This programme is offered by the UCL Division of Medicine and the Wolfson Institute for Biomedical Research and is designed for the more research-oriented student, complementing Drug Design MSc. Conducting cutting-edge research within the drug industries and UCL's academic group, it offers opportunities for networking and future career development.
Modes and duration
Tuition fees (2017/18)
- £12,680 (FT)
- £24,140 (FT)
Note on fees: The tuition fees shown are for the year indicated above. Fees for subsequent years may increase or otherwise vary. Further information on fee status, fee increases and the fee schedule can be viewed on the UCL Current Students website.
An upper second-class UK Bachelor’s degree in a relevant subject (for example, life sciences, medicine, chemistry) or an overseas qualification of an equivalent standard, or an appropriate professional qualification, or a minimum of three years’ relevant work experience.
English language requirements
If your education has not been conducted in the English language, you will be expected to demonstrate evidence of an adequate level of English proficiency.
The English language level for this programme is: Standard
Further information can be found on our English language requirements page.
Country-specific information, including details of when UCL representatives are visiting your part of the world, can be obtained from the International Students website.
International applicants can find out the equivalent qualification for their country by selecting from the list below.
Select your country:
About this degree
This programme teaches students the latest methodologies and approaches and covers all aspects of drug design: drug discovery, computational and structural biology, screening, assay development, medicinal chemistry, and most importantly the industrial practices involved in modern drug design technology.
Students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits.
The programme consists of two core modules (30 credits), three optional modules (45 credits) and a dissertation/report (105 credits).
Students will select three from the following Drug Design MSc modules:
- Bioinformatics and Structural Biology as applied to Drug Design
- Biological Molecules as Therapeutics
- Biophysical Screening Methods, X-ray Crystallography, Protein NMR and Phenotypic Screening
- Cheminformatics and Modelling for Drug Design
- Fragment-based Drug Design
- Target Selection – Commercial and Intellectual Property Aspects
- Target Selection – Scientific Grounds
- Core modules
- Plus two taught transferable skills modules delivered by CALT (UCL Centre for the Advancement of Learning and Teaching):
- Investigating Research
- Researcher Professional Development
There are no optional modules for this programme.
All students undertake an independent research project which culminates in a dissertation of 15,000 to 20,000 words.
Teaching and learning
The programme is delivered through a combination of lectures, seminars, tutorials and problem classes, critical journal clubs and a research project. Assessment is through coursework, practicals, laboratory work, examination, dissertation and oral presentation.
Two bursaries of £2500 are available for Home/Eu students to reduce tuition fees.
For a comprehensive list of the funding opportunities available at UCL, including funding relevant to your nationality, please visit the Scholarships and Funding website.
We expect students graduating from this programme to take leading roles in drug discovery and development worldwide or to undertake further PhD level research. The first cohort of students on the Drug Design MRes graduating in 2015 have found jobs in the pharmaceutical industry as well as PhD studentships in leading universities.
The advanced knowledge and skill set acquired by taking this programme will enable students to find employment in the pharmaceutical and biotech industries in a global market.
Careers data is taken from the ‘Destinations of Leavers from Higher Education’ survey undertaken by HESA looking at the destinations of UK and EU students in the 2012–2014 graduating cohorts six months after graduation.
Why study this degree at UCL?
The division hosts research groups in the areas of medicine, pharmaceutical research, cell cycle, neurobiology, mitochondrial function, stem cells and cancer. Underpinning the translational aspects of the biomedical research, we have a medicinal chemistry group which conducts research where chemistry and biology intersect, using the latest techniques and developing new ones for the study of biological systems.
The division collaborates extensively within industry and academia to develop biological tools and therapeutic agents. There are plenty of opportunities to conduct translational research that has an impact on drug discovery.
Pharmaceutical and biotech companies, well established in the West, have been transferring their research and development to the East. Given these substantial developments, particularly in China and India, the programme will have a broad international appeal.
Department: Division of Medicine
Student / staff numbers
› 411 staff
including 84 postdocs
› 102 taught students
› 201 research students
Staff/student numbers information correct as of 1 August 2017.
Research Excellence Framework (REF)
The Research Excellence Framework, or REF, is the system for assessing the quality of research in UK higher education institutions. The 2014 REF was carried out by the UK's higher education funding bodies, and the results used to allocate research funding from 2015/16.
The following REF score was awarded to the department: Division of Medicine
82% rated 4* (world-leading) or 3* (internationally excellent)
Learn more about the scope of UCL's research, and browse case studies, on our Research Impact website.
Application and next steps
Students are advised to apply as early as possible due to competition for places. Those applying for scholarship funding (particularly overseas applicants) should take note of application deadlines.
Who can apply?
This MRes is ideal for suitably qualified graduates who wish to obtain a broad understanding of the drug design process, either to establish a career in drug discovery, or to undertake further research in this field. It is also suitable for industry professionals wishing to refresh their existing knowledge and skills and become familiar with cutting-edge research and developments.
- All applicants
- 28 July 2017
For more information see our Applications page.Apply now
What are we looking for?
When we assess your application we would like to learn:
- why you want to study Drug Design at graduate level
- why you want to study Drug Design at UCL
- what particularly attracts you to the chosen programme
- how your personal, academic and professional background meets the demands of this challenging programme
- where you would like to go professionally with your degree
Together with essential academic requirements, the personal statement is your opportunity to illustrate whether your reasons for applying to this programme match what the programme will deliver.