Pharmaceutical Chemistry

BSc, 3 years

This is for you if... you love chemistry and want to understand the way chemists develop new drugs. From curing cancer to treating malaria, chemists are at the forefront of drug design.

Course Description

The pharmaceutical industry needs scientists with a firm understanding of chemistry together with a knowledge of biochemistry, disease action, and drug behaviour. Our Pharmaceutical Chemistry degrees provide you with an excellent grounding in all these areas. They have been designed to cover all aspects of pharmaceutical drug development, from target selection, through to drug discovery and optimisation to clinical trials and marketing.

If you choose to study for a BSc or MChem degree in Pharmaceutical Chemistry you will, on graduation, be equipped with the skills to work in the pharmaceutical industry or in the health and biomedical sectors. Pharmaceutical Chemists are at the forefront of drug development, design, synthesis, trials and marketing, and as one of the largest employer sectors in the UK, a diverse range of careers will be open to you.

The Department of Chemistry at Leicester is one of the best in the UK for both teaching and research. We have a reputation as a friendly, supportive department that produces highly trained graduates with skills valued by employers. This is because we offer high quality courses that are designed to give you a wide range of employment opportunities, and are carefully structured to ensure you will cover all the relevant topics.

Whichever degree you study, you will always benefit from our excellent teaching, our well-equipped laboratories, our high-quality welfare provision and academic support. You will also reap the benefits of the cutting-edge research being carried out in the department by our academics – the same academics who teach you.

Our specialist research areas include atmospheric chemistry, chemical biology, materials and interfaces, spectroscopy and dynamics, and sustainable synthesis and catalysis. You can be sure of learning about the very latest breakthroughs in each area throughout your course. In your final year, you will carry out your own personal research project, working under one of our academic staff and applying the knowledge and practical skills which you have gained on the course – placing you at the cutting-edge of chemistry research.

What's the difference?

Study for a BSc and you will receive rigorous training in chemistry and related, transferable skills – which will put you in a strong position to apply for a range of different employment sectors. Or you may want to continue your studies by applying for a Masters degree (MSc).

If you specifically want to find work as a chemist, whether in industry or the public sector, you should consider an MChem. The extra depth of experience and knowledge you will gain is valued by prospective employers that use chemical processes, and will keep you competitive in the job market against graduates who may have studied for the longer degrees taught in some European countries. Alternatively, an MChem provides a solid basis for progressing to a PhD.

Each of our three MChem degrees share a common first two years with the respective BSc, during which you can switch between them (transfer from BSc to MChem is subject to satisfactory progress). Both the MChem and BSc degrees are taught and assessed to the same high standards. The difference is one of content, not quality.

Also please note that the Year in Industry and Year Abroad options are not available on our BSc degrees. (The MChem in Pharmaceutical Chemistry does not have a Year Abroad option.)

Key Facts
Typical offer
ABB-BBB
UCAS code
F154
Start date
September 2017
Department
Chemistry
Contact

Admissions enquiries
+44 (0)116 252 5281
seadmissions@le.ac.uk

Course enquiries
+44 (0)116 252 2100
chemadmiss@le.ac.uk

Department of Chemistry website



View Key Information Sets

Why Leicester?

Students are trained as high-level users of state-of-the-art equipment such as UV/Visible spectrometers, gas/liquid chromatographs (GC/MS and HPLC), NMR spectrometers, atomic force microscopes, fluorimeters, FTIR, refractometers, mass spectrometers and X-ray diffractometers.

We focus on high-quality, technically innovative and interactive small group teaching activities. The highlights of these are weekly level 1 and 2 tutorials and an excellent staff to student rations for problem classes, laboratory sessions and our C/PBL activities.

You will benefit from our high teaching standards and dedicated academic and pastoral support structure. Personal, careers, industrial placement, study-abroad and accessibility tutors are all here to ensure that each student has a chance to reach their full potential.

All of our degrees involve an independent research project in the final year. Some of these academic-led research projects have resulted in previous students having their work published in leading scientific journals.

Course Structure

Year 1

Year 1

During your first year you will be taught a range of fundamental chemistry theories and techniques. In addition to this, you will begin to look at the aspects of chemistry that form the foundations of pharmaceutical chemistry.

Modules

    • Chemical Principles
    • Co-ordination Chemistry
    • Kinetics and Thermodynamics
    • Organic Reactivity and Mechanisms
    • Organic Structure and Functional Groups
    • Pharmaceutical Chemistry Special Topics 1 and 2
    • Chemistry Practical Parts A and B
    • Maths for Chemists

    This is the same as the first year of the MChem.

    NB. It is possible to switch at the end of your first year to a regular Chemistry degree, but not to a degree in Chemistry with Forensic Science because of the specialised modules taught on that course.

    Modules shown represent choices available to current students. The range of modules available and the content of any individual module may change in future years.

    Year 2

    Year 2

    You will learn more advanced practical techniques, increase the number of specialised pharmaceutical modules you are taking and begin to reflect on your career ambitions and how to go about realising them.

    Modules

    • Bifunctional Molecules
    • Bioanalytical Chemistry
    • Chemistry of Rings
    • Physical Chemistry of Colloids
    • Kinetics and Mechanisms
    • Organometallic Chemistry
    • Physiology and Pharmacology
    • Science Communication and Career Skills
    • Chemistry Practical Parts A and B

    This is the same as the second year of the MChem.

    Modules shown represent choices available to current students. The range of modules available and the content of any individual module may change in future years.

    Year 3

    Year 3

    In your third year you will gain advanced knowledge in core areas of chemistry and specialist fields of pharmaceutical chemistry.

    Modules

    • Advanced Organic Chemistry
    • Advanced Inorganic Chemistry
    • Biological Chemistry
    • Chemistry Project
    • Metals in Organic Synthesis
    • Pharmaceutical Chemistry
    • General Chemistry Skills

    Modules shown represent choices available to current students. The range of modules available and the content of any individual module may change in future years.

    Additional Information

    Accreditation

    This degree is accredited by the Royal Society of Chemistry.

    Teaching and Assessment

    Teaching is a mixture of lectures, tutorials, exams, lab reports, essays, oral presentations, poster design and problem based learning. A typical week might include nine hours of lectures, seven hours of lab work, and two or three workshops or tutorials. You will also be expected to spend several hours each week on private study which might include answering problem sheets, preparing for tutorials or writing up lab reports.

    All of our courses are linked to Blackboard – a virtual learning environment that gives you access to lecture notes, self-test exercises, supplementary information and background literature about the course.

    We place a strong emphasis on small group tutorials, in which half a dozen students meet with a member of staff to discuss questions arising from the lectures. Often you will go over a set of problems handed out a few days earlier. Tutorials are also an ideal opportunity to discuss any aspects of the course that you don’t fully understand.

    Chemistry is, of course, a very practical subject, so strong emphasis is placed on the acquisition of laboratory skills. In Years 1 and 2 you will spend about four to six hours each week in the lab. In your third year, work on your research project will increase your lab time to about 10-12 hours per week.

    You are assessed on your performance through exams at the end of the semester or at the end of the year and through continuous assessment throughout your modules.

    NB. All lab work is continually assessed - there are no practical exams.

    You will have regular meetings with your personal tutor to discuss progress in your studies. Your personal tutor will also provide a sympathetic ear for all matters of personal concern, whether they are academic, financial, housing, career or social issues.

    Entry Requirements

    • A/AS-levels: ABB-BBB including Chemistry. (The lower offer is given to students studying two or more science subjects.) Two AS-levels considered in place of one A-level.
    • EPQ with A-levels: BBB-BBC + EPQ at grade B.
    • GCSE: Grade A Maths (if Maths or Physics not held at A/AS-level)
    • Access to HE Diploma (Science): 60 credits overall with 45 credits at level 3, including some at distinction in relevant Chemistry modules.  Must include at least 15 credits in Chemistry..
    • International Baccalaureate: Pass Diploma with 30 points (with grade 5 in Chemistry).
    • BTEC Nationals: BTEC Diploma in Applied Science with DDD, plus A-level Chemistry.

    Other national and international qualifications considered.

    If you do not meet the entry requirements for this course, you can apply for the International Foundation Year run by our dedicated International Study Centre. The ISC provides academic and English language support to help you progress to your chosen undergraduate degree at the University of Leicester. 

    Second year entry may be possible with suitable qualifications.

    Selection Process

    Applicants are not normally interviewed. If you receive an offer you will be invited to visit the department.

    English Language Requirements

    IELTS 6.0 or equivalent. If your first language is not English, you may need to provide evidence of your English language ability. If you do not yet meet our requirements, our English Language Teaching Unit (ELTU) offers a range of courses to help you to improve your English to the necessary standard.

    International Qualifications

    Find your country in this list to check equivalent qualifications, scholarships and additional requirements.

    Countries list

    Fees and Funding

    • Starting in 2017

      An inflationary increase (2.8% based on RPIX*) in tuition fees and student support loans have been announced by the Government for 2017. This is still subject to formal parliamentary approval however, if approved, fees for 2017/18 entry could rise to £9,250 in 2017/18.

      After 2017/18, the tuition fee you pay may increase annually in line with inflation (RPIX) and is subject to government regulations.

      (*RPIX is a measure of inflation in the UK, equivalent to all items in the Retail Price Index (RPI) excluding mortgage interest payments.)

      Find out more about scholarships and funding.

      Additional costs

      You will need to have your final year research project professionally bound. The cost of binding 2 copied of your project is included in your tuition fee.

      Please note that you will need to pay a refundable deposit for a locker padlock (£10).

    • Starting in 2017

      • £18,855 per year
      Find out more about scholarships and funding.

      Additional costs

      You will need to have your final year research project professionally bound. The cost of binding 2 copied of your project is included in your tuition fee.

      Please note that you will need to pay a refundable deposit for a locker padlock (£10).

    Career Opportunities

    Many of our graduates seek employment in the chemical and pharmaceutical industries, which are the largest employers of scientists in the UK and are among the country’s leading manufacturing exporters.

    As well as gaining detailed knowledge of different aspects of chemistry you will gain a range of transferable skills from your degree in areas such as problem solving, data analysis, numeracy, computing and time management. This combination of chemistry knowledge and transferable skills means that after you graduate your job prospects are extremely good.

    Each of our Chemistry degrees includes a specialist module with guidance on searching and applying for jobs, and on writing CVs and application letters. Plus we have a dedicated Careers Tutor organising careers events throughout the academic year.

    Careers

    Our Career Development Service is here to support you, with advice on interviews, CVs, work experience, volunteering and more. From Freshers’ Week to Graduation and beyond, they are here to help you reach your professional goals.

    Course Qualification Duration UCAS Code Availability
    Pharmaceutical Chemistry BSc 3 years full-time F154 Apply Now
    Course
    Pharmaceutical Chemistry
    Qualification
    BSc
    Duration
    3 years full-time
    UCAS Code
    F154
    Availability

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