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    2023 start September 

    Clinical Neurology

    The Medical School, Faculty of Medicine, Dentistry and Health

    Gain practical clinical exposure and apply the fundamentals of neuroanatomy and physiology to understanding the clinical features of patients with neurological diseases. You'll attend hospital outpatient clinics, undertake hands-on neuroanatomy dissection and experience cutting-edge clinical research.
    A male academic member of staff teaches a class of students

    Course description

    Lead academic: Dr Jon Wood and Dr Esther Hobson

    The understanding of the causes and treatments for neurological diseases has rapidly advanced due to translational research over the last decade.  You’ll learn how insights from the laboratory are translated, via clinical research, into benefits for patients and their carers. This includes practical experience in the neuroanatomy dissection room, attendance at NHS clinics, interaction with patients and clinicians, and exposure to qualitative and quantitative clinical research. You will develop presentation, lay communication, critical thinking, and ethical and clinical research skills. 

    The course contains several themed modules, each focussing on a different pathophysiological branch of neurological disease, where disease-centred lectures and small group tutorials provide theoretical knowledge into state-of-the-art diagnostics and therapeutics. You will examine diseases such as dementia, stroke, epilepsy and multiple sclerosis, exploring aspects such as anatomy, genetics, immunology and biopsychosocial models of therapy. You will learn from expert clinicians and scientists developing cutting-edge treatments such as gene therapy and stem-cell transplantation.

    In the final term, you will undertake a Clinical Research Project (Route A) or a Clinical Neurology Experiential Learning Module (Route B).

    Students taking Route A will choose from a range of clinical research projects based at SITraN or within the Royal Hallamshire Hospital. Students opting for Route B will attend hands-on NHS clinics and the inpatient neurology unit, experiencing clinical teaching from experts in their field who will emphasise recent advances in clinical practice. Currently, Route B provides sufficient experience to be recognised by the GMC as a clinical attachment.

    This course will especially benefit those wishing to develop a career within the expanding field of translational clinical neuroscience and has served as a stepping stone to a range of careers in healthcare, academia and industry for our graduates. The course will also benefit medical graduates with an MBChB or equivalent qualification, who wish to develop sub-speciality experience in neurology. 


    We accept medical students who wish to intercalate their studies. Find out more on the Medical School website.

    Do you have a question? Talk to us

    Book a 15-minute online meeting with our course lead to find out more information and ask further questions.

    Book an appointment with Dr Jon Wood


    This is a 12-month, full-time course consisting of four taught module components worth 30 credits each undertaken during the autumn and spring terms.

    Additionally, either a research project (Route A) or a Clinical Neurology Experiential Learning Module - CNELM (Route B) worth 60 credits is completed in the summer term.

    Core modules

    Complementing the taught modules is a comprehensive programme of practical activities designed to equip the students with skills and experiences vital in their careers in clinical neuroscience. They are taught by clinicians and scientists at the cutting edge of research as well as through “patient as educators” sessions, where they can talk directly to patients with neurological diseases.  They will learn through lectures, small group activities, journal clubs, poster presentations and neuro-anatomy dissection where students will be able to apply the taught theory and further substantiate their understanding of the topic area being studied. There will also be the opportunity to attend some of the neurology outpatient clinics during the year. 

    Students will study the NIHR Good Clinical Practice course, a prerequisite course for any clinical researcher.  

    Applied Neuroanatomy and Clinical Neuroscience

    Clinical neurology is underpinned by knowledge of the neuroanatomy of the central and peripheral nervous system. In order to diagnose, investigate and provide appropriate treatment we must first localize the lesion. In order to do this a thorough knowledge of basic neuro-anatomy will be provided by video sessions followed by laboratory dissection of the human brain and spinal cord by students. The dissection course is complimented by a lecture series on functional neuro-anatomy and functional neuroscience. This lecture course covers the basic anatomy and physiology that underpins are understanding of neurological disease.

    30 credits
    Cerebrovascular disease and disorders of consciousness

    Cerebrovascular disease is a common cause of death and disability. In recent years, great progress has been made in both prevention and acute management of cerebrovascular disease. Epilepsy is a common cause of morbidity in individuals of all ages. Correctly characterising can be difficult as can identifying the most appropriate treatment. This module provides practical exposure to expert specialist clinics in conditions such as TIA, stroke and epilepsy, in combination with lectures covering key aspects of these disorders and recent research insights. The aim is to facilitate the students understanding how laboratory breakthroughs have been translated into clinical benefits for patients in the modern treatment of these conditions.

    30 credits
    Neuroinflammation (CNS) and diseases of the PNS

    Inflammatory diseases of the nervous system are a common cause of disability, often in young people. In recent years, great progress has been made in elucidating the pathological mechanisms underlying neuroinflammation, which has led to new treatments and a better understanding of links with the neurodegenerative processes discussed in other modules. Non-inflammatory disorders of the peripheral nervous system will also be covered. This module provides practical exposure to expert specialist clinics in conditions such as multiple sclerosis, autoimmune ataxia, muscle disease and peripheral neuropathy, in combination with lectures summarising recent research insights. The module will also facilitate the students understanding how laboratory breakthroughs have been translated into clinical benefits for patients in the modern treatment of neuroinflammatory disease.

    30 credits

    Neurodegenerative diseases increase in prevalence with age and as such are increasing rapidly with the ageing population. They result in a large number of years of disability and resulting burden on families, carers, health and social care costs. This module provides practical clinical teaching on diagnosis and management of these disorders. This is enhanced with exposure to expert specialist clinics, including those for motor neuron disease (MND), Parkinson's disease (PD), dementia and Huntington's disease. Additionally the student will have clinical tutorials and lectures on the pathophysiology underlying the selective neuronal loss in these conditions.

    30 credits

    The content of our courses is reviewed annually to make sure it's up-to-date and relevant. Individual modules are occasionally updated or withdrawn. This is in response to discoveries through our world-leading research; funding changes; professional accreditation requirements; student or employer feedback; outcomes of reviews; and variations in staff or student numbers. In the event of any change we'll consult and inform students in good time and take reasonable steps to minimise disruption. We are no longer offering unrestricted module choice. If your course included unrestricted modules, your department will provide a list of modules from their own and other subject areas that you can choose from.

    Open days

    An open day gives you the best opportunity to hear first-hand from our current students and staff about our courses. You'll find out what makes us special.

    Online postgraduate open day - Wednesday 26 April 2023


    1 year full-time


    The taught component of the MSc is delivered through lectures, seminars, tutorials, practical demonstrations and student-led group work.

    Each of the 30-credit modules is assessed using a formal examination (15 credits) and ongoing assessments during the module (15 credits), including essays, posters and oral presentations.


    The research project (Route A) is assessed from the written dissertation and research presentation examination.

    The CNELM (Route B) is assessed by means of a portfolio (30 credits) and a 6,000-word dissertation (30 credits) on an aspect of the sub-speciality chosen for the module.

    The portfolio will contain a reflective log, anonymised details of cases seen, and work-based assessments.

    Your career

    After successfully completing your course, graduates have had the opportunity to find work in a wide variety of areas and industries:

    • Medicine (if you are a MBChB Medicine graduate)
    • NHS Scientific Training Programme in Neurophysiology and Audiology
    • Clinical Trials Administrator or Coordinator within the NHS or health industry
    • Clinical Research Assistant
    • Clinical PhD research
    • Clinical Support worker within the NHS
    • Allied Healthcare Professional
    • Physician Associate postgraduate programmes
    • Various nursing roles

    Our graduates now work in many healthcare settings such as the Medical Research Network and residential care homes for a variety of ages, needs and backgrounds, as well as universities around the world, local councils and clinical research facilities.

    Entry requirements

    For Route A: You need at least a 2:1 undergraduate honours degree in a relevant science subject (eg neuroscience, psychology, biomedical science, medicine) or an MBChB degree. We also accept medical students who wish to intercalate their studies.

    For Route B: We require an MBChB degree, you will need to be an intercalating medic and you must be eligible for GMC registration.

    All students will require a DBS check and honorary contract with Sheffield Teaching Hospitals (arranged on arrival).

    We also consider a wide range of international qualifications:

    Entry requirements for international students

    Overall IELTS score of 6.5 with a minimum of 6.0 in each component, or equivalent.

    If you have any questions about entry requirements, please contact the department.


    You can apply for postgraduate study using our Postgraduate Online Application Form. It's a quick and easy process.

    Apply now


    Helen Hickson
    +44 114 222 2296

    Any supervisors and research areas listed are indicative and may change before the start of the course.

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