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Developmental Neuroscience and Psychopathology - MRes

Course Description

This unique two-year international programme is offered in collaboration with Yale University. There is a focus on developmental psychopathology drawing on multidisciplinary perspectives, with a specific emphasis on neuroscience. Students spend year one in London, primarily based at the Anna Freud National Centre for Children and Families and year two at Yale.

Degree information

The programme provides students with an excellent foundation in developmental psychopathology and neuroscience, with a focus on:
-The emergence of childhood clinical disorders (e.g. autism, depression and PTSD)
-Multiple theoretical frameworks of disorder
-Research practice, including science communication
-The translational issues around research and psychological treatments
-This two-year MRes has a total value of 330 credits. 135 credits of taught modules are taken in the first year and in the second year, the research portfolio, comprising an oral presentation, proposal, dissertation and research poster, comprises a total of 195 credits.

Year One core modules
-An Introduction to Psychoanalytic Theory
-The Clinical Theory of Psychoanalysis
-Research Methods I: Research Skills
-Research Methods II: Introduction to Statistical Analysis
-Research Methods III: Evaluating Research Literature (formative)
-Introduction to Neuroscience Methods
-Affective Neuroscience
-Multiple Perspectives on Development and Psychopathology I
-Multiple Perspectives on Development and Psychopathology II

Year Two core modules
-Series of formative workshops (e.g. fMRI; EEG; Advanced research design; Integrating cross-disciplinary models)
-Research Portfolio (see below)

Dissertation/research project
The research portfolio comprises a project presentation – made up of an oral presentation, slides and a written proposal, a written dissertation and a research poster. All students undertake a research project supervised by a faculty member while at Yale, completing a dissertation of 15,000–17,000 words.

Teaching and learning
The programme comprises lectures, research classes, tutorials, small-group seminars, and computer-based practical classes. Assessment is predominantly through essays, statistical assignments, a piece of science communication and unseen examinations. In the second year assessment will be based on the research portfolio - comprising an oral presentation, written research proposal, the dissertation and a poster. Further information on modules and degree structure is available on the department website.


Typically our students are interested in pursuing a research or clinical career. Of students who graduated within the last two years, 23% are now enrolled on PhD programmes; 38% are employed as research associates, 23% are undertaking further training and the remaining 16% are undertaking clinical work.

The two-year structure allows students to not only develop in-depth theoretical knowledge and research skills but also provides the opportunity to undertake a substantial piece of research under the mentorship of a leading Yale academic and their research lab. A grounding in quantitative analysis and fMRI/EEG skills combined with a focus on clinical disorders during childhood make students particularly attractive as prospective PhD candidates and doctoral Clinical Psychology applicants. Students are encouraged to publish their research where possible.

Some students seek voluntary clinically relevant experience across both years, which is particularly helpful for those considering applications to Clinical Psychology doctoral programmes.

Why study this degree at UCL?

Students acquire excellent research skills in statistical analysis and a grounding in neuroimaging methods, including fMRI and EEG, and expertise in critical evaluation of research.

The programme is based at the Anna Freud National Centre for Children and Families in London, a world-renowned centre for research, training and clinical practice in the field of child mental health.

UCL Psychology & Language Sciences undertakes world-leading research and teaching in mind, behaviour, and language. The division has excellent links with other universities including Yale, providing unique research and networking opportunities for postgraduate students.

Our work attracts staff and students from around the world. Together they create an outstanding and vibrant environment, taking advantage of cutting-edge resources, including state-of-the art neuroimaging equipment. The division offers an extremely supportive environment with opportunities to attend numerous specialist seminars, workshops, and guest lectures.

Visit the Developmental Neuroscience and Psychopathology - MRes page on the University College London website for more details!

Entry Requirements

A minimum of an upper second-class Bachelor's degree from a UK university or an overseas qualification of an equivalent standard.

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