Neuroscience (MRes) 2021 entry
The MRes in Neuroscience is designed to provide advanced training in neuroscience research. Students conduct a year-long research project and learn relevant techniques and skills through course work. Research projects are carried out in a single laboratory over the full length of the programme, giving students a unique opportunity to pursue research questions in depth. The overall aim is to help students acquire the skills needed to succeed as independent research scientists.
Postgraduate, leading to a Master of Research (MRes)
- Start date: 30 August 2021
- End date: 30 September 2022
Information about all programmes from previous years of entry can be found in the archive.
One year full time
- Undergraduate degree (typically 2.1 or higher) in a science-related subject (e.g. neuroscience, chemistry, physics, biology, psychology or computer science). If you studied your first degree outside the UK, see the international entry requirements.
- Candidates with other suitable and equivalent qualifications such as relevant work experience or research accomplishments will also be considered.
- English language proficiency. See English language tests and qualifications.
The qualifications listed are indicative minimum requirements for entry. Some academic Schools will ask applicants to achieve significantly higher marks than the minimum. Obtaining the listed entry requirements will not guarantee you a place, as the University considers all aspects of every application including, where applicable, the writing sample, personal statement, and supporting documents.
There are two deadlines: 20 November 2020 and 19 February 2021. Applications received after February 19 may be accepted if places are still available, but applicants should contact the programme coordinator first for advice.
- CV or résumé
- personal statement, including names of 3 potential supervisors (500 words maximum)
- two letters of recommendation
- academic transcripts and degree certificates
- evidence of English language proficiency (required if English is not your first language).
Potential supervisors may vary from year to year. MRes neuroscience students are typically supervised by academic staff within the Cellular and Developmental Research Group. However, academic staff in other research groups may supervise students in certain instances. Questions about suitability of potential supervisors should be directed in the first instance to the programme coordinator, Stefan Pulver (firstname.lastname@example.org).
For more guidance, see supporting documents and references for postgraduate taught programmes.
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The modules in this programme have varying methods of delivery and assessment. For more details of each module, including weekly contact hours, teaching methods and assessment, please see the latest module catalogue which is for the 2020–2021 academic year; some elements may be subject to change for 2021 entry.
- Neuroscience Research Design Reading Party: intensive week-long module provides an introduction to designing and carrying out neuroscience research at the postgraduate level.
- Techniques and Skills in Neuroscience Research: examines state-of-the-art neuroscience techniques through critical analysis of primary literature.
Students choose two optional modules, examples of optional modules that may be offered include:
- Advanced Microscopy and Image Analysis - Seeing is Believing: introduction to advanced imaging techniques, such as Confocal, Super-resolution, TIRF and Electron Microscopy.
- Behavioural Neuroscience: allows students to access current research in the area of behavioural neuroscience. Possible topics include motivation, learning and attention.
- Biology and Behaviour of Social Insects: examines and compares the biology of the four main groups of social insects: termites, ants, wasps and bees.
- Evolution and Human Behaviour: introduces and critically evaluate the main evolutionary approaches currently being used, including socio-biology, evolutionary psychology, behavioural ecology and gene-culture co-evolution.
- Evolutionary Developmental Biology: aims to cover some of the main, current themes in evolutionary developmental biology.
- Mechanisms of Behaviour: Integrating Psychological and Neuroscience Perspectives: explores some of the many physiological and neural systems that modulate patterns of behaviour in a range of species, including humans.
- Molecular Mechanisms of Membrane Trafficking: considers how molecules control the movement of substances through the secretory pathway, but will focus on how cells regulate the release of contents.
- Motoneurons: From Physiology to Pathology: provides an in-depth knowledge of key aspects of neuronal function and potential dysfunction by focusing on motoneurons.
- Neural Basis of Episodic Memory: examines how the brain enables us to remember information from our personal experience.
- Neuroscience: primarily for students who have not studied neuroscience previously, this module covers basic biochemical, cellular and behavioural aspects of the nervous system in health and disease.
- Neuroethology: focuses mainly on behaviours arising from the interactions between predators and their prey.
- Neuromodulation: explores the diverse range of neuromodulatory mechanisms and outlines their importance in information processing in the nervous system.
- Research Methods in Cognitive Neuroscience: showcases the state-of-the-art approach of observing the brain in action to to understand the physical bases of behaviour.
- Synaptic Transmission: covers recent progress in understanding the morphology and ultrastructure of synapses, neurotransmitter corelease and recycling mechanisms, retrograde signalling, synaptic plasticity, the role of glial cells and the development of neurotransmission.
Optional modules are subject to change each year and require a minimum number of participants to be offered; some may only allow limited numbers of students (see the University's position on curriculum development).
Students will spend one year conducting a research project culminating in a data-based thesis of not more than 15,000 words. The thesis will describe the research results obtained from the year-long research project and must be submitted by a date specified in August.
If students choose not to complete the thesis requirement for the MRes, there is an exit award available that allows suitably qualified candidates to receive a Postgraduate Diploma. By choosing an exit award, you will finish your degree at the end of the second semester of study and receive a PGDip instead of an MRes.
The modules listed here are indicative, and there is no guarantee they will run for 2021 entry. Take a look at the most up-to-date modules in the module catalogue.