Our current students' guide on how to become a neurosurgeon


What special skills and personality traits are necessary for a budding neurosurgeon?

Neurosurgery is a highly competitive discipline, with many highly-qualified junior doctors applying for training spaces. It is difficult to continue one’s clinical practice with a full time job, and be able to undertake a part time diploma in neurosurgery. It is therefore important to us, who have written these modules, that we have chosen good, realistic case studies that students can see are directly applicable to patients that they will see in their future career. By working with world class healthcare professionals we build our courses to the highest standard.

Our courses provide active learning opportunities through scenario based discussion forums and we use these case studies to build in a spiral manner throughout the whole course. Skills are covered from the most basic – such as anatomy and interpretation of scans, to complex – such as treatment decision-making and rationale for surgical adjuncts. Underlying all this is a base of improving critical appraisal of evidence, understanding current guidelines, and learning reflective practice, all of which are essential for the modern-day doctor.

Our current students' step by step guide on how to become a successful neurosurgeon:

Hear from our best performing student on the MSc neurosurgery course, Thevandiran Kanavathy. He gives us a thorough breakdown on the steps to becoming a neurosurgeon and how to achieve academic success on our neurosurgery courses:

What are the qualities of a good surgeon?

  • Empathy/Compassion: we care for the most ill and functionally disabled patients in the hospital
  • Good communicator/listener: patients and their families are often left with more questions than answers sometimes and may need to vent at their prognosis)
  • Knowledge-seeking: neurosurgery demands a lot out of its surgeons due to the complexity and nuances of cases; to be up to date and to be able to sieve through clinical history/exam to arrive at the correct diagnosis
  • Flexibility: ability to deal with dynamic changes with patient care, technology and adapt accordingly

What personality traits are needed to be a neurosurgeon?

  • Good emotional and physical strength
  • Ability to remain calm under pressure
  • Confidence
  • Good visuo-spatial awareness
  • Ability to manage people in a team
  • Inquisitiveness

What skills do you need to be a brain surgeon?

  • Dexterity
  • Good manual coordination
  • Great communication skills
  • Explaining difficult concepts simply and effectively
  • Managing personal stress effectively

“In addition, reading up on other students' work helps to ground not only the knowledge but also one’s own standing with respect to the rest of the group. This spurs the individual to work harder and more effectively to upgrade oneself; and in so doing, enriching other students as well with the quality of one’s work within the module. This creates an active atmosphere where dynamic discussions can be held and candid opinions relating to how these new insights shape one’s clinical practice, shared.”

Our neurosurgery online courses can help students establish a broad knowledge in anatomy, neurology, physiology, critical appraisal and research skills via the scope and breadth of reading required to do around the weekly topics in the modules. Neurosurgery is a competitive and technically demanding surgical specialty. You will certainly need a special blend of skills and personal qualities which include the above mentioned.

Do you possess such skills? And do you aim to gain specialist qualifications to progress your career in this field? If yes, then view our Postgraduate Diploma Neurosurgery and MSc Neurosurgery online course and create an application today!

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