Technological advances in Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) have led to a greater range of clinical applications, such that MRI is now a core imaging modality in contemporary healthcare. This course, aimed at radiographers working in MRI, integrates the physical principles of MRI with practical clinical applications.
This course aims to foster the personal and professional development of the postgraduate radiographer by encouraging students to develop core knowledge, cultivate a critically questioning approach to MR imaging practice, foster constructive change within the workplace, and direct high-quality MR service provision.
The MSc MRI programme is designed for radiographers who wish to provide high quality healthcare by deepening and broadening their knowledge and expertise in the field of Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI). Applicants should normally:
This MSc programme shares modules with the Graduate Diploma in MRI, building on knowledge and clinical practice skills gained, and developing a greater focus on advanced MR imaging technology and applications within both clinical and research arenas.
The MSc MRI programme will develop the expertise of radiographers working in the field of MRI, broadening their knowledge of routine and advanced MR applications, and developing communication skills and critical thinking.
Programme content builds on undergraduate study and existing clinical practice skills to enable radiographers to become experts in MR imaging. During the Technology of MRI modules, students will evaluate the physical principles underpinning MR image generation together with the factors influencing equipment and pulse sequence selection and manipulation within the clinical setting. Practice-based modules address the spectrum of routine and advanced applications of MRI in the central nervous, musculoskeletal and cardiovascular systems, together with applications in the abdomen and pelvis. This provides the knowledge-base for students to evaluate MR scanning protocols and resultant image appearances for diverse clinical indications, and to justify clinical decision-making.
Since this Masters programme confers clinical competence, there is an emphasis on the integration of theory and practice to enable students to develop practical MR scanning skills and manage MR service provision within the clinical department. During the course, students must undertake a minimum of 900 clinical hours to gain the requisite specialist clinical skills in MR scanning.
The programme encourages radiographers to apply a critically questioning approach to MR imaging practice and fosters both the development of decision-making and problem-solving skills and the advancement of research within the clinical practice environment.
Technology of MRI I
This module aims to enable students to develop knowledge and understanding of the underlying physical principles of Magnetic Resonance technology. Topics addressed include: magnetism, resonance and MR signal generation, MR system hardware, pulse sequence design, relaxation, MR image weighting and contrast, and an introduction to MR artefacts, scanning features and safety in the MR environment. This module is assessed by coursework and end-of-semester written examination.
Practice of MRI I
This module facilitates the integration of theory and practice in clinical MR imaging of the CNS, neck, and musculoskeletal system in pursuit of clinical competence. For these anatomical regions, students are encouraged to analyse issues relating to the typical clinical indications, selection and modification of MR scanning techniques and imaging protocols, together with normal and abnormal MR image appearances. This module also aims to cultivate higher level professional and reflective skills in the student, and is assessed by coursework and an end-of-semester MR image-based written examination.
Technology of MRI II
This module aims to enable students to demonstrate knowledge and understanding of the physical principles of the more complex MR imaging technologies. Topics addressed include: advanced MR pulse sequences and scanner functional options, MR image artefacts and avoidance strategies, flow phenomena & the principles of vascular MR imaging, MR equipment QA and MR facility design and associated safety considerations. Students will have the opportunity to develop their presentation skills as part of the module assessment strategy, which also involves an end-of-semester written examination.
Practice of MRI II
This module facilitates the integration of theory and practice in clinical MR imaging of the abdomen, pelvis and cardiovascular system in pursuit of clinical competence. Consideration is also given to the particular requirements for MR imaging of paediatric patients. For these anatomical regions and patient types, students are required to analyse issues relating to typical clinical indications, selection and modification of MR scanning techniques and imaging protocols, together with normal and abnormal MR image appearances. As part of the assessment strategy, students will have the opportunity to further develop their ability to source and analyse current evidence-based literature and to demonstrate clinical justification and decision-making skills through the end-of-semester MR image-based written examination.
Clinical Practice of MRI I and II
These two modules primarily involve student-directed learning within a clinical MR imaging department, with the aim of facilitating the integration of theoretical concepts and professional clinical practice in order to consolidate the learning process. Specifically, they provide an opportunity for students to become competent and demonstrate high-level clinical skills in the performance of MR examinations of the CNS, head & neck, musculoskeletal system, body and vascular system. They further aim to help students develop professionally in a manner that is largely autonomous. The assessment strategy for these modules involves a practical clinical assessment undertaken in the student’s MRI department and an MR image-based written examination.
Advanced MR Imaging
This module aims to enable students to develop knowledge and understanding of advanced neurological, cardiovascular, high field and other MR imaging techniques and how these contribute to disease assessment. For each of the above topics, there will be consideration of the underlying physical principles and method of image acquisition, including pulse sequences and scanning techniques, with review of the principal applications in disease assessment and normal and abnormal appearances. Students will also investigate the principles underpinning the development and performance of clinical audit within the MR imaging department, thereby fostering self-directed learning, problem-solving and applied research skills. Through the integration of theory and practice issues relative to these areas, students are encouraged to further enhance their professional competence in MR scanning. The module assessment strategy focuses on enhancing generic skills such as problem-solving, presentation skills, reflection and critical evaluation, and involves written coursework, a presentation and an end-of-semester MR image-based written examination.
Stepwise progression enables students who have successfully completed six core modules to exit after 12 months with a Graduate Diploma in MRI. Candidates who wish to complete the full Taught Masters will complete core modules 1 to 7 (90 credits) (16 months duration).
There are a limited number of additional places available on the Advanced MR Imaging module for candidates who have already gained a Graduate Diploma or equivalent qualification in MRI and who wish to further their learning to MSc level. Applications will be considered on an individual basis as candidates will have to submit supporting documentation to justify the award of credit exemptions for prior learning. Interested applicants are advised to contact the Programme Director for further information (details below).
The taught MSc MRI programme leads to a UCD Level 4 Masters award (equivalent to NQAI Level 9) and takes 16 months to complete. The programme encompasses a flexible modular course structure, with emphasis placed on integration of academic and clinical components in the pursuit of clinical competence. The programme is currently offered in September of each year.
Students benefit from a blended learning approach that integrates lecture attendance, class discussions, image appraisal tutorials, practical tasks, e-Learning activities and self-directed learning. These teaching and learning strategies are designed to encourage autonomous personal and professional development within a supportive framework.
Autumn Trimester: Sept-Dec 2023: (12 days)
Spring Trimester: Jan - April 2024: (11 days)
Summer Trimester: May - Aug 2024
Final Autumn Trimester: Sept-Dec 2024: (12 days)
Candidates holding a Graduate Diploma or equivalent in MRI who wish to pursue the award of MSc in MRI may, subject to approval by the Academic Programme Director and Graduate Taught Programmes Committee, apply for accreditation of prior learning for up to 60 of the 90 credits required for the award of MSc. Applications will be considered on an individual basis once candidates have satisfied the entry requirements and the University’s policy on accreditation of prior learning.
Candidates applying to undertake the Advanced MR Imaging module on this basis must:
International applicants should:
Important Application documents:
1. Clinical Hours Declaration Form: MRI Clinical Hours Declaration Form 1 (criteria for standard entry applicants) and MRI Clinical Hours Declaration Form 2 (criteria for applicants with existing postgraduate qualification in MRI).
To be submitted by all applicants to confirm they have organised clinical placement in an MRI department for the duration of the programme so that the requisite clinical hours can be achieved. The University will organise completion of this form for International applicants.
2. Pre-course Clinical Experience Declaration Form: Pre-course MRI Clinical Experience Form.
To be submitted by all applicants, in advance of the course start date, to confirm that the minimum pre-course experience in MRI has been gained (4 months re standard entry applicants and 8 months, exclusive of internship placement(s), re international applicants) and outlining the scope of this experience.
3. Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) Application Form - Portfolio of Evidence: RPL Application Form
To be submitted only by those applicants who have previously undertaken postgraduate studies in Magnetic Resonance Imaging either at UCD or at another educational institution and who now wish to upgrade their qualification to an MSc. Applicants are advised to contact the Academic Programme Director to confirm their eligibility for RPL prior to submitting the application form.
4. Diagnostic Imaging Reference Form to be completed by all applicants
To Apply Online (all applicants):
Application process for entry to the Advanced MR Imaging Module only:
Application deadline: 18th August 2023
Academic Programme Director
|Dr. Allison Mc Gee
School of Medicine
Health Sciences Centre
T: + 353 1 716 6534
|Diagnostic Imaging Programme Office
Health Sciences Centre
T: + 353 1 716 6545
F: + 353 1 716 6547