UCL Division of Biosciences


Neuroscience degrees

UCL is home to the largest Neuroscience Research Community in Europe with over 450 Principal Investigators engaged in Neuroscience research. Our BSc and MSci Neuroscience degrees were one of the first of their kind and are some of the most highly regarded neuroscience programmes in the world today.
Programme details 
Start dateSeptember
UCAS code

BSc Neuroscience B140
MSci Neuroscience B141


BSc 3 years Full Time
MSci 4 years Full Time

LocationUCL Bloomsbury

Why study Neuroscience at UCL?


  • UCL has the largest Neuroscience Research Community in Europe with over 450 Principal Investigators and 1500 Neuroscientists.
  • UCL has been ranked second in London and ninth in the world for Life Sciences and Medicine in the 2023 QS World University Rankings.
  • You will delve into the workings of our genes, brain cells, synapses, connections and circuits and investigate how the brain typically works to perform complex tasks. This can help shed light on what happens when there are problems leading to neurological diseases and mental health disorders.
  • Our carefully designed programme supports and guides you through your first and second years and then gives you flexibility and a unique choice of advanced modules covering most aspects of Neuroscience after you have built your knowledge base.
  • You will be encouraged and supported to complete at least one summer internship during your studies, either at UCL or a similar level university overseas, providing you with practical experience. The programme allows you to choose your own topic and supervisor for your research projects in years three and four. Both BSc and MSci students can take a library project in their third year. 
  • We partner with other world-leading Neuroscience institutes in London including the Sainsbury Wellcome Centre, the Gatsby Computational Neuroscience Unit, Google Deep Mind, the Francis Crick Institute, the Institute of Neurology, the K Dementia Research Institute (UK DRI), the Institute of Ophthalmology, the Institute of Child Health and UCLH.
  • The UCL Neuroscience Society is one of the largest student-led scientific societies in the UK. It hosts a mix of debates, talks and lectures as well as social activities.

What is the difference between the BSc and the MSci?

  • The BSc is a three-year programme whist the MSci four years.
  • Both programmes are identical in years one and two.
  • In year two, students on the BSc programme can evaluate their programme choice and apply to change to the MSci, contingent on their marks in the programme to date. Students on the MSci programme must achieve certain results to stay in the programme.
  • In year three, BSc students will undertake a small-scale research project. MSci students will undertake a literature review. 
  • In year four, MSci students will undertake an original piece of research in a working laboratory.
  • Both BSc and MSci students are encouraged to undertake lab placements in the summer months.

Course structure overview

All years have 120 credits total. Modules are either 15 or 30 credits. Year one consists of seven compulsory modules. This is the same for both BSc and MSci students. We offer two (one 30 credit and one 15 credit) neuroscience modules that are exclusive to neuroscience students. We believe that the compulsory modules we have chosen will not only provide an excellent grounding across the sciences but will also allow you to find the areas about which you are passionate. 

In year two students have a list of compulsory modules and a list of selective options. Students choose all but 15 credits from these two lists and then have one 15 credit free choice. In year three, BSc students will undertake a lab-based project and MSci students a literature-based project. All students will then be able to choose between five and six modules.

In year four, MSci students will undertake an extended experimental project. Additionally, they will be able to choose between two and four modules. Lab projects come as 60 or 90 credit modules and students can then fill up to 120 credits. 

Year one course content

Seven compulsory modules are undertaken by all Neuroscience students:

NEUR0004  Introduction to Neuroscience (15 credits)
Leader: Dr Martina Wicklein

NEUR0005 Foundations of Neurobiology (15 credits)
Leader: Dr Martina Wicklein​​​​​​

BIOC0001  Biochemistry and Molecular Biology (15 credits)
Leader: Dr Amanda Cain​​​​​

PHOL0002  Introductory Mammalian Physiology (15 credits)
Leader: Dr Richard Tunwell​​​​

CELL0007  Cells and Development (15 credits)
Leader: Professor Sandip Patel ​​​​​

BIOL0003  Introduction to Genetics (15 credits)
Leader: Dr Lawrence Bellamy​​​​

CHEM0010  Chemistry for Biology Students (15 credits)
Leader: Professor Andrea Sella​​​


Year two course content

Core courses (75 or 90 credits)

ANAT0003 Human Neuroanatomy (15 credits)
Leader: Dr Thomas Wills

NEUR0006 Molecular Biology for Neuroscientists (15 credits)
Leader: Professor Ralf Schoepfer

BIOC0007 Essential Molecular Biology (15 credits)
Leader: Dr Eleni Makrinou

NEUR0007 Cellular Neurophysiology (15 credits)
Leader: Dr Martin Stocker

PHAR0007 Introductory Pharmacology (15 credits)
Leader: Professor Talvinder Sihra


PHAR0009 Intermediate Pharmacology (30 credits)
Leader: Professor Talvinder Sihra

Restricted options taking total to 105 credits

ANAT0002 Developmental Neurobiology (15 credits)
Leader: Professor Patricia Salinas

PHOL0004 Systems Neuroscience & Research (15 credits)
Leader: Dr Margaret Mayston

CELL0010 Principles of Cellular Control (15 credits)
Leader: Professor Geraint Thomas

PSYC0007 Perception (15 credits)
Leader: Professor Daniel Richardson

MATH0101 Linear Algebra for Data Science (15 credits) (For students with A-level Maths or equivalent)
Leader: Dr Luciano Rila


MATH0039 Differential and Integral Calculus (15 credits) (For students without A-level Maths or equivalent) 
Leader: Maria Chivers & Amalia Gjerloev 


Open option 15 credits (timetable compatibility)

A module of your choice from the list above, or from a wider choice across UCL. 

Year two is a total of 120 credits

Year three course content

Experimental research project

NEUR0001 45 credit lab-based (BSc)
NEUR0002 30 credit literature-based (BSc or MSci)

Your experimental research project will give you a taste of what a full-time career in research could include:

  • Laboratory-based original research performed by you under supervision.
  • A third of your final BSc year or a half to three-quarters of your final MSci year.
  • Choose your supervisor and your topic, and help to plan your project.
  • Work alongside full-time research staff, get trained by them in experimental techniques, data analysis and data visualisation.
  • Be a full member of the lab; you will be attending and presenting at lab meetings and journal clubs.
  • You are not restricted to UCL teaching departments and can do your project in one of our world-leading Neuroscience partner institutes.
  • Your project is examined by a written report and an oral examination.

Options 75/90 credits (Advanced) - We offer more than 30 advanced modules for you to choose. Here are some examples. 

Developmental, Cellular and Molecular modules

PHOL0009 Cellular Basis of Brain Function (30 credits)
Leader: Professor Beverley Clark

PHAR0010 Neuropharmacology (15 credits)
Leader: Dr Stephanie Koch

CELL0003 Cellular and Developmental Neurobiology (15 credits)
Leader: Dr Gaia Gestri 

PHAR0018 Synaptic Pharmacology (15 credits)
Leader: Professor Talvinder Sihra

PHAR0011 Molecular Pharmacology (15 credits)
Leader: Professor Alasdair Gibb

Clinically Disease-related and Translational modules

ANAT0013 Pain (15 credits)
Leader: Dr Sandrine Geranton

NEUR0010 (30 credits), NEUR0011 and NEUR0012 (15 credits) The Neurobiology of Brain Injury and Disease
Leader: Professor Paola Pedarzani

ANAT0012 Molecular Basis of Neuropsychiatric Disorders (15 credits)
Leader: Professor Steve Hunt

PHAR0015 Psychopharmacology (15 credits)
Leader: Professor Neil Millar

Systems, Behavioural and Cognitive modules

NEUR0014 Neural Basis of Learning/Motivation (15 credits)
Leader: Professor Francesca Cacucci

NEUR0015 Control of Movement (15 credits)
Leader: Professor Christopher Yeo

NEUR0017 Visual Neuroscience (15 credits) 
Leader: Professor Andrew Stockman

NEUR0020 Integrative Systems Neuroscience
Leader: Professor Maria Fitzgerald

NEUR0009 Metabolic Neuroscience (15 credits)
Leader: Professor Stefan Trapp

BIOS0029 Social Neuroscience of Animal Model Systems (15 credits)
Leader: Dr Elena Dreosti

PSYC0031 Cognitive Neuroscience (15 credits)
Leader: Dr Leun Otten

Computational Neuroscience and Biology modules

NEUR0016 Neural Computation (15 credits)
Leader: Professor Neil Burgess

NEUR0019 Foundations of Neuroinformatics (15 credits)
Leader: Dr Martina Wicklein and Prof. Kenneth Harris

CELL0014 Dynamic Biological Systems (15 credits)
Leader: Dr Philip Lewis

CELL0013 Functional Genetics of Model Systems (15 credits)
Leader: Dr Richard Poole

    Year four course content (MSci only)

    In the fourth year you will be able to join an existing research team in one of UCL departments or institutes to conduct an extended project of original research of your choice, guided by a supervisor. 

    NEUR0021 MSci Extended Research Project in Neuroscience

    How we continually improve our programme 


    changemakers neuroscience student
    One of the ways we continually improve our programmes is through UCL ChangeMakers which provides project funding and support to students and staff who want to work together to enhance the learning experience of students at UCL.  

    In Neuroscience these projects have taken different forms including supporting a student to setting up a podcast, Brains talk about brains, related to and expanding on the curriculum to changing assessment methods.  

    The projects can also be added to a student’s CV and providing strong examples of skills in job interviews.  

    Interested in start-ups?

    Many of our Neuroscience students are interested in start-ups, social enterprises and developing entrepreneurial skills. UCL's Innovation and Enterprise division offers training, start-up grants, competitions, communities and much more, all of which are free to students on this programme.

    UCL's entrepreneurship community has supported over 300 UCL start-ups since 2010 and raised over £280 million in investment. 

    YouTube Widget Placeholderhttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yZbJ2aOH3g4&t=65s

    In addition to potentially starting a successful business, making use of the resources at UCL in this area provides students with the opportunity to develop business skills, chances to network in London's start up community and projects that will serve them well on their CVs as well as in future job interviews. 



    Most of our students (85%) are in employment or studying 15 months after finishing their degree, with 90% of those in employment in highly skilled work, according to the Graduate Outcomes 2019-2021. Companies that have employed our graduates in recent years include KPMG, the UK Civil Service, Barclay's Bank, Astra Zeneca and Arabesque Asset Management. Our alumni can be found in areas such as journalism, the diplomatic services, the civil service, pharmaceutical companies, start-ups, financial companies and more.

    In addition to neuroscience, we focus on teaching our students highly sought after transferable skills from the first week of the programme. These include but are not limited to teamwork, problem solving, critical thinking/evaluation, data literacy, analysis and visualisation, literacy, scientific reading, presentation training, written/verbal communication, IT skills and more.

    As well as the development of these skills within the formal structure of the programme, UCL provides many opportunities for students to practice these skills in other environments. These include summer internships, our student society NeuroSoc, the Changemakers program and our entrepreneurship/start up programs. In addition to being enjoyable and educational, these opportunities provide students with examples of their abilities in the key skills sought by employers for their CV and to use in job interviews. These are the examples that can clearly differentiate recent graduates from the rest of the crowd and assist them in landing their first major career role. 

    Find out more about our graduate employability and earnings statistics at Discover Uni.

    Useful careers resources:

    My UCL Careers
    UCL Neuroscience Careers Network
    Professional Development Courses
    Linked In Learning
    Public Engagement Training
    Public Policy Training

     Find out more

    For information on entry requirements, fees, how to apply and much more visit the BSc Neuroscience Prospectus Page or MSci Neuroscience Prospectus Page.

    Neuroscience BSc Prospectus Page

    Neuroscience MSci Prospectus Page