Cognitive Neuroscience (research) (MSc)
In the track Cognitive Neuroscience we focus on the investigation of the psychological, computational, and neuroscientific bases of human cognition by means of mind and brain research.
Alumni & PhD Candidate
'After finishing my bachelor’s in psychology in Leiden, I wasn’t sure whether I wanted to do something practical or scientific. I decided on the former and did the economical and consumer psychology master’s. It was great but I noticed that I wasn’t really heading in the direction where I wanted to go to'
'I decided to try and get into the cognitive neuroscience research master. In my final year, I started working at the department as an assistant, then I applied for a PhD position, and now I’m working there full-time focusing on prosocial development in adolescence!'
'I’m studying how the intestines influence brain function, and how we notice that in our behavior. We hope that with this we can find methods to cope with our complex and demanding surroundings even better. I like sharing my knowledge with a larger audience.'
"With that I hope to fight the prejudice that research is boring. One of the ways I do that, is by being a speaker in ‘Op zoek naar geluk’, a college tour through the Dutch theaters about happiness. Here I tell about how the scientist thinks about happiness, what’s measurable, and which chemical processes are involved.'
What does this master's programme entail?
The programme provides you with a rigorous training in the methodological and practical skills necessary to carry out scientific research on human behaviour. You gain hands-on experience with how psychological theory can contribute to the analysis and solution of practical problems and how the application of existing theory guides further theoretical development. You have ample opportunity to get in touch with and work with top researchers and excel in the area of your choice. You are also trained in a broad multi-layered, theoretically-driven approach to processes of self-regulation.
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Reasons to choose Cognitive Neuroscience at Leiden University
- A Research Master's degree will give you a great perspective on a future in research within the public or private sector.
- A Research Master's degree is the perfect way to prepare for a PhD programme.
- Because only the most talented and motivated students will be admitted to the Research Master's track, you will be guaranteed to be challenged during your studies.
- Because the Research Master is a two-year academic programme, you really have the possibility to delve deep into psychological theories about the subjects that interest you the most. This is also a great way to develop your research skills.
Cognitive Neuroscience: the right programme for you?
Our research and teaching are based on the conviction that cognitive processes can only be understood in the context of their function and purpose for action control. That is, for the adaptation of intentional, goal-directed actions to environmental demands.
The master’s specialisation Cognitive Neuroscience has a strong hands-on flavour with numerous practical course modules. You play a very active role in ongoing behavioural and neuroscientific research, partly within the interfaculty centre for interdisciplinary research on brain and cognition, the Leiden Institute for Brain and Cognition: LIBC
The research is carried out in a number of specially dedicated laboratories:
- electrophysiological and fMRI laboratories for the study of the neurophysiological basis of attention and action control
- an infant laboratory for the study of the development of voluntary action
- numerous experimental testing rooms for the study of young and old healthy subjects and patients
Your own laboratory
Master’s students of this specialisation are provided with their own laboratory including six testing rooms, dedicated work places for the development of psychological experiments, and a discussion room.