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MSc in Medicinal Chemistry

Course Description

How are drugs designed? This qualification focuses on the latest developments in this critical area of contemporary medical therapy, while developing a wide range of skills associated with postgraduate study. You will study aspects of medicinal chemistry that explore the links between disease, mechanisms of action and the development of safe, effective commercial drugs – pursuing these topics across a number of major health areas such as cancer, heart disease, infectious diseases, neuropharmacology and inflammation.

Key features of the course

•Explores current research and advanced scholarship within medicinal chemistry
•Critically evaluates research methodologies
•Concludes with a substantial piece of independent research on a topic of your choice.

This qualification is eligible for a Postgraduate Loan available from Student Finance England. For more information, see Fees and funding.

Course details


We recommend that you take the modules in the order listed below. However if you would prefer to start in February 2017, you can do so with Molecules in medicine (S807) before studying Developing research skills in science (S825) from October 2017. You must have successfully completed S807 before studying the project module, which we expect you to as the final module for this qualification. You must have successfully completed the taught modules before you undertake the project module as the topic you choose for your research project must be linked to medicinal chemistry.

To gain this qualification, you need 180 credits as follows:

Compulsory modules

• Developing research skills in science (S825)
• Molecules in medicine (S807)
• Concept to clinic (S827)

MSc project module for MSc in Medicinal Chemistry (SXM810)

The modules quoted in this description are currently available for study. However, as we review the curriculum on a regular basis, the exact selection may change over time.

Credit transfer

If you’ve successfully completed some relevant postgraduate study elsewhere, you might be able to count it towards this qualification, reducing the number of modules you need to study. Please note that credit transfer is not available for the MSc project module (SXM810). You should apply for credit transfer as soon as possible, before you register for your first module. For more details and an application form, visit our Credit Transfer website.

Visit the MSc in Medicinal Chemistry page on the Open University website for more details!

Entry Requirements

You must normally hold a UK honours degree (or equivalent qualification) in science, or a science-related subject relevant to this qualification. We strongly recommend that you check whether or not your background and experience are sufficient to give you a sound basis on which to tackle this qualification, since we have found that students who are appropriately prepared have the best chance of completing their studies successfully. Our booklet Preparing for S807 and S827 provides more detailed guidance; this can be viewed or printed as a PDF. Please contact us or visit our website for further information.

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