UCL Division of Biosciences


Pharmacology BSc

Pharmacology is the science of how chemical substances interact with our bodies. Pharmacologists work on everything from the development of new medicines to understanding the effects of poisons.

Pharmacology BSc Degree Overview

Pharmacology is a fast-moving, exciting subject and UCL remains world-leading in this discipline. 

The subject of Pharmacology is immensely broad and covers areas of physiology, chemistry, neuroscience, biochemistry, and genetics. 

Our programme provides in-depth training in both practical skills and theory. Our students benefit from the expertise in many areas of pharmacology such as neuropharmacology and immunopharmacology.

This flexible three-year programme offers a thorough training in the subject and students retain the option of applying to transfer to the Pharmacology MSci at the end of year two.

Course benefits

  • The subject of Pharmacology is wide-ranging and some of your modules will be taken with other Life Sciences students and will draw on expertise from across the faculty.

  • In your final year, you will have the opportunity to join a world-leading research team to carry out your own research project, working side-by-side with some of the most outstanding scientists in the field.

  • Enjoy modern, state-of-the-art facilities, that are located adjacent to the Medical Research Council's Laboratory for Molecular Cell Biology, allowing for collaborative final-year projects.

  • The programme not only provides detailed knowledge of the subject but also trains you in planning, executing and analysing scientific projects and in quantitative and analytical skills, equipping you with a versatility that will be attractive to future employers.

  • National Student Survey results:
    - 92% of students were satisfied with the teaching on their course. (NSS 2022)
    - 85% of students were satisfied with the learning resources provided on their course. (NSS 2022)


Modules - Year 1
CompulsoryBIOC0001Biochemistry and Molecular Biology15
CompulsoryCHEM0011Chemistry for Biologists30
CompulsoryPHOL0001Mammalian Physiology30
CompulsoryPHAR0002An Introduction to the Mechanisms of Drug Action15
CompulsorySTAT0021Introductory Statistical Methods and Computing15
CompulsoryCELL0007Cells and Development15
Modules - Year 2
CompulsoryPHAR0004General and Systematic Pharmacology30
CompulsoryPHAR0006Experimental Pharmacology30
CompulsoryPHOL0005Structure and Function of Nervous Systems15
Students will need to choose minimum of 15 and maximum of 30 credits
BIOC0006Essential Protein Structure and Function15
 BIOC0007Essential Molecular Biology15
Students will need to choose minimum of 0 and maximum of 15 credits
NEUR0007Cellular Neurophysiology15
 ANAT0002Developmental Neurobiology15
 CHEM0023Chemistry of Biologically Important Molecules15
Modules - Year 3
CompulsoryPHAR0011Molecular Pharmacology15
Students will need to choose minimum of 30 and maximum of 45 credits
PHAR0016Advanced Investigative Project in Pharmacology30
 PHAR0017Advanced Research Project in Pharmacology45
Students will need to choose minimum of 0 and maximum of 90 credits
 PHAR0012Receptor Mechanisms15
 PHAR0013Pharmacology of Inflammation (Extended)30
 PHAR0019Pharmacology of Inflammation15
 PHAR0014Drug Design and Development15
 PHAR0018Synaptic Pharmacology15
Students will need to choose minimum of 0 and maximum of 90 credits
PHOL0006Respiration in Health and Disease15
 PHOL0008Cell Signalling in Health and Disease30
 PHOL0010Space Medicine and Extreme Environment Physiology30
 PHOL0011Autonomic and Central Control of Cardiorespiratory Function15
 PHOL0012Cell Polarity and Disease30
 NEUR0009Metabolic Neuroscience15
 NEUR0014Neural Basis of Motivation and Learning15
 NEUR0015The Control of Movement15
 NEUR0016Neural Computation: Models of Brain Function15
 NEUR0017Visual Neuroscience15
 ANAT0008The Neurobiology of Neurodegenerative Disease15
 ANAT0012Molecular Basis of Neuropsychiatric Disorders15
 CELL0012Stem Cells and Regenerative Medicine15
 CELL0014Dynamic Biological Systems15
 BIOC0017Cancer Biology15
 BIOL0020Sex, Genes and Evolution15
 PSYC0035Topics in Neurobiology15
ElectiveALLUGAll UG Modules 


Career Opportunities

Graduation from our programme creates excellent employment opportunities in professional and managerial jobs.

As with any science degree, our graduates move into many types of employment including financial and managerial professions, scientific publishing, journalism, law and health administration (e.g., the Medicines and Healthcare Regulatory Agency (MHRA)).

Unlike many degrees, there is a related industry involving drug safety, drug research, drug sales and patent law.

If you are interested in laboratory research, you could progress to a postgraduate research degree (PhD) leading to further opportunities in the pharmaceutical industry, government research institutes, hospital laboratories, forensic science or university-based research.


What is it like to study Pharmacology at UCL?

The Pharmacology degree at UCL is a small programme to maintain a good staff-student ratio and a warm and friendly atmosphere. For intellectually curious students we are able to offer a truly world-class experience in one of the most exciting areas of modern science.