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Course content

About the course

This unique research-led masters course provides laboratory training to future scientists in drug screening and gene discovery using the latest automated genomics techniques. Students will also gain training in pharmaceutical industry practices through direct contact with industry leaders from a wide range of companies.

Your research project will be undertaken in conjunction with the internationally renowned Sheffield RNAi Screening Facility, providing you with world-class training and professional skills in the use of pharmaco-genomics. You’ll also benefit from our modern research laboratories and equipment, including purpose-built facilities for drug screening, laboratory automation, cellular assays, imaging and processing.

Learn from the experts

The 2014 Research Excellence Framework (REF) rates us No 1 in the UK for research in this field. Our international reputation attracts highly motivated staff and students. Sheffield is a vibrant place to take a masters based on pioneering research.

Regular seminars from distinguished international experts help you to connect your studies to the latest developments. We’re also part of collaborative research groups for developmental biology, cell biology, physiology, pharmacology, neuroscience, models of human disease, stem cell science and regenerative medicine.

Our three research centres focus on translating laboratory research to the clinical environment: Bateson Centre, the Centre for Stem Cell Biology, and the Centre for Membrane Interactions and Dynamics.

Leaders in our field

We have a long track record of groundbreaking discoveries. These include breakthroughs in human stem cells for hearing repair, and the generation of animal models for Parkinson’s disease, schizophrenia, muscular dystrophies and their use for therapeutic studies.

Labs and equipment

We have purpose-built facilities for drosophila, zebrafish, chick and mouse genetics and for molecular physiology. Other facilities provide all the tools you’ll need to examine and analyse a range of cellular structures. We have an electron and a light microscopy centre, a PCR robotics facility, a flow cytometry unit and an RNAi screening facility.

Teaching and assessment

There are lectures, practical classes, tutorials and seminars. In small group teaching classes you’ll discuss, debate and present on scientific and ethical topics. Laboratory placements within the department provide you with one-to-one attention, training and support to do your individual research project. Assessment is by formal examinations, coursework assignments, debates, poster presentations and a dissertation.

Our teaching covers ethics, practical scientific skills and an overview of the current literature. You’ll also develop useful career skills such as presentation, communication and time management.

Core modules

  • Literature Review
  • Practical Research Project
  • Analysis of Current Science
  • Ethics and Public Understanding

Examples of optional modules

  • Practical Approaches to Small Molecule and Functional Genomic Screening
  • 3D Tissue Culture and Genome Editing
  • Genomic Approaches to Drug Discovery
  • The Biotech and Pharmaceutical Industry
  • Modelling Human Disease

Visit the MSc Genomic Approaches to Drug Discovery page on the University of Sheffield website for more details!

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