PET-MR Principles and Applications (PgCert, PgProfDev - Online Learning)


Read more about this program on the school's website

Program Description

Programme description

Combined Positron Emission Tomography (PET) and Magnetic Resonance (MR) is an imaging technology which allows information on metabolic function, physiology, and anatomy to be collected in a single scanning session for diagnostic and research purposes (e.g. investigating dementias & cancers).

PET-MR scanners are increasingly being installed in clinical and research settings, but currently training in how to run and best use such facilities is limited, often requiring long periods of residency, away from work and personal commitments at home.

The University of Edinburgh is among the few UK centres with a PET-MR scanner and personnel with the expertise in how to run and use it. This programme harnesses our expertise in imaging technology, which will allow learners to train in this field via an online learning environment.

Online learning

Access world-class teaching at the University of Edinburgh while maintaining your local professional and personal commitments where you live.

Our online students not only have access to Edinburgh’s excellent resources but also become part of a supportive online community, bringing together students and tutors from around the world.

Students will be required to access materials, discussion boards, references, activities and other online learning tools, via the internet.

Programme structure

You may take up to 30 credits per semester.

Core courses:

  • Techniques and Physics (20 credits)
  • Applications in Disease (Research) (10 credits)
  • Practicalities and Safety (10 credits)
  • Hybrid radionuclide imaging – PET-MR (10 credits)


  • Hybrid radionuclide imaging – PET-CT (10 credits)
  • Student-led individually-created course (10 credits)

Postgraduate Professional Development

Postgraduate Professional Development (PPD) is aimed at working professionals who want to advance their knowledge through a postgraduate-level course(s), without the time or financial commitment of a full Masters, Postgraduate Diploma or Postgraduate Certificate.

You may take a maximum of 50 credits worth of courses over two years through our PPD scheme. These lead to a University of Edinburgh postgraduate award of academic credit. Alternatively, after one year of taking courses, you can choose to transfer your credits and continue on to study towards a higher award on a Masters, Postgraduate Diploma or Postgraduate Certificate programme.

Although PPD courses have various start dates throughout a year you may only start a Masters, Postgraduate Diploma or Postgraduate Certificate programme in the month of September. Any time spent studying PPD will be deducted from the amount of time you will have left to complete a Masters, Postgraduate Diploma or Postgraduate Certificate programme.

Learning outcomes

  1. Demonstrate subject-specific knowledge and understanding in both PET and MR individually, as well as in the unique issues which arise from combining the two techniques into a single imaging unit. Subject-specific knowledge will encompass a number of specialist areas such as technical and physical principles, Applications in disease, plus practicalities relating to health, regulations and safety.
  2. State and appropriately apply the practical health, regulation and safety issues pertaining to PET, MR and the combined techniques.
  3. Communicate the principles and applications of PET-MR imaging to other operators and users, e.g. radiographers, researchers and clinicians, to ensure optimum study design and use of the technology.
  4. Explain and justify the PET-MR patient pathway by integrating practical knowledge around patient management with constraints determined by the imaging technique
  5. Critically appraise current and recommend future applications of PET-MR, both in research and clinically.

Career opportunities

PET-MR is an emerging imaging technology with research and clinical applications. PET-MR scanners have started to be deployed in clinical and research imaging centres, which creates a demand for operators and users with relevant skills and knowledge.

We anticipate the programme will enhance the career options and earning a potential of PET-MR operators, particularly radiographers, for whom there currently is limited opportunity for training.

We also anticipate PET-MR users (research and clinical medics) will be better positioned to apply for research grants and other funding to allow their careers to evolve.

Entry requirements

A UK 2:1 honours degree, or its international equivalent, in fields such as Medicine, Veterinary Medicine, Radiology, Radiography, Radiotherapy, Nursing, Biological Sciences, Biomedical Sciences, Pharmacology, Chemistry, Physics, Engineering, Image Analysis, Image Processing, Computer Science, Informatics, Neurology, Neurosurgery, Psychiatry, Psychology, Stroke Medicine, Geriatrics / Medicine of the Elderly or Neurosciences.

We may also consider your application if you have a minimum of 3 years’ work experience in a related scientific area, e.g. in a hospital or research laboratories. Please contact the programme team to check before you apply.

English language requirements

All applicants must have one of the following qualifications as evidence of their English language ability:

  • an undergraduate or masters degree, that was taught and assessed in English in a majority English speaking country as defined by UK Visas and Immigration
  • IELTS Academic: total 6.5 (at least 6.0 in each module)
  • TOEFL-iBT: total 92 (at least 20 in each module)
  • PTE(A): total 61 (at least 56 in each of the "Communicative Skills" sections; the "Enabling Skills" sections are not considered)
  • CAE and CPE: total 176 (at least 169 in each module)
  • Trinity ISE: ISE II with distinctions in all four components

Degrees taught and assessed in English must be no more than three years old at the beginning of your degree programme. Language tests must be no more than two years old at the beginning of your degree programme.

Last updated Mar 2020

About the School

Together we form a unique grouping in the UK where vets, medics and biomedical scientists work together and study the common causes of disease that affect our populations.

Together we form a unique grouping in the UK where vets, medics and biomedical scientists work together and study the common causes of disease that affect our populations. Read less