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Cognitive Neuroscience - MRes

Course Description

There is increasing international demand for high-quality research training on mental processes in the healthy and diseased human brain. This MRes brings together some of the world's leading researchers in cognitive neuroscience and cognitive neuropsychology, offering students an ideal environment to prepare for independent research careers in this fast-developing field.

Degree information

Students learn about the relationship between the mind and the brain in patients and healthy individuals, alongside the ideas, methodology, and current state of knowledge in cognitive neuroscience. In addition to specialised, research-oriented training, the programme develops key transferable skills. These include project management, logical thinking, oral and written communication, and independent learning. The MRes has a greater emphasis on the research project than the Cognitive Neuroscience MSc.

Students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits.

The programme consists of two key skills modules (30 credits), two optional modules (one from Group One and one from Group Two to a total value of 30 credits) and a substantial research project (120 credits).

Core modules
-Key Skills Module: Generic Research Skills – Statistics
-Key Skills Module: Communication Skills in Cognitive Neuroscience

Optional modules - students choose one optional module from group one* and one module from group two**
-Structure and Function of the Brain*
-Methods in Cognitive Neuroscience I: Lesion Approaches*
-Methods in Cognitive Neuroscience II: Neuroimaging – Designing and Analysing fMRI Experiments*
-Current Issues in Cognitive Neuroscience I: Fundamental Processes**
-Current Issues in Cognitive Neuroscience II: Elaborative and Adaptive Processes**
-Current Issues in Cognitive Neuroscience III: Translational Research**

All students undertake an empirical research project in the area of cognitive neuroscience, which culminates in a dissertation of 15,000–17,000 words.

Teaching and learning
The programme is delivered through a combination of lectures, tutorials, problem classes, laboratory classes and student presentations. Depending on the chosen optional modules, it includes case demonstrations of neuropsychological patients, hands-on experience with the analysis of neuroimaging data, critical analyses of published scientific papers, and discussion seminars. Assessment is through examinations, essays, practical exercises, reports and the research dissertation.


The MRes is a very selective programme that develops key research skills in the field of cognitive neuroscience and serves as a basis for PhD study in an academic setting or a research career in industry or business. The MRes also promotes key skills that prepare students for more general careers in clinical psychology, marketing, teaching, and consultancy.

Top career destinations for this degree:
-Proofreader, Akademie věd České republiky (The Czech Academy of Sciences)
-DPhil in Psychiatry, University of Oxford
-PhD in Psychology, Cardiff University (Prifysgol Caerdydd)
-PhD in Psychology, University of Cambridge

Students have the opportunity to study and conduct cutting-edge research alongside some of the leading researchers in the field of cognitive neuroscience. Students will be immersed in this research environment and will learn directly from experts in the field rather than just text-books.

Why study this degree at UCL?

The UCL Institute of Cognitive Neuroscience (ICN) is among the principal research centres in the world in this area and offers an ideal environment to study the subject.

Our work attracts staff and students from around the world. Together they create an outstanding and vibrant environment, taking advantage of cutting-edge resources such as a behavioural neuroscience laboratory, a centre for brain imaging, and extensive laboratories for research in speech and language, perception, and cognition.

Opportunities for graduate students to work with world-renowned researchers exist in all areas of investigation. The division offers a supportive environment including numerous specialist seminars, workshops, and guest lectures.

Visit the Cognitive Neuroscience - MRes page on the University College London website for more details!

Entry Requirements

Normally 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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