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Medicinal Chemistry (Taught)

Cardiff University
Program overview
1-3 Years
Full time/part time
Master's degree
Scholarships available
Start dates
21,950 GBP
20 September 2021

21,950 GBP
27 September 2021

Program description

Medicinal Chemistry (Taught)

The search for new drugs to combat serious illnesses is an important and exciting challenge at the forefront of medical research. As a medicinal chemist, you can have a positive impact on the health and wellbeing of millions of people worldwide.

On the course, you will explore the wider context of drug discovery, business and healthcare, as well as developing the knowledge and laboratory skills needed to design drugs. You will also investigate the relationship between medicinal chemists and drug discovery companies with stakeholders such as patients, investors and governments.

There are opportunities for you to gain hands-on experience within a medicinal chemistry team during your research project.

The field of medicinal chemistry is becoming increasingly important as we continue to push the boundaries in the discovery of new drugs and applications in healthcare. This MSc in Medicinal Chemistry will allow you to specialise in this area and explore the wider context of drug discovery, business and healthcare.

Distinctive features

  • Accredited by the Royal Society of Chemistry.
  • Our School of Chemistry is ranked 9th in the UK in the most recent REF cycle.
  • Cardiff University has invested over £20 million in our Chemistry research facilities.
  • Network and build contacts with industry professionals who are frequently invited to present guest seminars.
  • Our research partners range from local and national SMEs to some of the world's largest multinationals.
  • Available on a one year full-time or three year part-time basis.
  • Explore medicinal chemistry in a wider industrial context, including how businesses interact with patients and investors.
  • Specialise in an area of interest to you with an end of course research project.
  • Some industrial and academic placements are available in the UK or abroad for the research project.

The modules shown are an example of the typical curriculum and will be reviewed prior to the 2020/21 academic year. The final modules will be published by September.

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Admission requirements

We invite applications from graduates in chemistry or a related discipline, such as chemical engineering, pharmacy, pharmacology and biochemistry, with a minimum 2:2 degree or equivalent. Applicants with a degree in a subject other than chemistry will be required to demonstrate knowledge and understanding of key chemical topics prior to an offer being made.

Entry to courses in chemistry will be subject to the University requirements for English language.

Note: International students pursuing part-time programs of study are not eligible for Tier 4 (General Student) visas and must have alternative leave to remain in the UK if they intend to study at the University in person.

Applicants should submit an application via the Online Application Service.

We will make a decision on the basis of your written application and the references received on a continuous basis throughout the year.

When you are applying for this course, please include information on why you are interested in medicinal chemistry in your personal statement. Specific details such as your future aspirations, and how your educational or professional background makes you a suitable applicant are welcomed. We do not accept generic statements.

For more information about admission requirements, please visit the university website

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Program content

  • Research Project
  • Colloquium
  • Key Skills for Postgraduate Chemists
  • Drug Discovery Chemistry
  • Techniques in Drug Discovery
  • Drug Targets
  • Drug Development from Laboratory to Clinic
  • Trends in Drug Discovery
  • Practical Medicinal Chemistry
  • Structure and Mechanism in Organic Chemistry
  • Biocatalysis I: Modern Approaches to Biocatalysts
  • Biocatalysis II: Industrial Applications of Biocatalysis
  • Bioinorganic Chemistry
  • Asymmetric Synthesis of Pharmaceuticals and Natural Products
  • Advanced Techniques in Organic and Biological Chemistry
  • Analytical and Structural Techniques in Chemical Biology
  • Bio-imaging Applications of Coordination Chemistry
  • Molecular Modelling
  • Molecular Modelling for Postgraduate Chemists
  • Engineering Biosynthesis

Scholarships & funding

For more information about scholarships, please visit the university website.

Tuition fees

Full-Time Tuition Fees

  • UK and EU students: £9,700
  • Students from outside the EU: £21,950

Part-Time Tuition Fees

  • UK and EU students: £4,850
  • Students from outside the EU: £10,975


What skills will I practise and develop?

On completing the course you will have developed key skills, which can be applied to a variety of industrial and academic working environments. You will have gained learning skills, information handling and presentation skills. In detail you should be able to:

  • Understand the theory, application, preparation and analysis of drug molecules to a level that is appropriate for graduates in chemistry or pharmaceutical sciences wishing to pursue a career in academia or industry.
  • Apply modern laboratory methods to the preparation, purification, evolution and application of drug molecules.
  • Understand the mechanism of action of a variety of molecules as therapeutic agents and apply this knowledge to unseen problems.
  • Use molecular modelling to implement drug design.
  • Critically evaluate novel drug targeting strategies and industry trends.
  • Describe how new technologies are being employed to increase productivity in drug discovery.
  • Describe and explain trends in drug approvals and drugs currently in the pipeline.
  • Understand where medicinal chemistry fits within the context of the pharmaceutical industry.
  • Work within a team to research solutions to unsolved problems in medicinal chemistry.
  • Present research work to peers in both oral and written format.

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About this institute

Cardiff University

Founded in 1883, Cardiff University combines a prestigious heritage with impressive modern facilities, on one of the most beautiful campuses in the UK. As part of the Russell Group, our students benefit from our outstanding research quality and reputation, while...

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Contact info

Cardiff University

CF10 3AT Cardiff

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Contact school

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