How To Become a Neurologist

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How to Become a Neurologist

The discipline of Neurology concerns the study of diseases related to the human nervous system. It includes the brain, the spinal cord and the vast system of nerves and muscles. Neurologists are medical professionals who concentrate on the treatment of specific medical conditions related to complications in the working of the nervous system. Such conditions may include Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, Cerebral Palsy, coordination problems, trauma etc. Through this article, we will explore the process of how to become a Neurologist by understanding this field as well as key programs you can pursue in Neurology.

Understanding Neurology as a Discipline

Neurology innovatively combines methods of Medicine and Psychiatry. It aims to understand how lapses of the nervous system take place, what are the common conditions and how they can be treated. As a discipline, neurology has become a sought-after field for young medical graduates. Moreover, as it combines surgery as well thus offering plentiful exciting opportunities.

Step 1: Choose the Right PG Degree

Neurology is generally undertaken as a postgraduate specialisation. You can even pursue it at the doctorate level after completion of your PG degree in Medicine. In order to take the initial step towards how to become a Neurologist, you must get yourself enrolled in the right PG course and opt for Neurology as your specialization. Here are some courses offered abroad which you can opt to study-

MSc Clinical Neurology  MSc Neuropharmacology  MRes Neuropharmacology 
Graduate Certificate in Brain Disorder Management  MD Neurological Science MPhil Neurological Science 
MSc Advanced Professional Practice in Neurological Rehabilitation Associate of Arts in Neurodiagnostic Technology   Master of Neurological  Rehabilitation

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Eligibility Criteria

There are a few entry requisites you need to keep in mind while discovering the process of how to become a neurologist. As a common measure, Neurology courses require prospective students to already possess a bachelor’s degree in Medicine, apart from this, mentioned below are some general requisites you need to fulfil for seeking a Neurology degree abroad-

  • Bachelor’s degree in medicine like MBBS, etc from a recognised institution
  • A good score in English proficiency exams like IELTS, TOEFL, etc
  • Candidates must qualify entrance exams like MCAT, USMLE Exam etc as per the demand of the chosen university 
  • It is necessary for MBBS graduates to have a considerable amount of work experience  
  • LOR and SOP 

Step 2: Select the Best University 

The aforementioned courses are offered by many top universities in the world. Once you are aligned with the course of your choice, the next step in your how to become a Neurologist journey would be selecting the best university. While choosing an institution for your PG course in Neurology, you must thoroughly check all the details of the course that is offered by the university. Enlisted below are the prominent universities offering masters courses in Neurology-

Along with the above-listed universities, there are some other leading ones that do offer various courses in the same field. Here we have elucidated the particular programs offered by them so that you can get to know what they entail-

University College London, United Kingdom (UCL)

Programs: MSc (1 year), PgDip in Neurology (6 months)
At UCL, both a master’s degree and a post-graduate diploma course in Neurology is offered. As a central element for your question of how to become a Neurologist, the University College London requires applicants having at least an MBBS qualification as well as two years experience in clinical medicine with six months experience in neurology for students from India. It also offers the MSc in Neuroscience program.

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King’s College London

Program: MSc Clinical Neuropsychiatry (1-year full time)
An MSc Clinical Neuropsychiatry program at King’s College London is a highly advanced course focusing on Neuropsychiatry. It requires an undergraduate degree in scientific or clinical subjects such as Medicine, Psychology, etc and it recommends applicants to have a professional qualification.

University of Birmingham

Programs: MSc in Clinical Neuropsychiatry, PG Diploma in Clinical Neuropsychiatry, PG Certificate in Clinical Neuropsychiatry
This program offers a cross-disciplinary understanding of Neuropsychiatry-related concepts geared toward medical professionals. It requires a bachelor’s degree in a relevant field and professional experience of five years. English language requirements are also applicable. 

The University of Sheffield

Program: MSc in Clinical Neurology (1-year full time)
This course equips individuals with fundamental knowledge of Neurology as well as with practical training in this medical field. If you are wondering how to become a Neurologist at the University of Sheffield, it requires a bachelor’s degree in Biomedical or healthcare-related subjects. Relevant professional experience is also desirable.

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Step 3: Explore Career Options a Neurologist 

Once you are successfully secured a masters degree with Neurology as your major stream of study, you are all set to work as a full-time Neurologist. But Neurology is a highly specialised field and a medical license is required to start practising as a Neurologist or Neurosurgeon. You can earn your license, once you have completed the due amount of internship mandatory after the PG course. 

After earning your license which certifies that you are a learned Neurologist, you would have earned a milestone in your journey of how to become a Neurologist. Predominantly, graduates opt to get associated with a hospital and continue their practice. The option of setting up your own clinic and carrying out the practice independently is also open. On the other hand, if you are eager to know more about this exciting field of study, you can go on and pursue higher levels courses like MPhil, Doctor of Medicine, PhD, etc. and devote your time to clinical research

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Are you looking for a specific path following which you can become a Neurologist in India? What can be better than getting to know about it from a Neurosurgeon practising in AIIMS? Yes, you read it right! Check out this video for the same- 

Credits: Dr. Amir AIIMS

Salary of Neurologist in India

The average salary of a Neurologist in India is around INR 20-25 Lakh per annum.

Major Employment Areas

Here are the major employment areas for the upcoming Neurologist-

  • Government Hospitals
  • Armed Forces Medical Services
  • Railways Medical Facilities
  • Spine and Brain Hospitals
  • Private Hospitals
  • Medical Colleges
  • Private Practice
  • Specialist Hospitals

Top Recruiters for a Neurologist

Listed below are the top recruiters for Neurologist-

  • Fortis
  • Artemis
  • Max Hospital
  • Indian Armed Forces Medical Services
  • AIIMS
  • Apollo Hospitals  
  • Born & Bicknell, Inc
  • Onyx M.D.
  • Physician Recruiting
  • StaffPointe Recruiter
  • Kendall & Dav
  • Enterprise Medical Services (EMS)

Bonus: Neurology vs Neuroscience

You may have come across both of these terms during your research. As opposed to popular belief, Neuroscience and Neurology have subtle differences. Neurology is a sub-medical field that is undertaken at a certified medical school. If you are discovering the process of how to become a Neurologist, there are various degree programs that aim to equip students about the several treatments and diagnosis processes of neurological disorders. However, Neuroscience is inclined towards studying and researching patient disorders and behaviours. Neuroscientists may or may not be required to have a medical license. 

We hope this blog provided you with the answer to how to become a Neurologist. Understandably, making a career is a demanding task, be it in any field let alone Neurology. If you need a helping hand at any phase of applying to a program in Neurology, get in touch with our experts at Leverage Edu that can guide you throughout the application to assist you in beginning a rewarding career in Neurology. Hurry Up! Book an e-meeting now!

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