The Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology & Neuroscience

The Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology & Neuroscience works to transform care for people who are affected by mental health and neurological conditions, through world-class research, education and training, and to serve our communities locally and globally.

The Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology & Neuroscience (IoPPN), one of the nine faculties at King’s, is Europe’s largest centre for research and postgraduate education in psychiatry, psychology, basic and clinical neuroscience. We are internationally recognised as a world-leading centre for mental health research, producing more highly cited outputs (top 1% citations) in Psychiatry & Mental Health than any other centre internationally (Scopus, 2022).

The IoPPN has over 2,000 students, 1,000 staff (370 core funded) and a turnover of £125 million (£60 million research). Split across Denmark Hill and Guy’s Campus, the IoPPN has the unique advantage of being co-located with the world famous Maudsley Hospital, now part of the South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust. This successfully facilitates the seamless movement of researchers and clinicians between the two institutions and ensures high quality translational research, new understanding of the nervous system and novel approaches to treatment.

Together, King’s and the South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust have been responsible for many ground-breaking evidence-based developments in mental health and neuroscience, from basic science across the full translational range of activities. Breakthroughs include the contributions by Rosalind Franklin, Ray Gosling and Maurice Wilkins to understanding the structure of DNA, the treatment of shell shock, the Maudsley model for treating eating disorders, medication for migraines, CBT for psychosis, the role of nicotine in addiction, stem cell therapy to repair stroke damage, and many more. With child and adolescent mental health, such ground-breaking developments include identifying the genetic basis for autism, showing the severe and long-lasting impacts of early deprivation on neurodevelopment, identifying that most adult mental disorders begin in childhood or adolescence and developing the Maudsley Family Treatment model for eating disorders, now adopted in many countries.

Our impact over the past 100 years was recently honoured when Her Majesty the Queen awarded King’s the country’s first Regius Chair in Psychiatry in 2013, as part of her Diamond Jubilee celebrations.

The partnerships with NHS trusts, charities, industry, and national and international academics allows us to apply cross-disciplinary perspectives to prevention, treatment and novel research approaches. Working across the lifespan, as well as the mental and physical health interface, we influence policy, practice and public understanding of mental health and neuroscience.

In the recent Research Excellence Framework (REF) ratings (2021) our Psychology, Psychiatry and Neuroscience research (UoA4) was rated as 2nd in the country (power), and we achieved 100% 4* (top) ranking for research ‘environment’, providing an ideal setting for UKRPIF investment in this field. No other centre produced as many 4* impacts in this REF category. Our close relationship with service providers and work with communities affected by mental health problems and policy-makers such as NICE are critical to our success in translating scientific discoveries into real-world interventions and policy changes that improve health.

We are home to one of the world’s largest centres for postgraduate education and research in the areas of psychiatry, psychology and neuroscience, and we are ranked 1st in the world for the number of research papers in these areas in the top 10% (Scopus Data). Our world-class research-led learning experience attracts the very best students from around the world. Students have unparalleled opportunities in clinical training, placements and research as a consequence of the Institute’s long relationship with, and close proximity to, the Maudsley Hospital.

Our psychology, psychiatry and neuroscience courses offer training in a variety of specialist fields that have clear applications in mental health care and neuroscience (including careers in child and adolescent mental health, forensic or health psychology, clinical neuropsychiatry, neurology, neuroimaging, therapy, addictions work, mental health nursing, NHS service management). Our teaching activities have expanded from around 100 full-time- equivalent students to around 1,000 over the last two decades and we launched our first full undergraduate programme in psychology three years ago, which has been heavily oversubscribed. We currently offer 5 undergraduate courses and 26 postgraduate courses.

In January 2020 we launched a five-year strategic plan, whose main pillars are people and culture, research, education, international and impact and influence. Following the launch of the strategy we have transformed the existing Divisions within the Institute in to Schools and the Head of Schools together with their respective Heads of Department are undertaking an academic reshaping to ensure that our academic configuration is optimized to take advantage of funding opportunities for research that will materialise over the next five years.

For further information, please visit: kcl.ac.uk/ioppn

Structure

The Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology & Neuroscience is made up of three major academic Schools and 14 departments.

  1. Academic Psychiatry

  2. Neuroscience

  3. Mental Health & Psychological Systems Sciences



School of Academic Psychiatry

The School of Academic Psychiatry comprises six departments and includes more than 100 Principal Investigators, with research grants of £30-40 million. We have programs covering the whole spectrum of psychiatry from public policy to molecular genetics, from psychological treatments to brain imaging. Our work covers the life span, healthy adults and children as well as people with physical and mental health conditions:

  • 75% of mental health disorders start in childhood and the Department of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry is world-renowned for its basic and translational research in this field, including autism, ADHD, antisocial behaviour, intellectual disability, trauma, mood and eating disorders

  • The Addictions Department houses the National Addiction Centre which over the last 30 years has developed a body of research evidence that has informed the development of new treatment services for alcohol, smoking and drug problems in the UK

  • The Department of Psychosis Studies is one of the world’s largest groups conducting research on psychosis and in 2013 launched the world’s first post-graduate course on early intervention in psychosis

  • Research in the Department of Psychological Medicine focuses on affective disorders, eating disorders, the interface between psychiatry and medicine, psychiatry and occupation, psychiatry and the military, and psychiatry in different settings and is pioneering translational research into the integration of mental and physical healthcare

  • The Department of Forensic & Neurodevelopmental Sciences is one of Europe’s largest research groups focusing on the development of prosocial and antisocial behaviours across the lifespan and world leaders in brain imaging of infants, and in relating differences in brain structure and function to social and cognitive development; and

  • The Old Age Psychiatry Department carries out biological and clinical research that we believe will have important impact upon our understanding of dementia and other conditions that affect older people that affect older people and lead to the development of better treatments.

About King’s College London

Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology & Neuroscience

King’s College London offers an intellectually stimulating environment in which to work, where staff are dedicated to the advancement of knowledge and learning, in the service of society. We are a multi-faculty institution, providing high-quality teaching, research and innovation across the sciences, humanities, medicine, law, dentistry, and social sciences. As a member of the Russell Group, an association of leading UK research-intensive universities, we are committed to maintaining the highest standards in research and education. King’s is the largest centre for the education of healthcare professionals in Europe, and is home to five Medical Research Council Centres spread across its three teaching hospitals. For further information, please see kcl.ac.uk/about