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Clinical Pharmacology MSc, PG Dip, PG Cert

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The Clinical Pharmacology course will give you the advanced skills and knowledge to evaluate the safety of new medicinal products in preparation for medical approval. It is one of three modular programmes in Pharmaceutical Medicine designed for working physicians, clinical scientists and allied health professionals interested in the clinical development process.

The course information sheet is a printable version of the information on this web page, which you can download here.

Key benefits

  • King's is ranked 7th in the world for Pharmacy & Pharmacology (QS World University Rankings by Subject 2017)
  • Lectures delivered by experienced multi-disciplinary researchers from the biopharmaceutical sector and the regulatory authorities.
  • Flexible study schedule with the option to complete a PG Diploma (coursework only) or PG Certificate.
  • Coordinated study programme with the PharmaTrain and the Faculty of Pharmaceutical Medicine of the Royal College of Physicians curricula.
  • The first UK course that complies with both the PharmaTrain initiative of the European Commission and the Bologna Process, and is the PharmaTrain Centre of Excellence.


Key information

Application status Open

Duration MSc full-time: one year, MSc part-time: two-four years PG Dip part-time: two-three years PG Cert part-time: up to two years

Study mode Full-time, Part-time

Course intake 20

Course leaders

Professor Albert Ferro

 Dr Stuart Jones

Further details

Course contact for further information Programme Officer +44 (0)20 7848 4683 • Before you apply: via our Enquiry Form at www.kcl.ac.uk/study/pg/contacts.aspx#admissions • After applying: use the messaging service at http://apply.kcl.ac.uk

Course contact form Postgraduate admissions

Awarding institution King's College London

Faculty Faculty of Life Sciences & Medicine

Department Department of Pharmacy & Forensic Science



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Course detail


Clinical Pharmacology is the study of how drugs influence human physiology and the way the body responds. This study forms a vital part of the clinical development of new medicines and requires an advanced understanding of pre-clinical science, as well as the ethical and legal requirements for specialist research programmes. A well-designed clinical pharmacology programme informs the final regulatory of a new medicine. Therefore, generating skilled clinical pharmacologists is critical for the efficiency of future drug development.

This course will provide you with a broad knowledge and understanding of the drug development process and the medical aspects of the marketing of pharmaceutical products. You will also have opportunities to undertake advanced research projects and the possibility of one or more thesis publications.

The study programme is made up of optional and required modules. The MSc pathway requires modules totalling 180 credits to complete the programme, including 60 credits from a dissertation of around 15,000 - 18,000 words. The Postgraduate Diploma pathway will require modules totalling 120 credits, while the Postgraduate Certificate will require you to study modules totalling of 60 credits to complete the course.

If you are studying full-time, you will complete the course in one year, from September to September. If you are studying for the MSc qualification part-time, your programme will take up to four years to complete. The Postgraduate Diploma and Certificate pathways are both part-time courses. The Postgraduate Diploma will take two to three years to complete and the Postgraduate Certificate up to two years.


Course purpose

This course is for those working in or seeking to work in the field of clinical drug development. It covers all aspects of the clinical development process through from the earliest studies to post marketing activities. It will enhance knowledge and skills in all aspects of clinical research, drug regulation and drug safety.

Course format and assessment

Clinical Pharmacology MSc Pathway



Lectures, seminars & feedback


Per 15-credit taught module

The total contact time for each 15-credit taught module is 30 hours. These sessions will include lectures, teacher-led and student-led group discussions based on the main areas of study.

Each 15-credit taught module:

Two to four hours pre-reading 30-40 hours researching and writing assignments, and 10-20 hours   preparing for an MCQ exam. 

Dissertation module

Throughout the year, you can expect to receive approximately 80 hours’ tutorials, supervision of dissertation research, plus ad hoc academic tutor meetings including assignment feedback.

Approximately 200-300 hours researching and writing. Longer study times can be expected if you are pursuing laboratory-based projects with extended practical work timescales.


Clinical Pharmacology Postgraduate Diploma and Certificate Pathway



Lectures, seminars & feedback


Per 15-credit taught module

The total contact time for each 15-credit taught module is 30 hours. These sessions will include lectures, teacher-led and student-led group discussions based on the main areas of study.

Each 15-credit taught module:

Two to four hours pre-reading 30-40 hours researching and writing assignments, and 10-20 hours   preparing for an MCQ exam. 

 Typically, one credit equates to 10 hours of work.


The primary method of assessment for this course is a combination of coursework and written examinations. The MSc study programme also requires a research and dissertation on the subject of clinical pharmacology.

The study time and assessment methods detailed above are typical and give you a good indication of what to expect. However, they are subject to change.


Year 1

Courses are divided into modules. You will normally take:

  • MSc – modules totalling 180 credits
  • PG Diploma – modules totalling 120 credits
  • PG Cert – modules totalling 60 credits.
Required Modules

 MSc Pathway

 Postgraduate Diploma Pathway

Postgraduate Certificate Pathway

You are required to take 30 credits from the following modules:


Optional Modules

 Postgraduate Diploma & Postgraduate Certificate Pathways

You will take an additional 30 credits from a range of optional modules that may typically include:

Part time students are recommended to take three 15 credit modules a year. The choice of module order will be dependent on the student’s experience and previous qualifications and students are recommended to discuss their best options with the course director.

We regularly review our modules to make sure our programmes are as up-to-date, innovative and relevant as possible. The modules we offer may therefore change. We suggest that you check the course finder for updates: 


Entry requirements & how to apply

Clinical Pharmacology Entry Requirements
Minimum UK requirements  2:1 Minimum entry requirements are either a medical degree (such as an MBBS) or a 2:1 first degree in pharmacy, pharmacology, biology, biochemistry, chemistry or related subject.

Work experience
Employment within a relevant industry would be advantageous but is not essential. Those without a degree but with extensive work experience will be considered on an invidual basis.

We will require two satisfactory references. If you have completed your degree in the last three years, one of your references should be an academic reference. 
International requirements  

Visit our admissions webpages to view our International entry requirements.

International applicants should bear in mind that, as this is a part-time programme, they will not be eligible for a Tier 4 student visa.

English Language requirements Band D Visit our admissions webpages to view our English language entry requirements. 


Application procedure

PLEASE NOTE - We accept applications on a rolling basis throughout the year for standalone modules and the part-time study mode. However, please bear in mind that all modules are filled on a first-come-first-served basis so it is advisable to apply as soon as possible.

All applicants will need a degree in a health or biomedical science related discipline, and relevant work experience. We will need two references. We would not normally interview potential students, but reserve the right to if deemed necessary.

Applications must be made online using King’s online application portal apply.kcl.ac.uk and a non-refundable application fee of £55 applies.

Potential students are encouraged to speak by phone to one of the course organisers to determine whether or not they would be able to complete the course.

Overseas applicants who will require a visa to enter and study in the UK should note that they will be unable to obtain a Tier 4 student visa for standalone modules or part-time study. A visa can only be obtained for the full-time study option of this programme.

Please contact Hayley Kelly at pharm-med@kcl.ac.uk for application instructions.

Personal statement and supporting information

No information required.

Application closing date

MSc - Full time:

We recommend that you submit your application as soon as possible.  Our first application deadline is the 30th March 2018.  Applications will remain open if places are available and programmes will be closed as soon as they are full.  For programmes with spaces remaining, no further applications will be accepted from non-EU (Overseas) nationals after 27th July 2018 or from UK/ EU nationals after 31st August 2018.


MSc, PGCert, PGDip - Part time:
There is no specific deadline for applications. Applications will be considered subject to the availability of places, thus we encourage you to submit your application as soon as possible. Please note funding applications may be subject to specific deadlines.

Help and support

If you don't have a suitable qualification for direct entry to a UK university, or if English isn't your first language, our academic preparation courses can help you get ready for study in the UK.

Preparation courses

Fees and funding

  • Full time UK fees: £15,600 per year (MSc, 2018/19)
  • Full time overseas fees: £23,940 per year (MSc, 2018/19)
  • Part time UK fees: £1,650 per module, per year (MSc, PGDip, PGCert, 2018/19)
  • Part time overseas fees: £2,600 per module, per year (MSc, PGDip, PGCert, 2018/19)

Please note: Current regulations allow some students to pay UK tuition fees on the basis of their EU citizenship or residency. Until these eligibility criteria are changed, the EU tuition fee will remain the same as the UK tuition fee. 

These tuition fees may be subject to additional increases in subsequent years of study, in line with King’s terms and conditions.


When you receive an offer for this course you will be required to pay a non-refundable deposit to secure your place. The deposit will be credited towards your total fee payment.

The UK/EU deposit is £500.

The INTERNATIONAL deposit is £2,000. 

  • If you receive an offer on or before 31st March 2018, payment is due by 27th April 2018.
  • If you receive an offer between 1st April 2018 and 30th June 2018, payment is due within one month of receiving the offer.
  • If you receive an offer between 1st July 2018 and 31st July 2018, payment is due within two weeks of receiving the offer.
  • If you receive an offer on or after 1st August 2018, payment is due within one week of receiving the offer.

If you are a current King’s student in receipt of the King's Living Bursary you are not required to pay a deposit to secure your place on the programme. Please note, this will not change the total fees payable for your chosen programme.

Additional costs/expenses

In addition to your tuition fees, you can also expect to pay for: 

  • Books if you choose to buy your own copies 

  • Clothing for optional course related events and competitions 

  • Library fees and fines 

  • Personal photocopies 

  • Printing course handouts 

  • Society membership fees 

  • Stationery 

  • Travel costs for travel around London and between campuses 

  • Graduation costs

Please visit our web pages on fees and funding for more information.

Financial help and support

Visit the fees and funding webpages to find out more about bursaries, scholarships, grants, tuition fees, living expenses, student loans and other financial help available at King's.


Next steps

View our postgraduate guide

Learn more about postgraduate degree programmes at King's. Download or view our guide in PDF format.

Download guide

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