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MSc Clinical Cognitive Neuroscience

Learn how to use clinical cognitive neuroscience in a range of contexts with both healthy and neuropathological groups, such as individuals with head injuries or Parkinson’s disease. As well as developing an academic understanding of the subject, you learn practitioner skills, including how to use electroencephalographic (EEG) and eye tracker machines, as well as analyse magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scans. You also have the opportunity of training on various neuropsychological testing techniques with professional clinical neuropsychologists, as well as undertaking discipline specific employability sessions.

Course length 1-2 Year(s)
Location Collegiate Campus

Course description

Gain both theoretical and applied knowledge of clinical cognitive neuroscience. Cognitive neuroscience combines techniques and skills including psychometric testing, electroencephalography (EEG), eye tracking and imaging techniques – for application to neuropathological and healthy groups in clinical, academic or biomedical settings. Various neurobiological mechanisms of cognitive and perceptual functions with demonstration of practical recordings, as well as psychology experimental software are taught on the course.

This course is ideal if you
• are a graduate with an applied or pure science degree including psychology, biosciences and nursing, and want to pursue a research, clinical or biomedical career in neuroscience
• work in a related area and wish to formalise and develop your skills, knowledge and expertise as part of continuing professional development
• want to open alternative career pathways
• are an EU or international student with the appropriate background and qualifications.

The course gives you the knowledge and skills to evaluate cognitive and brain function and dysfunction in healthy and neuropathological groups. You learn to understand the important ethical issues involved in neuroscientific research targeted at various age groups and people with range of cognitive abilities, as well as developmental disorders.

You have an opportunity to learn psychophysiological recording techniques, including electrocardiogram (ECG), Skin Conductance (SC), performance speed and accuracy, as well as perceptual mechanisms using Eprime, Martlab and other specialist software.

We also build your research skills enabling you to work as an independent researcher in this area. You have the opportunity to attend workshops run by experts from relevant professions and fields of work. Examples include private clinical consultants, NHS neuropsychologist, teaching staff from the Doctorate in Clinical Psychology course at the University of Sheffield and alumni from our course working in academia and the private sector.

Our specialist learning resources include psychometric measures for assessing cognitive function and 3D model brains for understanding neuroanatomy. You learn to use specialist equipment including • EEG • transcranial magnetic stimulation • analysis of Biopack • structural magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) data • visuo-psychophysics equipment.

Some lectures are taught by guest tutors including clinical psychologists and neuroimaging experts.

You are automatically affiliated with our Brain, Behaviour and Cognition Research Group, which
• delivers targeted neuroscience workshops
• organises subject specific presentations
• has regular research meetings
• has strong collaborative links with other institutions.

Entry requirements

2017 entry requirements

Typically you need one from

• a second class honours degree or above in psychology

• a relevant undergraduate degree from a non-psychological background such as biosciences or a healthcare related subject

• appropriate practical or work-based experience

You may also be able to claim credit points which can reduce the amount of time it takes to complete your qualification at Sheffield Hallam. Find out more

If English is not your first language, you need an IELTS score of at least 6.5 with a minimum of 6.0 in writing and 5.5 in all other skills or equivalent. If your English language skill is currently below IELTS 6.5 we recommend you consider a Sheffield Hallam University Pre-sessional English course which will enable you to achieve an equivalent English score.

International and European entry qualifications

If you are an International or non-UK European student, you can find out more about the country specific qualifications we accept on our international qualifications page.

Course structure

Full-time – one year
Part-time – typically one day per week for two years

Starts September

Typical modules may include

Core modules

To graduate with an MSc you complete the following modules

• reward mechanisms • addiction and craving • the role and action of drugs on the central nervous system

Neuron to neuropathology
• mapping the process of neuropathology from the molecular to the brain systems level • neuronal death and regeneration • the effect of lesions on specific cognitive and socio-emotional functions

Cognitive neuroscience methods
• cognitive and neuropsychological assessment employing a battery of psychometric tasks measuring physiological correlates of behaviour: response times, skin conductance responses and heart rate/breathing • functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) and magnetoencephalography (MEG), imaging of neurochemical activity: PET, magnetic resonance spectroscopy (MRS) and pharmacological magnetic resonance imaging (phMRI) • design an experiment for an imaging study using stimulus presentation software (MATLAB), familiarised with transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) technique

• an exploration of the use of electrophysiology to further our understanding of brain function and cognitive mechanisms • recording, analysis and interpretation of EEG and event related potentials (ERPs) in normal and clinical populations

Perception and cognition across the lifespan
• the neural mechanisms underlying perceptual and cognitive processes • differences in cognitive function and neuroanatomy of healthy and abnormally developing human brains • attention, executive function, decision making and the brain • language processing in the normally developing brain and in children with developmental disorders such as dyslexia, ADHD, autism

Research dissertation
An independent research project on a subject of your choice. You also complete one of the following research methods modules, depending on your educational background and statistical knowledge
• advanced statistical design
• fundamentals of design and statistics

  • coursework
  • seminar activities
  • examinations
  • dissertation


This course gives you the skills to work in both academic and clinical settings with healthy population and diverse neuropathological groups.

Graduates have the skills and knowledge to work in roles involved in assessing and evaluating cognitive function and dysfunction in healthy ageing across the lifespan and patient groups including people with Parkinson’s disease, head injury, dementia, and other neuropathological conditions.

During the course you benefit from employability sessions, where our alumni currently working in academia or industry, clinical psychologists and professionals from private research companies discuss possible career choices.

You may find roles in academic and clinical contexts using methods of neuroscience such as • functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) • structural magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) • electroencephalogram (EEG) • transcranial magnetic stimulation • eye tracking techniques • visual psychophysics.

You can also complete further cognitive neuroscience postgraduate academic work.


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Please note tuition fees may increase in each subsequent academic year of your course, subject to government regulations on fee increases and in line with inflation. More information can be found in the ‘Tuition Fee Increases’ section of our Fees Regulations (PDF, 2.10 MB)

2016/17 academic year

Typically £6,300 for the course

Part-time – typically £4,200 in year 1, £2,100 in year 2

Postgraduate loans of up to £10,000 are available across the majority of subject areas.

2017/18 academic year

Typically £6,400 for the course

Part-time – typically £4,270 in year 1 and £2,135 in year 2 (subject to inflation)

International student

2016/17 academic year

Typically £12,500 for the course

2017/18 academic year

Typically £13,250 for the course

Additional course costs

This link allows you to view estimated costs associated with the main activities on specific courses. These are estimates and, as such, are only an indication of additional course costs. Actual costs can vary greatly depending on the choices you make during your course.

Additional costs information

How to apply

Complete the application form available at www.shu.ac.uk/study/form

Any offer of a place to study is subject to your acceptance of the University’s Terms and Conditions and student Regulations.

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