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:
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.
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.
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:
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.
"Since graduating from Essex I have been working for a biotechnology company called IXICO as an associate image analyst. I analyse and quality-check brain images of individuals with neurological and neurodegenerative diseases who are undergoing clinical trials, as well as setting up MRI scanners around the world making sure they scan patients in a safe way."
Sammy Shittu, MSc Cognitive Neuroscience and Neuropsychology, 2019
A 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.
Applications from students with a degree below a 2:2 or equivalent will be considered dependent on any relevant professional or voluntary experience, previous modules studied and/or personal statement.
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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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.
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.
Most of our courses combine compulsory and optional modules, giving you freedom to pursue your own interests. All of the modules listed below provide an example of what is on offer from the current academic year. Our Programme Specification provides further details of the course structure for the current academic year.
Our research-led teaching is continually evolving to address the latest challenges and breakthroughs in the field, therefore to ensure your course is as relevant and up-to-date as possible your core module structure may be subject to change.
Following the impact of the pandemic, we made changes to our teaching and assessment to ensure our current students could continue with their studies uninterrupted and safely. These changes included courses being taught through blended delivery, normally including some face-to-face teaching, online provision, or a combination of both across the year.
The teaching and assessment methods listed show what is currently planned for 2021 entry; changes may be necessary if, by the beginning of this course, we need to adapt the way we’re delivering them due to the external environment, and to allow you to continue to receive the best education possible safely and seamlessly.
Your modules are taught through lectures, laboratory practicals, seminars, independent reading and research projects and we host a very active programme of research seminars.
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).
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).
£18,800EU students commencing their course in the 2021-22 academic year will be liable for the International fee.
Fees will increase for each academic year of study.
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:
If the dates of our organised events aren’t suitable for you, feel free to get in touch by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll arrange an individual campus tour for you.
We aim to respond to applications within two weeks. If we are able to offer you a place, you will be contacted via email.
For information on our deadline to apply for this course, please see our ‘how to apply’ information.
Home to 15,000 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.
The Campus is set within 200 acres of beautiful parkland, located two miles from the historic town centre of Colchester – England's oldest recorded town. Our Colchester Campus is also easily reached from London and Stansted Airport in under one hour.
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.
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.
At Essex we pride ourselves on being a welcoming and inclusive student community. We offer a wide range of support to individuals and groups of student members who may have specific requirements, interests or responsibilities.
The University makes every effort to ensure that this information on its programme specification is accurate and up-to-date. Exceptionally it can be necessary to make changes, for example to courses, facilities or fees. Examples of such reasons might include, but are not limited to: strikes, other industrial action, staff illness, severe weather, fire, civil commotion, riot, invasion, terrorist attack or threat of terrorist attack (whether declared or not), natural disaster, restrictions imposed by government or public authorities, epidemic or pandemic disease, failure of public utilities or transport systems or the withdrawal/reduction of funding. Changes to courses may for example consist of variations to the content and method of delivery of programmes, courses and other services, to discontinue programmes, courses and other services and to merge or combine programmes or courses. The University will endeavour to keep such changes to a minimum, and will also keep students informed appropriately by updating our programme specifications.
The full Procedures, Rules and Regulations of the University governing how it operates are set out in the Charter, Statutes and Ordinances and in the University Regulations, Policy and Procedures.
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