Dr Bruno Silva


Subject Medicine
Course MSc Clinical Neuropsychiatry
Country Portugal
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Hello, I have just graduated with a bsc psychology degree and got a 2:1. I am going to be doing Masters from September. In the future i would like to apply for a Clinical psychology doctorate programme. I am stuck between two MSc programmes: an applied Clinical Psychology msc at the University of Bath and MSc in Clinical Neuropsychiatry programme at the University of Birmingham. I am aware that the Clinical Neuropsychiatry has a lot of Neuroscience background, and in case i wont get into the Clinical Psychology doctorate programme it will be helpful with that. However i am not sure if it will actually help with the Clinical Psychology doctorate. Will it matter which Msc i do for the doctorate. I would like Birmingham more since its closer, but i am just stuck on the decision.

Hello! Hmm, tough question. The MSc in Neuropsychiatry is a taught masters course, which means that it focuses on the development of skills that can have an immediate impact on your present or future professional practice. There is still a research component that is encouraged and can be further developed if you want to pursue a PhD afterwards, but not as much as in a research masters programme.

I’d say that if you’ve set your mind to pursue a PhD in Clinical Psychology, you’d be better off enrolling in a research masters course – for example, the Clinical Psychology MRes you mentioned.

Then again, the MSc in Neuropsychiatry may be for you if you like clinical neuroscience or are considering working with this client group in a clinical setting in the future.

Hi sir im doing bsc in neuroelectrophysiology so can i do msc in neuropyschiatry or is it only for pyschology students?

Hello! The course is open to anyone with a relevant degree (at 2:1 or equivalent) and experience of working with the client group. Working as a neuroelectrophysiologist, you’ll probably come across some patients with neuropsychiatric disorders, so this course may be a good fit for you 🙂 Please bear in mind that this is a clinically oriented course, so it will benefit you most if you expect to work directly with these patients in a clinical setting.

Hi Bruno. I am very keen on applying for the course but will likely be needing to travel each week across the country. In your experience, are other students managing this at all or are people predominately more locally based? Also it would be useful to know on what day of the week the course runs. Many thanks in advance

Hello! I was based on campus, so for me that wasn’t an issue. However, I did have a colleague who traveled from Cardiff to attend lectures, and another who was based in London. I’m pretty sure there were other students who were not based in Birmingham. For some modules you’ll have lectures once a week (mostly on Fridays), for others lectures are scheduled in 3-day blocks (Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays). My colleagues opted to stay in Birmingham for those 3-day modules and there’s a wide range of accommodation offerings in town. I hope you can make it work 🙂

Please can you tell me how to go about research project for the course? I will be doing it as part time whilst working full time in northwest deanery as speciality registrar in general adult psychiatry. Is there a supervisor contact list?

Hi! Thank you for your question.

 

As a part-time student, you will have 2 years to finish this course and complete your dissertation. You are free to choose what type of research you want to carry out. Most students opt for a systematic review of the literature on a relevant topic of their choice, but some students present original, primary research – naturally, this is more resource-intensive and may require a considerable amount of time to acquire the necessary approvals from ethics committees, gather the sample, perform measurements, etc.

 

Several members of the faculty will be available to tutor you on your dissertation project and this is usually arranged directly with the staff. If you already have an idea and want to get a head start, you should contact the Programme Administrator at clinicalneuro@contacts.bham.ac.uk. If not, you will probably develop an area of interest during the course and you will always have opportunities to present your ideias to the faculty and get some feedback.

Hi Bruno, I’m applying for the clinical neuropsychiatry MSc. Just wondering how you have found the course so far and what your next steps are? I’m not sure if you can help but I have prematurely sent my application with an incomplete personal statement and was wondering if I could send a second application?

Hello!  Thank you for your questions and I hope that my answers will be useful to you.

I’m a full-time student and as of right now I’m roughly midway through the course. This is a taught masters course, so the focus is on acquiring knowledge and skills that you can immediately deploy in your current or future practice – nonetheless, there’s ample opportunity for research development. In my particular case, my next steps will be: 1) use the skills I’m acquiring in this course to develop a Neuropsychiatry clinic at my hospital back in Lisbon and 2) pave the way to a future PhD in the field of clinical neuroscience.

I’m very happy with the course so far. The syllabus is broad ranging and the topics are covered in sufficient depth to provide you with useful skills that you can start using right away. The teachers are well-renowned in their fields of expertise, so you know you’re learning from the best. Also, the university offers you a wide range of learning tools and plenty of support, enabling you to further deepen your knowledge on the subjects that matter to you the most.

Regarding the problem with your personal statement, I advise you to contact the Admissions Office. Please consult this webpage.

How will your degree prepare you for what you want to do afterwards?

It will provide me with the essential knowledge needed to properly set up a Neuropsychiatry clinic and it will motivate me to dwell further into the field of clinical neuroscience.

Do you have anything lined up for once you have completed your degree?

I will return to Lisbon and use what I’ve learned to develop a specialised Neuropsychiatry clinic. I also plan to purse further studies in the near future, possibly a PhD in the field of clinical neuroscience.

What, for you, are the best things about the course?

This course is unique because it is very clinically oriented, while still covering essential topics on basic neuroscience. It provides a solid introduction to a very complex subject, making it accessible to students from many different backgrounds. When you are comfortable with the basic concepts, it constantly challenges you to go one step further. I feel that I will easily be able to apply what I have been learning here in my clinical practice, so it is extremely useful to health care professionals.

What has been the highlight of your time at Birmingham?

It is difficult to pinpoint the highlight when the whole experience is so consistently good. I am very excited about how much I have been learning and how I will be able to apply that knowledge to improve the quality of care to my patients.

Why did you choose the University of Birmingham?

I chose the University of Birmingham because it is a world-class centre for medical education and research. With close ties to local Mental Health departments and a faculty of experienced and renowned clinicians and researchers, it provides a uniquely stimulating and challenging learning environment. Also, it offers one of the most comprehensive and clinically oriented Neuropsychiatry training programs available anywhere in the world.

What was your motivation for undertaking postgraduate study?

I decided to pursue postgraduate studies because I felt that I lacked training in the specific subject of Clinical Neuropsychiatry, which is regrettably missing from the standard and postgraduate medical curriculum in Portugal. I developed an interest in this subject after completing my previous studies in Neuropsychology and felt the need to undertake a more focused training in the specific aspects of Neuropsychiatry in the everyday clinical setting.