MRes Vision Research - University College London

Programme title:
MRes in Vision Research
Final award (BSc, MA etc):
(where stopping off points exist they should be
detailed here and defined later in the document)
UCAS code:
(where applicable)
Cohort(s) to which this programme
specification is applicable:
From 2014/2015 onwards
(e.g. from 2015 intake onwards)
Awarding institution/body:
University College London
Teaching institution:
University College London
Faculty of Brain Sciences
Parent Department:
UCL Institute of Ophthalmology
(the department responsible for the administration of
the programme)
Departmental web page address:
(if applicable)
Method of study:
Criteria for admission to the
Length of the programme:
A UK Bachelor’s degree in either medical, biomedical, biological or
life sciences awarded with a first or upper second class Honours or
an equivalent qualification of a corresponding standard from an
international institution of university rank. Applicants with science
degrees or appropriate professional qualifications and/or work
experience will also be considered on an individual basis.
Overseas students will have to provide evidence of their proficiency
of the English language (an International English Language Testing
System, IELTS qualification) or a recognised equivalent. The Faculty
of Brain Sciences requires an overall grade of 6.5 with a minimum of
6.0 in each of the subtests.
1 year
(please note any periods spent away from UCL, such
as study abroad or placements in industry)
Level on Framework for Higher
Education Qualifications (FHEQ)
(see Guidance notes)
Relevant subject benchmark statement
(see Guidance notes)
MSc – Level 7
Brief outline of the structure of the
(see guidance notes)
Board of Examiners:
Professional body accreditation
(if applicable):
The MRes in Vision Research is a programme of study worth 180
UCL credit points. Two taught modules, worth 15 credits each, will
focus on key transferrable personal and professional skills centred on
research excellence. The first of these modules, Research in
Practice, will teach generic transferrable research skills related to
research statistics, the regulatory and ethical aspects of research,
research governance, and the critical appraisal and interpretation of
research. The assessment of this module will be an unseen written
examination. The second of these modules, Developing Research,
will deal with the practical aspects of developing and communicating
research in the context of professional career progression in research
and academia. The module will include aspects of practical written
and oral communication, career pathways, research enterprise and
entrepreneurship. This module is designed to align with the Research
Project, and the assessment will include a written task (abstract) and
an oral task (project presentation) based on the Research Project.
The programme will include two core teaching modules worth 15
credits each. Students will be able to choose any two modules from
the existing MSc Biology of Vision. The objective is to provide
students with the core theoretical knowledge required to understand
the biology of the visual system. The Research Project (120 credits)
is the major component of the MRes in Vision Research. Supervision
of the project will be undertaken by a primary supervisor based at the
Institute of Ophthalmology and a secondary supervisor based at the
Institute or within the Faculty of Brain Sciences. Assessment of the
Research Project will be a research dissertation of the required word
length and an oral presentation.
Name of Board of Examiners:
The MRes in Vision Research will share the MSc Biology of Vision
Board of Examiners.
Date of next scheduled
accreditation visit:
The programme provides opportunities for students to develop and demonstrate knowledge and understanding,
qualities, skills and other attributes in the following areas:
A: Knowledge and understanding
Knowledge and understanding of:
The fundamental biology, physiology and
function of the ocular system.
Teaching/learning methods and strategies:
Lectures, tutorials, practicals, journal clubs, workshops,
problem-based tasks.
Statistical research methods.
Ethical and regulatory aspects of
Research governance.
Research communication.
Career pathways in research.
Enterprise and entrepreneurship in
Unseen written examination, essays, oral presentations.
B: Skills and other attributes
Intellectual (thinking) skills:
Critically appraise and interpret research.
Evaluate advanced research
methodologies as they apply to an
independent empirical research project.
Teaching/learning methods and strategies:
Lectures, tutorials, practicals, journal clubs, workshops,
problem-based tasks, independent empirical research
Evaluate current research and advanced
scholarship in ocular science.
Develop and propose an experimental
hypothesis, design experiments and
interpret findings with critical insight and
appropriate depth of understanding.
Manage the planning and delivery of a
unseen written examination, essays, oral presentations,
practicals, research dissertation.
C: Skills and other attributes
Practical skills (able to):
Communicate research effectively
through written and oral means.
Use a range of software packages to
effectively and professionally
communicate science through verbal,
written and visual means.
Teaching/learning methods and strategies:
Supervised practical experimentation; computational
methods in statistics; computational literacy in tools used
for accessing information resources; computational
literacy in programmes used for the interpretation,
preparation and presentation of research data.
Design and implement an experimental
plan for a research project.
Conduct laboratory-based experiments.
Access and utilize appropriate resources
in order to effectively find and manage
information and reference material.
Manage and analyse data, including
statistical data, and prepare data for
Essays, oral presentations, figure and poster design,
primary data presentation, research project abstract and
protocol, research dissertation
D: Skills and other attributes
Transferable skills (able to):
Engage and communicate effectively with
others to disseminate knowledge.
Teaching/learning methods and strategies:
Lectures, seminars, independent study, journal clubs,
practical demonstrations, workshops, computational
work, supervised empirical research project.
Demonstrate self-direction, originality and
the capacity for critical independent
thought in planning and implementing
Demonstrate independent problem
solving capability.
Manage projects independently.
Collaborate effectively with team
members to further research goals.
Unseen written examinations, essays, oral
presentations, problem-based tasks, research
The following reference points were used in designing the programme:
 the Framework for Higher Education Qualifications:
 the relevant Subject Benchmark Statements:
 the programme specifications for UCL degree programmes in relevant subjects (where applicable);
 UCL teaching and learning policies;
 staff research.
Please note: This specification provides a concise summary of the main features of the programme and the
learning outcomes that a typical student might reasonably be expected to achieve and demonstrate if he/she takes
full advantage of the learning opportunities that are provided. More detailed information on the learning outcomes,
content and teaching, learning and assessment methods of each course unit/module can be found in the
departmental course handbook. The accuracy of the information contained in this document is reviewed annually
by UCL and may be checked by the Quality Assurance Agency.
Programme Organiser(s)
Dr Jacqueline van der Spuy
Professor Alison Hardcastle
Date of Production:
Date of Review:
October 2014
Date approved by Head of
October 2014
Date approved by Chair of
Departmental Teaching
Date approved by Faculty
Teaching Committee
October 2014
November 2014
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