The UCL MSc in Advanced Pharmacy Practice (MScAPP) is an advanced-level programme designed by pharmacists for pharmacists.
Successful completion of this course equips pharmacists with advanced professional capabilities and confidence to complete research and evaluation in their area of practice, lead and develop pharmacy workforce, teams and services, and to enhance their own and others’ professional development.
The MScAPP course is suitable for pharmacists working in any professional environment, including primary and secondary care, community and industry, and provides the opportunity to advance your professional career by one of two routes:
- Pharmacy Practice Research route
- Advanced Professional Practice route
The course offers the flexibility to study over one to two years, enabling busy senior pharmacists to tailor their studies to suit work and personal commitments.
The MScAPP Advanced Professional Practice route modules can also be studied as stand-alone short courses, giving pharmacists the option of studying the specific components that are best suited to their learning and development needs.
About the MScAPP programme
UCL School of Pharmacy has an established reputation of supporting the training and development of practicing pharmacists seeking to enhance their specialist knowledge, develop their professional practice and advance their careers. The importance of healthcare professionals developing advanced practice skills and capabilities, in particular leadership and research skills, is increasingly being recognised as crucial to improving the quality of patient care and service delivery.
Additionally, NHS agencies have called for clinical pharmacists in all sectors to increase their activity in research and evaluation of medicines and professional interventions, and to better use and analyse data to improve health outcomes. The MScAPP is designed to support development in these crucial areas, to help pharmacists meet the challenges they face as pharmacy roles and services evolve to provide optimum pharmaceutical care for patients.
Pharmacy Practice Research route
The pharmacy practice research route has been running successfully for over 25 years, facilitating pharmacists to complete a wide range of practice-based pharmacy research projects that have benefitted patient care and helped to optimise pharmacy services. The focus of this route is on the development of research skills and leadership in research and the application to health problems.
The aim of the research route is to equip pharmacists with research and evaluation skills needed to initiate, design, and lead pharmacy research projects. Pharmacists completing this route will develop a critical understanding and gain practical experience of: how to identify research and evaluation projects; define/refine research questions from initial ideas; design studies using appropriate research methods; data collection, data management and data analysis.
Through completion of all stages of a research project, pharmacists studying via this route gain an in-depth understanding of the practicalities of conducting research, including meeting local research requirements, and engagement with local research experts and networks is strongly encouraged. Pharmacists are strongly encouraged to identify an area of research in collaboration with relevant individuals or teams in their workplace. One-to-one academic supervision is provided by leading UCL pharmacy practice researchers.
Advanced Professional Practice route
The advanced professional practice route has been developed through consultation with key stakeholders and senior clinical pharmacists to meet the needs of pharmacists in developing and consolidating advanced to Consultant-level competencies. The focus of this route is on the development of advanced skills to identify, develop and lead innovative solutions to pharmacy practice challenges based on a critical understanding of underpinning theories and concepts.
The aim of this route is to equip pharmacists with the advanced professional capabilities and confidence to complete research and evaluation in their area of practice, lead and develop pharmacy staff, teams and services, and to enhance their own and others’ professional development. Face-to-face sessions with leading pharmacy experts are provided, offering a unique learning opportunity for pharmacists to benefit from masterclasses and workshops with inspiring pharmacy leaders.
This route involves completion of four modules, aligned to four core clusters of the Advanced Pharmacy Framework (APF) and Faculty:
- Research Methods in Pharmacy Practice
- Education, Training & Development
- Leadership & Management
- Developing your Advanced Pharmacy Practice Portfolio
Research Methods in Pharmacy Practice Module
The aim of this module is to equip pharmacists with key research and evaluation skills to initiate, design, and conduct pharmacy research projects. Pharmacists completing this module will develop a critical understanding of: how to identify research and evaluation projects; define/refine research questions from initial ideas; design studies using appropriate research methods; data collection, data management and data analysis. Through development of a research proposal, pharmacists completing this module gain insight into the practicalities of conducting research, including meeting local research requirements, and engagement with local research experts and networks is strongly encouraged. Pharmacists are strongly encouraged to identify an area of research in collaboration with relevant individuals or teams in their workplace.
Education, Training & Development in Pharmacy Practice Module
The aim of this module is to equip pharmacists with key education, training and development skills to support workplace learners. Pharmacists completing this module will critically reflect on how to apply teaching and learning theories in the workplace, and develop their supervision, mentoring and coaching skills, in particular to identify complex educational needs or environments. Participants will consider the ways in which learners can reach their full potential and what to do in cases of difficulty. Learning about the fundamentals of assessment, peer observation of teaching, and educational policy will enable participants to develop a new local education and training programme or policy. Participants will be invited to identify a programme or policy with managers and educational leads in the workplace, in order to deliver tangible outcomes from undertaking this module.
Leadership & Management in Pharmacy Practice Module
The aim of this module is to equip pharmacists with key clinical and professional leadership skills needed to lead pharmacy teams and services effectively. Pharmacists completing this module will develop a critical understanding of leadership and management theories and approaches and how to apply these in the healthcare setting, enabling them to develop their own leadership and management skills and those of others. Through critical evaluation of a change management project, and reflection on the effectiveness of different leadership styles, pharmacists completing this module gain insight into the practical application of key leadership components for successful management of change. Pharmacists are encouraged to identify a project in collaboration with relevant individuals or teams in their workplace.
Developing your Advanced Pharmacy Practice Portfolio Module
The aim of this module is to equip pharmacists with key skills to develop and demonstrate advanced pharmacy practice. Pharmacists completing this module will develop a critical understanding of the use of professional development frameworks as a tool for continuing professional development, and how to advance knowledge, understanding and professional development through critical reflective practice. Through development of a portfolio, pharmacists completing this module gain insight into the practical application of professional development theories and policy. Pharmacists are encouraged to identify areas for development in consultation with their peers.
Programme Entry points (2020/21)
Mode and duration
Part time. Programme normally studied over 1 to 2 years. Modules are usually studied over 6 months, with the exception of the Advanced Pharmacy Practice Portfolio Module which is normally studied over a year.
Tuition Fee (2020/21 academic year)
£2880 (£720/ module)
- Entry Requirements
Applications are welcome from both experienced pharmacists wishing to develop and demonstrate their advanced practice, and less experienced pharmacists who have recently completed their Foundation Training and wish to develop their practice at an advanced level.
Pharmacists wishing to apply for this course must fulfil the following requirements:
- To have completed the Postgraduate Diploma in General Pharmacy Practice at the UCL School of Pharmacy (or an equivalent postgraduate diploma in pharmacy practice or clinical practice from another University).
- To be working in a role that allows them to complete the course requirements.
Note: All applicants will be required to submit a CV. Applicant CVs must include AfC banding for all NHS posts, and clear start and end dates for all qualifications and posts
- English Requirements
Applicants must be registered pharmacists with the GPhC or PSNI and so must be able to meet the professional standards of the relevant professional body relating to communication.
The programme draws on a range of assessment methods including:
• Oral presentation
• Written assignment
Pharmacists must pass each element of assessment in order to pass the course.
- Teaching and Learning
The course uses a range of teaching and learning strategies including: face-to-face sessions involving lectures, presentations, workshops, group work and surgeries; independent private study; peer support from and of fellow students; assessments; and, individual academic supervision.
Self-directed learning is guided by the curriculum and the module learning outcomes, and supported by course resources accessed via the UCL e-learning platform Moodle.
Attendance at the University is required for learning sets and vivas. Requirements are as follows:
Advanced Professional Practice route:
- 10 half-day (afternoon) Learning Sets
- 1 half-day (morning) Introductory session (on the day of the first Learning Set)
- Viva preparation session (optional)
Pharmacy Practice Research route:
- 4 half-day (afternoon) Learning Sets
- How to apply
Applications are now open for entry onto the MSc APP programme in October 2020. All candidates are required to complete an online application form and submit a current CV that includes AfC Banding for all relevant posts. (Click Accept and apply, search for School of Pharmacy and apply to the MSc Advanced Pharmacy Practice).
It is important that applicants read the application guidance notes carefully before starting the online application process. Applicants are required to submit their CV as part of this process. The deadline for applications has been extended to Monday 31st August 2020.
If you wish to apply to study a single module as a stand-alone short course, please contact Akua Boakye, the Course Administrator at firstname.lastname@example.org for information about the application process. If you are applying for the research route please also contact the Course Director, Alison Innes at email@example.com to discuss your research idea(s) by the end of August 2020.