The MSc is a full one-year course (from the end of September to mid September the following year), carried out within the Division of Medical Sciences, which provides a broad interdisciplinary training in Neuroscience. Students must study within the three main branches (molecular, cellular and systems), learning both theory and practical research techniques.
The modular course is based on lectures, seminars and practicals which take place during the University term, and on two independent research projects, one in the spring and one in the summer. The course gives an integrated view of Neuroscience, and provides a wide range of practical skills so that the students can ask questions and tackle problems that transcend the traditional disciplines from which Neuroscience has evolved. Applicants with a strong scientific background, but not necessarily in Neuroscience, are encouraged to apply.
All students will be required to pass a qualifying exam at the end of the first (introductory) term. Students will write either a 3,000 word essay or an equivalent practical write-up for each of five modules, and a 10,000 word research report on each of their two research projects. They will also be assessed on their oral presentation. Satisfactory performance will be required in all these components for the award of MSc to be made and, in the case of the Wellcome Trust 4-year Programme, for transfer to the doctoral research project.
The MSc in Neuroscience was recently assessed (along with the Psychology undergraduate courses) by the Quality Assurance Agency for Higher Education , which reviews the performance of universities and colleges of higher education. The QAA review team awarded the maximum rating for all aspects of their review.
The introductory course consists of five modules, each consisting of between 5 and 12 lectures. There is also a series of practical classes and demonstrations. The Organising Committee can exempt students from modules where they have already covered the material; such students will be required to take alternative taught courses or project work approved by the Organising Committee. However, all students are required to take a qualifying exam on the introductory material at the end of the first term.
1: Introduction to the brain
Organiser: Dr D Clarke
3: Synapses and transduction
Organiser: Prof P Bolam
4: Neuronal cell and molecular biology
Organiser: Dr J Taylor
5: Overview of systems neuroscience
Organiser: Prof A Parker
The advanced courses are distributed over the spring and summer terms and comprise lectures, seminars, practical classes and demonstrations to cover three main branches of Neuroscience: molecular/cellular, systems and developmental. Each module is the responsibility of a specified member of staff, but within each module the teaching will be carried out by identified staff members who are expert in the particular subtopics. Students will select five modules from this group, at least one module within each branch of the subject. The teaching in the advanced modules is currently under review, and details of some courses are yet to be finalised
Indications of proven and potential academic excellence normally including a minimum of a 2:1 (or equivalent) in the undergraduate degree
A statement of purpose.
No work experience is required.
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