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what's the process of getting into a neuroscience or psychology course at kcl like?

so, it's lowkey my dream to be able to go to king's college- i want to study neuroscience and psychology, and hopefully that will lead me on to a great profession (i haven't exactly figured out what i want to do as a job yet, but i've done a LOT of research and i have a lot of branches im interested in). i used to want to go to ucl, but i didn't want to take chemistry for a-level to do neuroscience since it is a separate course to pysch, but in kcl i saw they have a course that is both neuroscience and psychology (as well as them separate too) so that was convenient.

i just wanted to ask: anyone that goes to kcl, what's it like there? what was the admissions process like? was there an interview? was your ucas personal statement a huge indicator of whether you got in, or was it combined with your a-level grades (if you did a-levels)?

it would be nice if any students taking neuroscience, psychology, or even both could answer, because even though i'm in year 11, i'm still really interested in the uni life and how it works out for different people. any answers for people taking any courses would be really amazing!
(edited 1 month ago)
Reply 1
second year KCL student here! 😊 so I'm technically on the Biomedical Science BSc but I'm specialising in Neuroscience (just allowed me to pick all my modules without having to take some of the compulsory ones I didn't want lol) and I believe the process is pretty much the same! certainly the just-neuroscience course runs the same as it's the same faculty and we have the same first year modules and most of my second/third year modules

firstly, the admissions process was pretty straightforward! no interviews or anything, and I'm not sure of the exact weighting but it definitely takes both your personal statement and your a-levels into account -- I don't think my personal statement was that great, but I had high predicted grades 😅

in terms of what kcl is like, I'm pretty happy here! It was my first choice uni when I applied because of the total flexibility of my course and idk just something about it I really liked. As a neuro student you'll be on guy's campus, or neuro and psych is on Denmark hill which I haven't been to yet but will next year, which are science campuses in pretty much central London (DH is a bit further away) and the atmosphere is pretty chill and friendly. Especially when it's good weather, maybe it's just me but it's just such a good vibe. There are also a ton of student societies for pretty much every interest that are either free or pretty cheap to be part of, and it's also (in my experience) very lgbtq+-friendly if that's something that applies 😊

On the neuroscience only course, you have what's called the Common Year One in first year, which is where all the courses that fall under the School of Bioscience (Biomed, neuro, pharmacology, anatomy and suchlike) do the same set of 8 modules that cover biochemistry, anatomy, genetics, pharmacology, physiology, cell biology and a smidge of neuroscience, and then the course gets neuro-specific in second and third year. whereas I've seen that the first year in the neuro and psych course is very psych-heavy, and then it's a mix of both -- a lot of the optional modules I've seen for that course are actually ones I've done or am doing! :biggrin:

In my experience, the workload isn't too bad on a week-by-week basis, as you generally only get set work for tutorials and workshops, which usually expect you to complete the questions beforehand. otherwise, it's pretty much just self-study so up to the individual. I'm not sure if they're different for the neuro+psych course but my lectures are usually an hour long, though you often get them back to back. How modules run in second year (at least amongst the Bioscience faculty) is that they each run one day of the week, and you'll have lectures in the morning and then practicals/tutorials/workshops after lunch. I won't lie, lecturers are a bit of a mixed bag - you get some great ones and also some terrible ones lol. But, either way on neuro or neuro/psych, you'll get to have Dr Clemens Kiecker who runs a lot of neuro modules and is widely regarded amongst like half my year group to be an absolute legend of a lecturer. A lot of the neuro lecturers are pretty good

The only real downside I've had at king's is that admin is not always the best --- my personal tutor, for instance, is supposed to contact me at least once a term and we've spoken like twice the whole time I've been here 😅🥲 we also had a ton of timetabling issues this year. on the whole, it's not too bad though

I hope this helps, and feel free to ask if you have any more questions!! I'll be happy to answer anything I can :smile:
Waterfront bar, King's College
King's College London
London
Reply 2
Original post by cyberhex
second year KCL student here! 😊 so I'm technically on the Biomedical Science BSc but I'm specialising in Neuroscience (just allowed me to pick all my modules without having to take some of the compulsory ones I didn't want lol) and I believe the process is pretty much the same! certainly the just-neuroscience course runs the same as it's the same faculty and we have the same first year modules and most of my second/third year modules
firstly, the admissions process was pretty straightforward! no interviews or anything, and I'm not sure of the exact weighting but it definitely takes both your personal statement and your a-levels into account -- I don't think my personal statement was that great, but I had high predicted grades 😅
in terms of what kcl is like, I'm pretty happy here! It was my first choice uni when I applied because of the total flexibility of my course and idk just something about it I really liked. As a neuro student you'll be on guy's campus, or neuro and psych is on Denmark hill which I haven't been to yet but will next year, which are science campuses in pretty much central London (DH is a bit further away) and the atmosphere is pretty chill and friendly. Especially when it's good weather, maybe it's just me but it's just such a good vibe. There are also a ton of student societies for pretty much every interest that are either free or pretty cheap to be part of, and it's also (in my experience) very lgbtq+-friendly if that's something that applies 😊
On the neuroscience only course, you have what's called the Common Year One in first year, which is where all the courses that fall under the School of Bioscience (Biomed, neuro, pharmacology, anatomy and suchlike) do the same set of 8 modules that cover biochemistry, anatomy, genetics, pharmacology, physiology, cell biology and a smidge of neuroscience, and then the course gets neuro-specific in second and third year. whereas I've seen that the first year in the neuro and psych course is very psych-heavy, and then it's a mix of both -- a lot of the optional modules I've seen for that course are actually ones I've done or am doing! :biggrin:
In my experience, the workload isn't too bad on a week-by-week basis, as you generally only get set work for tutorials and workshops, which usually expect you to complete the questions beforehand. otherwise, it's pretty much just self-study so up to the individual. I'm not sure if they're different for the neuro+psych course but my lectures are usually an hour long, though you often get them back to back. How modules run in second year (at least amongst the Bioscience faculty) is that they each run one day of the week, and you'll have lectures in the morning and then practicals/tutorials/workshops after lunch. I won't lie, lecturers are a bit of a mixed bag - you get some great ones and also some terrible ones lol. But, either way on neuro or neuro/psych, you'll get to have Dr Clemens Kiecker who runs a lot of neuro modules and is widely regarded amongst like half my year group to be an absolute legend of a lecturer. A lot of the neuro lecturers are pretty good
The only real downside I've had at king's is that admin is not always the best --- my personal tutor, for instance, is supposed to contact me at least once a term and we've spoken like twice the whole time I've been here 😅🥲 we also had a ton of timetabling issues this year. on the whole, it's not too bad though
I hope this helps, and feel free to ask if you have any more questions!! I'll be happy to answer anything I can :smile:

thank you so much for this!! this was so helpful honestly. it actually gives me such a good insight from your pov. atm i don't have any pressing questions on my mind, so i wish u the best in all your studies : ))
Original post by cyberhex
second year KCL student here! 😊 so I'm technically on the Biomedical Science BSc but I'm specialising in Neuroscience (just allowed me to pick all my modules without having to take some of the compulsory ones I didn't want lol) and I believe the process is pretty much the same! certainly the just-neuroscience course runs the same as it's the same faculty and we have the same first year modules and most of my second/third year modules
firstly, the admissions process was pretty straightforward! no interviews or anything, and I'm not sure of the exact weighting but it definitely takes both your personal statement and your a-levels into account -- I don't think my personal statement was that great, but I had high predicted grades 😅
in terms of what kcl is like, I'm pretty happy here! It was my first choice uni when I applied because of the total flexibility of my course and idk just something about it I really liked. As a neuro student you'll be on guy's campus, or neuro and psych is on Denmark hill which I haven't been to yet but will next year, which are science campuses in pretty much central London (DH is a bit further away) and the atmosphere is pretty chill and friendly. Especially when it's good weather, maybe it's just me but it's just such a good vibe. There are also a ton of student societies for pretty much every interest that are either free or pretty cheap to be part of, and it's also (in my experience) very lgbtq+-friendly if that's something that applies 😊
On the neuroscience only course, you have what's called the Common Year One in first year, which is where all the courses that fall under the School of Bioscience (Biomed, neuro, pharmacology, anatomy and suchlike) do the same set of 8 modules that cover biochemistry, anatomy, genetics, pharmacology, physiology, cell biology and a smidge of neuroscience, and then the course gets neuro-specific in second and third year. whereas I've seen that the first year in the neuro and psych course is very psych-heavy, and then it's a mix of both -- a lot of the optional modules I've seen for that course are actually ones I've done or am doing! :biggrin:
In my experience, the workload isn't too bad on a week-by-week basis, as you generally only get set work for tutorials and workshops, which usually expect you to complete the questions beforehand. otherwise, it's pretty much just self-study so up to the individual. I'm not sure if they're different for the neuro+psych course but my lectures are usually an hour long, though you often get them back to back. How modules run in second year (at least amongst the Bioscience faculty) is that they each run one day of the week, and you'll have lectures in the morning and then practicals/tutorials/workshops after lunch. I won't lie, lecturers are a bit of a mixed bag - you get some great ones and also some terrible ones lol. But, either way on neuro or neuro/psych, you'll get to have Dr Clemens Kiecker who runs a lot of neuro modules and is widely regarded amongst like half my year group to be an absolute legend of a lecturer. A lot of the neuro lecturers are pretty good
The only real downside I've had at king's is that admin is not always the best --- my personal tutor, for instance, is supposed to contact me at least once a term and we've spoken like twice the whole time I've been here 😅🥲 we also had a ton of timetabling issues this year. on the whole, it's not too bad though
I hope this helps, and feel free to ask if you have any more questions!! I'll be happy to answer anything I can :smile:


Hi,
What were your GCSEs like and what did you talk about in your personal statement when it comes to extracurriculars ect?
I’m also considering studying at KCL for neuroscience but I’m worried my grades aren’t good enough especially since it’s a top Russel group Uni.
Original post by user_098761234
Hi,
What were your GCSEs like and what did you talk about in your personal statement when it comes to extracurriculars ect?
I’m also considering studying at KCL for neuroscience but I’m worried my grades aren’t good enough especially since it’s a top Russel group Uni.

so I did 11 GCSEs, one of which I actually took (just Religious Studies lol but came out a 9) and the others which were 8s-9s but with the caveat that I was the year they cancelled them, so I don't think unis put that much stock in them last year (Oxford, for instance, outright told us they cared about nothing but our admission tests basically because they didn't trust our grades lol). My A-Level predicteds were 4A* (I didn't quite come out with that haha) and my EPQ which I'd attained at an A* (but again not sure how much they care about that)

My personal statement is a weird one, I think because I was going for Biomed but I didn't really know what to put it was all jumbled. I introduced it talking about this epigenetics book I'd read, then I talked about my interest in neuroscience which my extracurriculars for that were my EPQ (was semi-relevant, did it on an evaluation of the lobotomy) and then a few free online courses I'd done on educational neuroscience because they were the only ones I could find). I also had a paragraph on a few online medical summer schools I'd done (don't know why when I never wanted to do med but I think I just needed something to do over quarantine) and the UNIQ online summer school which I'd been in for some Biomed stuff. Outside of science, I talked about liking cyber security and doing a few courses for that, and then briefly mentioned the fact I read/write stories in my spare time. So I had nothing majorly tangible and because of the pandemic, everything I had was virtual -- I don't really have major extracurriculars that can show for things because what I actually spend my time doing is reading fanfiction, watching TV and slowly working on the novel I've been trying to write for the past 4 years 😅

It's hard to say how much unis took into account each part of my application because both sets of my exams were affected by Covid and I don't know how much they weigh them up against each other. But I think it's probably my personal statement that let me down a bit with it being all jumbled between different areas so really not having anything solid for my subject (combined with the fact I had no real proof of my grades) - I got into KCL and Uni of Leeds but was rejected from Oxford, UCL and Edinburgh so definitely don't worry too much about grades!! As long as you meet the requirements, I think they really place more value in seeing that you're passionate about the subject and would "be a benefit to the university" (both from an academic drive and extracurriculars, like maybe if you're into sports or music or something along those lines? you don't even have to have any actual desire to join the societies, but it's making them think that you will I guess)

hopefully this helps! and happy to answer any other questions :smile:

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