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Masters Degrees (Systems Neuroscience)

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One of the longest running postgraduate programmes in clinical neuroscience in the UK. It will give you an insight into recent advances in neurosciences of relevance to neurological and neuropsychiatric diseases. Read more
  • One of the longest running postgraduate programmes in clinical neuroscience in the UK.
  • It will give you an insight into recent advances in neurosciences of relevance to neurological and neuropsychiatric diseases.
  • The programme is recognised by the Federation of Neuroscience Societies (FENS) and included in the Network of European Neuroscience Schools (NENS), which is the highest accolade in European neuroscience teaching.
  • We are the most research-intensive modern university in the UK (Research Excellence Framework 2014).

Summary

This cutting-edge programme offers an exciting opportunity to study modern neuroscience with a focus on clinical implications. You will gain a strong foundation in understanding the mechanisms and treatments of neurological and neuropsychiatric diseases.

This course is designed for students from a range of backgrounds, who are interested in pursuing a career in neuroscience. You will develop a detailed understanding of modern theory and concepts relating to brain research and neuroscience and the application of these principles in the treatment of brain disorders. This course places emphasis on the clinical relevance of recent developments in neuroscience.

The development of your research methods skills is an integral part of the course. You will further your understanding of applied neuroscience with a research project which will develop your data handling and analysis skills, use of applied theory and statistics. 

You will join the Health Sciences Research Centre whose academics are currently investigating a range of topical issues such as the addictive nature of new psychoactive substances, effects of stress on the brain regulatory systems and the mechanisms of brain cell death and repair using neural stem cells. You will be welcome to attend research seminars and discussions on topical developments in neuroscience and health sciences, led by experts.

MSc Clinical Neuroscience is recognised by the Federation of Neuroscience Societies (FENS) and included in the Network of European Neuroscience Schools (NENS), which is the highest accolade in European neuroscience teaching.

Content

In this postgraduate programme, you will develop an integrated overview of contemporary neuroscience as a rapidly developing discipline with multiple links with molecular biology, genetics, pharmacology and medical sciences.

You will be introduced to a diverse range of topics and will have the chance to focus on areas that interest you. Examples of topics that you might cover include: clinical relevance of recent developments in neuroscience, brain imaging techniques and their applications in neurology and psychiatry, neurobiological mechanisms of human brain disorders, effects of nutrition and addiction on brain function, and research methods.

You will discuss ethical issues in clinical neuroscience and develop your ability to critically evaluate current developments in clinical brain research, which are relevant to healthcare.

This course can accommodate students from a range of backgrounds including new graduates from life sciences or psychology as well as health professionals who hold non-traditional qualifications. The programme options of PG Diploma or PG Certificate can be useful to health professionals who wish to refresh update theory knowledge without the commitment of conducting a research project (MSc). It is also suitable for applicants from the NHS, for example neuro-nurses or therapists.

Modules

Postgraduate Certificate (PGC)

Students select 60 credits (three modules) from the following:

Postgraduate Diploma (PGD)

Students select 120 credits (six modules) from the following:

Compulsory set for MSc students

MSc students must complete the following six modules:

Optional modules

MSc students choose one optional module from the following:

Compulsory and Required modules

Compulsory and/or required modules may change when we review and update programmes. Above is a list of modules offered this academic year.

Optional modules

Optional modules, when offered as part of a programme, may vary from year to year and are subject to viability.

Career options

Health professionals, research careers in academia, NHS or private sector including the pharmaceutical industry. Alternatively, graduates may opt for further academic study at PhD level.



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Our brain and its workings define who we are. Neuroscience is discovering how the nervous system functions in health and disease from the molecular to the behavioural level. Read more

Our brain and its workings define who we are. Neuroscience is discovering how the nervous system functions in health and disease from the molecular to the behavioural level. It is a vibrant area of science with regular exciting new breakthroughs, but there is still much to be discovered. UCL is the leading neuroscience institution in Europe, and students benefit greatly from a vast reservoir of expertise.

About this degree

In addition to providing experience and participation in cutting-edge neuroscience, delivered by internationally recognised researchers, the programme generates several transferable skills, notably advanced laboratory research methods, data analysis, computer literacy, oral presentation, critical appraisal of specialised literature, and time management.

Students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits.

The programme consists of four core modules (75 credits), one optional module (15 credits) and a research project (90 credits).

Core modules

  • Developmental Neurobiology
  • Receptors and Synaptic Signalling
  • Systems and Circuits Neuroscience
  • Neuroscience Journal Club

Optional modules

Students choose one of the following:

  • Neurobiology of Degeneration and Repair
  • Cognitive Systems Neuroscience

Research project/report

Students undertake an original research project which culminates in a 7,000-word dissertation.

Teaching and learning

The programme is delivered through a combination of lectures, seminars, tutorials and a laboratory project. Student performance is evaluated through formal examination, coursework, and the research project.

Further information on modules and degree structure is available on the department website: Neuroscience MSc

Funding

For a comprehensive list of the funding opportunities available at UCL, including funding relevant to your nationality, please visit the Scholarships and Funding website.

Careers

The majority (more than 80%) of our graduates take up PhD positions in neuroscience research, including some who stay on at UCL.

Recent career destinations for this degree

  • Graduate Trainee, Wellcome Trust
  • Research Assistant, University of Oxford
  • MD Neurosurgery, University of Pennsylvania
  • PhD in Neuroscience, UCL
  • PhD in Neuroscience, ZNZ: Zentrum f゚r Neurowissenschaften Z゚rich (Neuro

Employability

The MSc in Neuroscience provides an introduction to a career in neuroscience. Around 80% of our students progress to a PhD and then onto careers in academia, industry and other allied biomedical professions. The remainder go into careers in the fields of healthcare, education and commercial scientific research.

Careers data is taken from the ‘Destinations of Leavers from Higher Education’ survey undertaken by HESA looking at the destinations of UK and EU students in the 2013–2015 graduating cohorts six months after graduation.

Why study this degree at UCL?

The UCL Division of Biosciences is one of the largest and most active research environments for basic biological research in the UK, and UCL has one of the largest, most dynamic and exceptional neuroscience communities in the world.

UCL has over 450 principal investigators covering all aspects of neuroscience.

This MSc provides students with a broad knowledge of neuroscience, together with deep knowledge and hands-on experience in the area of their research project.



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About the course. Cognitive neuroscience relates cognitive and behavioural functions to the underlying brain systems. Computational neuroscience uses data to construct rigorous computational models of brain function. Read more

About the course

Cognitive neuroscience relates cognitive and behavioural functions to the underlying brain systems. Computational neuroscience uses data to construct rigorous computational models of brain function. Put them together and these new disciplines are the key to explaining the relationship between brain and behaviour.

You’ll develop a broad and critical understanding of these two fields, along with an appreciation of different approaches to understanding brain function.

Your range of computational and analytical skills, and an ability to generate and test hypotheses, will give you an excellent foundation for further research.

The course takes students from both life sciences and the physical sciences and engineering. Appropriate training is given to ensure all students can master the required skills and complete the course successfully.

Where your masters can take you

You’ll develop the skills and knowledge for all sorts of careers. Many of our graduates continue to PhD level. Others work as research associates and assistant psychologists for employers such as universities and the NHS. Throughout your course, you’ll have frequent reviews with your tutor to discuss your learning needs and objectives.

Applying psychology in the real world

Our ongoing collaborative projects with hospitals, mental health care units, the police and prison service, and several leading firms in business and industry will show you how psychology can be applied in the real world.

You’ll also benefit from our research excellence. We don’t just focus on one or two specialisms – with active researchers in most areas of psychology, we are consistently one of the highest-ranked research departments in the UK.

Our facilities

Whatever your particular interest, we have the facilities for your research. Our research environment was rated amongst the best in the country in the last national assessment. We are exceptionally well resourced for research in Social and Health Psychology, Clinical Psychology and Developmental Psychology, with a dedicated suite of rooms for different participant groups.

To give you the right tools for your research, there is a fully equipped neuroscience unit with excellent facilities for brain imaging, neuroanatomy, electrophysiology, behavioural neuroscience and computational neuroscience. We have access to a small-bore MRI device and to the University’s MRI facility for human studies.

Studentships and bursaries

Please contact us for the latest funding opportunities.

Core modules

  • Fundamentals of Cognitive Neuroscience
  • Fundamentals of Neuroscience
  • Computational Neuroscience 1: biologically grounded models
  • Mathematical Modelling and Research Skills
  • Computational Neuroscience 2: theoretical models
  • Brain Imaging and its Physical Foundations
  • Current Issues in Systems Neuroscience
  • Current Issues in Cognitive Neuroscience

Teaching

Teaching is through lectures, seminars and laboratory classes.

Assessment

Examinations at the end of semesters one and two, written coursework and an extensive empirical research project over the summer.



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Understanding the relationship between brain, cognition and behaviour is one of the biggest challenges the scientific community is currently working on. Read more

Understanding the relationship between brain, cognition and behaviour is one of the biggest challenges the scientific community is currently working on. Computational cognitive neuroscience is a young and exciting discipline that tackles these long-standing research questions by integrating computer modelling with experimental research.

This Masters programme will foster a new generation of scientists who will be trained in both neuro-computational modelling as well as cognitive neuroscience. Its core topics include:

  • Creating computational/mathematical models of neurons, circuits and cognitive functions
  • The fundamentals of cognitive neuroscience (brain mechanisms and structures underlying cognition and behaviour)
  • Advanced data analysis and neuroimaging techniques

The programme is suitable for students from a variety of disciplines including - but not limited to - psychology, computing, neuroscience, engineering, biology, maths and physics. Students with no prior programming experience are welcome.

Graduates of this Masters will acquire a unique set of complementary skills that will make them extremely competitive in securing research or analyst positions in both academia and industry.

Why study this course?

  • This cutting-edge programme is at the forefront of a new, rapidly emerging field of research.
  • It is multidisciplinary, conveying the theory and practice of computational and cognitive neurosciences.
  • Graduates of this programme will gain a competitive edge in the job market over graduates of other, standard programmes in related fields.

Modules & structure

You will study the following core modules:

You will also undertake a 60 credit research project investigating an aspect of cognitive neuroscience using computational modelling, advanced data analysis methods, or a combination of these techniques. Culminating in a 10,000 word dissertation, the project will be carried out by combining the computational, experimental and data analysis skills that students will acquire over Term 1 and 2.

Option modules

You will choose one option from the following two modules:

  • Data Programming
  • Introduction to MATLAB

You will also choose one of the following 4 options:

Please note that due to staff research commitments not all of these modules may be available every year.

Skills & careers

Graduates of this programme will have the following assets in their portfolio:

  • A sound understanding of brain mechanisms and structures underlying cognition and behaviour
  • Knowledge or experience of experimental cognitive neuroscience methods
  • Skills in statistical data analysis
  • Knowledge of theory and practice of biologically constrained neural models of human brain function
  • Computer programming skills.

Such a cross-disciplinary profile will make graduates of this Masters particularly competitive on the job market, especially when applying for positions that require complementary expertise and skills.

The course prepares students for employment in areas including cognitive neuroscience, IT consultancy, cognitive robotics, as well as large enterprises developing software systems inspired by human cognition (e.g., web-search engines, systems for natural language processing, information extraction, data mining and human-computer interaction).

The course is also ideal preparation for further study at PhD level.



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Goal of the pro­gramme. We are conscious, we sense, we feel and we act because of our brains. The brain coordinates and is affected by bodily functions, and it integrates the information about the outside world conveyed by our senses – it is the most central player in the physiology of the whole body. Read more

Goal of the pro­gramme

We are conscious, we sense, we feel and we act because of our brains. The brain coordinates and is affected by bodily functions, and it integrates the information about the outside world conveyed by our senses – it is the most central player in the physiology of the whole body. Neuroscience is an interdisciplinary field that studies the brain and the entire nervous system at different levels of organisation, from genes and molecules to nerve cells and networks; and beyond. The focus of a neuroscientist’s research may lie in understanding the neurobiological bases of behaviour, analysing the functional roles of a single molecule, or developing new treatments for neurological disorders or sensory deficits.

The Master’s Programme in Neuroscience provides you with the opportunity to gain knowledge and skills in a scientifically vibrant international environment. You will be taught by scientists who will provide you with a wide spectrum of opportunities for practical training and for becoming integrated into the stimulating neuroscience community. When you graduate, you will have mastered the essentials of neuroscience and have deeper knowledge and skills in the subfields of your choice. The Programme prepares you for PhD studies and a research career, or for a career in the private or public sector.

Further information about the studies on the Master's programme website.

Pro­gramme con­tents

Training is arranged in modules and consists of lecture courses, hands-on laboratory courses, seminars and book exams. Group work, reports and presentations help you to develop critical thinking and communication skills that are essential for a successful career within Academia and in jobs in the public and private sectors. Compulsory studies provide you with a broad general knowledge of the field, whereas optional studies will offer you freedom to focus on topics of interest to you. You can choose lecture or laboratory courses for example in molecular and cellular neuroscience, developmental neurobiology, sensory biology, regeneration biology, systems neuroscience, electrophysiology, neuroanatomy, brain disorders, etc. You can also expand your knowledge by taking courses from other Master’s Programmes. 



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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.

Facilities

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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Our Computer Science MPhil and PhD programme gives you an opportunity to make a unique contribution to computer science research. Read more
Our Computer Science MPhil and PhD programme gives you an opportunity to make a unique contribution to computer science research. Your research will be supported by an experienced computer scientist within a research group and with the support of a team of advisers.

Research supervision is available under our six research areas, reflecting our strengths, capabilities and critical mass.

Advanced Model-Based Engineering and Reasoning (AMBER)

The AMBER group aims to equip systems and software engineering practitioners with effective methods and tools for developing the most demanding computer systems. We do this by means of models with well-founded semantics. Such model-based engineering can help to detect optimal, or defective, designs long before commitment is made to implementations on real hardware.

Digital Interaction Group (DIG)

The Digital Interaction Group (DIG) is the leading academic research centre for human-computer interaction (HCI) and ubiquitous computing (Ubicomp) research outside of the USA. The group conducts research across a wide range of fundamental topics in HCI and Ubicomp, including:
-Interaction design methods, eg experience-centred and participatory design methods
-Interaction techniques and technologies
-Mobile and social computing
-Wearable computing
-Media computing
-Context-aware interaction
-Computational behaviour analysis

Applied research is conducted in partnership with the DIG’s many collaborators in domains including technology-enhanced learning, digital health, creative industries and sustainability. The group also hosts Newcastle University's cross-disciplinary EPSRC Centre for Doctoral Training in Digital Civics, which focusses on the use of digital technologies for innovation and delivery of community driven services. Each year the Centre awards 11 fully-funded four-year doctoral training studentships to Home/EU students.

Interdisciplinary Computing and Complex BioSystems (ICOS)

ICOS carries out research at the interface of computing science and complex biological systems. We seek to create the next generation of algorithms that provide innovative solutions to problems arising in natural or synthetic systems. We do this by leveraging our interdisciplinary expertise in machine intelligence, complex systems and computational biology and pursue collaborative activities with relevant stakeholders.

Scalable Computing

The Scalable Systems Group creates the enabling technology we need to deliver tomorrow's large-scale services. This includes work on:
-Scalable cloud computing
-Big data analytics
-Distributed algorithms
-Stochastic modelling
-Performance analysis
-Data provenance
-Concurrency
-Real-time simulation
-Video game technologies
-Green computing

Secure and Resilient Systems

The Secure and Resilient Systems group investigates fundamental concepts, development techniques, models, architectures and mechanisms that directly contribute to creating dependable and secure information systems, networks and infrastructures. We aim to target real-world challenges to the dependability and security of the next generation information systems, cyber-physical systems and critical infrastructures.

Teaching Innovation Group

The Teaching Innovation Group focusses on encouraging, fostering and pursuing innovation in teaching computing science. Through this group, your research will focus on pedagogy and you will apply your research to maximising the impact of innovative teaching practices, programmes and curricula in the School. Examples of innovation work within the group include:
-Teacher training and the national Computing at School initiative
-Outreach activities including visits to schools and hosting visits by schools
-Participation in national fora for teaching innovation
-Market research for new degree programmes
-Review of existing degree programmes
-Developing employability skills
-Maintaining links with industry
-Establishing teaching requirements for the move to Science Central

Research Excellence

Our research excellence in the School of Computing Science has been widely recognised through awards of large research grants. Recent examples include:
-Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC), Centre for Doctoral Training in Cloud Computing for Big Data Doctoral Training Centre
-Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC), Centre for Doctoral Training in Digital Civics
-Wellcome Trust and Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) Research Grant: a £10m project to look at novel treatment for epilepsy, confirming our track record in Systems Neuroscience and Neuroinformatics.

Accreditation

The School of Computing Science at Newcastle University is an accredited and a recognised Partner in the Network of Teaching Excellence in Computer Science.

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A flexible and interdisciplinary programme, which challenges you to use your specific knowledge to unravel the workings of the human brain. Read more

A flexible and interdisciplinary programme, which challenges you to use your specific knowledge to unravel the workings of the human brain.

Our brain contains many ingenious networks of millions of interconnected neurons. Together, they have a storage capacity and flexibility that far exceed modern supercomputers, or any artificial intelligent system. The Master’s specialisation in Neuroscience aims at unravelling the neuro-biological and neuro-computational mechanisms of this fascinating, complex system. We study the full spectrum from molecule to man, and from experiment to advanced theory and models.

The brain, as part of the human body, may at a first glance seem the exclusive domain of Biology. However, as the communication between neurons involves neurotransmitters and electrical ionic currents, understanding these mechanisms calls for knowledge of Chemistry and Physics. Moreover, studying mechanisms of coding and encoding of neural signals, requires advanced concepts from Mathematics and Informatics. By working together, our students learn to view complex issues from all these different sides.

Choose your own angle

Neuroscience at the Science Faculty ranges from biology to physics and mathematics, and will thus appeal to students from different Master’s programmes. The programme can be readily adapted to your individual academic background – whether that is in the field of Biology, Mathematics, Physics or Computing Science. Apart from fundamental knowledge of the brain, the Neuroscience specialisation also provides you with a general background in the principles of complex systems, and of intelligent behaviour of living and artificial systems.

Why study Neuroscience at Radboud University?

- Radboud University is the only university in the Netherlands that covers the complete research field of Neuroscience, from cognition to behaviour, and from sub-cellular processes, to single cell analysis and big data.

- The specialisation is closely connected to the world-renowned Donders Institute for Brain, Cognition and Behaviour (DI). You will get the chance to work with DI researchers during your internship, and build up a high profile network for your future career.

- The courses have a strong focus on research: they will cover the latest developments in brain research and technology, and train you the essential academic skills.

- You will work with students and researchers from different backgrounds in the natural sciences and become acquainted with a wide variety of research methods and scientific approaches.

Change perspective

The brain, as part of the human body, may at a first glance seem the exclusive domain of Biology. However, as the communication between neurons involves neurotransmitters and electrical ionic currents, understanding these mechanisms calls for knowledge of Chemistry and Physics. Moreover, studying mechanisms of coding and encoding of neural signals, requires advanced concepts from Mathematics and Informatics. By working together, our students learn to view complex issues from all these different sides.

Career prospects

Master’s specialisation in Neuroscience

The Master’s specialisation in Neuroscience gives you the chance to work at the Donders Institute for Brain, Cognition and Behaviour, and build up your own network of international renowned scientists who are working on the human brain: an excellent preparation for a future career in science. Neuroscience will also provide you with general skills that are required for any other job you aspire:

- the ability to structure complex problems

- excellent social skills for working in a multidisciplinary team

- extensive experience in presentations

- academic writing skills

Our approach to this field

At Radboud University, all branches of Neuroscience are accounted for, and strongly intertwined through the Donders Institute for Brain, Cognition and Behaviour (DI). This unique combination of expertises is a real advantage for Neuroscience students: it gives you absolute freedom to develop your knowledge in your field of interest and a high profile network for your future career.

- Science faculty

In this specialisation at the Science faculty, you will use your background in the natural sciences to unravel neurobiological processes. When completed, you will receive a Master’s degree in Medical Biology, Molecular Life Sciences, Physics & Astronomy or Science. For highly talented students it is possible to obtain a second Master’s degree at the selective Research Master’s in Cognitive Neuroscience of the DI, which has a more cognitive approach. This extra Master’s degree takes one additional year (60 EC) to complete.

- Themes

The Master’s specialisation in Neuroscience focuses on three of the four research themes of the Donders Institute for Brain, Cognition and Behaviour:

- Perception, Action and Control

Focus: Studying sensorimotor mechanisms, their cognitive and social components, their clinical implications, and their relevance for robotics.

Research: Researchers use theoretical analysis, psychophysical and behavioural studies, neurophysiological techniques, neuroimaging, clinical and pharmacological interventions, developmental and genetic approaches.

- Plasticity and Memory

Focus: The development and decay of the healthy and the maladaptive brain.

Research: Researchers in this field study the mechanistic underpinnings and behavioural consequences of long-term changes in neural structure and function. Genetic, molecular and cellular methods, animal models, as well as human neuroimaging and cognitive neuropsychology are used.

- Brain Networks and Neuronal Communication

Focus: Complex neural networks, ranging from the very smallest – communication between individual neurons – to the largest: communication between different brain areas and the outside world.

Research: The research groups combine the development of new techniques for measurements of connectivity and activation, with the experimental application of these techniques in studies of cognition in humans, non-human primates and rodents. Computational modelling is an important component.

- Custom approach

The specialisation programme depends on the Master’s programme that you will follow. In this way, it will perfectly fit to your current knowledge and practical skills. However, as all neuroscience research topics are interdisciplinary, you will become acquainted with other disciplines as well. This will help you to develop a common ground that is necessary to communicate in a multi-faceted (research) team.

See the website http://www.ru.nl/masters/medicalbiology/neuro



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The Sensory Systems, Technologies & Therapies (SenSyT) MRes programme was devised in consultation with industry partners developing treatments for sensory disorders. Read more

The Sensory Systems, Technologies & Therapies (SenSyT) MRes programme was devised in consultation with industry partners developing treatments for sensory disorders. It is an innovative biomedical and translational sciences programme intended for students pursuing a career in academia or in the pharmaceutical and biotechnology industrial sectors.

About this degree

Through a major year-long research project and supplemental coursework, students will learn to conduct cutting-edge research aimed at understanding fundamental principles of sensory systems function and/or developing novel technologies and therapies for sensory disorders, such as deafness and blindness.

Students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits.

The programme consists of three core modules (45 credits), one optional module (15 credits) and a research project with dissertation/report (120 credits).

Core modules

  • Introduction to Sensory Systems, Technologies & Therapies
  • Research in Practice
  • Translating Science into the Clinic

Optional modules

One optional module can be chosen from a group of appropriate modules currently offered at the UCL Ear Institute or at the UCL Institute of Ophthalmology, to provide more in-depth knowledge and understanding of particular issues in sensory systems research. Examples include:

  • Anatomy and Physiology of the Audiovestibular System
  • Auditory Biophysics and Electroacoustics
  • Ocular Cell Biology, Genetics and Epidemiology of Ocular Disease
  • Ocular Development in Health and Disease
  • Visual Neuroscience

Students may choose an alternative optional module from across UCL with prior approval of the Programme Director, provided that it aligns with the topic of the extended research project.

Dissertation/report

All students undertake a year-long independent research project which culminates in a dissertation of 15,000 words.

Teaching and learning

The programme is delivered through a combination of lectures, tutorials, practicals, seminars, workshops, journal clubs, and an extended research project. Assessment is through coursework, oral presentations, essays, practicals, unseen written examinations, and research dissertation.

Further information on modules and degree structure is available on the department website: Sensory Systems, Technologies and Therapies MRes

Funding

For a comprehensive list of the funding opportunities available at UCL, including funding relevant to your nationality, please visit the Scholarships and Funding website.

Careers

The Sensory Systems, Technologies and Therapies MRes was devised in consultation not only with academic scientists pursuing cutting-edge research in sensory systems and therapies, but also with representatives from industries interested in developing new treatments for sensory disorders. The programme has therefore been designed with the intention of ensuring that successful graduates will be attractive candidates either for further PhD research or for jobs in the commercial sector (for example, in companies developing or marketing novel treatments for visual impairment or hearing loss).

Employability

Students will graduate with interdisciplinary training in sensory systems science; a good understanding of the clinical and commercial context for development of sensory systems technologies and therapies; and substantive experience with a cutting-edge research project.

Why study this degree at UCL?

UCL is among the world's top universities for biomedical research, with particular strength in neuroscience, sensory systems research, and translational studies. Students taking the Sensory Systems, Technologies and Therapies MRes will be based at the UCL Ear Institute, an internationally recognised centre for auditory research, and will also take core modules at the UCL Institute of Ophthalmology, one of the world's major centres for vision research.

MRes students will have access to potential research supervisors from across all UCL, and will benefit from interaction with students on the Sensory Systems, Technologies and Therapies MPhil/PhD. The Sensory Systems, Technologies and Therapies MRes will therefore provide students with outstanding opportunities to learn from and network with scientists, engineers, clinicians and students throughout the UCL community.



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This MSc course aims to integrate two active and rapidly developing fields, computational neuroscience and cognitive robotics, to generate innovative strategies and solutions for scientific problems and technological limitations. Read more

This MSc course aims to integrate two active and rapidly developing fields, computational neuroscience and cognitive robotics, to generate innovative strategies and solutions for scientific problems and technological limitations.

From modelling human cognition to programming robots to act in their environment, this course crosses the boundary between several disciplines, including biology, neuroscience, psychology, and computer science. 

Course details

The CNCR MSc course is highly interdisciplinary encompassing psychology, cognitive science, neuroscience, computational modelling, neuroimaging, robotics, and patient rehabilitation. The Course is designed for those who are interested in applying knowledge of neural systems, brain function, and modeling to research in human cognition, perception, sensory and motor systems as well as the design of bio-inspired and biologically plausible robotic systems. It has a strong research focus with hands-on modules and practical applications. The course is aimed at both students from psychology/neuroscience with a strong quantitative background and at students from computer science and physics that want to apply their knowledge to neuroscience.

Programme organisation

A significant part of the CNCR MSc Course involves being part of a research group and conducting an independent research project. For this, you will be assigned to a supervisor and supervise the research project. Your research project is written up as the masters dissertation and counts for one third of your degree. Exposure to a different research group is intended to broaden research experience and widen research skills repertoire.

The course is organised jointly through the Schools of Psychology, Computer Science, Sport, Exercise and Rehabilitation Sciences and Electronic, Electrical and Systems Engineering.

Your choice of course modules will be individualised and agreed between you and your supervisor. The goal is to develop your knowledge and skills to allow you to carry out your research project in Semester 3 while learning a wide range of neuroscience, computation, and experimental method topics. Several modules rely on Matlab programming skills for their practical exercises, which could be used also in the placement and project. Students that don't have a sufficient programming knowledge will be required to attend a programming course in Semester 1. 

You will be taught to devise a research plan, and will read and comment on scientific articles. You will choose the topic for your research project with the help of a research proposal module. A year-long CNCR Foundations module allows you to participate in CNCR seminars, journal clubs, and lab activities to have sufficient knowledge to carry out the research project. This will expose you to cutting edge research and labs. 

For more module information see the Modules section.

Projects

You can select from a range of research topics depending on your areas of interest, and there are a number of supervisors who can provide support. See some of the recent projects and placements undertaken by students on the programme.

See MSc CNCR frequently asked questions (PDF 88KB)

Learning and teaching

Material is delivered through lectures, workshops and hands-on training in cutting edge laboratories. 

Some of the key features of this course and areas of focus for student learning include:

  • Coverage of brain and cognitive function, including brain imaging
  • Introduction to cognitive robotics
  • Hands-on training in state-of-the-art laboratories
  • Detailed research project cutting across disciplines 

Employability

You will receive training in computational and research methods, and will gain an overview of current research in neuroscience and robotics. The programme will prepare you to go onto high quality PhD programmes, leading to work in a range of fields from advanced robotics to cognitive neuroscience.

Many of our students receive job offers before they graduate. Recent students have found employment working and training in an IT consultancy; software engineering at Google; and setting up startup companies to develop IT products inspired by human cognition.

Several of our students receive PhD offers before completing the course; one of our recent students will be studying for a PhD in computational neuroscience at University College Dublin with funding secured via a postgraduate award from the Irish Research Council. Others choose to stay at Birmingham for PhD study. The course gives you an opportunity to showcase your talent in the School of Psychology and the School of Computer Science, and to increase your chances of pursuing an academic career within the University of Birmingham.



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Research profile. The MSc by Research in Integrative Neuroscience is a one-year, full-time research programme covering all levels of modern neuroscience, which makes it an ideal programme to prepare you for a PhD. Read more

Research profile

The MSc by Research in Integrative Neuroscience is a one-year, full-time research programme covering all levels of modern neuroscience, which makes it an ideal programme to prepare you for a PhD.

We include molecular, cellular, systems, regenerative, cognitive, clinical and computational neuroscience. We also allow you to choose your specialty right from the start, allowing you to shape your learning around your interests and career goals.

Programme structure

You start with a taught component in the first 12 weeks, and attend ‘themed weeks’ which run in parallel with elective from which you choose your optional courses. The Elective optional courses include:

  • Developmental Neurobiology
  • Neural Circuits
  • Neurodegeneration and Regeneration

The elective courses run during the first 12 weeks on two half days per week. These will give you a deeper insight into the concepts and methodology of a specific field of interest.

For your research you can choose available projects or contact principal investigators from more than 120 groups in the Edinburgh Neuroscience community to develop your own project, which can range from psychology to nanoscience.

Examples of completed projects are:

  • Axon Initial Segment plasticity in a mouse model of Fragile X Syndrome (Peter Kind)
  • Cognitive and motor functions in neurodegenerative diseases (Thomas Bak)
  • Interactions of amyloid beta and tau in causing cognitive decline in a novel Alzheimer’s disease model (Tara Spires-Jones)
  • Role of primary cilia in the development of stem cells during development of the cerebral cortex (Thomas Theil)

Career opportunities

This programme is designed to help you in your research career. Over 90% of students on the MSc by Research in Integrative Neuroscience have positive next destinations, including PhD, research or clinical career paths.



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Research profile. The Centre for Discovery Brain Sciences (CDBS) carries out research at molecular, cellular, systems and behavioural levels to understand fundamental mechanisms and pathways relevant to brain and body function in health and disease. Read more

Research profile

The Centre for Discovery Brain Sciences (CDBS) carries out research at molecular, cellular, systems and behavioural levels to understand fundamental mechanisms and pathways relevant to brain and body function in health and disease.

CDBS investigators exploit rapid advances in the enabling technologies available from genomics, proteomics, imaging, informatics, and in-vivo analysis to understand the function of gene products at the cell, organ and whole-animal level, and to understand cognition and behaviour at the systems, circuit, cellular and molecular level.

They also exploit the most appropriate model organisms/systems to investigate the delicate balance between high biomedical relevance (for example human, mouse, rat) and high genetic power (such as C. elegans, drosophila and zebrafish).

Research encompasses the study of the central and peripheral nervous systems, at multiple levels of analysis, from the molecular and cellular levels through to cognitive neuroscience, brain imaging, and behavioural neuroscience.

MSc by Research

The MSc by Research Neuroscience is a full-time 1-year research project done under the supervision of a CDBS Researcher. This programme has no taught component and is therefore only suitable for highly motivated students with a clear idea of their research interests and goals, with significant theoretical or practical knowledge of a chosen field. An MSc by full-time research provides an excellent training in laboratory research and a strong grounding for further study at the level of PhD.

MSc by Research Neuroscience students will work full-time on their research project with the additional option of taking selected transferable skills courses. Each student will have two supervisors. After 3 months study a short presentation and report of completed and proposed work will be made to the supervisors, at which point progression from Diploma to full Masters will be considered. Students that demonstrate sufficient progress and aptitude will progress for a further 9 months full-time research after which a Dissertation will be presented and assessed for the award of MSc.

If you're interested in applying for the MSc by Research Neuroscience please see "the how to apply" section on the right.

Note that this programme is different from “MSc by Research in Integrative Neuroscience” as the latter contains taught elements – for information on that programme please visit:

Facilities

Students have access to state-of-the-art laboratories and equipment to facilitate their research objectives. These are located both within the Central area campus and at the Little France campus. Extensive collaborations exist with the wider biomedical and clinical communities helping ensure you are supported in a world-class research environment.



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Students of the new Master’s Degree Programme will get a deep understanding of human brain function. They will learn noninvasive imaging methods to investigate brain activation and structure as well as behavioural methods to measure human cognition and performance. Read more

Students of the new Master’s Degree Programme will get a deep understanding of human brain function. They will learn noninvasive imaging methods to investigate brain activation and structure as well as behavioural methods to measure human cognition and performance. The Programme gives a strong foundation to work as a human neuroscience expert in various industries requiring knowledge and skills to tackle the complex brain-behaviour issues. Graduates are expected to find jobs, for example, in drug development, in companies developing novel health and game products, and in customised marketing research. The Programme also gives a strong basis to continue studies towards a PhD.

Programme structure

The extent of the Master’s Degree Programme is 120 ECTS to be completed in two years. The studies consist of brain imaging methods (20 ECTS), clinical neuroscience (25 ECTS), behavioural methods to measure human cognition, perception, consciousness and performance (15 ECTS), other studies (20 ECTS) and a Master’s thesis (40 ECTS). All programme parts contain lectures, group work, independent studies and practical exercises. The Programme requires a basic understanding of key neuroscience concepts. Depending on previous study history, this may require completion of introductory neuroscience courses during the first semester.

Academic excellence and experience

University of Turku (est. 1640) is among the top one percent of all universities in the world. Turku is well known particularly for its PET Centre which provides several state-of-art PET and MRI scanners for human studies. With a long research tradition in neuroscience, strong research groups and excellent facilities, Turku is a great place to study neuroscience. Turku has a unique, compact campus area with two universities, a university hospital and a strong cluster of medical and technology companies nearby, which creates an inspiring environment to study and work.

The Programme is run by the Turku Brain and Mind Center (TBMC) in collaboration with experts from three faculties (Faculty of Medicine, Faculty of Social Sciences, and Faculty of Mathematics and Natural Sciences). TBMC provides a multidisciplinary context for comprehensive theoretical and practical education in human neurosciences. University of Turku has excellent research facilities for noninvasive brain imaging including PET, MRI, fMRI, EEG, TMS, and optical imaging. Researchers of TMBC have a wide network of connections within the Turku area, in Finland and internationally. This provides the students ample opportunities to work and learn in practical research projects.

Master's thesis and topics

Master’s thesis (40 ECTS) is an important part of the Programme’s curriculum. Students will write a research plan, participate in a research seminar, conduct practical research work and write a theoretical report of their results. The thesis will be based on analyses of behavioural and/or brain-imaging data conducted in collaboration with research groups or companies in the Turku area or elsewhere.

Competence description

In the Master’s Degree Programme you will

  • learn to understand and measure complex brain functions at systems level
  • learn to measure human cognition, perception and behaviour
  • learn to integrate brain-level and behavioural measurements to investigate human performance in different contexts
  • gain knowledge and skills suitable for pursuing a scientific career
  • design and manage your research project
  • analyse behavioural and imaging data
  • work in international and interdisciplinary research groups

Job options

The interdisciplinary Master’s Degree Programme in Human Neuroscience provides you with broad knowledge to use behavioural methods, noninvasive brain imaging and structural brain measures as indices of the complex brain–behaviour relationship in different settings.

The Programme gives a strong basis to pursue a career as a human neuroscience expert. For example, graduates of the Programme can

  • work in medical companies and drug development
  • work in health and game industries
  • continue studies and research towards a PhD

Career in research

Master of Science degree provides you with eligibility for PhD studies. Graduates from the Programme are eligible to apply for a position in the University of Turku Graduate School, UTUGS. The Graduate School consists of 16 doctoral programmes which cover all disciplines and doctoral candidates of the University.



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A minimum of 30 credits is required for the degree, excluding bridge courses. The graduate curriculum consists of seven core courses and additional elective courses, with an optional thesis (six credits) or research project (three credits). Read more

A minimum of 30 credits is required for the degree, excluding bridge courses. The graduate curriculum consists of seven core courses and additional elective courses, with an optional thesis (six credits) or research project (three credits).

Required Courses

  • Critical Thinking for the Life Sciences
  • Numerical Methods for Computation
  • Linear Algebra and Applications
  • Analytical Computational Neuroscience
  • Introduction to Biostatistics or Approaches to Quantitative Analysis in the Life Sciences
  • Computational Ecology
  • Foundations of Bioinformatics
  • Master's Project or Masters Thesis

Electives

Select two of the following:

  • Foundations of Mathematical Biology
  • Regression Analysis Methods
  • Design and Analysis of Experiments
  • Advanced Physical Chemistry
  • Cell Biology: Methods & Appl
  • Cell Surface Recept
  • Computational Biology
  • Systems Neuroscience
  • Systems Computational Neuroscience
  • Comparative Animal Physiology
  • Intermediate Differential Equations
  • Biomathematics I: Biological Waves and Oscillations


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Trains you for further research and study. Receive training in neurobiological and psychological aspects of cognitive neuroscience. Read more
  • Trains you for further research and study
  • Receive training in neurobiological and psychological aspects of cognitive neuroscience
  • Develop analytical skills
  • Have the chance to get involved with research from the Centre for Integrative Neuroscience and Neurodynamics
  • Use facilities including brain imaging systems, and eye-tracking, psychophysiology, nutritional testing, and VR and haptic laboratories

What will you study?

Sample modules:

  • Topics in cognitive neuroscience
  • Programming in behavioural and cognitive neuroscience
  • Principles of neurobiology
  • fMRI data analysis
  • Methods in neuroscience

Please note that all modules are subject to change. Please see our modules disclaimer for more information.

What career can you have?

All of our MSc programmes are research intensive, providing essential training in analytical ability, methods awareness and critical thinking, among other fundamental transferable skills.

The MSc Cognitive Neuroscience is designed to train you for further research and study, ideally for a doctoral programme in psychology, neuroscience, clinical psychology, or a related field. Our students regularly move on to PhD positions, applied and clinical psychology posts in the NHS and private sector, as well as research-based positions in industry.



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