancy and Perinatal Interventions
Immune-endocrine interactions in reproductive health

These theme titles illustrate some of the remarkable properties that make reproductive systems such relevant and powerful models for translational studies across a wide spectrum of human diseases and pathologies in other systems.

The MRC Centre for Reproductive Health (CRH) has close links with other internationally recognised research centres in the Queen’s Medical Research Institute QMRI and elsewhere in Edinburgh, with the Edinburgh Royal Infirmary, the Veterinary School, the University of Edinburgh science campus and the Royal Zoological Society of Scotland.

Many student projects are organised with and between these centres, reflecting the interdisciplinary research environment, where students and trainees are regarded as the ‘lifeblood’ for the future.

Programme structure

The programme provides a core grounding in basic science and interlinked medical aspects of reproductive sciences. It is delivered by undertaking a two-week basic core laboratory skills training course, followed by gaining practical experience by performing two 20 week laboratory-based research projects. Examples of research projects completed in 2016-2017 can be found here: http://www.ed.ac.uk/centre-reproductive-health/students/msc-research-reproductive-sciences

These research projects provide you with hands-on laboratory experience and training in a wide range of up-to-date techniques in molecular and cellular biology. Students also gain a wide range of generic professional and scientific skills such as developing effective communication skills, and scientific writing through project reports and a grant application.

Alongside the project work there is a series of lecture modules and seminars delivered by internationally-recognised experts in the field, together with both staff and student-led small group tutorials.

Career opportunities

This programme is the ideal route for those wishing to embark on a PhD, or in a technical laboratory role, in the field of Reproductive Health, spanning the biosciences, clinical and veterinary fields.

The broad range of skills gained is also readily transferable into careers at the clinical-laboratory interface and in the broader biosciences industry opportunities.

This programme does not amount to specific training to become a clinical embryologist.

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This MSc aims to provide medical and science students with a comprehensive knowledge and understanding of the field of prenatal genetics and fetal medicine, specifically human genetics, human embryonic development and fetal medicine. Read more
This MSc aims to provide medical and science students with a comprehensive knowledge and understanding of the field of prenatal genetics and fetal medicine, specifically human genetics, human embryonic development and fetal medicine. There is a strong focus on the development of key skills and careers advice in the programme.

Degree information

Students will develop a knowledge and understanding of the field of prenatal genetics and fetal medicine, specifically in the areas of basic genetics and technology, genetic mechanisms, medical genetics, organogenesis and fetal development, gametogenesis and IVF, prenatal diagnosis and screening, fetal and perinatal medicine, and preimplantation genetic diagnosis and developing technology. They gain transferable skills including information technology, analysis of scientific papers, essay writing, seminar presentation, research techniques, peer review and laboratory skills.

Students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits.

The programme consists of eight core modules (120 credits) and a research project (60 credits). A Postgraduate Diploma consisting of eight core modules (120 credits, full time nine months, flexible study two to five years) is offered. There are no optional modules for this programme.

Mandatory modules
-Basic Genetics and Technology
-Gametogenesis, Preimplantation Development and IVF
-Genetic Mechanisms
-Medical Genetics
-Organogenesis and Fetal Development
-Prenatal Diagnosis and Screening
-Fetal and Perinatal Medicine
-Preimplantation Genetic Diagnosis and Developing Technology

Dissertation/report
All MSc students undertake a clinical, laboratory, audit or library-based research project, which culminates in a dissertation of 10,000 words.

Teaching and learning
The programme is delivered through a combination of lectures, seminars, tutorials, practical demonstrations in laboratories, observation days in fetal medicine and IVF units, and student presentations. There are a number of peer-led learning activities. Assessment is through essays, patient case reports, critical reviews of papers, online problem booklet, examinations and the dissertation.

Careers

On completion of the programme, all students will have gained knowledge of both the clinical and laboratory aspects of prenatal genetics and fetal medicine. This will enable the science-orientated students to go on to pursue research degrees, careers in embryology or prenatal diagnosis, or other careers in the field or in general science. Medically-orientated students will be able to develop their careers in the field of fetal medicine.

Top career destinations for this degree:
-Ob/Gyn Surgeon, Ente Ospedaliero Cantonale
-Trainee Embryologist, Homerton University Hospital (NHS)
-PhD Medical Genetics, The Cyprus Institute of Neurology and Genetics (CI
-Clinical Research Nurse, University College London (UCL)
-Trainee Embryologist, Life Hospital

Employability
Throughout the MSc programme students learn key skills through peer-led activities, such as evaluating and presenting orally on patient cases and media coverage of scientific papers. Basic laboratory techniques are taught as are essay writing, the critical evaluation of papers, debates and ethical discussions. We also offer a comprehensive careers programme involving our alumni, covering job applications, CV writing, general careers in science and specific advice on careers in embryology, clinical genetics, medicine and research degrees.

Why study this degree at UCL?

The UCL Institute for Women’s Health delivers excellence in research, clinical practice, education and training in order to make a real and sustainable difference to women's and babies' health worldwide.

The institute houses the UK's largest group of academics working in women's health and the UCL/UCL Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust collaboration at its core provides an academic environment in which students can pursue graduate studies taught by world-class reseachers and clinicians.

Our diversity of expertise in maternal and fetal medicine, neonatology, reproductive health and women's cancer ensures a vibrant environment in which students develop subject-specific and generic transferable skills, supporting a broad range of future employment opportunities.

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This MSc aims to provide medical and science-based students with a comprehensive knowledge and understanding of the field of reproductive science and women's health. Read more
This MSc aims to provide medical and science-based students with a comprehensive knowledge and understanding of the field of reproductive science and women's health. There is a strong focus on development of key skills and careers advice in the programme.

Degree information

Students will develop knowledge and understanding of the theoretical (including clinical) and laboratory aspects of reproductive science and women's health, specifically in the areas of basic genetics, gametogenesis and IVF, female reproductive anatomy, physiology and pathology, pregnancy and childbirth, breast and reproductive cancers, prenatal diagnosis and screening, reproductive health, and preimplantation genetic diagnosis and developing technology. They gain transferable skills including information technology, analysis of scientific papers, essay writing, seminar presentation, research techniques, peer review and laboratory skills.

Students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits.

The programme consists of eight core modules (120 credits) and a research project (60 credits).

A Postgraduate Diploma comprising eight core modules (120 credits, full-time nine months or flexible study two to five years) is offered. There are no optional modules for this programme.

Mandatory modules
-Basic Genetics and Technology
-Gametogenesis, Preimplantation Development and IVF
-Female Reproductive Physiology and Anatomy, Physiology and Pathology
-Pregnancy and Childbirth
-Breast and Reproductive Cancers
-Prenatal Diagnosis and Screening
-Reproductive Health
-Preimplantation Genetic Diagnosis and Developing Technology

Dissertation/research project
All MSc Students undertake a clinical, laboratory, audit or library-based research project, which culminates in a dissertation of 10,000 words.

Teaching and learning
The programme is delivered through a combination of lectures, seminars, tutorials, practical demonstrations in laboratories, observation days in fetal medicine, reproductive medicine and IVF units, and student presentations. There are a number of peer-led learning activities. Assessment is through essays, patient case reports, critical reviews of papers, online problem booklet, examinations and the dissertation.

Careers

On completion of the programme, all students will have gained knowledge of both the clinical and laboratory aspects of reproductive science and women's health. This will enable the science-orientated students to go on to pursue research degrees, careers in embryology, or other careers in the field or in general science. Medically-orientated students will be able to develop their careers in the field of reproductive science and women's health.

Top career destinations for this degree:
-Research Fellow, NHS Harris Birthright Research Center for Fetal Medicine
-Trainee Embryologist, Assisted Reproduction and Gynaecological Centre
-University Teaching Assistant, King Saud University
-Medical Laboratory Assistant, Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust
-Senior House Officer (Obstetrics and Gynaecology), NHS Health Education South London / St Thomas' Hospital (NHS

Employability
Throughout the MSc programme students learn key skills through peer-led activities, such as evaluating and presenting orally on patient cases and media coverage of scientific papers. Basic laboratory techniques are taught as are essay writing, critical evaluation of papers, debates and ethical discussions. We also offer a comprehensive careers programme involving our alumni, covering job applications, CV writing, general careers in science and specific advice on careers in embryology, clinical genetics, medicine and research degrees.

Why study this degree at UCL?

The Institute for Women's Health delivers excellence in research, clinical practice, education and training in order to make a real and sustainable difference to women's and babies' health worldwide.

The institute houses the UK's largest group of academics working in women's health and the UCL/UCL Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust collaboration at its core provides an academic environment in which students can pursue graduate studies taught by world-class researchers and clincians.

Our diversity of expertise in maternal and fetal medicine, neonatology, reproductive health and women's cancer ensures a vibrant environment in which students develop subject-specific and generic transferable skills, supporting a broad range of future employment opportunities.

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