Pharmacology and Drug Discovery MSc 2021/22 entry

Course code:

HLST178
HLST179 (with Professional Experience)

Study options:

1 year full-time
18-20 months (with professional experience)

How to Apply
Location:

Coventry University

Starting:

September 2021

 

Fees:

£10,400 | £15,450 (with professional experience)

Find out more

Faculty:

Get in touch

Recruitment and Admissions Office

+44(0)24 7765 4321
Request information

Course code:

HLST178
HLST179 (with Professional Experience)

Study options:

1 year full-time
18-20 months (with professional experience)

How to Apply
Location:

Coventry University

Starting:

September 2021

 

Fees:

£16,600 | £18,950 (with professional experience)

Find out more

Faculty:

Get in touch

Recruitment and Admissions Office

+44(0)24 7765 4321
Request information

Course code:

HLST178
HLST179 (with Professional Experience)

Study options:

1 year full-time
18-20 months (with professional experience)

Location:

Coventry University

Starting:

September 2021

 

Fees:

£16,600 | £18,950 (with professional experience)

Find out more

Faculty:

Get in touch

Recruitment and Admissions Office

+44(0)24 7765 4321
Request information

Overview

This master’s course aims to provide the training and development necessary to meet the demand for highly skilled scientists within the expanding and global bioscience sector. It can lead to a wide range of careers including academic, commercial, industrial and healthcare applications of pharmacology.

The course has been designed to respond to the increasing demand for suitably trained professional pharmacologists, essential to speed up the critical task of translating basic laboratory medical research into commercially-ready medical biotechnology and drugs that can be used to diagnose and treat patients. As well as relevant biotechnical innovations associated with pharmacology and drug discovery, classical clinical trial design and health-outcomes research, the course also encompasses an emerging area of science that is known as ‘Translational Medicine’.

Translational medicine requires a new breed of pharmacologist who can apply basic science knowledge and skills to experimental study design, management and data analysis, and who understands the legislation and other regulatory procedures surrounding disease treatment. Our course is designed to provide such specialists by applying basic and clinical science to topics including diagnosis, understanding and treatment of disease, supported by our excellent staff, research expertise and laboratory facilities.

Our multi-million pound, state-of-the-art Alison Gingell Building features a suite of analytical and biological laboratories where you can gain hands-on experience in cutting-edge industry techniques.

The MSc with Professional Experience also provides you with the opportunity to undertake a six month professional experience either on or off campus*.

Professional experience opportunities (whether within an external company or within the university) are subject to a competitive application and selection process. Such experiences may be paid or unpaid, and this will depend on what is being offered and agreed with the host organisation or university.

Students who are not successful in securing professional work experience outside the university will have the opportunity to undertake campus-based professional experience*, which will deliver similar learning outcomes through supervised projects and activities designed to offer students the opportunity to integrate theory with an understanding of professional practice. Please note that fees for students on the Professional Experience route are higher than the standard fees payable by students on the MSc course without professional experience.

*Please note that we are unable to guarantee any placement or study abroad opportunities and that any such opportunities referred to on this webpage may be subject to additional costs (e.g. travel, visas and accommodation etc.), competitive application, availability and/or meeting any applicable visa requirements. To ensure that you fully understand the requirements in this regard, please contact the International Office for further details if you are an EU or International student.

Why Coventry University?

An award-winning university, we are committed to providing our students with the best possible experience. We continue to invest in both our facilities and our innovative approach to education. Our students benefit from industry-relevant teaching, and resources and support designed to help them succeed. These range from our modern library and computing facilities to dedicated careers advice and our impressive Students’ Union activities.

COVID-19

The University may deliver certain contact hours and assessments via emerging online technologies and methods across all courses. In response to the Covid-19 pandemic, we are prepared for courses due to start in or after the 2020/2021 academic year to be delivered in a variety of forms. The form of delivery will be determined in accordance with Government and Public Health guidance. Whether on campus or online, our key priority is staff and student safety.

Due to the ongoing restrictions relating to Covid-19, some facilities (including some teaching and learning spaces) and some non-academic offerings (particularly in relation to international experiences), may vary from those advertised and may have reduced availability or restrictions on their use.

Global ready

An international outlook, with global opportunities

Employability

Career-ready graduates, with the skills to succeed

Student experience

All the support you need, in a top student city
Super Lab

SuperLab

The Alison Gingell building contains a state-of-the-art SuperLab, capable of holding up to 270 people at once. The lab's facilities include equipment for microscopy, DNA analysis and forensic testing.

Hospital Wards

Hospital Wards

We have two fully-equipped mock hospital wards, each containing 4 beds. The wards are built to NHS standards and contain moveable beds, first aid equipment and patient monitoring tools.

Strength and Conditioning suite

Strength and Conditioning Suite

Our multi-purpose suite is equipped with multiple Olympic lifting platforms, a 20m gait analysis track, an anti-gravity treadmill and even a 3D motion capture system!

Course information

This master’s course is designed to expand your knowledge of the pharmacological, molecular, biochemical, cell biological and genetic techniques underpinning modern pharmacology and drug discovery and how they can be used to solve real world problems and benefit society.

The programme is composed of a combination of modules which progressively build to the award of Postgraduate Diploma (PgDip) or master’s (MSc). Core subject areas include cellular molecular biology, genetics, protein biology, pharmacology, bioinformatics, numeracy, statistics and computing and a range of practical laboratory techniques.

We provide hands-on practical experience of both laboratory and bioinformatics techniques. You will be trained in pharmacology research strategies and gain an understanding of the nature of business based on bioscience knowledge and research, opportunities for innovation, and regulatory requirement constraints, intellectual property and ethical issues.

This course includes the Professional Development module in Entrepreneurship. Each of the participating postgraduate courses have an individually tailored version of the Chartered Management Institute (CMI) Professional Development module.

Coventry University’s accreditation with CMI is currently ongoing for the relevant modules, but is frequently reviewed and monitored by the CMI through their quality systems. If any changes occur with respect to our accreditation related to these modules, we will seek to notify applicants and students as soon as possible.

Course Specification
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Modules

Overview

This course includes the Professional Development module. Each of the participating postgraduate courses have an individually tailored version of the Chartered Management Institute (CMI) Professional Development module.

Modules

  • Postgraduate Diploma

    • Research Techniques in Pharmacology

    This module combines computational biology, bioinformatics and pharmacology to develop your technical skills in pharmacology and drug discovery. A further, important, aspect of this module is to provide a thorough grounding in quantitative skills in pharmacology including statistics. A development of your awareness and the critical analysis of current literature is also fulfilled in this module through regular workshops and tutorials.

    • Principles of Pharmacology and Drug Discovery

    The module will aim to provide you with an understanding of the drug discovery process from identification of novel targets to the introduction of new drugs into clinical practice. The module will enable you to explain how novel targets for drugs are identified, understand current drug screening methods with respect to their desired activity and appreciate the limitations of both pre-clinical and clinical screening methods using contemporary examples. Students will also encompass information needed to introduce a new drug to clinical practice including the function and operation of the Medicines and Healthcare Product Regulatory Agency (MHRA) and post-approval drug monitoring and surveillance.

    • Current Topics in Pharmacology and Drug Discovery

    This module aims to provide you with an overview of translational medicine from an academic, commercial, public sector and global perspective. You will use real life case studies as examples of translational medicine. The topics will emphasise new and/or pipeline drugs including biologics, cell-based therapies and devices. The module will also allow you to appreciate novel approaches using primary research data/methodologies to design pre-clinical and clinical studies, with a specific focus on enhancing the discovery of new therapeutic agents for specific patient groups.

    • Drug Discovery: from Bench to Bedside

    This module aims to provide an experience which tracks the drug discovery process from target identification and initial ligand screen, through in vitro cell toxicity assays, culminating in the use of METIman to observe the effects of the drugs in a life size, fully wireless, human simulation under artificial intelligence control.

    • Critical Review in Pharmacology

    This module is designed to consolidate theoretical knowledge and practical skills developed in previous modules and develop your skills as critical readers of scientific literature. You will be instructed on the critical review process and will have opportunities to practice this skill through discussion groups with your peers and tutor, before embarking on your own critical evaluation of a published scientific research article in pharmacology and drug discovery.

    • Pharmacology Scientific Presentation

    The aim of the module is to allow you to utilise your knowledge of contemporary/advanced pharmacology and drug discovery, and discuss challenges in treatment of diseases. You will utilise your entrepreneurship skills, gained in the Global Professional Development module, to consider a suitable market. You will present their ideas in the form of a scientific poster at a School Symposium.

    • Global Professional Development - Entrepreneurship

    The aim of this module is to give you the opportunity to critically assess the relationship between entrepreneurship and other domains of management, such as strategy and leadership. You will gain an understanding how entrepreneurial thinking can enhance organisational performance and leadership through the application of a more enterprising mind-set. By drawing on a wide range of scenarios, tasks and debates, this module will explore a range of entrepreneurial archetypes to help you explore your own entrepreneurial profile and potential.

    • Research Principles and Preparation (MSc Pharmacology and Drug Discovery only)

    This module aims to provide a detailed consideration of the complex processes necessary to formulate, develop and test a scientific/clinical hypothesis. You will apply these to the design of an individual research experiment in a chosen area.

    • Research Project (MSc Pharmacology and Drug Discovery only)

    You will be required to carry out a series of investigative, analytical or experimental studies in your selected field within biomolecular sciences and present your findings in a scientific manner.

  • Master’s degree with Professional Experience

    • Professional Experience Preparation (MSc Pharmacology and Drug Discovery with Professional Experience only)

    The module aims to prepare you for your forthcoming professional experience. It introduces expectations of you in the workplace, with reinforcement of the transferable skills, attitudes and competencies expected by the employer. You will be supported to make applications and secure suitable professional experience opportunities.

    • Professional Experience in Life Science 1 and 2 (MSc Pharmacology and Drug Discovery with Professional Experience only)

    These two modules aim to provide you with a substantive professional experience. This may take the form of a professional experience with a host organisation, which may include the university, or a campus based professional experience. The module should help support the development of your personal and professional skills, including team working, communication, self-management and critical reflection, to enhance future employability.

    • Life Sciences Professional Experience Project and Reflection (MSc Pharmacology and Drug Discovery with Professional Experience only)

    You will be required to report, analyse and critically evaluate your research findings gathered during the Professional Experience period. It is designed to enable you to demonstrate critical thinking ability, appropriate use of statistical analyses where relevant and a broad understanding of the context and prior knowledge framework into which your research study fits.

We regularly review our course content, to make it relevant and current for the benefit of our students. For these reasons, course modules may be updated.

Please note that we are unable to guarantee any placement or study abroad opportunities and that any such opportunities referred to on this webpage may be subject to additional costs (e.g. travel, visas and accommodation etc.), competitive application, availability and/or meeting any applicable visa requirements. To ensure that you fully understand the requirements in this regard, please contact the International Office for further details if you are an EU or International student.

In more detail...

  • Current extensive industry links with, for example, Green Biologics and Cambridge Scientific Solutions
  • Regular guest lectures from current practitioners in the pharmacology industry, laboratory research and other jobs in science in areas including pharmacology, drug design and development and clinical trials (subject to availability)
  • Research-inspired teaching with input from experts in our Sport, Exercise and Life Sciences research centre (CSELS), which focuses on the themes of cellular and molecular biosciences; biological systems, health and disease; pharmacology; and physical activity, exercise and obesity
  • Access to a well-equipped suite of analytical and biological laboratories where you will have the opportunity to get hands on experience using industry standard techniques, such as flow cytometry, mass spectrometry, high performance liquid chromatography and confocal microscopy.

Your main study themes are:

  • Research Techniques in Pharmacology: Develops students in a number of experimental techniques including in-vitro pharmacology, computational biology and bioinformatics as well as quantitative skills.
  • Principles of Pharmacology and Drug Discovery: Aims to provide an understanding of contemporary and advanced pharmacology, clinical trials, drug design and development.
  • Current Topics in Pharmacology and Drug Discovery: Explores contemporary topics in modern biotechnology, drug discovery and issues surrounding the regulatory framework and the integration of legal and commercial issues for human research that uses drugs, biologics, devices and stem cells.
  • Drug Discovery: from bench to bedside: You will be required to track the drug discovery process from target identification and initial ligand screen, through in vitro cell toxicity assays, culminating in the use of METIman to observe the effects of the drugs in a life size, human simulation under artificial intelligence control.

The course can be studied over three semesters and one year as a traditional full-time master’s programme. It can also be studied over 20 months as an extended full-time programme ‘with Professional Experience’. This incorporates the additional professional experience modules, in which you gain experience throughout either an internship with an external organisation or with the university and then write up a report detailing what you have learned.

Internships, subject to competitive application and selection, will normally be undertaken for three to five days per week for 18-22 weeks over two semesters. Those unsuccessful in gaining an external internship will undertake an internal internship that is based at the university, but which may have some input from external organisations, depending upon the nature of the internship.

Teaching and learning incorporates lectures, workshops, tutorials, presentations and practical laboratory sessions, all supported by an extensive suite of analytical and biological laboratories staffed by experienced technicians. In addition, each module is supported by extensive online material to help prepare you for your taught sessions and to assist with your personal study.

Where possible, coursework uses applied tasks that mimic the skills needed in jobs to help ensure you are attractive to future employers, such as oral and poster presentations, and the collection and interpretation of laboratory data culminating in a detailed report. We try to organise industry visits and also offer the opportunity to apply for internships, which have led to previous students spending time with companies such as Inocardia, Severn Trent Water and Lytegro.

You will receive a series of lectures and seminars on selected contemporary topics in pharmacology and drug discovery, delivered by university teaching, research staff and invited speakers from other universities, research institutes, biotechnology and pharmaceutical industries (subject to availability).

This course will be assessed using a variety of methods which will could vary depending upon the module. Assessment methods include practical or project work, critical reviews of the literature, oral, poster and leaflet presentations and data analytical exercises.

The Coventry University Group assessment strategy ensures that our courses are fairly assessed and allows us to monitor student progression towards the achieving the intended learning outcomes. Assessments may include exams, individual assignments or group work elements.

On successful completion, you should have knowledge of:

  • Current hot topics in pharmacology, such as drug discovery, dug development and clinical trials
  • Genomes and DNA technology, including molecular biology and genomics, and pharmacological applications
  • Diagnosis of disease, including the use of pharmacology in disease diagnosis
  •  Pharmaceutical discoveries, including translational medicine and drug discovery
  • Research methodology, including design and management of scientific research.

On successful completion, you should be able to:

  • Critically analyse, evaluate and interpret knowledge and practice in pharmacology
  • Collect, analyse and present data using appropriate methods
  • Apply scientific methods to the critical analysis of literature, reflection, information searching, and research methodology in areas of pharmacology
  • Apply scientific/clinical methods to conducting and management of research
  • Formulate and present a critical argument using a variety of methods (e.g. presentation, essay) that would stand up to critical review and scrutiny in academic and professional settings
  • Work safely in the laboratory, establishing fundamental techniques, and carry out progressively more advanced laboratory-based investigations based on competence in pharmacology
  • To lead and to collaborate with others in order to solve problems of a practical nature and to provide appropriate solutions
  • Design a research study, including demonstrating awareness of safety and ethical issues
  • Conduct an independent research project, including collection, analysis and presentation of data.

In a typical teaching week, you will have around 15 ‘contact’ hours of teaching. This generally breaks down as 3 hours of laboratory sessions and 12 hours of lectures, workshops and tutorials each week.

In addition, you will be expected to undertake a further 25 hours of self-directed study each week e.g. working on coursework assignments.

The contact hours may be made up of a combination of face-to-face teaching, individual and group tutorials, and online classes and tutorials.

This course attracts like-minded students from across the world, who are seeking to improve their scientific and laboratory skills in pharmacology, using British standard equipment and gaining extensive practical laboratory time. As such, you’ll find yourself part of a multicultural learning environment, working alongside students who will share their own professional and personal experiences.

You will benefit from being taught by a diverse range of staff with different international experiences. Some modules have external speakers who have an international research background. Coventry University is committed to providing students an international experience, so you will also have the opportunity to take part in the Global Leaders programme.

Please note that we are unable to guarantee any placement or study abroad opportunities and that any such opportunities referred to on this webpage may be subject to additional costs (e.g. travel, visas and accommodation etc.), competitive application, availability and/or meeting any applicable visa requirements. To ensure that you fully understand the requirements in this regard, please contact the International Office for further details if you are an EU or International student.

Global ready

Did you know we help more students travel internationally than any other UK university according to data from the experts in higher education data and analysis, HESA?

In 2018/19, we were able to provide a total of 5,469 experiences abroad that lasted at least five days.

Much of this travel is made possible through our Global Leaders Programme, which enables students to prepare for the challenges of the global employment market, as well as strengthening and developing their broader personal and professional skills.

Explore our international experiences

1st for

International experiences

Sending more students overseas than any other UK uni 2016/17


5,469

Student experiences

The number of student trips abroad for at least 5 days in 2018/19


12,000

and counting

The number of students we’ve helped travel internationally since 2016

12

global programmes

As well as trips, we offer other opportunities like language courses


Entry Requirements

An Honours degree in a life sciences, pharmacology or clinical sciences undergraduate course; with a minimum of a lower second class (2.ii) classification (2.i for the professional experience course).

We would normally be looking for study of the following subjects in the final year of an undergraduate degree programme: physiology, molecular biology, biochemistry, cell biology or pharmacology.

An Honours degree in a life sciences, pharmacology or clinical sciences undergraduate course; with a minimum of a lower second class (2.ii) classification (2.i for the professional experience course).

We would normally be looking for study of the following subjects in the final year of an undergraduate degree programme: physiology, molecular biology, biochemistry, cell biology or pharmacology.

Following the UK’s exit from the European Union, EU students should be aware that there may be a change to UK laws following the UK’s exit in the coming years, this may change their student status, their eligibility to study part time, and/or their eligibility for student finance amongst other things. We will act in accordance with the UK’s laws in force from time to time.

English as a Foreign Language This course requires IELTS of 6.5 overall, with no component lower than 5.5. Pre-sessional English is available if required.

Note: For January 2020 applications onwards IELTS requirements for the professional experience course will be 7 overall, with no component lower than 6.

Our International Student Hub offers information on entry requirements for your country, as well as contact details for agents and representatives should you need more advice.

More detail

An Honours degree in a life sciences, pharmacology or clinical sciences undergraduate course; with a minimum of a lower second class (2.ii) classification (2.i for the professional experience course).

We would normally be looking for study of the following subjects in the final year of an undergraduate degree programme: physiology, molecular biology, biochemistry, cell biology or pharmacology.

Graduate Immigration Route visa

Based on current information from the UK Government, students whose study extends beyond summer 2021 may be eligible for a visa under the UK Government’s Graduate Immigration Route, which will enable students to stay and work, or look for work, in the UK at any skill level for up to two (2) years. Check the most up to date guidance available to check your eligibility and any updates from the UK Government before making an application or enrolment decision.

English as a Foreign Language This course requires IELTS of 6.5 overall, with no component lower than 5.5. Pre-sessional English is available if required.

Note: For January 2020 applications onwards IELTS requirements for the professional experience course will be 7 overall, with no component lower than 6.

Our International Student Hub offers information on entry requirements for your country, as well as contact details for agents and representatives should you need more advice.

More detail

Tuition Fees

We pride ourselves on offering competitive tuition fees which we review on an annual basis and offer a wide range of scholarships to support students with their studies. Course fees are calculated on the basis of what it costs to teach each course and we aim for total financial transparency.

Starts

Fee


September 2021

£10,400 | £15,450 (with professional experience) (per year)


UK Scholarships

If you're a truly outstanding undergraduate candidate we may be able to offer you a Coventry University Scholarship. Coventry University Scholarships are awarded to recognise truly exceptional sports achievement and academic excellence.

Starts

Fee


September 2021

£16,600 | £18,950 (with professional experience) (per year)


Scholarships

If you're a truly exceptional candidate we may be able to offer you a Coventry University Scholarship. Coventry University Scholarships are awarded to recognise truly exceptional achievement and academic excellence.

Starts

Fee


September 2021

£16,600 | £18,950 (with professional experience) (per year)


Scholarships

If you're a truly exceptional candidate we may be able to offer you a Coventry University Scholarship. Coventry University Scholarships are awarded to recognise truly exceptional achievement and academic excellence.

Course essentials – additional costs

  • This course may incur additional costs associated with any field trips, placements or work experience, study abroad opportunities or any other opportunity (whether required or optional), which could include (but is not limited to) travel, accommodation, activities and visas.
    This course may incur additional costs associated with any equipment, materials, bench fees, studio or facilities hire.

EU student fees

EU nationals starting in the 2020/21 academic year remain eligible for the same fees as home students and the same financial support. Financial support comes from Student Finance England, and covers undergraduate and postgraduate study for the duration of their course, providing they meet the residency requirement.

For tuition fee loans

EU nationals starting in the 2020/21 academic year must have resided in the European Economic Area (EEA) or Switzerland for the three years prior to the start of their course. The purpose of that three year residency should not have been mainly for the purpose of receiving full time education.

For maintenance loans

EU nationals starting in the 2020/21 academic year must have resided in the UK and Islands for the five years prior to the start of their course. The purpose of that five year residency should not have been mainly for the purpose of receiving full

Career prospects

Graduate Immigration Route visa

Based on current information from the UK Government, international students whose study extends beyond summer 2021 may be eligible for a visa under the UK Government’s Graduate Immigration Route, which will enable students to stay and work, or look for work, in the UK at any skill level for up to two (2) years. Check the most up to date guidance available to check your eligibility and any updates from the UK Government before making an application or enrolment decision.

The MSc Pharmacology and Drug Discovery programme is specifically designed to equip you with the skills and knowledge required for a career within the pharmacology and drug development arena and there may be many opportunities, both the UK and internationally.

A large number of pharmacologists are employed by companies in the pharmaceutical industry, where they are involved in discovering and developing drugs and carrying out clinical trials. Pharmacologists may also work for contract research organisations (CROs) or academic departments within universities on research projects. There may also be opportunities within government laboratories (including environmental agencies), charity-funded research organisations, such as the Medical Research Council (MRC), and with other research institutes.

The scientific knowledge and skills you should acquire upon successful completion of this course can also be a useful basis for a career in teaching; technical and scientific writing (such as medical writing or writing for the media); clinical trials; drug registration, patenting or monitoring; medical publishing or other information services, regulatory affairs or sales and marketing.

A wide range of job opportunities exist, including:

  • Clinical research manager 
  • Clinical scientist
  • Human resources manager
  • Patent attorney
  • Pharmacologist
  • Project manager/director
  • Public relations officer
  • Regulatory affairs associate
  • Research scientist
  • Sales representative
  • Medical writer
Disclaimer

By accepting your offer of a place and enrolling with us, a Student Contract will be formed between you and the university. A copy of the 2020/21 Contract can be found here. The Contract details your rights and the obligations you will be bound by during your time as a student and contains the obligations that the university will owe to you. You should read the Contract before you accept an offer of a place and before you enrol at the university.

The tuition fee for the course that is stated on the course webpage and in the prospectus for the first year of study will apply. We will review our tuition fees each year. For UK and EU students, if Parliament permit an increase in tuition fees, we may increase fees for each subsequent year of study in line with any such changes. Note that any increase is expected to be in line with inflation. Following the UK’s exit from the European Union, EU students should be aware that there may be a change to UK laws following the UK’s exit, this may change their student status, their eligibility to study part time, and/or their eligibility for student finance. We will act in accordance with the UK’s laws in force in relation to student tuition fees and finance from time to time.

For International students the tuition fee that is stated on the course webpage and in the prospectus for the first year of study will apply. We will review our tuition fees each year. For international students, we may increase fees for each subsequent year of study but such increases will be no more than 5% above inflation.