Postgraduate Course

MSc Cognitive Neuroscience and Neuropsychology

MSc Cognitive Neuroscience and Neuropsychology

Overview

The details
Cognitive Neuroscience and Neuropsychology
October 2018
Full-time
1 year
Colchester Campus
Psychology

Studying both cognitive neuroscience and neuropsychology will give a thorough grounding in the scientific investigation of the neural mechanisms underlying human behaviour and the effects of brain injury on cognitive function. You will be taught the theoretical and biological foundations of cognitive science, and undertake advanced training in statistics and neuropsychological research methods.

Cognitive neuroscience is the scientific study of biological substrates underlying cognition, with a focus on the neural substrates of mental processes. It is a branch of both psychology and neuroscience, overlapping with disciplines such as biological psychology, cognitive psychology and neuropsychology. Cognitive neuropsychology uses data from single cases of individuals with brain injury or neurological illness to refine theoretical models of cognitive processing.

You explore topics including:

  • The physiological bases and practical applications of cognitive neuroscience techniques
  • How brain activity translates into cognitive processes
  • The theoretical and biological foundations of cognitive science
  • How brain damages impact on cognitive functions
  • Cognitive neuroscience of language
  • Cognitive neuropsychology of reading and face processing

Our research is challenging and ground-breaking, rated as ‘world-leading’ or ‘internationally excellent’ (REF 2014). We are supported by some of the most prestigious funding bodies, including the ESRC, European Commission and the Leverhulme Trust.

We are a warm and friendly Department, and we wish to welcome recent graduates of psychology (or a closely related subject such as cognitive science). This course is popular with international students (particularly those from North America). Our students receive a high quality Masters degree within one year and benefit from small class sizes and strong research training.

Why we're great.
  • Develop expert knowledge of both neuroscience and neuropsychology
  • Gain full use of neurophysiological and neurostimulation facilities, our virtual reality suites, babylab and observation suites and eye-tracking labs
  • We are ranked top 15 in the UK for research quality (REF 2014)

Our expert staff

The Cognitive and Developmental Psychology Group are researching attention, language, decision-making, and memory. Recent projects have investigated the psychology of energy reduction, the enhancement of human memory through technology, reading development in different writing systems, and improvements in the usability and design of transport maps.

The Cognitive and Sensory Neuroscience Group research brain function and human behaviour. Recently they have been working on projects on the neural processes underlying sensory and multi-sensory processing, awareness of body sensations, empathy, perspective taking, social communication, and language production.

Students are taught by our award-winning teachers and administrative staff and researchers who are international experts in their own research areas. Our department is expanding, and has recently appointed a number of excellent researchers whose expertise increases the diversity and depth of our skills base.

Specialist facilities

We are committed to giving you the best access to state-of-the-art facilities in higher education, housed entirely within our purpose-built psychology building on our Colchester Campus:

  • Several systems to record and alter brain activity including, near infrared spectroscopy, electroencephalography, transcranial magnetic stimulation, transcranial direct current stimulation, transcranial alternate current stimulation and transcranial random noise stimulation
  • Neuronavigation systems
  • Dedicated laboratories including a virtual reality suite and an observation suite
  • Study the development of perceptual and cognitive abilities in infants in our Babylab
  • Our multimillion pound Centre for Brain Science (CBS) contains specialist laboratories, office space for research students, and research rooms and social spaces which foster opportunities for innovation, training and collaboration.

Your future

With the skills and knowledge you acquire from studying within our Department of Psychology, you will find yourself in demand from a wide range of employers. Our MSc graduates have been employed as Research Associates, Research Coordinators, Data Analyst, Lab Managers and Research and Development Companies. The course also may be taken prior to a PhD or Clinical Training.

We also have excellent links with the research community; we are recognised by the ESRC as providing excellent postgraduate training and are an accredited Doctorial Training Centre, offering several studentships.

Our recent PhD students have taken up post-doctoral positions in other top UK universities and international universities (in the US, Italy and Australia), as well as being appointed to lectureships.

Entry requirements

UK entry requirements

A high 2.2 degree in Psychology, Cognitive Science or a related subject .

If you hold a degree in Psychology it would be preferable, though not essential, if this was British Psychological Society accredited.

International & EU entry requirements

We accept a wide range of qualifications from applicants studying in the EU and other countries. Get in touch with any questions you may have about the qualifications we accept. Remember to tell us about the qualifications you have already completed or are currently taking.

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English language requirements

IELTS 7.0 overall with a minimum component score of 5.5

If you do not meet our IELTS requirements then you may be able to complete a pre-sessional English pathway that enables you to start your course without retaking IELTS.

Additional Notes

The University uses academic selection criteria to determine an applicant’s ability to successfully complete a course at the University of Essex. Where appropriate, we may ask for specific information relating to previous modules studied or work experience.

Structure

Research Project (MSc)

In this module you complete a research dissertation with a maximum of 10,000 words, written up as a report. You have a lot of flexibility as there are a wide variety of topics that you can choose to research. You report on the results of an original psychological research study carried out under the supervision of a staff member. A good research report will look like a psychology study reported in a peer-reviewed journal (such as Cognitive Neuropsychology, or Quarterly Journal of Experimental Psychology).

View Research Project (MSc) on our Module Directory

Neurocognition of Language

Gain an in-depth introduction to the major topics in neurocognition of language. By critically analysing a range of research and methodologies used to study brain processes, you will acquire an advanced understanding of the brain bases of language, and of the neurocognitive processes that underlie human communication.

View Neurocognition of Language on our Module Directory

Research Methods & Statistics in Cognitive Neuropsychology & Neuroscience
Theory and Methods in Cognitive Neuroscience and Neuropsychology
Special Topics in Social Psychology (optional)

An advanced survey of major topics in contemporary experimental social psychology. Provide critical analysis of the relevant theory and research including: motivation, emotion, self and identity, intergroup bias, automaticity, existential psychology, social justice, evolutionary psychology and health.

View Special Topics in Social Psychology (optional) on our Module Directory

Special Topics in Individual Differences and Developmental Psychology (optional)

Be inspired by the current research of the academics in your department, and examine major contemporary topics in individual differences and developmental psychology. In doing so, you’ll gain an insight into the major unresolved questions and controversies in the field, as well as the opportunity to engage critically and scientifically with relevant theory and research, in preparation for the research project module.

View Special Topics in Individual Differences and Developmental Psychology (optional) on our Module Directory

Teaching

Your modules are taught through lectures, laboratory practicals, seminars, independent reading and research projects and we host a very active programme of research seminars.

Assessment

Full-year modules are most often examined using a three-hour examination, and half-year modules by a combination of two-hour examination and coursework (e.g., essays, oral presentations).

Dissertation

A research study in cognitive neuropsychology, cognitive neuroscience or neuroscience of language carried out under the supervision of a staff member (maximum of 10,000 words, written up as a research report).

Fees and funding

Home/EU fee

£7,560

International fee

£16,225

Fees will increase for each academic year of study.

What's next

Open Days

We hold Open Days for all our applicants throughout the year. Our Colchester Campus events are a great way to find out more about studying at Essex, and give you the chance to:

  • tour our campus and accommodation
  • find out answers to your questions about our courses, student finance, graduate employability, student support and more
  • meet our students and staff

If the dates of our organised events aren’t suitable for you, feel free to get in touch by emailing tours@essex.ac.uk and we’ll arrange an individual campus tour for you.

2018 Open Days (Colchester Campus)

  • Saturday, June 23, 2018

Applying

You can apply for our postgraduate courses online. You’ll need to provide us with your academic qualifications, as well as supporting documents such as transcripts, English language qualifications and certificates and recent academic references. You can find a list of necessary documents online, but please note we won’t be able to process your application until we have everything we need.

There is no application deadline but we recommend that you apply before 1 July for our taught courses starting in October. We aim to respond to applications within two weeks. If we are able to offer you a place, you will be contacted via email.

Colchester Campus

Visit Colchester Campus

We want you to throw yourself in at the deep end, soak up life and make the most of those special Essex moments.

Home to over 13,000 students from more than 130 countries, our Colchester Campus is the largest of our three sites, making us one of the most internationally diverse campuses on the planet - we like to think of ourselves as the world in one place.

 

Virtual tours

If you live too far away to come to Essex (or have a busy lifestyle), no problem. Our 360 degree virtual tour allows you to explore the Colchester Campus from the comfort of your home. Check out our accommodation options, facilities and social spaces.

Exhibitions

Our staff travel the world to speak to people about the courses on offer at Essex. Take a look at our list of exhibition dates to see if we’ll be near you in the future.

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