MSc Pharmaceutical Analysis

Key facts

  • Start date: September
  • Study mode and duration: 12 months full-time
  • Ranking: 1st in the UK for Pharmacology & Pharmacy – Complete University Guide 2020

Study with us

  • gain skills in the analytical techniques used to detect, identify and quantify drugs and related substances
  • examine strategies for analytical research and development 
  • gain experience in instrumentation and techniques
  • gain specialised knowledge of the analytical techniques used to detect, identify and quantitatively determine drugs and related substances
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Why this course?

The course provides specialised knowledge of the analytical techniques used to detect, identify and quantitatively determine drugs and related substances. You'll be introduced to techniques for evaluating analytical data and validating analytical methods and examine strategies for analytical research and development.

You’ll gain practical experience in a wide range of modern instrumentation and techniques.

What you’ll study

The course consists of four theory and two practical modules running between October and April followed by examinations.

If you pass all exams and wish to proceed to the MSc, you’ll undertake a 10-week research project. This will be in the University or at an external company or organisation. You’ll submit a thesis at the end of August.

Course video

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Course content

Chemical & Statistical Analysis

The class aims to develop an integrated knowledge and ability to apply the principles of chemical (titrimetry), statistical and chemometric methods in the quantitative/qualitative analysis of drugs and related substances, including their effectiveness.

The class also aims to provide an understanding of:

  • the physicochemical properties of drug substances
  • the stability of drugs or formulations
  • the basic calculations used in the analysis of drugs
  • the principles and application of method validation in analytical procedures
Spectrophotometric & Spectroscopic Methods

The class aims to develop a detailed knowledge of a variety of spectrophotometric techniques used in the quantitative/qualitative analysis of drugs and related substances. The lectures are integrated with “real world” examples in the use of each technique in the quantitative/ qualitative analysis of pharmaceuticals/related substances to ensure you have the ability to apply learnt principles.

Techniques studied include:

  • UV/visible spectrophotometry
  • Fluorescence spectrophotometry
  • Infrared spectrophotometry
  • Near infrared spectrophotometry
  • Raman spectrophotometry
  • Nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy
  • Mass spectrometry - lectures and workshops cover both electron impact and atmospheric ionisation techniques (electrospray and chemical ionisation)

The class also provides an understanding of the application of UV, IR, NMR and MS techniques in the structural elucidation of known (and new) drugs and/or chemical entities.

Chromatography

The class aims to develop an integrated knowledge and ability to apply the principles of separation (chromatographic) techniques and methods in the quantitative/qualitative analysis of drugs and related substances. Techniques studied include:

  • Thin Layer Chromatography
  • Gas Chromatography
  • High Performance Liquid Chromatography
  • Capillary Electrophoresis
Bioanalysis, Biotechnology & Quality and Management

This class aims to give you a thorough understanding of the procedures used to analyse drugs in biological matrices. You'll also obtain a thorough understanding of the procedures used to assure quality in both synthetic and biotechnologically produced drugs.

Chemical & Spectroscopic Methods

This class is laboratory based and is used to develop practical lab skills of relevance to current industrial and academic practice.

The aims of this class are to provide you with an appreciation and knowledge of the practical skills necessary when using chemical and spectroscopic techniques for the qualitative and quantitative analysis of pharmaceutical substances and ingredients in formulations.

Chromatographic & Bioanalytical Methods

This class is laboratory based and is used to develop practical lab skills of relevance to current industrial and academic practice. It has been designed to enable you to develop an integrated knowledge base and critical understanding of the practical skills relating to the pharmaceutical analysis and quality control of medicinal products, as preparation for progress to practice as a pharmaceutical analyst.

The class provides an appreciation of chromatographic techniques used in the qualitative, quantitative analysis of pharmaceutical substances and ingredients in formulations. 

Research Project

Students who pass the necessary number of class passes are eligible to do a research project to gain the required number of credits for an MSc.

The research project takes place over ten weeks from May until the end of August. Projects can be internal (within SIPBS) or external.

We have external placements within pharmaceutical companies, other Universities, government/European bodies and other industries. We aim to place as many students as we can in external placements. Internal placements are conducted with members of staff from SIPBS, usually within an area of active research within the department. These internal projects are by no means inferior to external placements, and students regularly achieve their name on scientific publications from these projects.

QS logo 2019 - 5 stars
Complete University Guide 2020 logo - 1st for Pharmacology & Pharmacy
Athena Swan bronze logo

Learning & teaching

The course is taught by experts based in the Strathclyde Institute of Pharmacy & Biomedical Sciences. There are also specialised lectures from visiting professors and world-renowned scientists who are working in the pharmaceutical and analytical industries and legislative bodies, including the European Pharmacopoeia.

Teaching of theory and applications is through lectures, tutorials and web-based learning. The material is further reinforced with practical sessions which provide you with hands-on experience in a wide range of modern instrumental techniques.

Assessment

Assessment is through written and practical examinations and submission of a thesis (MSc students only).

Teaching staff

Dr David Breen, Course Leader

Dr Iain D H Oswald – Dr Oswald is part of the team that teaches spectroscopic methods such as IR, spectrofluorimetry and circular dichroism. His research focuses on materials at high pressure and he has a general interest in the solid-state and polymorphism/co-crystallisation of materials.

Dr Christine Dufès – Dr Dufès teaches Binding Assays on the MSc course. Her research interests are:

  • Design and development of novel tumour-targeted anti-cancer therapeutic systems
  • Design and development of novel therapeutic systems able to reach the brain after systemic administration, with the ultimate aim to facilitate drug delivery to brain tumours and neurodegenerative disorders.

Dr RuAngelie Edrada-Ebel – Dr Edrada-Ebel teaches NMR spectroscopy and Mass Spectrometry in Pharmaceutical Analysis. Her research focuses on natural products chemistry of macro-organisms and micro-organisms from both the marine and the terrestrial habitat.

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Entry requirements

Academic requirements

Minimum second-class Honours degree, or international equivalent, in an appropiate science.

English language requirements

You must have an English language minimum score of IELTS 6.0 (with no component below 5.5).

We offer comprehensive English language courses for students whose IELTS scores are below 6.0. Please see ELTD for full details.

As a university, we now accept many more English language tests in addition to IELTS for overseas applicants, for example, TOEFL and PTE Cambridge. View the full list of accepted English language tests here.

Pre-Masters preparation course

The Pre-Masters Programme is a preparation course held at the University of Strathclyde International Study Centre, for international students (non EU/UK) who do not meet the academic entry requirements for a Masters degree at University of Strathclyde. The Pre-Masters programme provides progression to a number of degree options.

Upon successful completion, you will be able to progress to this degree course at the University of Strathclyde.

International students

We've a thriving international community with students coming here to study from over 100 countries across the world. Find out all you need to know about studying in Glasgow at Strathclyde and hear from students about their experiences.

Visit our international students' section

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Fees & funding

2020/21

All fees quoted are for full-time courses and per academic year unless stated otherwise.

Scotland/EU

£8,100

Rest of UK

£8,100

International

£20,350

Available scholarships

Take a look at our scholarships search for funding opportunities.

Please note: the fees shown are annual and may be subject to an increase each year. Find out more about fees.

How can I fund my course?

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Scottish and non-UK EU postgraduate students

Scottish and non-UK EU postgraduate students may be able to apply for support from the Student Awards Agency Scotland (SAAS). The support is in the form of a tuition fee loan and for eligible students, a living cost loan. Find out more about the support and how to apply.

Don’t forget to check our scholarship search for more help with fees and funding.

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Students coming from England

Students ordinarily resident in England may be to apply for postgraduate support from Student Finance England. The support is a loan of up to £10,280 which can be used for both tuition fees and living costs. Find out more about the support and how to apply.

Don’t forget to check our scholarship search for more help with fees and funding.

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Students coming from Wales

Students ordinarily resident in Wales may be to apply for postgraduate support from Student Finance Wales. The support is a loan of up to £10,280 which can be used for both tuition fees and living costs. Find out more about the support and how to apply.

Don’t forget to check our scholarship search for more help with fees and funding.

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Students coming from Northern Ireland

Postgraduate students who are ordinarily resident in Northern Ireland may be able to apply for support from Student Finance Northern Ireland. The support is a tuition fee loan of up to £5,500. Find out more about the support and how to apply.

Don’t forget to check our scholarship search for more help with fees and funding.

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International students

We've a large range of scholarships available to help you fund your studies. Check our scholarship search for more help with fees and funding.

An image of Pharmaceutical Analysis graduate Jennifer Wallace

I couldn't recommend studying at Strathclyde highly enough. Everything from the location to the fact it's always felt to me, as a progressive and inclusive university with a rich history, is something I feel is to be admired.

Jennifer Wallace, Pharmaceutical Analysis graduate

Find out more about Jennifer's Strathlife
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Careers

Many of our graduates obtain positions in the pharmaceutical & chemical industries and some have continued into PhD research. Previous graduates of the course include a number of world-renowned academics and leaders of international organisations such the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime and the European Pharmacopoeia Laboratory.

Where are they now?

88.9% of our graduates are in work or further study.**

Job titles include:

  • Analyst of Pharmaceutical Products
  • Analytical Assistant
  • Lab Scientist

Employers include:

  • GlaxoSmithKline
  • Ministry of Health
  • Reckitt Benckiser Healthcare Ltd

**Based on the results of the national Destinations of Leavers from Higher Education Survey

Glasgow is Scotland's biggest & most cosmopolitan city

Our campus is based in the very heart of Glasgow, Scotland's largest city. National Geographic named Glasgow as one of its 'Best of the World' destinations, while Rough Guide readers have voted Glasgow the world’s friendliest city! And Time Out named Glasgow in the top ten best cities in the world - we couldn't agree more!

We're in the city centre, next to the Merchant City, both of which are great locations for sightseeing, shopping and socialising alongside your studies.

Find out what some of our students think about studying in Glasgow!

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Apply

Pharmaceutical Analysis

Qualification: MSc
Start Date: Sep 2020
Mode of Delivery: full-time

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Contact us

PGT Admissions Team

Telephone: +44 (0)141 548 3623

Email: science-masters@strath.ac.uk