The Cognitive Neuroscience MSc at UCL is a research-led, state-of-the-art degree programme on mental processes in the human brain. The programme brings together some of the world's leading researchers in cognitive neuroscience and cognitive neuropsychology.
Modes and duration
Tuition fees (2018/19)
- £10,740 (FT) £N/A (PT)
- £25,880 (FT) £N/A (PT)
Note on fees: The tuition fees shown are for the year indicated above. Fees for subsequent years may increase or otherwise vary. Further information on fee status, fee increases and the fee schedule can be viewed on the UCL Current Students website.
Normally a minimum of an upper second-class Bachelor's degree from a UK university or an overseas qualification of an equivalent standard.
English language requirements
If your education has not been conducted in the English language, you will be expected to demonstrate evidence of an adequate level of English proficiency.
The English language level for this programme is: Good
Further information can be found on our English language requirements page.
Country-specific information, including details of when UCL representatives are visiting your part of the world, can be obtained from the International Students website.
International applicants can find out the equivalent qualification for their country by selecting from the list below.
Select your country:
About this degree
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. Students learn in the classroom and laboratory via a combination of lectures, discussions and practical work. Alongside discipline-specific knowledge and skills, the programme develops key transferable skills.
Students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits.
The programme consists of eight core modules (120 credits) and a research dissertation (60 credits).
- Communication Skills in Cognitive Neuroscience
- 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
- Methods in Cognitive Neuroscience I: Lesion Approaches
- Methods in Cognitive Neuroscience II: Neuroimaging
- Research Methods (Statistics)
- Structure and Function of the Brain
- There are no optional modules for this programme.
All students undertake an empirical research project in the area of cognitive neuroscience, which culminates in a dissertation of 10,000–12,000 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 taught 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.
For a comprehensive list of the funding opportunities available at UCL, including funding relevant to your nationality, please visit the Scholarships and Funding website.
The MSc 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 MSc also promotes key skills that prepare students for more general careers in clinical psychology, marketing, teaching, and consultancy.
Recent career destinations for this degree
- Research Assistant, Institute of Cognitive Neuroscience, UCL
- Research Assistant, University of Oxford
- Centre Director, Explore Learning
Students will 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.
Careers data is taken from the ‘Destinations of Leavers from Higher Education’ survey undertaken by HESA looking at the destinations of UK and EU students in the 2013–2015 graduating cohorts six months after graduation.
Why study this degree at UCL?
UCL is among the principal research centres in the world in this area and offers an ideal environment to study cognitive neuroscience.
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.
Department: Division of Psychology & Language Sciences
Student / staff numbers
› 181 staff
including 173 postdocs
› 780 taught students
› 440 research students
Staff/student numbers information correct as of 1 August 2017.
Research Excellence Framework (REF)
The Research Excellence Framework, or REF, is the system for assessing the quality of research in UK higher education institutions. The 2014 REF was carried out by the UK's higher education funding bodies, and the results used to allocate research funding from 2015/16.
The following REF score was awarded to the department: Division of Psychology & Language Sciences
83% rated 4* (world-leading) or 3* (internationally excellent)
Learn more about the scope of UCL's research, and browse case studies, on our Research Impact website.
What our students and staff say
"UCL is a fantastic place to work and study, and it is a world leader in cognitive neuroscience."
Professor Sophie ScottCognitive Neuroscience MSc
Professor of Cognitive Neuroscience, Wellcome Trust Senior Fellow
"The Master's in Cognitive Neuroscience at the ICN is a terrific opportunity to study how the brain works within a world-class research environment."
Professor Neil BurgessCognitive Neuroscience MSc
Professor of Cognitive & Computational Neuroscience
"UCL is one of the best neuroscience centres in the world and, more generally, a fantastic university. The university has a global outlook and a focus on equality, with a rich research environment that is integrated with education, and the many opportunities that are created to develop students and staff. "
Luen J. OttenCognitive Neuroscience MSc, Cognitive Neuroscience MRes
Language & Cognition, UCL Psychology & Language Sciences
Application and next steps
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.
Application fee: There is an application processing fee for this programme of £75 for online applications and £100 for paper applications. More details about the application fee can be found at www.ucl.ac.uk/prospective-students/graduate/taught/application.
Who can apply?
Applications will be evaluated on the basis of the quality of the applicant's degree and degree institution; the quality of the references; the relevant skills and experience; the quality of the personal statement; the suitability of the applicant's career plans.
- All applicants
- 27 July 2018
For more information see our Applications page.Apply now
What are we looking for?
When we assess your application we would therefore like to learn via your personal statement:
- why you want to study Cognitive Neuroscience at graduate level
- why you want to study Cognitive Neuroscience at UCL
- which module (s) on the Cognitive Neuroscience programme interest you most and why
- if you have a particular research project in mind
- your knowledge and interest in the subject demonstrated by briefly discussing a specific book or article that you have read that aroused your interest in the topic of cognitive neuroscience
- how your academic and professional background meets the demands of this rigorous programme
- how completion of the Cognitive Neuroscience MSc will help you obtain your short- and long-term career goals
Together with essential academic requirements, the personal statement is your opportunity to illustrate whether your reasons for applying to this programme match what the programme will deliver.