Explores the link between genes, disease & treatment by combining the study of drugs and their effects in the body with study of the structure & function of genes & genomes. An ideal basis for careers in the pharmaceutical industry or biomedical research, especially in pharmacogenetics - the variation of a drug’s effectiveness and toxicity on an individual’s genetic make-up. Also prepares for graduate entry to medicine.
- Europe's largest centre for medical and professional healthcare education.
- Only university to host six Medical Research Council centres.
- Teaching by internationally renowned scientists and researchers.
- Contemporary approach based on our history of pioneering discoveries – including our part in finding the structure of DNA.
- Top-rated Pharmacology programme in latest National Student Survey.
- Optional Extramural Year in industry or research institution.
- Highly rated in the National Student Survey
- Opportunity to progress onto four year MSci programme
Three years (or four years with optional extramural year or converson to MSci Integrative Pharmacology & Physiology for Research)
Year of entry 2014
School of Biomedical Sciences
Department of Pharmacology and Therapeutics
Please refer to the UCAS website
for application deadline dates, or contact the relevant Admissions Office for further advice
Fees & funding
For information on fees and funding for undergraduate programmes at King's go to http://www.kcl.ac.uk/ug/funding/
King’s College London
London SE1 1UL
020 7848 6511
020 7848 6510
The Pharmacology & Molecular Genetics BSc degree is jointly organised by the Departments of Pharmacology and Biochemistry in recognition of the need for graduates who are conversant with the concepts and techniques of both disciplines.
Pharmacology is the study of drugs and their effects on the human body, while genetics is the study of the structure and function of genes and genomes (the genome is the entire genetic material of an organism) in order to understand how they determine inherited characteristics.
Genomics is a powerful tool in the study of human genetic variation: the small differences in alleles between individuals can affect their characteristics and health. It is closely related to the term 'pharmacogenetics' which is the study of variation of a drug's effectiveness and toxicity between individuals in relation to variation in their genome. Genomics also comes into play in the term 'toxicogenomics' in which changes in gene expression are investigated as a means of classifying and understanding the harm produced by toxic substances (including drugs) to which we may be exposed.
Pharmacogenetics studies are of major importance to the medical profession and pharmaceutical industry, as drug design and treatments are being influenced by an understanding of the genetic variation between individual patients. In addition, our growing knowledge of the molecular basis of disease allows the development of new therapies based on rational drug design.
Graduates from this course will be well qualified to contribute to these rapidly growing fields. They will also be well qualified for general biomedical fields and graduate entry to medicine.
All students are initially admitted onto the three-year Pharmacology & Molecular Genetics BSc programme. However, conditional upon suitable performance in the first-year examinations, students may switch onto our four-year programme with Extramural Year. Others may wish to specialise later in integrative, whole animal studies in which case they may progress, at the end of Year 3, onto our MSci Integrated Pharmacology and Physiology for Research.Year One
The first year of study is common to all degree programmes within the School of Biomedical Sciences. This so-called Common Year One programme introduces you to a broad range of subjects that provide a firm foundation for subsequent specialisation in pharmacology. In addition to pharmacology, modules cover biochemistry, genetics, cell biology, physiology, cell and tissue structure and function, neuroscience, statistics and issues related to the practice of science, including ethics and communication. This broad curriculum also allows flexibility to switch between programmes in subsequent years, if this is desired. First year is largely examined by multiple-choice and short answer type questions and makes up around ten percent of the final degree mark.Year Two
In their second year students will take a selection of the core modules from the Pharmacology and Molecular Genetics degrees. The courses allow a greater degree of self-directed study and are examined by essay-style examination questions and a range of different types of in-course assessments, including the writing up of practical experiments, oral and poster presentations. This year comprises about 30% of the final degree mark. Four core modules are taken.Drug Discovery & Development
is taught partly by experts from the pharmaceutical industry and offers insight into the process of drug discovery from the molecule to the bedside, as well as increasing practical skills for our students.Drugs & Disease
emphasises the mechanisms by which drugs in clinical use for a variety of diseases bring about their desired effects as well as unwanted side-effects. Oral and poster presentation skills are introduced as part of this module, alongside additional practical work.Gene Cloning & Expression
considers how genes are expressed in eukaryotes and prokaryotes and provides training in the use of molecular biology techniques, highlighting their application in research and medicine.Human & Molecular Genetics
The aim of the module is to develop students understanding of key concepts of genetics through lectures and formative data handling exercises. The genetic basis of a range of human disorders will be covered and also the use of genetic model organism.
A number of optional modules also exist, such as:Medical Microbiology
which examines a range of microorganisms that can give rise to human disease.Neuroscience
which provides an understanding of the principles of neuroscience with emphasis on the structure and function of the human nervous system through integrations of neuroanatomy, neuropharmacology, neurophysiology and psychology.Foreign Language
courses are available at the King’s Modern Language Centre.Optional year in industry/research
Following completion of their second year, about a quarter of our students opt to take an extramural year. If you choose this route you may take up a research placement at home or abroad, to gain valuable first-hand experience of research. Previous placement have included GlaxoSmithKline, AstraZeneca, Eli Lilly & Co Ltd., Novartis and the William Harvey Research Institute. On returning to the College for the final year, a student’s performance during the extramural year is assessed through a written dissertation and poster presentation.Final year
Final year modules strongly reflect the research interests of our staff and some courses place great emphasis on developing practical expertise. The core modules are Cellular & Molecular Pharmacology
, which emphasises aspects relevant to the understanding of drug receptor, structure and function, Advanced Molecular Genetics
which covers a range of advanced molecular genetic techniques and illustrates their applications in both research and genetic diagnostic situations and Molecular Genetics of Model Organisms
which examines, using a range of model organisms, how molecular genetic methodologies are used to identify genes involved in development, cell biology, physiology and biochemistry.
All of our students also take a project module. Those offered include Literature, Drug Discovery and Experimental Research Projects
. This allows the student to examine a particular area of pharmacology or molecular genetics in greater depth through the appraisal of published literature or by undertaking a laboratory-based project. This year contributes around 60% to the overall degree mark.
A wide range of optional modules are available including:
Optional MSci in Integrated Pharmacology & Physiology for Research
- Pharmacology of Inflammation provides up-to-date information about the roles of the cells and endogenous substances (mediators) in acute and chronic inflammation and how these ideas underpin the use and development of drugs for treating inflammatory diseases like asthma and arthritis.
- Pharmacology of Neurological and Psychiatric Disorders examines the pharmacology and pathophysiology of neurological and psychiatric conditions like Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease and how this knowledge informs the use of current drugs and future drug development for treating these conditions.
- Bioinformatics and Sequence Analysis provides an understanding of the role of computers and networks in the elucidation of gene structure, genomic organisation, protein structure and the interpretation of sequence (DNA and Protein data).
At the end of the 3-year BSc programme, some students opt to carry out a further year of study at King's to obtain specialist training in integrative models of disease. The MSci in Integrated Pharmacology & Physiology for Research provides theoretical and practical training in state-of-the-art whole organism techniques to facilitate gaining relevant employment in industry or academia. Students also undertake a six-month research project with an industrial partner or leading academic.
ABOUT THE Department of Pharmacology and Therapeutics
King’s pharmacology graduates are highly attractive to a variety of employers. Some of our graduates are employed as research scientists in university, hospital or industrial laboratories where they design and carry out experiments to examine the usefulness of new drugs or new drug targets. Many are studying for higher degrees such as an MSc or a PhD. Others have joined pharmaceutical companies as medical sales representatives or medical information officers who monitor scientific literature for publications relevant to the company’s research.
Companies also employ pharmacology graduates as drug registration officers who submit research findings to the international registration authorities for approval before new medicines are released for general use, or as clinical research associates involved in the design and coordination of clinical trials of new drugs. Graduate entry into medicine is becoming increasingly popular and a pharmacology degree provides an excellent platform and training for this. Studying pharmacology will also equip you with a wide range of transferable skills including data gathering, analysis and interpretation, presentation skills and teamwork, which will be relevant for graduate careers with many public and private sector employers.
Recent graduates have found employment as…
• Pharmacologist, Novartis
• Clinical Research Assistant, Parexel International
• Laboratory Assistant, P&G
• Regulatory Compliance Administrator, a charity
• Project Manager, Ford Motor Company
Teaching is delivered by a combination of lectures, seminars, tutorials and practical laboratory work. Tutorials are teaching sessions between an academic tutor and small groups of students where there is an opportunity to discuss work in detail and where subjects for coursework are agreed. Student seminars, involving larger groups, poster presentations (like those used at formal scientific meetings) and personal tutor sessions supplement tutorials.
We use our research experiences not only to advance the scientific field, but also to enhance our teaching and in your final year especially you will be able to choose from a range of subjects that reflect our expertise. We also maintain strong links with colleagues in the pharmaceutical industries who support our extramural year programme and also deliver teaching on some of our courses.
STRUCTURE OF PROGRAMMES & ASSESSMENT
The first year is common to all degrees within the School of Biomedical & Health Sciences, to allow flexibility between programmes in subsequent years. Topics covered in year one provide a firm foundation for the subsequent in-depth study of pharmacology. In Year Two, pharmacology becomes the main focus of study with topics covering the mechanisms of drug action, their current clinical utility in disease and the drug discovery process in general.
In your final year, in addition to learning up-to-date information in a wide range of our specialist pharmacological areas, you may also work in one of our state-of-the art research laboratories investigating exciting topics as diverse as the regulation of intracellular messengers in single cells, the effects of novel drugs in animal models of disease or the effects of drugs on human guinea pigs. Assessment is usually by written examination at the end of each academic year. Increasing importance is being given to coursework which takes a variety of forms including essay writing, laboratory reports, talks and poster presentations.
As a large multifaculty university, we have excellent social and sporting facilities, but a key attraction is our central London location. Our three campuses along the River Thames are located in the cultural and social heart of the capital and offer our students the opportunity to explore art galleries, theatres, museums, markets, restaurants and cafés.
Year in industry/research
Between the second and final year of the BSc in Pharmacology you may apply to undertake an extramural year during which you are placed in paid employment to work on an approved experimental project. This provides an excellent opportunity to gain valuable experience of research in industry as well as supplementing your overall learning experience.
You may also opt to study abroad for your second year with our partner institutions in the USA, Australia, Singapore or Sweden.
MSci in Integrated Pharmacology & Physiology for Research
Some students opt to carry our a fourth year at King's to obtain specialist training in integrative models of disease, graduating with an MSci degree in Integrated Pharmacology & Physiology for Research.
Currently, students study the following core modules. If there are optional modules available the current choices are also shown. King's reviews its optional modules on a regular basis, in order to continue to offer innovative and exciting programmes and this list is therefore subject to change. Please check here for updates, or contact the School/Departments for further advice.
In common with all of the BSc programmes in the School of Biomedical Sciences, students take compulsory modules in the biomedical science disciplines.
YEAR 1 CORE
Modules cover biochemistry, genetics, cell biology, physiology, pharmacology, cell and tissue structure and function, statistics and issues related to the practice of science, including ethics and communication.
Students take core courses including modules in the subjects outlined, plus a choice from the options listed.
YEAR 2 CORE
Drug Discovery & Development
Drugs & Disease B
Gene Cloning & Expression
Human & Molecular Genetics A
YEAR 2 OPTIONS
Animal Models of Disease & Injury
Cell Biology A/B
Cell Biology A
The Immune System in Health & Disease
A modern language
Students should take a combination of compulsory taught modules plus an original research project (subject to a good standard of performance in practical-based units in previous years).
YEAR 3 CORE
Advanced Molecular Genetics
Either Cell and Molecular Pharmacology or Cellular Basis of Drug Dependence
Molecular Genetics of Model Organisms
YEAR 3 OPTIONS
Extended Research Project in Molecular Science or
Pharmacology Research Project
Extended Pharmacology Research Project
Project Design in Pharmacology
Advanced Molecular Biology Techniques
Biochemistry & Genetics of Human Disease
Bioinformatics & Sequence Analysis
Experimental Cardiovascular Pharmacology
Experimental Pharmacology of Neurological & Psychiatric Disorders
Experimental Pharmacology of Inflammation
Infection & Disease in the Modern World
Mammalian Iron Metabolism
Medical & Cancer Genetics
Nutrition & Genetics
Parasitology of Tropical Diseases
Pharmacology of Neurological & Psychiatric Disorders
Pharmacology Library Project
Topics in Regenerative Medicine
Viruses & Disease
plus options from inside or outside the School eg a Modern Language
For students taking the optional Year Four MSci in Integrated Pharmacology & Physiology for Research only.
YEAR 4 CORE
Principles of In Vivo Pharmacology
Characterising Novel Pharmacology in Animal Models
Experimental Integrative Pharmacology & Physiology
Home Office Personal Licence Course
Extended Research Project in Integrated Pharmacology & Physiology
Tertiary Entrance Ranking
96+ ATAR, or an OP of band 3 for Queensland including high marks in Chemistry and Biology
Reifezeugnis with 1 including 1 in Chemistry and Biology
Certificat D’Enseignement Secondaire Superieur/Diplma van Secundair Onderwijs with 8/10 or 17/20 including 8 or 17 in Chemistry and Biology
Leaving CertifHigh School icate (Certificado de Ensino Médio) with 8 OR B OR Muito Bom PLUS at least one year of Bacharel/Licenciado at a Brazilian University with a GPA of at least 8.0 OR the King’s College London International Foundation Programme OR 3 A-levels with grades of AAB. Including high marks in Chemistry and Biology
School Leaving Certificate
Diploma za Sredno Obrazovanie with the majority of subject marks of 5.5 including 5.5 in Chemistry and Biology
Secondary School Certificate/Diploma
High School Certificate/Diploma with 85% OR Ontario University Preparatory Course with 85% at five grade 12 4U subjects including Biology and Chemistry. The sixth subject may be at 4U or 4U/C level. OR the Quebec CEGEP Cote R with an overall R score of 31.
Licencia de Educación Media with 6 PLUS at least one year of the Licenciatura at a Chilean university with a mark of 5 OR the Kings College London International Foundation Programme OR 3 A-levels with grades of AAB. Including high marks in Chemistry and Biology
Gao Kao (University Entrance Examination)
University Entrance Examination including high marks in Chemistry and Biology with at least a foundation/Access year or one year of undergraduate study at a Chinese university with at least 80%.
Apolytirion (School Leaving Certificate) with 18 including high marks in Chemistry and Biology plus at least an additional foundation/Access year
Maturita with 1 including 1 in Chemistry and Biology
Studentereksamen or Hjere Forberedelseseksamen
Studentereksamen or Højere Forberedelseseksamen with 10 including 10 in Chemistry and Biology
Gmnaasiumi lputunnistus (Secondary School Leaving Certificate)
Gümnaasiumi lõputunnistus with majority marks of 5, (including 5 in Chemistry and Biology) and an attestation of success in the state entry examinations (Riigieksamitunnistus)
Ylioppilastutkinto/Studentexamen (National Matriculation)
Ylioppilastutkinto with 6 including 6 in Chemistry and Biology
Baccalaureat (including the option internationale baccalaureat)
The Baccalaureat with 13/20 overall and 13 in Chemistry and Biology
Abitur with 1.5 overall including high marks in Chemistry and Biology
School Leaving Certificate
the West African Senior School Certificate (WASSC/WASSCE) PLUS 3 international Cambridge-board A levels at AAB including high marks in Chemistry and one other science
Apolytirion with 18 including high marks in Chemistry and Biology
Hong Kong Diploma of Secondary Education (HKDSE)
Three elective subjects at minimum Levels 5, 5, 5 to include Chemistry and Biology, plus Level 4 in each of the core subjects.
Erettsegi with 5 including 5 in Chemistry and Biology
School Leaving Certificate
School Leaving Certificate with 85% overall OR School Leaving Certificate with 75% including high marks in Chemistry and Biology with at least a foundation/Access year or year of undergraduate study at an Indian univeristy.
School Leaving Certificate
Pre-University Certificate (Peeshdaneshgahe) OR the National Entrance Exam (Kunkur) with 16 OR 3 Cambridge A levels at AAB. All including high marks in Chemistry and Biology
Irish Leaving Certificate (Higher level unless otherwise stated)
A1 A1 A1 A2 B1 B1 including Chemistry and Biology at A grade.
Esame di Stato
Esame di Stato with 90 including high marks in Chemistry and Biology
School Leaving Certificate
Upper Secondary School Leaving Certificate (Kotogakko Sotsugyo Shomeisho) PLUS 3 Cambridge Board International A-levels at ABB OR an Associate degree or Diploma from a Junior College (Jun-Gakushi) with a GPA of 3.3 or B+ or 4 OR a foundation year. Including Chemistry and Biology
Atestats par visparejo videjo izglitibu (Certificate of General Secondary Education)
Atestats par visparejo videjo izglitibu with 8 including high marks in Chemistry and Biology with at least a foundation/Access year or a year of undergraduate study at a Latvian university
Brandos Atestatas (Maturity Certificate)
Brandos Atestatas with 90 including high marks in Chemistry and Biology with at least a foundation/Access year or a year of undergraduate study at a Lithuanian university
Diplome de Fin D
Diplome de Fin D’Etudes Secondaires with Tres bien including Tres bien in Chemistry and Biology
Matriculation Certificate - Advanced level
Matriculation Certificate with AAB including Chemistry and Biology
The Bachillerato with a mark of 8 PLUS the King’s College London International Foundation Programme OR at least one year of the Licenciado study with an overall average mark of at least 8/10 OR A-levels with grades of ABB. Including high marks in Chemistry and Biology
School Leaving Certificate
Diploma de Bacalaureat with 9 including 9 in Chemistry and Biology
Diploma Voorbereidend Wetenschappelijk Onderwijs (VWO)
VWO with 7.5 including 7.5 in Chemistry and Biology
National Certificate of Educational Achievement Level 3 (NCEA)
the NCEA level 3 with E in the majority of standards/modules in four subjects, including Excellent in Chemistry and Biology
School Leaving Certificate
The Senior School Certificate (SSC/SSCE) OR the West African Senior School Certificate (WASSC/WASSCE) PLUS 3 Cambridge International A levels at AAB, including Chemistry and Biology
Vitnemal-videregaende opplaering (Upper Secondary Leaving Certificate)
Vitnemal-videregaende opplaering grade 5 including 5 in Chemistry and Biology
High School Certificate (HSSC)
High School Certificate with A including high marks in Chemistry and Biology with at least a foundation/Access year or a year of undergraduate study at a Pakistani university
Matura with 80% in extended level subjects including high marks in Chemistry and Biology
Diploma de Ensino Secundário
Diploma de Ensino Secundário with 18 including high marks in Chemistry and Biology
School Leaving Certificate
Diploma de Bacalaureat with 8 including 8 in Chemistry and Biology
Attest o (Polnom) Srednem Obrazovanii (Certificate of Secondary Education)
Attest o (Polnom) Srednem Obshchem Obrazovanii with an average of 4.5 including 5 in Chemistry and Biology with at least a foundation/Access year or a year of undergraduate study at a Russian university
School Leaving Certificate
College of Technology Diploma OR Higher Technical Institute Diploma OR Junior Health College Diploma OR Undergraduate Diploma with 85% OR 3 Cambridge International A levels at AAB. All including Chemistry and Biology
Singapore A Level
AAB in three content-based H2 subjects. (To include a minimum of two from Chemistry, Biology, Maths, Physics) Knowledge and Inquiry is not considered as part of the offer.
Vysvedcenie Maturitnej Skuska/Maturita
Vysvedcenie Maturitnej Skuske/Maturita with 2 including 2 in Chemistry and Biology
Maturitetno Spricevalo (Secondary School Leaving Certificate)
Maturitetno Spricevalo with 5 including 5 in Chemistry and Biology
South African Senior Certificate/National Senior Certificate with Matriculation endorsement
The National Senior Certificate with Matriculation endorsement with AAABB including high marks in Chemistry and one other science
Titulo de Bachiller
Titulo de Bachiller with 8 overall including 8 in Chemistry and Biology
Fullständigt Slutbetyg (School Leaving Certificate)
Fullstandigt Slutbeytg with MVG including MVG in Chemistry and Biology
Federal Maturity Certificate
Federal Maturity Certificate with an overall mark of 5 including 5 in Chemistry and Biology
Lise Diplomasi (High School Diploma)
Lise Diplomasi with an overall mark of 4 including high marks in Chemistry and Biology with at least a foundation/Access year or a year of undergraduate study at a Turkish university
AAB to include a minimum of two from (Chemistry, Biology, Maths, Physics) of which at least one must be Chemistry or Biology and, if only one, you must have AS grade A in the other subject.
General Studies and Critical Thinking - College policy
Please note that AS/A level General Studies and Critical Thinking are not accepted by King's as one of your A or AS levels. However, if offered the grade achieved may be taken into account when considering whether or not to accept a candidate who has just fallen short of the conditions of their offer
Access to HE Diploma
Access to Science (or similar) Diploma including study of Chemistry and Biology at Level 3 with 33 Level 3 credits from units awarded at Distinction, with the remaining credits at Merit. Supplementary information and achievement e.g marks for certain credits/subjects may be required depending on course content. Preferred other subjects are Maths and Physics
3 Pre-U Principal Subjects with grades of D3 D3 M2 including Chemistry and Biology
BTEC Level 3 Extended Diploma
Considered on an individual basis
Scottish Highers & Advanced Highers
AAABB at Higher and AB at Advanced Higher. Advanced Highers should include at least two subjects from Chemistry, Biology, Maths, Physics of which at least one must be Chemistry or Biology (and if only one, you must have Higher grade A in the other subject. )
35 points and 665 HL to include a minimum of two from (HL - Chemistry, Biology, Maths, Physics) of which at least one must be Chemistry or Biology and, if only one, you must have 6 SL in the other subject.
80% overall including 8 - 8.5 in Biology & Chemistry
Advanced Placement Tests and/or SAT/ACT (SAT/ACT acceptable only where stipulated)
Three AP subjects with 554 including Chemistry and Biology
No test required
NON ACADEMIC REQUIREMENTS
We hope to attract applicants who participate in any scholastic activity, e.g. general reading, debating, theological interests etc.
We hope to attract applicants who have participated in school, college or community life, making the most of the opportunities available to them and also demonstrated some experience of society beyond their immediate environment.
We hope to attract applicants who have varied extra-curricular interests and enjoy active participation in areas such as sport, music and the arts in general. Any participation is valued and any achievement in extra-curricula activities will be particularly recognised. King’s aspires to attract applicants who will continue with their personal interests and contribute to the vitality of the College community.
Are interviews offered? Yes.
Are all applicants interviewed? No. Only applicants who may be borderline or from a non-traditional educational background may be called for interview.
Are all those made an offer interviewed? No. The majority of admissions decisions are made on the basis of information provided on the UCAS form.
What form does it take? Interviews last between 20 and 30 minutes and are Chaired by the Admissions Tutor and one other member of academic staff.
What is considered at interview? Your personal statement and academic performance to date will be explored.
If you are interested in coming to King’s, you should apply through the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS) and apply online via the UCAS website (click on 'apply'). If you are applying through a school or college, you will need to obtain a 'buzzword' from the centre you are applying through. Alternatively, you can apply as an individual, independent of a school or college. Please see the UCAS website for instructions. The UCAS institution code name for King’s is KCL, and the institution code is K60.
There are a few programmes which require direct application to King's, this will be stated above
We welcome applications from students with A-levels or equivalent qualifications from the UK, EU and other countries. Before you apply, you may wish to attend a pre-application open day, usually held in July.
All applicants who receive an offer from us will have an opportunity to visit the School, either for interview or at a post-offer open day. These events take place between January and April and give you the opportunity to ask questions about studying at King’s. If you would like a personal discussion with a staff member about your career aspirations and interests in biomedical science, please contact the Health Schools Admissions Centre in advance to make an appointment.