Mrs Pia Horbacki
Tel: +44 (0)20 7679 5335
Fees and funding
Full details of funding opportunities can be found on the UCL Scholarships website
Research Assessment Rating
Interdisciplinary: not an assessed unit
(What is the RAE?)
The programme information on this page relates to 2013 entry. 2014 content to appear here shortly.
Cognitive and Decision Sciences MSc
The Cognitive and Decision Sciences MSc at UCL studies the cognitive processes and representations underlying human thought, knowledge and decision-making. It integrates a wide range of disciplines and methodologies, with the core assumption that human cognition and choice are computational processes, implemented in neural hardware.
What will I learn?
Key topics include the nature of computational explanation; the general principles of cognition; the scope of rational choice explanation; probabilistic models of the mind; learning and memory; and applications to economics and business. The programme involves training in experimental design and methodology, building computational models and undertaking original research.
Why should I study this degree at UCL?
The programme draws on an outstanding faculty, ranging across many disciplines, including internationally renowned researchers in psychology, computational modelling, neuroscience and economics.
London is one of the global hot-spots for research in cognition, decision-making, and neuroscience; and it is an intellectual hub, with a high density of research seminars and scientific meetings that attract leading international researchers.
London is also one of the world's foremost commercial and political centres, with consequent opportunities for high-level applied research; and it is a vibrant, culturally diverse and international city, with world-class music, theatre and galleries.
See subject website for more information:
Availability: Full-time 1 year; Part-time 2 years
Students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits. The programme consists of six core modules (90 credits), two optional modules (30 credits) and a research dissertation (60 credits).
All students undertake an independent research project which culminates in a dissertation of approximately 8,000–10,000 words.
Teaching and Learning
The programme is delivered through a combination of lectures, seminars, class presentations, and practical, statistical, computational and experimental class work. Student performance is assessed through unseen written examination, coursework, essays, practical experimental and computational mini-projects, and the dissertation.
Further details available on subject website:
Entry and application
Normally a minimum of an upper second-class Bachelor's degree from a UK university or an overseas qualification of an equivalent standard.
For overseas equivalencies see the relevant country page.
How to apply
You may choose to apply online or download application materials; for details visit www.ucl.ac.uk/gradapps
The deadline for applications is 2 August 2013. However students are advised to apply as early as possible due to competition for places. Those applying for scholarship funding (particularly overseas applicants) should take note of application deadlines.
Who can apply?
This programme will appeal to outstanding students interested in pursuing a research career in the cognitive and decision sciences, or to those wishing to develop an understanding of core theoretical principles of human thought to tackle applied problems in a range of areas including marketing, finance, and public policy.
What are we looking for?
When we assess your application we would like to learn:
- why you want to study Cognitive and Decision Sciences at graduate level
- why you want to study Cognitive and Decision Sciences at UCL
- what particularly attracts you to this programme
- how your academic and professional background meets the demands of this rigorous programme
- where you would like to go professionally with your degree
First destinations of recent graduates include:
- Pursuing PhDs at various universities including UCL, Harvard, Yale, and Oxford
- Research Assistant in various areas: surgical simulators, marketing, decision-making aspects of disaster situations, looking at the cognitive causes of diagnostic error, human cognition under sleep deprivation
- Sony: Human Interface Designer
- Queen Mary, University of London: Further study in Medicine
Find out more about London graduates' careers by visiting the Careers Group (University of London) website: