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Course content

Barts and the London School of Medicine and Dentistry, Queen Mary University of London, has a long history of providing high quality postgraduate education for clinicians and scientists working in the National Health Service (NHS), Public Health England (PHE) and industry. The aim of this programme is to prepare you for the next stage of your career, whether pursuing further research or professional study. 

Students on this course will share many of the formal teaching and practical sessions with students on the MSc Biomedical Science (Medical Microbiology) and MSc Clinical Science (Infection Science) courses, allowing inter-professional learning, but each course has its own unique additional teaching, electronic learning resources and assessments. 

The course aims to promote teaching and learning enriched by original scholarship and scientific research; encouraging students to become independent learners. 

Formal teaching comprises lectures, workshops, practical classes and demonstrations. Many of the lecturers are specialists in their field and are invited from many institutions within the UK. 

The practical classes are an important component of the course and are designed to give the students hands-on experience, particularly in basic clinical microbiology. Students are encouraged to relate current practices in their workplace to their studies, and to discuss and critically evaluate these techniques with their colleagues in light of their formal teaching. The practical classes are taught in the purpose-built teaching laboratory, which is well equipped with all necessary materials and is based on a routine clinical microbiology laboratory. 

In addition to the formal face to face teaching, students use online learning materials in the University's virtual learning environment (QMplus). 

Self-directed learning, by reading and reviewing literature to supplement the lectures, is essential and students are encouraged to use the library (both electronic and onsite) and computer facilities within the University. All students have off site access to the library and the electronic learning environment. 

This programme will provide: 

  • a systematic understanding of knowledge, and a critical awareness of current problems and/or new insights, much of which is at, or informed by, the forefront of medical microbiology and professional practice;
  • a comprehensive understanding of techniques applicable to their own research or advanced scholarship;
  • the opportunity to demonstrate originality in the application of knowledge, together with a practical understanding of how established techniques of research and enquiry are used to create and interpret knowledge in medical microbiology;
  • a conceptual understanding that enables the student to evaluate critically current research and advanced scholarship in medical microbiology;
  • the ability to evaluate methodologies and develop critiques of them and, where appropriate, to propose new hypotheses


Part-time study

This course is offered as a part-time study option only. 

To study this course as a part-time student, you must be employed in a suitable laboratory within the NHS, PHE or the private sector and your employer will need to support your application, to be able to give you time to study. The taught element of the course is provided one day a week and you will also be expected to undertake additional private study. In your first year of study you will attend on Tuesdays and in your second year, your day of attendance will be Thursdays. 

Additional tuition

In addition to the taught elements, theoretical tutorials are also used throughout the year to broaden the students' experience of clinical microbiology. These tutorials include case presentations to and by the students, workshops, discussion sessions, question-and-answer sessions, and oral presentations by the students. 

Modules offered on this course are:

  • Introduction to clinical microbiology (30 credits)
  • Molecular biology, pathogenesis and immunology (15 credits)
  • Antimicrobials in clinical practice (15 credits)
  • Communicable disease : prevention and control in the hospital and community (15 credits)
  • Clinical microbiology : diagnosis and management of human infection (30 credits)
  • Advanced clinical microbiology and laboratory management (15 credits)

Learning and teaching

As students at Queen Mary, you will be expected to play an active part in your acquisition of skills and knowledge. A variety of teaching and learning methods will be employed in the PG Diploma programme, including: seminars, laboratory practice sessions, self-directed learning, tutorials, case presentations, all supported by reading lists and journal papers. Students are assigned a personal mentor who will guide them in both academic and pastoral matters throughout their time at Queen Mary. 


The modules are assessed using a combination of final written examinations and a series of in-course assessments. The in-course assessments consist of literature reviews, oral and poster presentations, practical and written exams. They are designed as a learning experience as well as a test of knowledge. 


Tuition fees for Home and EU students

2019/20 Academic Year

Part time £3,053

Tuition fees for International students

2019/20 Academic Year

Part time £5,460


There are a number of sources of funding available for Masters students.

These include a significant package of competitive Queen Mary University of London (QMUL) bursaries and scholarships in a range of subject areas, as well as external sources of funding.

Queen Mary bursaries and scholarships

We offer a range of bursaries and scholarships for Masters students including competitive scholarships, bursaries and awards, some of which are for applicants studying specific subjects.

Find out more about QMUL bursaries and scholarships.

Other financial help on offer at Queen Mary

We offer one to one specialist support on all financial and welfare issues through our Advice and Counselling Service, which you can access as soon as you have applied for a place at Queen Mary.

Our Advice and Counselling Service also has lots of Student Advice Guides on all aspects of finance including:

Visit the PGDip Clinical Microbiology page on the Queen Mary University of London website for more details!




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