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How we will deliver your course in 2021: Cognitive and Clinical Neuroscience (postgraduate)

Programmes this information applies to: 

MSc Cognitive and Clinical Neuroscience 

1. Content of the course 

There are no planned changes to the advertised content and learning outcomes.

2. Length of the course 

There are no planned changes to the length of the course.

New students

There are no changes to the length of the Cognitive and Clinical Neuroscience MSc for 2021/22.

Returning students 

There are no changes to the length of the Cognitive and Clinical Neuroscience MSc for part-time students returning for year 2 of their Programme (2021/22).

3. How your course will be delivered 

New students 

Teaching and learning strategies in the Cognitive and Clinical Neuroscience MSc consist of theoretical lectures, seminars/discussions, tutorials and computer labs/practical sessions. Synchronous teaching sessions will be delivered using both interactive on-line ‘live’ sessions and in-person teaching delivered on campus. Synchronous sessions will be supported with high-quality educational materials, which will be made available online (asynchronous).

As the cohort is relatively small, a focus will be placed on on-campus, in-person teaching, but several sessions, spread-out over different modules, are planned as online sessions. On-campus sessions will either be broadcasted ‘live’, or all materials and recordings will be made available afterwards. Online synchronous sessions will either be live or use pre-recorded videos that will be made available prior to the online sessions.

In particular, the Term 1 modules PY5618 - Cognitive Psychopharmacology and Addiction, PY5619 - Cognitive Rehabilitation and Plasticity and PY5612: Historical and Contemporary issues in Psychology, as well as the Term 2 modules PY5616 - Cognitive and Clinical Neuroscience: Core Topics and PY5611 - Preparation for Research are planned to be taught pre-dominantly on-campus, in-person, with a smaller number of online sessions.

The Term 1 module PY5630 (Research Methods and Statistics for Psychology) involves the collection of original data and analysis using appropriate software (e.g., SPSS/JAMOVI, Excel). Thus, the focus will be on delivering these lab-based practical classes in person on campus. 

The Term 2 module PY5706 (Neuroscience Methods: Theory and Practice) consists of 10 x 1.5-hour theoretical lectures and 10 x 3-hour practical sessions/lab demos. The theoretical sessions will be a mix of online and on-campus sessions. All online sessions will be supplemented by asynchronous learning materials such as quizzes, additional reading, and various educational activities. All practical sessions will take place on-campus in various research labs and computer rooms.

NB. In the case that on-campus hours are limited (due to imposed restrictions), priority will be given to practical sessions that run in Term 1 and Term 2 (PY5630 - Research Methods and Statistics for Psychology and PY5706 - Neuroscience Methods: Theory and Practice) as these modules are more effectively taught on-campus compared to online. If the neuroscience practical sessions cannot take place on campus, the focus of PY5706 will shift from lab-based demonstrations to hands-on design and data analysis, which will take place online.

All modules are supported with a virtual teaching platform (Blackboard Learn) which provides access to various teaching materials including:

  • Weekly reading materials (i.e., journal articles, textbooks, newspaper articles etc).
  • A range of other activities to support learning including tutorials, quizzes, seminars, Q&As, discussion forums (or a combination of these).
  • Additional digital resources (e.g., TED talks, YouTube videos, web links etc.). 

For sessions that are taught online, the following holds:

  • Lecture materials will be made available to students in the form of short, recorded videos, which are either pre-recorded or recorded during a live or online lecture. In the latter case, lectures will be set-up in such a way to support such videos. The videos will be accompanied by lecture slides (where applicable) and will be released on a weekly basis. Videos will either be made available in advance, or recorded during a live lecture and made available shortly afterwards
  • For most modules, there will be set reading each week, as provided in the Talis Aspire reading list (e.g., journal articles, e-books etc.) and/or BBL.
  • For each Study Block/Modular Block there will be a variety of online activities designed to complement the didactic material and to put the learning into practice. The number and type of activities can differ per block, per week. These activities can take many forms: tutorials, quizzes, seminars, Q&As, discussion forums (or a combination of these). Breakout groups will be used where appropriate.

Assessments:

Coursework remains the same. Examinations will take place on-campus using Wiseflow software.

Tutoring and Pastoral Care:

All students will be assigned a Personal Tutor that will provide information to help students navigate university life. Personal Tutors will hold regular on-campus or virtual tutoring hours via Microsoft Teams. During these tutoring sessions, the Personal Tutor will be available for tutees who have questions or would like to discuss issues/concerns or seek pastoral care.

Feedback and Consultation Hours:

Academic staff teaching on the Programme will hold weekly on-campus or virtual (via MS Teams) Feedback and Consultation hours. During these weekly Feedback and Consultation hours, the member of staff will be available for students who have questions or would like feedback related to academic matters. Students who want to meet a member of staff outside of planned Feedback and Consultation hours can contact the member of staff to make an appointment. This appointment can take place online via Microsoft Teams or in-person.

Returning students 

The balance between contact hours and independent study, as set in the various Block Outlines, remains the same in 2021/22. Teaching and learning strategies in the Cognitive and Clinical Neuroscience MSc consist of theoretical lectures, seminars/discussions, tutorials and computer labs/practical sessions. Synchronous teaching sessions will be delivered using both interactive on-line ‘live’ sessions and in-person teaching delivered on campus. Synchronous sessions will be supported with high-quality educational materials, which will be made available online (asynchronous).

As the cohort is relatively small, a focus will be placed on on-campus, in-person teaching, but several sessions, spread-out over different modules, are planned as online sessions. On-campus sessions will either be broadcasted ‘live’, or all materials and recordings will be made available afterwards. Online synchronous sessions will either be live or use pre-recorded videos that will be made available prior to the online sessions.

In particular, the Term 1 modules PY5618 - Cognitive Psychopharmacology and Addiction, PY5619 - Cognitive Rehabilitation and Plasticity and PY5612: Historical and Contemporary issues in Psychology, as well as the Term 2 modules PY5611 - Preparation for Research are planned to be taught pre-dominantly on-campus, in-person, with a smaller number of online sessions.

The Term 2 module PY5706 (Neuroscience Methods: Theory and Practice) consists of 10 x 1.5-hour theoretical lectures and 10 x 3-hour practical sessions/lab demos. The theoretical sessions will be a mix of online and on-campus sessions. All online sessions will be supplemented by asynchronous learning materials such as quizzes, additional reading, and various educational activities. All practical sessions will take place on-campus in various research labs and computer rooms.

NB. In the case that on-campus hours are limited (due to imposed restrictions), priority will be given to practical sessions that run in Term 2 (PY5706 - Neuroscience Methods: Theory and Practice) as this module is more effectively taught on-campus compared to online. If the neuroscience practical sessions cannot take place on campus, focus of this module will shift from lab-based demonstrations to hands-on design and data analysis, which will take place online.

All modules are supported with a virtual teaching platform (Blackboard Learn) which provides access to various teaching materials including:

  • Weekly reading materials (i.e., journal articles, textbooks, newspaper articles etc).
  • A range of other activities to support learning including tutorials, quizzes, seminars, Q&As, discussion forums (or a combination of these).
  • Additional digital resources (e.g., TED talks, YouTube videos, web links etc.). 

  • For sessions that are taught online, the following holds:
  • Lecture materials will be made available to students in the form of short, recorded videos, which are either pre-recorded or recorded during a live or online lecture. In the latter case, lectures will be set-up in such a way to support such videos. The videos will be accompanied by lecture slides (where applicable) and will be released on a weekly basis. Videos will either be made available in advance, or recorded during a live lecture and made available shortly afterwards
  • For most modules, there will be set reading each week, as provided in the Talis Aspire reading list (e.g., journal articles, e-books etc.) and/or BBL.
  • For each Study Block/Modular Block there will be a variety of online activities designed to complement the didactic material and to put the learning into practice. The number and type of activities can differ per block, per week. These activities can take many forms: tutorials, quizzes, seminars, Q&As, discussion forums (or a combination of these). Breakout groups will be used where appropriate.

Assessments:

Coursework remains the same. Examinations will take place on-campus using Wiseflow software.

Tutoring and Pastoral Care:

All students will be assigned a Personal Tutor that will provide information to help students navigate university life. Personal Tutors will hold regular on-campus or virtual tutoring hours via Microsoft Teams. During these tutoring sessions, the Personal Tutor will be available for tutees who have questions or would like to discuss issues/concerns or seek pastoral care.

Feedback and Consultation Hours:

Academic staff teaching on the Programme will hold weekly on-campus or virtual (via MS Teams) Feedback and Consultation hours. During these weekly Feedback and Consultation hours, the member of staff will be available for students who have questions or would like feedback related to academic matters. Students who want to meet a member of staff outside of planned Feedback and Consultation hours can contact the member of staff to make an appointment. This appointment can take place online via Microsoft Teams or face-to-face (when it is safe to do so).

4. Cost of the course 

There are no changes to the cost of the course.

Access to a laptop or desktop PC is required for joining online activities, completing coursework and digital exams, and a minimum specification can be found herePlease note that a Windows or Mac laptop will be necessary for this course; Chromebooks are not suitable.  

If you have any concerns about accessing a suitable device, please complete and return this form to enquire about the University’s loan laptop scheme.

5. Award

There are no planned changes to the qualification that is being awarded.

6. Feedback and consultation

We provide set times where you can talk to your lecturers and module leaders about academic matters relating to your course. You can also use these opportunities to obtain and discuss feedback on an assessment. You can find these hours on Blackboard Learn and in your module booklets.  

You can book your slot by emailing your lecturer. We will be holding these virtually until it is safe to hold these appointments on campus.

7. Personal tutoring

Your personal tutor is responsible for monitoring and supporting your academic and personal development both in your transition to university and between years. It is someone you can discuss, in confidence, your academic progress with or any special requirements you may need. 

If you are a first year student, these sessions will be included in your timetable every other week. 

If you are a second year, final year, or postgraduate student you can request to have a session at a time that is convenient for you.  

You can attend our virtual ‘drop-in’ sessions which are advertised on Blackboard Learn, or request a session by emailing your personal tutor.

8. Departmental communications and events

You can keep up with subject and module updates through Blackboard Learn. We will also send important updates to your student email account, including a newsletter once a term, so please keep an eye on your emails. 

We host department assemblies where you will receive department updates and get to hear from lecturers and your peers. These take place at least once a term and you’ll receive an email invitation. 

Our programmes feature a range of opportunities including trips and visits, once it is safe to do so we will resume these.

9. Student-led academic representation

Student reps are elected to represent the views of their course, department or college to improve the academic experience at Brunel. They gather views and opinions from students on things such as lectures, exams, assessment and feedback and then take a collective view to the University and Union in order to develop the student experience at Brunel.

We welcome feedback from our student community on matters relating to your experience through your student representatives or through your programme leaders. 

Find out who your course rep is here. You’ll also receive an email from your programme leader who will confirm your contact.

10. Peer-to-peer opportunities

You can join our student societies, we have one for each subject area including Politics, History, Sociology, and Anthropology. You can join these societies through the Union of Brunel Students or contact your course rep to find out more. We have Facebook groups for these societies too.

Our department also has a Postgraduate Research society, if you would like to join this please contact your PGR Director.

You can join our social media groups to keep in touch with your peers and exchange knowledge.  Find out how to do this by contacting your course rep.

Contact us 

If you have any specific questions about the above information, please email: CHMLS-TPO-biosciences@brunel.ac.uk

 

Disclaimer: We have used our best endeavours to plan for the coming academic year and to ensure the information on this page is correct at the time of publication. The information provided here is intended for the general guidance of students studying the University’s degree programmes listed above in the academic year 2021/22. The University will deliver the course of study as described unless there are changes outside of our control related to COVID-19. In such circumstances, the University will adjust the delivery of the course accordingly, and use its best endeavours to ensure equivalence.

Date of publication: 16.07.21