This specialist programme is aimed at clinical professionals from all backgrounds involved in the delivery of integrated pain services in primary or secondary care. Combining cutting-edge research with an international reputation for clinical excellence, the UCL Pain Management MSc is ideal for anyone wanting to improve the lives of people living with pain while also accelerating their own career.
Modes and duration
This programme is designed to be undertaken part-time over 2 years alongside students' normal clinical work.
Tuition fees (2021/22)
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 Students website: ucl.ac.uk/students/fees. Please note that this programme is also available on a flexible (modular) basis so fees are charged pro-rata to the appropriate part-time Master's fee taken in an academic session. Please see the UCL Division of Surgery and Interventional Science website for more details.
A minimum of a second-class UK Bachelor's degree or an overseas qualification of an equivalent standard. Applicants should also be registered/licensed healthcare professionals with a demonstrable interest in pain management.
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
UCL Pre-Master's and Pre-sessional English courses are for international students who are aiming to study for a postgraduate degree at UCL. The courses will develop your academic English and academic skills required to succeed at postgraduate level. International Preparation Courses
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
You will learn:
- To question your own understanding and beliefs around pain
- Research methods and ethical principles underpinning pain research
- Health economics and social impact of pain
- How to design pain services that meet the needs of people living with pain
- Pathophysiology of pain
- Pharmacology of pain and therapeutics
- Managing pain in cancer patients including post-chemotherapy pain
- Management of headache and abdominopelvic/urogenital pain
- Managing pain in children and adolescents
- Strategies for the self-management of pain
- Neuromodulation for chronic pain
- Pain management with mental health, substance misuse and multiple morbidity
- Community pain management strategies
MSc students complete a 180 credit programme: eight core modules (120 credits), and a research dissertation (60 credits).
MSc students complete a 180 credit programme: eight core modules (120 credits), and a research dissertation (60 credits)Eight core modules are taken in sequence over 2 years.
The research project is commenced at the start of the 2nd year.
A Postgraduate Diploma (120 credits, eight core modules) is offered.
A Postgraduate Certificate (60 credits, four core modules) is offered.
Upon successful completion of 180 credits, you will be awarded a MSc in Pain Management. Upon successful completion of 120 credits, you will be awarded a PG Dip in Pain Management. Upon successful completion of 60 credits, you will be awarded a PG Cert in Pain Management.
Please note that the list of modules given here is indicative. This information is published a long time in advance of enrolment and module content and availability is subject to change.
- Pain in Society
- Acute Pain
- Chronic Pain
- Pain in Cancer Patients
- Headache, Paediatric Pain & Abdominopelvic Pain
- Strategies for the Self-Management of Pain
- Pain in the Community
Further information about each module including module lead, assessment structure, and content, can be found in the UCL Module Catalogue
There are no optional modules for this programme.
Successful completion of the MSc requires a 5,000 to 8,000-word dissertation on a topic that is relevant to the candidate's own clinical practice and has been covered, at least superficially, at some point in the programme. The options for the dissertation will be discussed with each student but can include, where possible, joining clinical research at the UCLH Pain Management Centre, study in-depth of topics, preparing for higher (doctoral) research, etc. Students will have both clinical and academic supervisors.
Clinical placement is not a required component of the programme. However, for students wishing to see practice in the UK or specialist pain management practice at UCLH, short clinical placements can be arranged. Placements can be undertaken in Year 2 and forward planning with course faculty is advisable to ensure you can make the most of the experience.
Clinical placement does not impact on grades.
Teaching and learning
This programme is delivered via a digital learning environment making it accessible to students all over the world. In addition, we offer a 1.5 day workshop every term (3 per year) at our Bloomsbury campus. Attendance at the workshops is not mandatory but students find the additional face-to-face contact with staff invaluable.
Assessment is based on reflective practice, video presentation, and short written assignments.
Depending on the activities planned during a clinical placement, an additional fee may be payable. This can be discussed with the faculty at the time of planning.
You may be required to print and bind two copies of your Research project at approximately £25-£50.
Details of the accessibility of UCL buildings can be obtained from AccessAble accessable.co.uk. Further information can also be obtained from the UCL Student Support & Wellbeing team: ucl.ac.uk/students/fees-and-funding.
For a comprehensive list of funding opportunities available at UCL visit the Scholarships and Funding website.
In addition to the funding options available from UCL Scholarships and Funding, a small number of bursaries are available to reduce the programme fees by up to £4,000. Candidates interested in applying for a bursary should indicate this in their application. Applicants will then be asked for further information if their application is successful.
For a comprehensive list of the funding opportunities available at UCL, including funding relevant to your nationality, please visit the Scholarships and Funding website.
This programme is the ideal solution for:
- Nurses and allied health professionals wishing to pursue senior (Band 7+) roles in the NHS
- General practitioners involved in the delivery of integrated community pain services
- Junior doctors wishing to develop and demonstrate clinical interest in pain management and/or the pain component of training in anaethesia
- International doctors wishing to develop their expertise in pain management
- Osteopaths and chiropractors with an interest in pain management.
Combining academic excellence with UCL's reputation as London's global university and our strong links to industry, the prospects for graduates of this programme are excellent. Whether you wish to continue with patient care in the NHS or private sector, pursue doctoral research, or work in industry and innovation, this programme will equips students not only with the knowledge and skills but also the networking links and research experience to take their career to the next level.
Why study this degree at UCL?
This exciting programme will provide graduates with the knowledge and opportunities to accelerate their careers in pain management. This is ideal for anyone pursuing a senior clinical position, health management role, or research and development or industry career.
Beginning with the socio-economic impact and moving from acute to chronic pain states before arriving at more complex pain conditions and interventions, this programme develops the knowledge and core skills required of an advanced pain practitioner.
This programme offers unique learning opportunities:
- Research-led material from UCLH's internationally renowned experts on headache and abdominopelvic pain.
- Innovative content on managing pain in the community.
- World's first module on Neuromodulation from the basic science to post-implantation care.
- World class expertise on the management of pain in cancer patients and survivors.
The programme is delivered via a specially-designed online learning environment. Recognising that the subject matter is often academically and emotionally demanding, optional workshops with programme tutors are available at the Bloomsbury campus and via lecturecast. In addition, online small-group tutorials supplement the online learning content.
Our flexible design allows students from all over the country, and world, to share their experiences and learning styles to enrich each other's academic experience. This is the only UK-based pain management degree offering students the choice of fully online or blended delivery.
UCL and UCL Hospitals (UCLH) Pain Management Centre has an international reputation for both cutting-edge research and innovative clinical services. Students on this programme will benefit from teaching from global experts at an institution that consistently delivers world-class research output. Graduates can expect to be academically confident and ideally placed to pursue doctoral (PhD) level study upon completion.
Department: Division of Surgery & Interventional Science
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.
This programme requires two references. Further information regarding references can be found in our How to apply section.
There is an application processing fee for this programme of £90 for online applications and £115 for paper applications. Further information can be found at: ucl.ac.uk/prospective-students/graduate/taught/application.
Who can apply?
This programme is ideal for any professional hoping to advance their career in pain management including:
- Occupational therapists
- General Practitioners
- Junior Doctors
- All applicants
- 30 July 2021
Late applications will only be considered after those received by the closing date and with a supporting statement explaining the late submission.
For more information see our Applications page.Apply now
What are we looking for?
When we assess your application we would like to learn:
- why you want to study Pain Management at graduate level
- why you want to study Pain Management at UCL
- what particularly attracts you to the chosen programme
- how your academic and professional background meets the demands of this challenging programme
- where you would like to go professionally with your degree
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.
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