Postgraduate study
Edinburgh: Extraordinary futures await.

Neuroscience (Integrative Neuroscience) MScR

Awards: MScR

Study modes: Full-time

Funding opportunities

The MSc by Research in Integrative Neuroscience covers all levels of modern neuroscience, including molecular, cellular, systems, regenerative, cognitive, clinical and computational neuroscience.

This makes it the ideal programme to prepare you for a research career including a PhD.

Our MSc includes:

  • A taught component in Semester One, which includes lectures on many different areas of neuroscience, specialist electives, and generic skills training.
  • Two 12-week research projects in Semester Two (or one 24-week research project).

The hands-on research emphasis allows you to contribute to real-world projects, where you will have the opportunity to engage with more than 120 world-leading Neuroscience groups covering interests from Brain Imaging to Neuroscience.

This is a full-time, 12-month programme, beginning in September and ending in August the following year. You are expected to be on campus from the beginning of week one of Semester One. We recommend that you also attend Welcome Week, which is the week prior to week one of Semester One.

Our programme is full-time for twelve months, beginning in early September and ending on August 31st of the following year. You are expected to be on campus from week one of Semester One. Successful MSc/Diploma candidates graduate in November/December of the following year.

Teaching breaks for 2024/5 include 22 December – 14 January.

Semester 1, Taught (September – December)

Taught component including Review of neuroscience course (themed weeks) which run in parallel with elective courses. In addition you will develop core skills including data analysis and statistics.

Programme themes

The first 12 weeks of semester one is the taught component comprising lectures on many different areas of neuroscience, including:

  • Neural development
  • Neurodegeneration and regeneration
  • Sensory and control systems
  • Synaptic physiology
  • Invertebrate model systems
  • Neural circuits for cognition
  • Motor disorders
  • Cognitive neurology
  • Neuroinformatics

Elective Courses

You will also have the opportunity to choose one of four elective courses, allowing you to specialise in a particular area of interest.

Elective courses run on two half days a week. These courses can provide a deeper insight into the concepts and methodology of a specific field of interest.

Elective courses include:

  • Development Neurobiology
  • Neural Dynamics
  • Neurodegeneration and regeneration
  • Neurodevelopment disorders

Elective course availability will be subject to student numbers. While every attempt will be made to allocate you to your preferred elective course choices where demand is high, we cannot guarantee this.

You should check course details for timetabling information and location as courses are taught at a number of sites across the university.

Core Skills

To help you gain a range of skills you can apply in many areas, you will develop core skills including experimental design, data analysis and statistics. There will be additional sessions to help you understand the ethical and legal framework under which animal research is conducted in the UK.

Semester 2 and Summer

Our programme has a strong hands-on research emphasis, allowing you to contribute to real-world projects, putting you in an ideal position for a career in research.

You may choose from available projects or contact principal investigators from the Edinburgh Neuroscience community to arrange a project. The Edinburgh Neuroscience community comprises more than 120 world-leading Neuroscience groups covering interests spanning different levels of analysis from genes to cognition, across the life course, in health and disease.

Research Project 1 (January – April)

By the end of Semester One you will have arranged your first 12-week project. This project may continue as Project 2, effectively making it a 24-week project. Alternatively, you can start a new project for Project 2.

There are two assessments related to Project 1:

  • Research proposal: in the research area of Project 1 and building on training in experimental design.
  • Poster Presentation: Summarising the research conducted during Project 1)

Research Project 2 (May to August)

During the summer period you will commence a second project, or continue with your first project. There are 2 assessments related to Project 2:

  • Dissertation
  • Oral Presentation summarising your research project.

You will also have the opportunity to attend a neuroscience conference. Usually this is the British Neuroscience Association (BNA) Festival of Neuroscience or the Federation of European Neuroscience Societies (FENS) Forum, which are held in alternating years.

Learning targets and assessments

These are structured so that you are encouraged to learn to produce everything a working scientist would be asked to for their research, including a group poster presentation, a short review of a topical research paper in Neuroscience, poster and oral presentations, a research proposal and a dissertation.

Find out more about compulsory and optional courses

We link to the latest information available. Please note that this may be for a previous academic year and should be considered indicative.

AwardTitleDurationStudy mode
MScRIntegrative Neuroscience1 YearFull-timeProgramme structure 2023/24

This programme is designed to help you develop a career in research. A high number of students proceed to PhDs in Edinburgh and elsewhere. Other positive next destinations include medical study, teaching and research assistant posts or science communication roles.

These entry requirements are for the 2024/25 academic year and requirements for future academic years may differ. Entry requirements for the 2025/26 academic year will be published on 1 Oct 2024.

A UK 2:1 honours degree, or its international equivalent, in biological or biomedical sciences (including neuroscience or psychology) or a medical, dental or veterinary degree.

Students from China

This degree is Band C.

International qualifications

Check whether your international qualifications meet our general entry requirements:

English language requirements

Regardless of your nationality or country of residence, you must demonstrate a level of English language competency at a level that will enable you to succeed in your studies.

English language tests

We accept the following English language qualifications at the grades specified:

  • IELTS Academic: total 6.5 with at least 6.0 in each component.
  • TOEFL-iBT (including Home Edition): total 92 with at least 20 in each component. We do not accept TOEFL MyBest Score to meet our English language requirements.
  • C1 Advanced (CAE) / C2 Proficiency (CPE): total 176 with at least 169 in each component.
  • Trinity ISE: ISE II with distinctions in all four components.
  • PTE Academic: total 62 with at least 59 in each component.

Your English language qualification must be no more than three and a half years old from the start date of the programme you are applying to study, unless you are using IELTS, TOEFL, Trinity ISE or PTE, in which case it must be no more than two years old.

Degrees taught and assessed in English

We also accept an undergraduate or postgraduate degree that has been taught and assessed in English in a majority English speaking country, as defined by UK Visas and Immigration:

We also accept a degree that has been taught and assessed in English from a university on our list of approved universities in non-majority English speaking countries (non-MESC).

If you are not a national of a majority English speaking country, then your degree must be no more than three and a half years old at the beginning of your programme of study.

Find out more about our language requirements:

Academic Technology Approval Scheme

If you are not an EU, EEA or Swiss national, you may need an Academic Technology Approval Scheme clearance certificate in order to study this programme.

Tuition fees

AwardTitleDurationStudy mode
MScRIntegrative Neuroscience1 YearFull-timeTuition fees

International Masters Scholarships

The Deanery of Biomedical Sciences will offer 2 scholarships to self-funding, international (non-EU) students who are currently residents in one of the countries on the DAC list of ODA recipients. Additional Programme Costs (to the value of £3,000) will be waived for successful applicants.

Applications will open in May 2023.

UK government postgraduate loans

If you live in the UK, you may be able to apply for a postgraduate loan from one of the UK’s governments.

The type and amount of financial support you are eligible for will depend on:

  • your programme
  • the duration of your studies
  • your tuition fee status

Programmes studied on a part-time intermittent basis are not eligible.

Other funding opportunities

Search for scholarships and funding opportunities:

  • Programme Joint Director, Professor Emma Wood
  • Phone: +44 (0)131 650 3531
  • Contact: emma.wood@ed.ac.uk
  • Centre for Discovery Brain Sciences
  • The University of Edinburgh
  • 1 George Square
  • Central Campus
  • Edinburgh
  • EH8 9JZ
Programme start date Application deadline
9 September 2024 28 June 2024

Due to high demand, we operate a number of selection deadlines for this programme.

Applicants who are not made an offer at a specific selection deadline will either be notified that they have been unsuccessful in securing a place on the programme, or that their application will be carried forward to the next selection deadline for further consideration at that time.

The selection deadlines for 2024/25 are:

Round Application deadline Decision Date
1 23 February 2024 23 March 2024
2 26 April 2024 24 May 2024
3 28 June 2024 12 July 2024

You must submit two references with your application.

When completing the online application form you are not required to complete a research proposal or supervisor at this stage. Please enter Not Applicable in this section on the application form.

You will select your first research project at the beginning of the programme. Please ignore any automatically generated emails requesting this information from you during the application process.

Find out more about the general application process for postgraduate programmes:

Further information

  • Programme Joint Director, Professor Emma Wood
  • Phone: +44 (0)131 650 3531
  • Contact: emma.wood@ed.ac.uk
  • Centre for Discovery Brain Sciences
  • The University of Edinburgh
  • 1 George Square
  • Central Campus
  • Edinburgh
  • EH8 9JZ