Designed in close collaboration with an international team of clinicians and research specialists, this focused MSc provides an understanding of the causes and treatment of cancer from 'bench-to-bedside'. You study both theory and practice to gain the specialist knowledge and skills required to pursue an academic career in cancer research or move into the more applied fields of cancer treatment, hospital pathology or industry.
The University has an international reputation for medical research and places a strong emphasis on cancer. This MSc is taught by a team of cancer research-focused staff from the School with internal and external expert guest lectures and seminars. We enjoy close collaborative links with NHS clinicians, clinical researchers and oncology staff who also deliver aspects of the programme.
Students are immersed in an excellent research environment and infrastructure, specifically the recently completed £6 million, state-of-the-art, cancer research facility housed in the Allam Building. The University has invested in preclinical optical and radiological imaging and radiotherapy research. Students engage in research in cutting edge facilities employing these and other technologies used for the early diagnosis and treatment of cancer, both on campus and within the Hull Royal Infirmary and Castle Hill Hospital.
This MSc is delivered by leading academic cancer scientists, research specialists, consultant clinical and medical oncologists, diagnosticians, radiologists, nurses and cancer surgeons, through a combination of lectures, expert seminars, state-of-the-art oncology-based practicals and projects supported by 'problem classes', workshops and tutorials.
Laboratory-based work is an important part of the programme, which includes an extended 12-week oncology research project carried out in the laboratory of an internationally-recognised cancer researcher. This MSc programme is designed to provide a highly supportive environment, in which teamwork, project management and communication skills are as important as technical proficiency.
Students are provided with in-depth specialist knowledge and insight into the fundamentals of Translational Oncology, alongside research-led teaching into the practical applications of cancer research. There is a strong emphasis on scientific method and associated skills.
* All modules are subject to availability.
Graduates of the MSc will be highly attractive candidates for competitive PhD programmes with a basis in oncology.
The programme provides a platform for developing transferable skills that are appropriate for employment within industry, basic science laboratories, clinical laboratories, and education and research.
You also learn transferable skills, highly valued by employers in many fields, including team work, critical analysis, IT skills, time management, presentation skills, problem solving, project management and discipline.
Our MRes Oncology course will enable you to develop the skills and knowledge you need to prepare for a career in cancer research.
Cancer is a major cause of mortality and morbidity worldwide. Approximately 300,000 people develop the disease each year in the UK.
Understanding the basis of tumourigenesis and developing new therapies are high priority areas for investment, especially since the economic burden of cancer is increasing. The field of oncology encompasses a wide variety of biological and physical sciences.
You will learn from renowned basic, translational and clinical scientists at the Manchester Cancer Research Centre, the Cancer Research UK (CRUK) Manchester Institute and The Christie NHS Foundation Trust, with a focus on developing practical research skills.
Our course covers the clinical and research aspects of cancer care, and you will have access to an exceptionally wide range of research projects in basic cancer biology, translational areas and clinical cancer care and imaging.
This MRes has both taught and research components and is suitable for those with little or no previous research experience.
Our MRes course aims to provide postgraduate level training that will equip you with the specialist knowledge and research skills to pursue a research career in the fields of medical and clinical oncology.
You will gain an understanding of the scientific basis of cancer and its treatments, as well as the skills needed to evaluate the potential efficacy of new treatments.
This course also offers the potential to:
Clinical and research components
This is one of only a handful of MRes Oncology courses in the UK. Unlike many other oncology courses, ours has both clinical and research elements, making it suitable for both medical undergraduates and graduates, as well as biomedical science graduates.
Our MRes is structured around a 2:1 split between laboratory/clinical-based research projects and taught elements.
Laboratory and clinical research experience is gained through two research placements, one lasting approximately ten weeks (October to December) and the second lasting approximately 25 weeks (January to August).
You may choose to carry out one project for both placements, which most students do, or separate projects for each placement.
Most research placements are based at the Christie site, either within the hospital, the Manchester Cancer Research Centre or CRUK Manchester Institute premises. Projects are also available on the Central Manchester University Hospitals and University Hospital of South Manchester sites.
A list of available projects will be provided to offer holders in August.
Students are assessed through oral presentations, single best answer exams, written reports and a dissertation.
The course features the following components:
The Research Methods course unit covers topics relating to:
The Clinical Masterclass course unit provides a truly multidisciplinary foundation in the key issues in oncology. Delivery is by lectures and site tours and these classes will offer the student the chance to debate with internationally recognised experts in their field. Areas covered include:
Following attendance at these classes, you will be able to understand how cancer is diagnosed and the principles of cancer surgery, radiotherapy and chemotherapy.
The Lecture Series course unit comprises two intensive one-week courses, one in November and the other in February. The November course covers the biological basis of chemotherapy, pharmacology and cancer biology. The February course covers the biological basis of radiotherapy and translational aspects of cancer research, including biomarkers and new technologies.
The Tutorial course unit allows students to choose from a selection of clinical and academic oncology topics. The unit aims to improve ability to interpret and criticise literature as well as improve verbal communication skills in a small group setting.
Our MRes Experimental Cancer Medicine master's course will give nurses, doctors and clinical researchers the skills needed to work in early phase clinical studies.
You will learn how to master experimental cancer through a combination of traditional teaching and hands-on learning, spending a year as a member of the Experimental Cancer Medicine Team at The Christie while also taking four structured taught units.
The taught units will see you learn the details of designing and delivering Phase 1 clinical studies, understanding the pre-clinical data required before a clinical programme can commence, and how to optimise early clinical studies to provide evidence for progressing a promising drug into Phase II/III clinical testing.
Alongside the taught elements, you will be allocated to one or more clinical trials that are being conducted by The Christie experimental cancer medicine team. You will have a named trainer and be exposed to tasks required in the setup, delivery, interpretation and audit of a clinical study.
Nursing and physician students will be expected to participate in patient care, including new and follow-on patient clinics, treatment and care-giving episodes with patients.
For clinical trials coordinators, no direct patient contact is envisaged and duties will involve clinical trial setup, protocol amendments, database setup, data entry, costing and billing for clinical research.
You will be able to choose two aspects of your direct clinical trial research experience to write up for your two research projects in a dissertation format. This will give you the skills and knowledge required to critically report medical, scientific and clinically related sciences for peer review.
The primary purpose of the MRes in Experimental Cancer Medicine is to provide you with the opportunity to work within a premier UK Phase 1 cancer clinical trials unit and, through a mix of taught and experiential learning, master the discipline of Experimental Cancer Medicine.
Extensive practical experience
You will spend most of your time gaining hands-on experience within The Christie's Experimental Cancer Medicine Team.
Meet the course team
Dr Natalie Cook is a Senior Clinical Lecturer in Experimental Cancer Medicine at the University and Honorary Consultant in Medical Oncology at The Christie. She completed a PhD at Cambridge, investigating translational therapeutics and biomarker assay design in pancreatic cancer.
Professor Hughes is Chair of Experimental Cancer Medicine at the University and Strategic Director of the Experimental Cancer Medicine team at The Christie. He is a member of the research strategy group for Manchester Cancer Research Centre. He serves on the Biomarker evaluation review panel for CRUK grant applications.
Professor Hughes was previously Global Vice-President for early clinical development at AstraZeneca, overseeing around 100 Phase 0/1/2 clinical studies. He was previously Global Vice-President for early phase clinical oncology, having been involved in over 200 early phase clinical studies.
Dr Matthew Krebs is a Clinical Senior Lecturer in Experimental Cancer Medicine at the University and Honorary Consultant in Medical Oncology at The Christie.
He has a PhD in circulating biomarkers and postdoctoral experience in single cell and ctDNA molecular profiling. He is Principal Investigator on a portfolio of phase 1 clinical trials and has research interests in clinical development of novel drugs for lung cancer and integration of biomarkers with experimental drug development.
Our course is structured around a 2:1 split between clinical-based research projects and taught elements respectively.
Taught course units will predominantly use lectures and workshops.
For the research projects, teaching and learning will take place through one-to-one mentoring from a member of the Experimental Cancer Medicine team.
The clinical and academic experience of contributors to this course will provide you with an exceptional teaching and learning experience.
You will be assessed through oral presentations, single best answer exams, written reports and dissertation.
For each research project, you will write a dissertation of 10,000 to 15,000 words. Examples of suitable practical projects include the following.
Publication-based/dissertation by publication
Service development/professional report/ report based dissertation
Adapted systematic review (qualitative data)
Full systematic review that includes data collection (quantitative data)
Qualitative or quantitative empirical research
Qualitative secondary data analysis/analysis of existing quantitative data
Quantitative secondary data analysis/analysis of existing qualitative data/theoretical study/narrative review
Teaching will take place within The Christie NHS Foundation Trust , Withington.
Practical support and advice for current students and applicants is available from the Disability Advisory and Support Service. Email: [email protected]
This course is relevant to physician, nursing and clinical research students who are considering a career in Phase 1 clinical studies.
The course provides a theoretical and experiential learning experience and offers a foundation for roles within other experimental cancer medicine centres within the UK and EU, as well as careers in academia, the pharmaceutical industry, clinical trials management and medicine.
The MRes is ideal for high-calibre graduates and professionals wishing to undertake directly channelled research training in the clinical and medical oncology field.