I hope to assist with the MSc debate. There will be 3 'flavours' of Masters programmes in the UK:
1) The oldest and most established ones are Southampton, Manchester and UCL and they were originally designed to attract scientist graduates to 'convert' to audiology and then do some post or pre registration training - this is run by the British Academey of Audiology and the training scheme was the 'Certificate in audiological competence' (CAC) but this has now been replaced by the 'Higher Training scheme' (HTS). Both schemes require you to be in post and on average takes 18 month to 24 months after completing the MSc. Once you have this qualification you have a further year of supervised experience and you can then apply for Clinical Scientist Registration which leads to being registered with the health professions council and you are then able to practice independantly. So all in all these MSc's are convertion courses at a high level. Some are funded places but there are clinicians that have self funded the MSc and then been employed by a department as pre-registered scientists and put through the CAC or HTS scheme
2) There are Masters at DeMontfort University, Aston, Bristol, QMU and (there maybe others) that are aimed at graduates who have audiology as their first degree or have an alternative audiology qualification and some experience in audiology. These are delivering content that is advanced and aimed at adding to undergraduate knowledge, so some background knowledge is assumed. It is possible after completing this masters to do the HTS scheme.
3) The final one is the new pathway that has evolved from the DoH 'Modernising Scientific Careers' agenda. This will have a 'Neurosensory' strand to it and will last for 3 years and is mixed in with work based experience - the actual academic part is delivered on a part time basis in the first and second year and the final year is dedicated to a reserach project (this is very similar to the model Demontfort university has for its MSc proghramme). Currently the number of places on this programme is finite - decided by the DoH and I think its less than 20. But this will be fully funded and that includes a salary etc. It should lead to being able to practice but it is not clear yet as to with registration body you have to be affiliated to (currently its the RCCP or Clinical Scientists). It is true to say that this is all very dynamic at present as it is the first year and there is a chang over in how this level of training is being funded. It is likely that only one university will be given the contract to deliver this course due to the relatively small numbers.
I have an interivew in UCL tomorrow for MSC Audiological Science and have a condiotnal offer from QMU for the same. I am not sure whether to accept the offer from QMU. Is it a good Univeristy? Obviously it cannot beat UCL. Also is audiology is good carrer in terms of clincal self satisfaction. I spoke to one Audiologist who was planning to change career as it did not give him much monetary gain and clinical satisfaction.
You won't have to pay the fees if you accept the offer as circumstances change. Will you self fund at Southampton if you don't get an SHA positition? I'm trying to find out information about arranging the clinical year after. Anyone done that before?
Just got some interesting information from Southampton saying that there are no longer any funded positions in the UK apart from the new STP positions. Has anyone heard from Manchester about the SHA positions as it looks like they are cancelled and the only option is to self-fund from 2011.
I wonder if many people will choose to self-fund as fees are going up to £9000 a year next year. Hmmmmm what to do?
Is there anyone here studying for MSc in Audiological Science at UCL? I found that you have to complete a one year placement in a UCL accredited hospital called CAC after the completion of the course to be registered with HPC? Apprently its quite competitive to get this placement and I want to enhance my chances of getting it. Could anyone please give me some advice as to what would be the best thing to do before commencing the course?