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Course content

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.

Visit the Prenatal Genetics and Fetal Medicine - MSc/PGDip page on the University College London website for more details!

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