Our flexible, blended MSc Molecular Pathology course will enable you to take advantage of growing opportunities within this field, which is critically important for translational medicine, both in cancer and non-cancer diseases.
The number of academic pathologists trained in molecular pathology has steadily declined over the past 20 years. As such, it has been identified as an area requiring support and development by the Medical Research Council (MRC) and the Royal College of Pathologists, creating careers opportunities for students and professionals alike.
Our master's course is aimed at medical students, biomedical scientists, medical practitioners and trainee pathologists who want to learn more about molecular pathology. Trainee pathologists can take our course as part of an existing training programme.
You will benefit from a unique focus on the molecular analysis of tissue samples and take optional units in various areas of laboratory medicine and emerging diagnostic methods, such as proteomics and chemical pathology.
Students will also become part of Manchester's world leading precision medicine research community, learning practical skills that will be directly applicable to this emerging field.
In addition, you will benefit from our association with the network of MRC and Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council funded Molecular Pathology nodes, which have been partly established to train more scientists to work in this field. This will enable you to connect with colleagues and related opportunities across the UK.
This course aims to provide you with a wide and detailed understanding of the various aspects of molecular pathology.
Provided as part of The University of Manchester MRC/EPSRC Molecular Pathology node (Manchester Molecular Pathology Innovation Centre), we recognise the need for providing more training in molecular pathology among histopathology trainees, clinical scientists and biomedical scientists.
As such, the course addresses a wide audience, and has a broad range of both core and non-core course units to facilitate the different learning and training needs of different groups of professionals.
In addition to the taught components, which will give an in-depth understanding of molecular pathology and associated disciplines (including genomics and bioinformatics), the full MSc course will also develop your experience of and skills in scientific investigation, analytical thought and scientific criticism.
Professional input into course content
This course has been designed to take into consideration the training requirements of biomedical scientists, clinical scientists and medical histopathologists. We have consulted with local Postgraduate Deaneries and associated professional bodies including the Institute of Biomedical Scientists (IBMS) and the Royal College of Pathologists to tailor the content.
The option to take the course over four years will particularly appeal to specialist trainee pathologists, who will be able to fit study around their clinical training. They can also use Year 4 to undertake the research project over three months on a full-time, salaried basis, as per RCPath regulations and Deanery funding.
Teaching is largely delivered through face-to-face, interactive sessions, consisting of some lecture material, with discussions and group work, and with a range of audio-visual stimuli including PowerPoint slides, images and videos.
All units are supported by the use of Blackboard (a virtual learning environment) on which staff post lecture slides, reading lists and other accompanying material.
Each unit on Blackboard also has its own discussion board, where you can interact with staff and other students on the course, for example, by posting and responding to questions, and making comments related to the course.
For students completing the full MSc, a significant amount of teaching and learning will take place through the dissertation research unit (60 credits or 30 credits), in which you will be expected to take a lead role in developing a research project with regular support, input, and mentorship from your project supervisor.
Formative assessments will be given throughout the taught component of the course and will take the form of MCQs, short answer questions, verbal presentations, data and method analysis exercises.
A range of summative assessments will be employed to assess your knowledge and understanding, and the development of your intellectual and transferable skills including:
The assessment methods employed by each unit will vary and will be tailored to match the material delivered and stated ILOs of that particular unit.
Your ability to gather information from a wide range of sources, evaluate and critically analyse information, make considered judgments about that information and synthesise material into logical and coherent pieces of work will all be assessed.
Examples of the marking proformas used in the assessment of verbal and written assignments will be provided in student handbooks and on Blackboard, the University's virtual learning environment.
As per the postgraduate taught degree regulations, students exiting with a postgraduate diploma (or postgraduate certificate) may be permitted to rescind this award and upgrade to a master's (or postgraduate diploma) by successfully completing the appropriate further component of the course, providing the following conditions are met:
Course content for Year 1
Optional units (max 1 per semester):
Course content for Year 2
Optional units (max 1 per semester):
This degree allows you to undertake a major research project in a specialised subject within the UCL Division of Biosciences. To cater for the diversity of topics available, the degree is split into ten subject streams, each with a dedicated tutor. The programme can act as a gateway into further research in academia or industry.
Students gain knowledge of their chosen specialism through the major research project, alongside basic skills for planning research and the written, verbal and visual communication of science. The acquisition and critical analysis of primary scientific literature are essential, as is experiencing the multidisciplinary and collaborative nature of bioscience research.
Students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits.
The programme consists of three core modules (45 credits), one optional module (15 credits) and a research dissertation (120 credits).
Students select one optional module from the field of study of their chosen subject stream. Choice will be guided by the stream tutor and influenced by students' previous experience and project topic.
All students undertake an independent laboratory-based research project which culminates in a dissertation of 15,000-18,000 words.
Teaching and learning
The programme is delivered through lectures, seminars and tutorials, combining research-led and skills-based modules. The core modules are assessed by assignments and coursework, whereas the optional module will also have an examination element. The research project is assessed by an oral presentation, submission of a dissertation and is subject to oral examination.
Further information on modules and degree structure is available on the department website: Biosciences MRes
This programme provides an ideal foundation for further doctoral research in the field of biosciences, and we envisage that many of the graduates of this programme will undertake a PhD or enter employment in an advanced capacity in industry or the public sector. Approximately 70% of graduates have obtained a funded PhD position, either at UCL or elsewhere.
Recent career destinations for this degree
The flexibility and responsiveness of the Biosciences MRes programme provides training in many areas of cutting-edge scientific research. This launches our students into prime academic and industrial careers. Most of our students progress to further study in PhD positions at leading universities but others in the past have used the generic training from the programme to enter medical publishing and commercial science laboratories, for example.
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 2013–2015 graduating cohorts six months after graduation.
UCL is recognised as one of the world's best research environments within the field of biological and biomedical science.
The UCL Division of Biosciences is in a unique position to offer tuition, research opportunities in internationally recognised laboratories and an appreciation of the multidisciplinary nature of biosciences research.
The division includes the Departments of Cell & Developmental Biology; Neuroscience, Physiology & Pharmacology; Genetics, Evolution & Environment; and Structural & Molecular Biology and also hosts the Centre for Stem Cells & Regenerative Medicine, the UCL Genetics Institute and the Institute for Healthy Ageing.
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 Biosciences
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.
This award is offered within the Postgraduate Scheme in Health Technology, which aims to provide professionals in Medical Imaging, Radiotherapy, Medical Laboratory Science, Health Technology, as well as others interested in health technology, with an opportunity to develop advanced levels of knowledge and skills.
A. Advancement in Knowledge and Skill
Students develop intellectually, professionally and personally while advancing their knowledge and skills in Medical Laboratory Science. The specific aims of this award are:
B. Professional Development
C. Evidence-based Practice
D. Personal Development
Our laboratories are well-equipped to support students in their studies, research and dissertations. Our specialised equipment includes a flow cytometer, cell culture facilities; basic and advanced instruments for molecular biology research (including thermal cyclers, DNA sequencers, real-time PCR systems and an automatic mutation detection system), microplate systems for ELISA work, HPLC, FPLC, tissue processors, automatic cell analysers, a preparative ultracentrifuge and an automated biochemical analyser.
This programme is accredited by the Institute of Biomedical Science (UK), and graduates are eligible to apply for Membership of the Institute.
To be eligible for the MSc in Medical Laboratory Science (MScMLS), students are required to complete 30 credits:
Apart from the award of MScMLS, students can choose to graduate with the following specialism:
To be eligible for the specialism, students should complete 2 Compulsory Subjects (6 credits), a Dissertation (9 credits) related to the specialism, 4 Specialty Subjects (12 credits) and 1 Elective Subject (3 credits).
* Specialty Subject