Medical Imaging MSc

Our programme will train you up for a career in the exciting, multidisciplinary field of medical imaging, and provide you with a judicious mix of theoretical and applied understanding.

Why Surrey?

In addition to our mix of lectures, laboratories, clinical demonstrations and hospital visits, our MSc will develop you as a professional, enhancing your ability to take on new challenges with confidence. Our graduates often say, "I can do things now that I did not think I could do, before the MSc!"

Programme overview

The term ‘medical imaging’ may invoke images of brain slices acquired from modern scanners. However, the breadth of this subject is far wider. Applications include the creation of 3D graphical models for facial reconstruction from scan data, the visualisation of complex vascular (blood vessel) structures to assist keyhole surgical procedures, techniques for creating patient-specific 3D modelling of human organ shapes and image-based methods designed to detect various pathologies and disease states in humans.

Medical imaging is a rapidly-growing discipline within the healthcare sector, involving clinicians, physicists, computer scientists and those in IT industries. This is fuelled by the rapid advancement of 3D medical imaging systems over the last few decades, matched by an exponential rise in computing power, which has paved the way for new methods of acquisition, reconstruction, processing and display of digital medical image data with unprecedented speed, resolution and contrast: a trend which can only continue.

Why not read about past and present student experiences of our electronic engineering programmes, including Christopher Lord, Christos Merkouris and Prashant Butani?

Module overview

In common with many MSc programmes, Medical Imaging is taught over twelve months and split over two semesters. A dissertation project is carried out over the summer (project) period and is concluded at the end of the academic year.

Module descriptions (all compulsory)

Image Processing and Vision

This module covers an introduction to methods of image enhancement and quantitative image registration, as well as conventional topics such as image filtering and transformation and the ability to implement these concepts in software.

Radiation Physics

This module covers the fundamental processes involved in forming images using ionising radiation. Topics include nuclear structure, radiation interaction and an introduction to ionising radiation detection.

Professional Skills for Clinical Science and Engineering

This module provides context for the programme material in terms of medical imaging within the NHS, health and safety issues, the particular issues associated with undertaking clinical medical imaging research and the associated legislative framework. This includes workshops on ethics and intellectual property, student-led seminars and visits to local hospital departments. There is also a laboratory-based component to this module where you will undertake a number of radiation physics experiments.

Introduction to Biology and Radiation Biology
Computer Vision and Pattern Recognition

This module complements material covered in the Image Processing and Vision module. The focus of the Computer Vision and Pattern Recognition module is to deliver a hands-on working knowledge of vision algorithms and techniques, and provide an understanding of the mathematics underpinning them. Consequently a series of compulsory weekly labs accompanies this module. Topics covered include image processing, pattern classification, features and matching, shape representation and tracking.

Artificial Intelligence and AI Programming

This module introduces you to some of the basic ideas and concepts which underlie the development of artificial or machine intelligence being increasingly used in expert medical systems. Topics covered include agent-based search methods, logic, probabilistic reasoning, artificial neural networks and AI programming.

Diagnostic Applications of Ionising Radiation
Non-Ionising Radiation Imaging

These two modules prepare you for the medical imaging and instrumentation aspects of real imaging environments, ranging from ultrasound and planar X-ray imaging to the modern tomographic imaging modalities (CT, MRI, PET and SPECT). These modules describe how images are acquired, reconstructed and processed, and exemplar applications are discussed. Formal lectures for these two modules are given by a variety of experts and clinical practitioners working in the relevant field, alongside visits and laboratory classes held at leading clinical institutes close to the main campus at Surrey.

MSc Project

The MSc project provides an opportunity for you to apply material learnt during the previous two semesters and to develop a detailed knowledge of a particular area. Project work typically comprises some simulation or experimental work, often coupled with a programming component.

Projects are selected during the second semester from a broad list and undertaken between June and August, usually in collaboration with a clinical or industrial partner, and usually within the South East region. Projects may be based at the partner institute or at the university, but always require some travel to the partner institute for project meetings and data acquisition.

You will usually meet with your supervisor for a project meeting either every week or every fortnight. There is a mid-term assessment based at the university where you will orally present your work to your peers and an assessment panel. This provides you with feedback on your progress and some suggestions for your on-going development.

Final assessment of the projects is by the submission of a dissertation report and through a viva voce examination held in early September.

Recent project titles include:

  • Mammography image scoring tool for quantitative image quality assessment. Collaborator: National Coordinating Centre for the Physics of Mammography
  • Using the NCAT Phantom for motion correction in SPECT/CT. Collaborator: Royal Surrey County Hospital
  • Dynamic contrast-enhanced MRI for assessment of renal function in paediatrics. Collaborator: Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children
  • Partial volume correction in PET. Collaborator: Royal Marsden Hospital/Institute of Cancer Research
  • A study of non-linear effects in ultrasound transducers. Collaborator: National Physical Laboratory
  • Motion correction in X-ray CT. Collaborator: University College Hospital, London

Teaching and assessment

Taught Masters programmes in the Department of Electronic Engineering utilise our research-active staff, in conjunction with state-of-the-art facilities. We provide a range of learning experiences – lectures, tutorials, directed study, practical laboratories and project work – that prepare graduates for their professional life.

Lectures, visits and dissertation projects are provided in association with a large number of expert clinical and industrial partners, including the Royal Marsden Hospital, GE Healthcare and the Royal Surrey County Hospital.

Formal examinations take place in January/February and June. The pass mark is set at 50 per cent for each module, representing a combination of the formal examination and any associated coursework or lab marks. An overall average (aggregated over all of the assessed modules) in excess of 70 per cent achieves a Pass with Distinction.

Following the spring examinations, you will concentrate on your formal dissertation project. This may be based at the university in collaboration with a clinical or industrial partner, or may be based at a hospital or industrial site, usually within the UK.

Finally, your dissertation project will be assessed at a viva voce examination in late August/early September.

Facilities, equipment and support

To support your learning, we hold regular MSc group meetings where any aspect of the programme, technical or non-technical, can be discussed in an informal atmosphere. This allows you to raise any problems that you would like to have addressed and encourages peer-based learning and general group discussion.

We provide computing support with any specialised software required during the programme, for example, Matlab.

The Department’s student common room is also covered by the university’s open-access wireless network, which makes it a very popular location for individual and group work using laptops and mobile devices. There is also a Faculty quiet room for individual study.

We pride ourselves on the many opportunities that we provide to visit collaborating hospitals. These enable you to see first-hand demonstrations of medical imaging facilities and to benefit from lectures by professional practitioners.

To support material presented during the programme, you will also undertake a selection of ultrasound and radiation detection experiments, hosted by our sister MSc programme in Medical Physics.

Professional recognition

The Institution of Engineering and Technology

Our full-time and part-time programmes are accredited by the Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET), and are countable under the continuing professional development (CPD) scheme.  The MSc is also accredited by the Institute of Physics and Engineering in Medicine (IPEM) and as such can be used in partial fulfilment of the requirements for gaining Chartered Engineer (CEng) status.

Related programmes

Postgraduate (Taught)

Professional development

Related departments/schools

Related research areas

Programme leader

Dr Kevin Wells

Find out more

General enquiries:

+44 (0)1483 681 681

Admissions enquiries:


Programme facts

Type of programme:


Programme length:

  • Full-time: 12 months
  • Part-time: 60 months

Start date:

Sep 2016

Entry Requirements

An honours degree in electronic engineering, mathematics, computing or physical sciences. Our minimum entry level is a 2.2 from a good UK university, or overseas equivalent. Relevant industrial experience will also be considered.

View entry requirements by country

English language requirements

We offer intensive English language pre-sessional courses, designed to take you to the level of English ability and skill required for your studies here.


Study mode Start date UK/EU fees Overseas fees
Full-time Sep 2016 £8,000 £18,000
Part-time Sep 2016 £900* £2,000*

Please note these fees are for the academic year 2016/2017 only. Annual fees will rise by four per cent (rounded up to the nearest £100) for each year of study.

A complete list of all fees for our Masters Programmes


Discounts for Surrey graduates

Thinking of continuing your education at Surrey? As an alumnus of Surrey you may be eligible for a ten per cent discount on our taught Masters programme fees. Learn more.

For more details

GREAT Surrey Scholarships India

For for all postgraduate taught courses starting in February 2017 within the Faculty of Engineering and Physical Sciences, the University is offering graduates from India the opportunity to apply for one of three scholarships worth £5,000 through the GREAT Scholarships - India programme. 

For more details

Admissions Information

Our Admissions Policy provides the basis for admissions practice across the University and gives a framework for how we encourage, consider applications and admit students.

Further information for applicants

Postgraduate Study Advice

Steps to Postgraduate Study is an official, independent guide for anyone considering a taught postgraduate course. The guide is produced by the Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE), the Higher Education Funding Council for Wales, the Scottish Funding Council and the Department for Employment and Learning, Northern Ireland.

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Modules listed are indicative, reflecting the information available at the time of publication. Please note that not all modules described are compulsory and may be subject to teaching availability and/or student demand.

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