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Course content

The language and concepts of infection and immunity, from basic science to translational clinical research, are taught by our world-class investigators. The programme emphasises data interpretation, critical analysis of current literature and culminates in a full-time research project: excellent preparation for a research career.

About this degree

The programme provides insight into state-of-the-art infection and immunity research, current issues in the biology of infectious agents, the pathogenesis, prevention and control of infectious diseases, and immunity and immune dysfunction. 

Students learn from UCL scientists about their research and are trained in the art of research by carrying out a full-time research project in a UCL laboratory.

Students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits.

The programme consists of five core modules (75 credits), three optional modules (45 credits) and a research dissertation (60 credits).

A Postgraduate Diploma comprising four core modules and four optional modules (120 credits, full-time nine months, part-time, flexible study two to five years) is offered.

A Postgraduate Certificate comprising four core modules (60 credits, full-time three months, and flexible study up to two years) is offered.

Core modules

  • Laboratory Introduction to Basic Bacteriology
  • Molecular Virology
  • Immunology in Health and Disease
  • Epidemiology and Infectious Diseases
  • Data Interpretation

Optional modules

  • Microbial Pathogenesis
  • Tropical Microbiology
  • Advanced Virology
  • HIV Frontiers from Research to Clinic
  • Immunological Basis of Disease
  • Immunodeficiency and Therapeutics
  • Infectious Diseases Epidemiology and Global Health Policy
  • Global eradication of viruses

Dissertation/report

All MSc students undertake independent research which culminates in a 4,000-word dissertation.

Teaching and learning

The programme is delivered through a combination of lectures, tutorials, paper review sessions, laboratory practicals, an independent research project and self-directed learning. A diverse range of assessment methods is used; coursework may be in the form of presentations, essays, data interpretation exercises, poster preparation, and group working. Many modules also have unseen written examination.

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

Careers

The programme produces graduates who are equipped to embark on research careers. Immersion in the superb research and teaching environment provided by UCL and the Division of Infection & Immunity, gives our graduates a unique understanding of the cutting edge of infection and immunity research and how world-class research is carried out. 

Opportunities for networking with UCL senior investigators with international reputations and their worldwide collaborators can provide the inside track for career development. Graduates are well placed to move onto PhD programmes, research positions in diverse biomedical fields, clinical research positions, further training and positions in associated professions.

Recent career destinations for this degree

  • PhD Student, Universitホ catholique de Louvain
  • Research Assistant, Imperial College London
  • Research Assistant, UCL
  • PhD in Molecular Immunology, UCL

Employability

Graduates are exceptionally well prepared for a career in research. The combination of research-informed teaching and practical research training provides an ideal preparation for a PhD and is equally applicable for clinicians seeking specialist training or wishing to pursue the clinical academic career track.

More broadly, a rigorous grounding in scientific method, critical analysis, data interpretation and independent thinking provides a pallet of marketable and transferable skills applicable to many professional career paths.

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 Infection & Immunity is a vibrant and world-class research community. Students are embedded in this superb training environment which provides a challenging and stimulating academic experience. 

Programme content reflects the research and clinical excellence within the division as well as cross-disciplinary research from all over UCL. First-class teaching and research supervision is provided by UCL academics, many of whom have international reputations.

Research Excellence Framework (REF)

The Research Excellence Framework, or REF, is the system for assessing the quality of research in UK higher education institutions. The 2014 REF was carried out by the UK's higher education funding bodies, and the results used to allocate research funding from 2015/16.

The following REF score was awarded to the department: Division of Infection & Immunity

80% rated 4* (‘world-leading’) or 3* (‘internationally excellent’)

Learn more about the scope of UCL's research, and browse case studies, on our Research Impact website.


Visit the Infection and Immunity (MSc/PGDip/PGCert) page on the University College London website for more details!

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