Master in Principles of Applied Neuropsychology
The MSc in Principles of Applied Neuropsychology examines the uses of neuropsychology in the clinical world. Studying the way the brain works is crucial to psychology and the understanding of human behaviour. Neuropsychology is central to the debate about the spark of individuality each human shows. This course looks at social cognition and affective neuroscience, as well as studying the emerging field of the neuropsychology of psychopathology.
The course is an employability-centred extension to an undergraduate psychology degree. It is focused on Neuropsychology, but is suitable for any student interested in preparing for an eventual career as a professional psychologist.
Course Structure and Content
The course has four 30-credit core modules and a 60-credit dissertation module. These modules are an introductory Cognitive Neuropsychology module, Advanced Neuropsychology, Advanced Psychopathology and Issues in Professional Practice. To gain the MSc you must complete all four taught modules and the dissertation module. There is also a Postgraduate Certificate, gained by successfully completing two taught modules, and a Postgraduate Diploma for the successful completion of four taught modules.
The course runs on one afternoon a week to allow you time to obtain relevant practical experience, should you wish to do so. You can study on a full-time or part-time basis, subject to a maximum of three years full-time or five-years part-time for the MSc.
This is a theoretical neuropsychology module, centred on the study of healthy participants. It provides lectures in hearing, speech and language, memory, sensory processing and perception, motor processing and perception. It features embedded research methods including issues of research practice, preparing a research proposal and the misuse of science.
This module includes a neuropsychological perspective on mental health problems. It features a series of lectures on psychosis, affective disorders, fear disorders, principles of cognitive behavioural therapy, and basic pharmacology. The embedded research methods deal with applications to ethics committees, experimental behaviour analysis and outcome evaluation.
This module provides a clinical approach to degenerative disorders, ageing, communication disorders visual disorders, and childhood developmental disorders. The module focuses on the functions and dysfunctions of the frontal lobes. The embedded research methods include performing a systematic literature review, researching a patient population, and using a test battery.
Issues in Professional Practice
This module introduces students to the principles of applied psychology and the processes of recovery and rehabilitation. It focuses on the core skills expected of a practitioner of applied psychology: assessment; formulation; intervention; evaluation; communication skills; and self-management skills. The embedded research skills in this module relate to the evaluation of clinical practice.
This is the opportunity to investigate an area of neuropsychology of individual interest. As part of this module you are required to submit a 5,000-7,000 word paper ready for publication in a specified journal, based on your research. You also have to demonstrate the ability to keep a detailed research log. The research undertaken by students must have a neuropsychological focus.
Teaching Methods and Resources
Teaching methods include lectures, seminars, individual tutorials, small and large group work, lab work and neuropsychological testing experience. There will be guest speakers from relevant employers as well as research talks from existing practitioners.
The course is centred on eventual employment as a professional psychologist. We aim to enhance your skills as a scientist-practitioner, and providing a step forward to meeting the criteria for assistant psychologist posts. The course also offers practical writing skills necessary for communicating complex scientific ideas to both a lay and specialist audience.
We have selected assessments with the aim to maximise experiences that will help with further study. For example, the dissertation element must be written in the form of a paper that is ready for submission in an established journal. In fact, we will encourage the submission of a research paper as the culmination of the Master’s experience. We also offer assessments in less formal writing for magazines or newspapers. We aim to consolidate your literature searching skills, something that is crucial to get right for a PhD thesis and for writing grant proposals.
This course is suitable for anyone with a good major Psychology degree. It is essential that applicants have a Psychology dissertation. It is not necessary to have undergraduate neuropsychology but it would be beneficial to show relevant experience or plans to obtain relevant experience of work in an appropriate area.