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Biomedical Sciences (Cellular Pathology) (MSc)


Course Description

This course will enable you to enhance your knowledge and understanding of modern cellular pathology through a range of option modules. In addition, the core modules in cellular pathology are designed to deliver a comprehensive overview of contemporary technical practice in the context of service delivery to the pathologist for diagnostic practice, or for the scientist engaged in cell and tissue-based research.

Our specialist cellular pathology modules are supported by the online use of interactive digital microscopy, for example in pathology case studies, to illustrate the applications of a range of visualisation methods in cellular pathology. Practical experience in research design and methodology is gained through the laboratory-based research project.

Core Modules

• Advances in Cellular Pathology
This module will engage with modern pathology practice in the cellular pathology specialty. You will evaluate advances in diagnostic, prognostic and predictive testing in the laboratory, discussed in the light of developments in our underpinning understanding of pathology and of evolving technologies.

• Diagnostic Cellular Pathology
This module provides you with a clear understanding of the science, practice and scope of routine diagnostic cellular pathology. The module will encourage you to evaluate disease pathogenesis at the molecular, cellular and tissue levels with particular reference to the diagnosis of disease in the cellular pathology laboratory

• Molecular Science and Diagnostics
This module is designed to make you aware of the impact of molecular biology on the diagnosis of human diseases. You will critically review the technologies and determine the advantages and disadvantages associated with each diagnostic strategy. Issues of accuracy, implementation, ethics and safety will be addressed.

• Postgraduate Project
You will be able to develop your skills in information retrieval, critical analysis and presentation relevant to your research topic, and form a clear plan for your project.

• Postgraduate Research Methods
This module aims to enhance your skills of self-management, experimental design, critical analysis and interpretation of data, enabling you to present and justify your research.

Option Modules

• Automation in Biomedical Sciences
This module will explore the current and potential impact of laboratory automation on the practice of biomedical science in the context of diagnosis and research. You will explore automation from the perspectives of technology, quality, impact on skill requirements, cost/benefit and laboratory organisation. The module will include site visits to laboratories using state-of-the-art automation.

• Cell Signalling and Genetics
This module provides up-to-date information on cell signalling processes coupling surface receptor engagement to changes in gene expression. Transcriptional, post-transcriptional and post-translational mechanisms are discussed in relation to selected cell-signalling pathways responsible for controlling cell functions such as cell cycle, cell differentiation and cell death. Examples of defective cell signalling through inherited and somatically acquired mutations in signalling components will be highlighted in relation to human disease.

• Extended Postgraduate Project
This module gives you the opportunity to investigate an appropriate research topic, generate and critically analyse data, and present your results and discuss findings in the context of previously published work. The project proposed and undertaken must include rigorous and critical analysis of data with a high level of initiative. This module is intended for students wishing to gain greater research experience and includes an extended period of research activity and extended assessment regime.

• Immunopathology
You will analyse and discuss cellular and molecular aspects of innate and adaptive immune responses, and advances in modern methods for disease diagnosis and treatment. This will include strategies available for the diagnosis of inherited and acquired immunological disorders, normal and pathological immune responses to extracellular and intracellular pathogens, transplantation of organs and tissues, immune surveillance of tumours, autoimmune and immunodeficiency disorders.

• Immunotherapy
The module aims to investigate the role of immunological tools such as vaccines, monoclonal antibodies and cytokines in the treatment of human disease.

• Molecular and Cellular Therapeutics
This module reviews and discusses the ways in which molecular biology has been used to treat inherited and acquired diseases. You will investigate the ethics and legislation involved in the use of novel therapies in humans.

• Principles of Molecular Medicine
The module provides you with a critical appreciation of the human genome, its regulation, functional significance of gene mutations and current approaches of identification of human genetic disorders. Topics covered include: molecular basis of host-pathogen interaction; molecular pathology of disease with simple genetics; molecular genetics of disease; complex systems, immunogenetics and disease; and molecular genetics of cancer.

Associated careers

As a graduate of this course you will possess a range of transferable skills that will enhance your employment prospects and your research opportunities in the UK or overseas. For those biomedical scientists (or international equivalents) undertaking continuing professional development, this course will enhance your knowledge base in your chosen specialist discipline and open up the potential for career advancement or moves towards involvement in research and development.

Successful completion of the course will enhance the career prospects of graduates for entering PhD programmes; you may also find employment in hospital laboratories, academia, research institutes, or in the pharmaceutical and related industries.

Professional recognition

The course is accredited by the Institute of Biomedical Science (IBMS).

Employability

At Westminster, we have always believed that your University experience should be designed to enhance your professional life. Today’s organisations need graduates with both good degrees and employability skills, and we are committed to enhancing your graduate employability by ensuring that career development skills are embedded in all courses.

Opportunities for part-time work, placements and work-related learning activities are widely available, and can provide you with extra cash and help you to demonstrate that you have the skills employers are looking for. In London there is a plentiful supply of part-time work – most students at the University of Westminster work part time (or full time during vacations) to help support their studies.

We continue to widen and strengthen our links with employers, involving them in curriculum design and encouraging their participation in other aspects of career education and guidance. Staff take into account the latest data on labour market trends and employers’ requirements to continually improve the service delivered to students.

Visit the Biomedical Sciences (Cellular Pathology) (MSc) page on the University of Westminster website for more details!

Entry Requirements

You must have at least a BSc Honours in Biomedical Sciences or a closely related subject, a professional qualification of equivalent status and associated work experience or an equivalent qualification deemed suitable by the course team. If you are applying for part-time study, you will normally be working in a relevant area and will require written support from your employer including confirmation that facilities will be available in your workplace for you to carry out your research project. If your first language is not English you should have an IELTS score of at least 6.5, with 6.0 in each element.

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