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Drug Discovery and Development MSc

This programme provides a broad overview of the drug discovery and development process and is designed for graduates in science-based subjects as preparation for either PhD-level research or a career in the pharmaceutical, biotechnology and CRO industries or with a government regulatory body.

Covid-19 programme updates

Due to COVID-19, there may have been updates to this programme for the 2020 academic year. Where there has been an update, these are indicated with a red alert and a link which will provide further information.

Key information

Programme starts

September 2020

Modes and duration

Full time: 1 year

Application dates

All applicants
Open: 1 November 2019
Close: 11 August 2020
Notification
Due to the large number of applications received, this programme is no longer accepting applications for 2020/21 entry. We apologise for any inconvenience caused. Applications for 2021/22 entry will open later in the year.

Tuition fees (2020/21)

UK/EU:
£15,050 (FT)
Overseas:
£28,930 (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 Students website.

Location: London, Bloomsbury

Entry requirements

A second-class UK Bachelor’s degree or higher in a related subject such as pharmacy, pharmaceutical science, pharmacology, physiology, physical science, biochemistry, biotechnology, chemistry, chemical engineering, genetics, material sciences, or a medical degree (MBBS), or an overseas qualification of an equivalent standard.

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: Good

Further information can be found on our English language requirements page.

International students

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

You will gain extensive knowledge about the process of drug discovery and development from the initial drug target validation stage through to regulatory approval of a new drug. You will gain hands-on experience of molecular modelling and computer-based drug design, and analytical and synthetic techniques and be exposed to modern platforms for drug discovery.

Students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits.

The programme consists of three compulsory modules (90 credits), two optional modules (30 credits) and a dissertation (60 credits).

Upon successful completion of 180 credits, you will be awarded a MSc in Drug Discovery and Development.

Please note that the list of modules given here is indicative. This information is published a long time in advance of enrolment and module content and availability is subject to change.

Compulsory modules

  • Modern Aspects of Drug Discovery
  • The Process of Drug Discovery
  • The Process of Drug Development

Optional modules

Students choose two from the following:

  • Anticancer Personalised Medicines
  • New Drug Targets in the CNS
  • Pharmacogenics, Adverse Drug Reactions and Biomarkers
  • Advanced Structure-based Drug Design
  • Pharmacometrics
  • Applications of Immunology
Covid-19 module updates
Due to COVID-19, there may be updates to the modules for your chosen programme of study this year. Some modules may not be available or may need to be moved to a later term or year of study. These updates are relevant for 2020-21 academic year only.  The full list of modules will be available in the module catalogue from late August.  From the first week of September, you will be invited to complete module selection from Portico, our student record system. There may need to be additional updates or changes to modules during the academic year to allow for new guidance from the UK Government and Public Health England. Your department shall keep you updated of these changes as they become available.

Dissertation/report

All students undertake a laboratory-based research project which is assessed at the end of the year by a written report and oral presentation.

Teaching and learning

The programme is delivered through a combination of lectures, tutorials and seminars supported by the Blackboard e-learning system and practical classes. Assessment is through a combination of written examination and coursework. The research project is assessed by written report and oral presentation.

Covid-19 contact hours on campus
In Term One, while campus will be open, all the learning activity for the core content of your modules will take place online – including lectures, tutorials, seminars and assessments. By “core content” we mean everything you need to learn to complete the module successfully. In addition to these online contact hours, we will be offering some face-to-face educational activities for students on campus, and we will provide alternative online activities for those students unable to join us on campus. These activities, which will include contact with academic staff, will be relevant to your programme of study may include seminars, academic and employability skills workshops, small-group or individual tutorials, lab and practice-based teaching. UK Government safety guidelines will limit the amount of ‘in person’ activity we can offer and while it will vary from programme to programme, is likely to be no more than 1-2 hours per week. This will vary across departments, particularly if your programme includes laboratory/practical/studio/workshop sessions. You will be updated with more specific details as they are available and your timetable will indicate which sessions will be on campus and which will be available online.
Covid-19 practical component updates
Due to COVID-19, there may be changes to the availability of the practical components for your chosen programme. Any updates relate only to the 20/21 academic year and may not apply to all students across the programme depending on your year of study.  Your department will keep you updated if the practical component of your programme is able to occur and/or any alternative options available.   There may need to be additional updates or changes to the practical component during the academic year to allow for new guidance from the UK Government and/or Public Health England. Your department shall keep you updated of these changes as they become available. 
Covid-19 assessment updates
There may be changes to the format of assessments for modules in this programme due to COVID-19. These will be summarised for each module on the module catalogue from 17 August 2020.   If any changes to assessments need to be made during the academic year due to updates in government guidance, these will be communicated to you as soon as possible from your department.    
Communicating further Covid-19 mitigation plans
We are continuing to follow UK Government guidance, as well as the expertise of our researchers, including specialists in health, education, human behaviour and infection prevention, to make sure UCL is as safe as possible during the COVID-19 pandemic. If it becomes necessary to make further changes to your programme as a result of new guidance/regulations, UCL and your department will communicate these as soon as this becomes clear. We will keep you up-to-date with our plans throughout term one, so you have the information you need to be able to take decisions that are right for your circumstances. Please ensure that you keep in touch with your department by regularly checking your UCL emails, Moodle courses, the Coronavirus FAQs for Students page and any UCL online groups or social media you follow.

Additional costs

For more information on additional costs for prospective students please go to our estimated cost of essential expenditure at Accommodation and living costs.

Accessibility

Details of the accessibility of UCL buildings can be obtained from AccessAble. Further information can also be obtained from the UCL Student Support & Wellbeing team.

Funding

For a comprehensive list of the funding opportunities available at UCL, including funding relevant to your nationality, please visit the Scholarships and Funding website.

Careers

Graduates from the Drug Delivery and Development MSc have progressed to careers in academia or in the various aspects of the pharmaceutical, biotechnology, CRO and consulting industries.

Why study this degree at UCL?

Many lectures and seminars are from industry, academic and regulatory experts with potential for on-site visits and attendance at a one day conference.

There is a choice of specialist modules and students can choose to carry out a research project within UCL or industry.

Career opportunities after this degree are vast and there are organised career days and Alumni networking events to help students become more aware of possible careers.

Department: School of Pharmacy

What our students and staff say

Staff view

"I enjoy teaching, particularly the opportunity to engage with graduate students in statistical science and to help them become more confident and interested in this branch of mathematics. I work on a variety of applied and methodological projects in biostatistics. On the applied side, I contribute statistical expertise to collaborative projects in medical science, such as clinical trials, and large cohort studies in areas such as rheumatology, ophthalmology and neuroscience."

Aidan O'Keefe

Statistics MSc, Statistics (Medical Statistics) MSc, Drug Discovery and Development MSc
UCL Statistical Science

Application and next steps

Applications

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.

There is an application processing fee for this programme of £80 for online applications and £105 for paper applications. Further information can be found at: www.ucl.ac.uk/prospective-students/graduate/taught/application.

Who can apply?

This programme is designed for graduates who have completed first degrees in a wide range of science subjects.

Application deadlines

All applicants
11 August 2020

For more information see our Applications page.

Apply now

What are we looking for?

When we assess your application we would like to learn:

  • how your academic and professional background meets the demands of Drug Discovery and Development
  • why you want to study Drug Discovery and Development at graduate level
  • what particularly attracts you to this programme at the UCL School of Pharmacy
  • where you would like to go professionally with your degree and how this programme meets these needs

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.

UCL is regulated by the Office for Students.

Page last modified on 13 August 2020