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    UCL Institute of Ophthalmology Logo
  • Study Type

    Full time available

  • Subject Areas


  • Start Date


  • Course Duration

    Full time: 1 year Part time: 2 years Flexible: 2-5 years

  • Course Type

    MSc, PgDip, PgCert

  • Course Fees


  • Last Updated

    20 February 2019

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The one-year Clinical Ophthalmology MSc will enhance your knowledge of common ocular diseases, ophthalmic surgical and laser procedures and ocular therapeutics. You will develop analytical skills for solving clinical cases and evaluating published research, and gain valuable research experience through the opportunity to undertake a clinical library-based dissertation.

About this degree

Students will be taught diagnosis and management of common ocular diseases and gain an understanding of clinical assessments and disease processes in the eye, imaging modalities, treatments and side-effects. Additional skills acquired include critical evaluation of scientific literature and research skills. The programme includes solving clinical cases and evaluating published research. 

Students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits over one year.

The programme consists of eight compulsory modules (120 credits) and a dissertation (60 credits).

A Postgraduate Diploma (120 credits, flexible three years) is offered.

A Postgraduate Certificate (60 credits, flexible two years) is offered.

Mandatory modules

All eight modules, plus the dissertation module, must be taken.

  • The Eye in Health and Disease
  • Common Ocular Diseases and Treatment
  • Systemic Disease and the Eye
  • Surgery and the Eye
  • Disorders Affecting Retinal Function
  • Ocular Imaging
  • Ocular Therapeutics 1
  • Ocular Therapeutics 2

Optional modules

There are no optional modules for this programme.


All MSc students undertake an independent library-based research project which culminates in a dissertation of 10,000–12,000 words.

Teaching and learning

The programme is delivered through a combination of lectures, seminars, problem-based learning, clinical application, and the possibility of clinical practice observation at Moorfields Eye Hospital. Assessment is through multiple choice question examinations, problem-based learning questions, and a dissertation.

Please note that the list of modules given here is indicative. This information is published a long time in advance of enrolment and module content and availability is subject to change.


The Institute of Ophthalmology currently offers the following bursaries for successful applicants on our postgraduate taught master’s degrees: Two £10,000 Allergan Foundation bursaries (available for successful applicants on the Clinical Ophthalmology and Ophthalmology with Clinical Practice degrees). These bursaries are open to home and overseas students and will be received in the form of a fee reduction only.

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


This programme provides students with the unique opportunity to study at world-leading ophthalmology institutions, where they will be exposed to the most advanced diagnostic and treatment approaches. Students will learn directly from experienced clinicians and researchers from both Moorfields Eye Hospital and UCL, who will help them acquire the basic knowledge for further clinical advancement. Students can obtain basic practical ophthalmic skills (use of slit lamp, how to do tonometry, gonioscopy, indirect ophthalmoscopy, biomicroscopy) to assist them at the start of their ophthalmic career.


This course offers excellent coverage of the diagnosis and management of eye disease and therefore provides a good basis for more advanced eye training.

A number of graduates have gone on to ophthalmic training programmes both in the UK and overseas.

Why study this degree at UCL?

The UCL Institute of Ophthalmology and Moorfields Eye Hospital are recognised globally and have an outstanding track record in basic biomedical research, teaching and clinical management of patients. This degree builds on the best of all of these to provide the student with an excellent knowledge of ophthalmology. 

In the first term basic clinical skills session teaching will be offered. In addition, subject to availability students will be given the opportunity to attend practical skill courses (microsurgical skills, basic phacoemulsification, trabeculectomy, squint) offered to MSc in Ophthalmology with Clinical Practice second year students for an additional fee. In the third term the student writes a dissertation on a topic of interest to them.

The programme will also provide unique opportunities to interact with leading clinicians from Moorfields Eye Hospital as well as from other prominent institutions. International students from countries with less well-developed ophthalmic services will especially benefit from this unique programme.

Department: Institute of Ophthalmology


Students are advised to apply as early as possible due to competition for places. Those applying for scholarship funding (particularly overseas applicants) should take note of application deadlines.

There is an application processing fee for this programme of £75 for online applications and £100 for paper applications. Further information can be found at: http://www.ucl.ac.uk/prospective-students/graduate/taught/application.

Who can apply?

This programme is aimed at junior doctors and experienced optometrists and orthoptists, and others with a relevant degree who are interested in acquiring an in-depth knowledge of ophthalmic diseases, diagnosis and treatment.

Application deadlines

26 July 2019

For more information see our Applications page.

Apply now

What are we looking for?

When we assess your application we would like to learn:

  • why you want to study Clinical Ophthalmology at graduate level
  • why you want to study Clinical Ophthalmology at UCL
  • what particularly attracts you to the chosen programme
  • how your academic and professional background meets the demands of this programme
  • where you would like to go professionally with your degree

Together with essential academic requirements, the personal statement is your opportunity to illustrate whether your reasons for applying to this programme match what the programme will deliver.

Visit the Clinical Ophthalmology MSc/PG Dip/PG Cert page on the University College London website for more details!