Course specification and structure
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PMCANPHA - MSc Cancer Pharmacology

Course Specification


Validation status Validated
Highest award Master of Science Level Masters
Possible interim awards Postgraduate Diploma, Postgraduate Certificate, Advanced Diploma in Professional Development
Total credits for course 180
Awarding institution London Metropolitan University
Teaching institutions London Metropolitan University
School School of Human Sciences
Subject Area Biosciences
Attendance options
Option Minimum duration Maximum duration
Full-time 1 YEARS 3 YEARS
Part-time 2 YEARS 6 YEARS
Course leader  

About the course and its strategy towards teaching and learning and towards blended learning/e-learning

The MSc course is designed to promote a deep understanding in the multi-disciplinary area of cancer pharmacology. Students will develop knowledge and skills, which will equip them for future careers in chemotherapeutic research and development. The course will foster students to become effective learners/practitioners by developing a variety of personal skills and capabilities.

Emphasis will be placed on self-directed and problem based learning within a lecture/tutorial/ practical framework. Students will explore case studies to promote high level reasoning in a professional context and to enhance a comprehensive and critical understanding of the existing state of knowledge in pharmaceutical science. Students will gain intellectual and practical skills necessary for the collection, analysis, interpretation and understanding of scientific data through laboratory practicals and also the research project.

Tutorial exercises and progress tests will be used to provide students with feedback on their progress. Summative assessment of students’ knowledge base and their understanding will be incorporated into formal in-course tests, extended essays, oral examination, dissertation, examinations and presentation completed at the end of each unit. Formative assessment of students’ approach in literature research is incorporated in group activities and project seminars.

Practical skills are an essential part of the MSc course and students have access to the unparalleled facilities in the Science Centre Laboratory. Practical classes are designed to reinforce the knowledge from the lectures and tutorials. The course aims to promote a good knowledge-skills balance enhancing the laboratory practice of the students. The Science Centre also provides an excellent facility to carry out the final research project. MSc project assessment will culminate in the presentation of a dissertation and a viva exam, which also explores knowledge and understanding.

Course aims

• provide a programme of advanced study for graduates that will equip them for future careers in the area of cancer pharmacology;

• foster a comprehensive and critical understanding of the existing state of knowledge in the fields of cancer and of anti-cancer drug therapy;

• enhance intellectual and practical skills necessary for the collection, analysis, interpretation and understanding of scientific data;

• provide practical opportunities in a multidisciplinary environment;

• enable students to become effective learners/practitioners by developing a variety of personal skills and capabilities including ethical research and practice.

• enable students to plan, carry out and write up a masters level research project.

Course learning outcomes

1. Have advanced systematic knowledge of the theoretical aspects of topics studied, and an awareness of current issues and insights;

2. an ability to apply knowledge in new contexts and in practical settings involving aspects relating to oncology, pharmacology, genetics, and statistics;

3. display the capacity to design, execute and critically evaluate research relevant to cancer pharmacology;

4. critically analyse different situations and problems showing a high level of understanding and reasoning and providing their own interpretation of information;

5. communicate a subject clearly and accurately orally, and / or in a variety of forms of written English;

6. demonstrate the technical and interpersonal skills required to work in a laboratory-based environment;

7. use analytical and reviewing skills in order to produce accurate summaries based on a body of literature.

Course learning outcomes / Module cross reference

Module Title Module Code

Medical Genetics & Genomics BM7122
Molecular Oncology BM7047
Scientific Frameworks for Research BM7001
Cancer Pharmacology BM7045
Cancer Diagnosis & Therapy BM7046
Drug Discovery Technology MS7029
Bioinformatics and Molecular Modelling BM7027
Advanced Drug Formulations Technologies MS7048
Research Project BM7P05

Learning Outcomes LO1 - LO7

Principle QAA benchmark statements

Although there are no QAA benchmark statements for cancer pharmacology at postgraduate level, course outcomes are in line with Generic QAA guidelines on Masters level qualifications. (EG Medicine - Intellectual Attributes; Generic Graduate Skills).

Assessment strategy

Students are assessed through a variety of methods including problem solving exercises, in-class tests, data analysis, practical reports, case studies, oral presentation, extended essays, examinations, research project interim report, oral examination and dissertation.
Practical skills are summatively assessed through the coursework assignments, including those in the final Project module. Data handling skills are summatively assessed by, practical reports, problem solving exercises, information abstracting and reviewing exercises, oral presentations and examinations.
Formative assessments include group activities in tutorial classes, pre-laboratory exercises and project workshops.

Organised work experience, work based learning, sandwich year or year abroad

N/A

Course specific regulations

The course conforms to the Postgraduate Regulatory Framework and University Academic Regulations.

Modules required for interim awards

PGCert – pass 60 credits; any 3 modules;
PGDip – pass 120 credits; 6 modules (not including Research Project);
MSc – pass 180 credits; 6 modules plus Research Project.

Arrangements for promoting reflective learning and personal development

Students will be able to assess and reflect upon their understanding of taught material through the completion formative tests and quizzes. In terms of their research project, they will be encouraged to think critically about their findings and, where appropriate, to provide solutions through the design of related experiments or alternative approaches to research; in the project module they will also complete a ‘personal statement’, the style of which would be appropriate to a job application. In Medical Genetics and Genomics students provide an evaluation of how the module enabled them to develop skills such as information technology, organisational skills, team building, communication time management, and working under pressure.

Career, employability and opportunities for continuing professional development

Postgraduates in cancer pharmacology are primarily equipped to take up employment in cancer research. They could also pursue careers more generally in medical research, in hospital and public health laboratories. The analytical, numerical and communication skills developed on the course are also in demand in non-science based careers such as journalism, marketing, and management.

On-line areas such Career and Employability Advice and Career Portal are available to all Students, who, as Postgraduates, may already be pursuing defined career goals. Students are also made aware of the advantages of membership of, for example, The British Association for Cancer Research, and the British Pharmacological Society, and related careers information and employment opportunities advertised in their publications.

Career opportunities

Our graduates primarily go on to pursue a career in anti-cancer drug development in academia or the pharmaceutical industry. The programme also provides an excellent basis for further research or study.

Entry requirements

You will be required to have:

  • at least a lower second class (2.2) UK first degree (or equivalent) in an appropriate subject, for example pharmacology, biomedical science, biological science or medical genetics (these will be considered on an individual basis)

To study a degree at London Met, you must be able to demonstrate proficiency in the English language. If you require a Tier 4 student visa you may need to provide the results of a Secure English Language Test (SELT) such as Academic IELTS. For more information about English qualifications please see our English language requirements.

If you need (or wish) to improve your English before starting your degree, the University offers a Pre-sessional Academic English course to help you build your confidence and reach the level of English you require.

Official use and codes

Approved to run from 2013/14 Specification version 1 Specification status Validated
Original validation date 01 Sep 2013 Last validation date 04 Sep 2013  
Sources of funding HE FUNDING COUNCIL FOR ENGLAND
JACS codes 100250 (pharmacology): 100%
Route code CANPHA

Course Structure

Stage 1 Level 07 September start Offered

Code Module title Info Type Credits Location Period Day Time
BM7001 Scientific Frameworks For Research Core 20 NORTH SPR WED AM
          NORTH AUT TUE AM
BM7045 Cancer Pharmacology Core 20 NORTH SPR WED PM
BM7046 Cancer: Diagnosis and Therapy Core 20 NORTH AUT WED PM
BM7047 Molecular Oncology Core 20 NORTH AUT TUE PM
BM7122 Medical Genetics and Genomics Core 20 NORTH SPR MON PM
BM7P05 Research Project Core 60 NORTH SPR NA  
          NORTH SUM NA  
          NORTH AUT NA  
BM7027 Bioinformatics and Molecular Modelling Option 20 NORTH AUT FRI PM
MS7029 Drug Discovery Technology Option 20 NORTH AUT MON PM
MS7048 Advanced Drug Formulation Technologies Option 20 NORTH AUT TUE PM

Stage 1 Level 07 January start Offered

Code Module title Info Type Credits Location Period Day Time
BM7001 Scientific Frameworks For Research Core 20 NORTH SPR WED AM
BM7045 Cancer Pharmacology Core 20 NORTH SPR WED PM
BM7046 Cancer: Diagnosis and Therapy Core 20        
BM7047 Molecular Oncology Core 20        
BM7122 Medical Genetics and Genomics Core 20 NORTH SPR MON PM
BM7P05 Research Project Core 60 NORTH SPR NA  
          NORTH SUM NA  
BM7027 Bioinformatics and Molecular Modelling Option 20        
MS7029 Drug Discovery Technology Option 20        
MS7048 Advanced Drug Formulation Technologies Option 20