Pharmacology - BSc (Hons)

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Why study this course?

This course focuses on how chemical compounds interact with living systems, looking particularly at drugs and their effects on disease. If you want to be involved in developing or testing new safe drugs for illnesses, or the analysis of pharmacological data, this practical degree will teach you the key laboratory and analytical skills in our cutting-edge Science Centre and in the classroom. 

In the most recent Destinations of Leavers from Higher Education (DLHE) survey, 100% of all 2017 graduates from this course were in work or further study within six months.

 
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More about this course

You’ll learn about the way molecules act on receptors to produce particular effects in the body, and use this information to understand how compounds can be used to treat disease. You’ll look at examples such as the way antipsychotic drugs are used to treat schizophrenia and the types of drugs used to treat high blood pressure. You’ll also study drug development and screening, as well as how to best analyse pharmacological data.

You’ll learn through a combination of lectures and tutorials, online facilities and practical sessions in our state-of-the-art £30 million Science Centre. You’ll complete an independent research project in your final year and also have the option to undertake a work placement in the industry to gain real, hands-on experience and boost your CV.

Assessment

You'll be assessed through progress tests, datasheets, comprehension exercises, practical portfolios, and end-of-module examinations.

Fees and key information

Course type Undergraduate
UCAS code B210
Entry requirements View
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Entry requirements

In addition to the University's standard entry requirements, you should have:

  • a minimum of grades CCD in three A levels including C in Biology and C in Chemistry (or a minimum of 88 UCAS points from an equivalent Level 3 qualification, eg BTEC Extended Diploma in Applied Science with MMM)
  • English Language and Mathematics GCSE at grade C (grade 4 from 2017) or above (or equivalent eg, Key Skills Level 3)

Entry from appropriate foundation or Access courses will also be considered.

If you don’t have traditional qualifications or can’t meet the entry requirements for this undergraduate degree, you may still be able to gain entry by completing the Pharmacology BSc Extended Degree.

All applicants must be able to demonstrate proficiency in the English language. Applicants who require a Tier 4 student visa may need to provide a Secure English Language Test (SELT) such as Academic IELTS. For more information about English qualifications please see our English language requ irements.

Accelerated study

If you have relevant qualifications or credit from a similar course it may be possible to enter this course at an advanced stage rather than beginning in the first year. Please note, advanced entry is only available for September start. See our information for students applying for advanced entry.

Modular structure

The modules listed below are for the academic year 2018/19 and represent the course modules at this time. Modules and module details (including, but not limited to, location and time) are subject to change over time.

Year 1 modules include:

  • This module currently runs:
    • all year (September start) - Monday morning

    Module title: Anatomy and Physiology (for chemical & Pharmaceutical Science)
    Description: This module introduces students to the theoretical and practical aspects of human anatomy and physiology in health and disease. It is designed for life-science students with an interest in human biology, but particularly for those wishing to pursue advanced studies in the Biosciences or Forensic Science.
    This module aims to provide students, through lectures, tutorials and practical classes, with a sound knowledge of human body structure using appropriate anatomical nomenclature and an in-depth understanding of the physiology of selected body systems. The module will also aim to introduce basic concepts in immunology and pathology.

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  • This module currently runs:
    • spring semester - Thursday morning

    Description: The module is concerned with biochemistry focusing on the properties of key biochemical molecules and their role in biochemical function.

    The aims of this module are aligned with the qualification descriptors within the Quality Assurance Agency’s, Framework for Higher Education Qualifications. This module is concerned with biochemistry focusing on the properties of key biochemical molecules and their role in biochemical function. This module aims to provide students with the qualities and transferable skills necessary for employment requiring the exercise of some personal responsibility.

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  • This module currently runs:
    • all year (September start) - Monday afternoon

    Description: This is a module which provides students with an understanding of basic cell structures and an awareness of different cell types and relates the structure and activities of cell components to their functions and to cellular activities as a whole. An overview of the organisation, expression, and replication of genetic information will be provided and the principles of Mendelian inheritance will be investigated. The consequences of mutation on gene expression are examined together with an introduction to techniques of gene analysis and manipulation.
    The aims of this module are aligned with the qualification descriptors within the Quality Assurance Agency’s, Framework for Higher Education Qualification. This module aims to expose students to some of the key questions of cell biology concerning cell structure and intracellular activities; provide students with practical experience in a range of laboratory-based biological techniques; enhance students' ability to manage themselves and to develop organisational and analytical skills which are applicable to the workplace; provide an overview of the organisation, expression, and replication of genetic information in prokaryotes and eukaryotes together with principles of Mendelian inheritance; examine the consequences of mutation on gene expression together with an introduction to techniques of gene analysis and manipulation. This module aims to provide students with the qualities and transferable skills necessary for employment requiring the exercise of some personal responsibility.

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  • This module currently runs:
    • autumn semester

    Description: The aims of this module are aligned with the qualification descriptors within the Quality Assurance Agency’s Framework for Higher Education Qualification. The module provides an introduction to core aspects of chemistry - concepts of naming and drawing chemical formulae, organic bonding, differing types of isomerism, moles, reaction processes, states of matter, and interactions between particles are enumerated. Students will undertake regular tests based on the material taught.

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  • This module currently runs:
    • all year (September start) - Thursday afternoon

    This module will introduce students to safe contemporary (GLP) practice in the laboratory environment, practical bioscience techniques, simple chemical techniques and the discipline of accurate laboratory record keeping. Professional issues, study skills and data analysis will be integrated in the module. In some practical sessions the techniques are related more specifically to the degree area the student is studying.
    The aims of this module are aligned with the qualification descriptors within the Quality Assurance Agency’s, Framework for Higher Education Qualifications.
    This module aims to provide students with the qualities and transferable skills necessary for employment requiring the exercise of some personal responsibility. More specifically the module aims to give students an introduction to the laboratory environment by exposing them to simple bioscience and fundamental chemical procedures. Further it aims to: introduce and familiarise the student with/to the laboratory environment, including its capacity to harness cutting edge technology (e.g. laboratory informatics systems, deployment of software for use in virtual experiments). These aspects are intended to enhance both the student experience and pedagogic quality of the provision. The module also aims to develop basic lab practice: personal safety (as expedited by COSHH and Risk Assessments), awareness of others and where appropriate to consider ethical issues that can have an impact on the execution of a given experiment. It is intended that students will become competent in writing laboratory records and scientific reports where emphasis is placed on: contemporary scientific record keeping, style, recording data, interpreting data and drawing a conclusion from results. Students will be introduced to basic lab procedures such as: handling of scientific apparatus, handling, purification and analysis of biological and chemical agents, including their safe handling and an introduction to microbiological and biomedical techniques. The development of study skills and the analysis of data will be a core component of the module. This will be fostered by integrating statistical analysis within practical sessions allowing students to analyse generated data and link theory to practice. Professional issues will also be integrated into the module. The transferable skills that will be developed will not only enable students to derive maximum benefit from their chosen courses of study, but to also allow them to consolidate and inculcate these in preparation for employment and employability.

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Year 2 modules include:

  • This module currently runs:
    • all year (September start)

    This module will develop problem solving and report writing skills in qualitative analytical chemistry and will enable students to identify analytical substrates on the basis of combined analytical results from a variety of sources.

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  • This module currently runs:
    • all year (September start) - Tuesday morning

    This module will equip students with a fundamental understanding of the actions and fate of drugs in the human body, linking this with drug formulations and different routes of administration. Throughout the module students will develop an ability to collect, manipulate and interpret experimental and simulation data important to the subject matter.

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  • This module currently runs:
    • spring semester - Thursday morning

    This module provides an introduction to physiological, cellular and molecular fundamentals of human immunology. It includes consideration of innate and acquired immune defences, genetic variation and immune defence, and immune responses or involvement in a range of pathological conditions. The aims of this module are aligned with the qualification descriptors within the Quality Assurance Agency’s, Framework for Higher Education Qualifications.
    The module integrates the knowledge and skills acquired from other modules, and encourages independent learning through the access of information using appropriate laboratory, primary and secondary sources, and informatics resources. It develops competence in laboratory skills through practical work, and in scientific writing. It aims to develop students’ qualities and transferable skills necessary for employment including developing ability to solve problems, and gather and interpret data to inform a focussed theme and writing reports. Moreover students have an opportunity to develop self-management employability skills by engaging fully with the learning material and opportunities made available to them, and by continually reflecting on their progress through the module using the regular feedback opportunities available to them.

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  • This module currently runs:
    • autumn semester - Wednesday morning

    This module focuses on understanding key principles of metabolism. These principles are illustrated through study of the major metabolic pathways. How metabolism interacts with the nutritional environment is discussed throughout the module.
    The aims of this module are aligned with the qualification descriptors within the Quality Assurance Agency’s Framework for Higher Education Qualifications This module aims to provide an understanding of the principles of metabolism encourage an appreciation of the diversity and interconnection of metabolic pathways, and to stimulate an understanding of the applicability of metabolism in a broad range of biological context. This module will also provide students with the qualities and transferable skills necessary for employment requiring the exercise of some personal responsibility and decision making

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  • This module currently runs:
    • spring semester - Wednesday morning

    Description: This module investigates the key metabolic pathways in eukaryotes and prokaryotes and investigates how these pathways, in different organisms, satisfy energy requirements for growth and reproduction using the nutrients in their surroundings. This module also examines the intrinsic and extrinsic factors which regulate microbial growth and development. Pre-requisite BC4001
    The aims of this module are aligned with the qualification descriptors within the QAA’s the Quality Assurance Agency’s, Framework for Higher Education Qualifications. It provides students with the opportunity to study the nutritional requirements for microbial growth and the intrinsic and extrinsic factors which regulate microbial growth and development. This module aims to provide students with the qualities and transferable skills necessary for employment requiring the exercise of personal responsibility and decision-making. Students will be encouraged to engage meaningfully with personal development planning (PDP) through the curriculum, to enable them to reflect on, plan and review their own personal and academic skills. PDP will enable students to develop well supported claims to their achievements and be able to articulate these to others. The University will facilitate students in the recognition and recording of their achievements.

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  • This module currently runs:
    • autumn semester - Thursday morning

    This module will enable students to extend their understanding of the principles of molecular biology in eukaryotic and prokaryotic organisms, with emphasis on understanding mechanisms of gene expression, genome structure, variation and replication, and genetic inheritance and genetic causes of disease. The aims of this module are aligned with the qualification descriptors within the Quality Assurance Agency’s, Framework for Higher Education Qualifications.
    The module integrates the knowledge and skills acquired from other modules and encourages independent learning through the access of information using appropriate laboratory, primary and secondary sources, and informatics resources. It develops competence in laboratory skills through practical work, and in scientific writing. It aims to develop students’ qualities and transferable skills necessary for employment including developing ability to solve problems and gather and interpret data to inform a focussed theme and writing reports. Moreover students have an opportunity to develop self-management employability skills by engaging fully with the learning material and opportunities made available to them, and by continually reflecting on their progress through the module using the regular feedback opportunities available to them.

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Year 3 modules include:

  • This module currently runs:
    • all year (September start) - Thursday afternoon

    This module will enable students to extend their understanding of disease and toxicity. They will study the influences of endogenous and foreign compound metabolism on pathology. Students will learn how these pathological processes can be modulated in the treatment of disease and poisonings.
    The aims of this module are aligned with the qualification descriptors within the Quality Assurance Agency’s, Framework for Higher Education Qualifications. This module aims to provide students with the opportunity to understand the principles and practices of biochemical pathology . This will be by expanding a student's knowledge and understanding of human biotransformations (metabolism) particularly as they influence the nature of disease(pathology) and toxic states (toxicology). Students will engage with problems in toxicology and pathology and study a range of topics including forensic, regulatory and environmental toxicology and metabolic pathology. They will be provided with an understanding of the key role of foreign compound (xenobiotic) metabolism in biochemical toxicology and given the opportunity to study the aetiology and treatment of disease and poisonings.

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  • This module currently runs:
    • spring semester - Monday morning

    The aim of this module is to provide students with an appreciation of neurotransmitter receptor physiology, with the aim of using this to gain understanding of the mechanism of action of drugs which are used to treat key neurological disorders of the central nervous system including depression, schizophrenia and Alzheimer’s disease. Students will also gain experience at generating, handling and analysing neuropharmacological data. The module provides students with fundamental pharmacological knowledge and skills.

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  • This module currently runs:
    • autumn semester - Monday morning

    The aim of this module is to provide students with an understanding of how drugs are used to treat key diseases, including cardiovascular conditions, cancer, and infection, and gives students experience at generating and handling pharmacological data. The module provides students with fundamental pharmacological knowledge and skills.

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  • This module currently runs:
    • all year (September start) - Wednesday afternoon

    This module will enable students to demonstrate the skills necessary to carry out a scientific programme requiring significant research. It will allow students to demonstrate the final development of their subject knowledge, skills and understanding through extended research based on laboratory, literature/meta-analysis of databases or bioinformatics research. This research will lead to the presentation of a detailed written report.
    The research project and laboratory skills sessions will enable students to carry out at least 35 hrs on directed competency skills-based activities and an equal amount of time on independent work-related learning activities on various themes approved in conjuction with the School Employer Liasion Board. In addition students will spend 230 hours on project-related activities

    This module aims to encourage the student to reflect and build upon their subject knowledge and expertise by means of a specific investigation requiring significant research; develop the skills necessary to plan, carry out, analyse and report upon the results of an experimental or analytical programme on a scientific topic; allow the student to demonstrate that s/he has achieved a high level of personal development through working independently with the minimum necessary supervision; allow the student to demonstrate their understanding and application of safe and considerate working practices, particularly within the laboratory.
    In addition the module will also encourage students to develop professional work-related learning skills through the competencies skills sessions which have been developed to map to and are responsive to employers requirements.

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  • This module currently runs:
    • all year (September start) - Wednesday afternoon

    This module will enable students to demonstrate the skills necessary to carry out a scientific programme requiring significant research. It will allow students to demonstrate the final development of their subject knowledge, skills and understanding through extended research based on laboratory, literature or field work, or meta-analysis of databases. This research will lead to the presentation of a detailed written report and a Powerpoint presentation of results. This module aims to encourage the student to reflect and build upon their subject knowledge and expertise by means of a specific investigation requiring significant research; develop the skills necessary to plan, carry out, analyse and report upon the results of an experimental or analytical programme on a scientific topic; allow the student to demonstrate that s/he has achieved a high level of personal development through working independently with the minimum necessary supervision; allow the student to demonstrate their understanding and application of safe and considerate working practices, particularly within the laboratory.

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  • This module currently runs:
    • spring semester - Friday morning

    The aims of this module are aligned with the qualification descriptors within the Quality Assurance Agency’s, Framework for Higher Education Qualifications.
    The module aims to develop students’ understanding of advanced bioanalytical techniques and to enable students to determine which analytical technique is suitable for a particular type of sample. The module will reinforce and build on analysis skills introduced in CH5007 and provide an opportunity for students to interpret more advanced data, particularly spectra and chromatograms and to solve defined problems. The students will gain practical experience in selected analytical techniques.
    This module aims to provide students with the qualities and transferable skills necessary for employment requiring the exercise of initiative and personal responsibility and decision-making in complex and unpredictable contexts. The module should also help students to gain the learning ability needed to undertake appropriate further training of a professional or equivalent nature.

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  • This module currently runs:
    • autumn semester - Friday afternoon

    The module uses online public databases and software to extract, analyse and interpret nucleic acid and protein sequences and to model the structures of RNA and protein sequences. Genomics, in particular, with an emphasis on pharmacogenomics and phylogeny are covered.
    The aims of this module are aligned with the qualification descriptors within the Quality Assurance Agency’s, Framework for Higher Education Qualifications. The module aims to provide familiarity with the primary and secondary databases used to analyse DNA, RNA and protein sequence, expression and structure, within and across genomes. Students will be given the opportunity to develop informatics skills for extracting, analysing and presenting data to extract biological knowledge. The principles of macromolecular, and in particular protein structure will be applied to the building of molecular models using modelling and graphics software. Applications of modelling will emphasise the importance of protein-protein interactions and protein-drug interactions. This module aims to provide students with the qualities and transferable skills necessary for employment requiring: the exercise of initiative and personal responsibility; decision-making in complex and unpredictable contexts; and, the learning ability needed to undertake appropriate further training of a professional or equivalent nature.

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  • This module currently runs:
    • all year (September start) - Monday afternoon

    Description: This module will introduce students to scientific principles underlying the formulation, industrial manufacture and quality assurance of commonly used pharmaceutical formulations. Students will learn a body of technical knowledge and acquire practical skills in the design, manufacture and quality evaluation of various pharmaceutical products.

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  • This module currently runs:
    • spring semester - Monday afternoon

    Description: This module builds on the knowledge and understanding developed at level 4, through the module Cell and Molecular Biology. It will also be underpinned by topics covered in the module entitled “Molecular Biology”. In this module specific diseases will be used to illustrate genotype/phenotype relationships. The module will address the application of current knowledge to clinical practice in the NHS and will examine how a family with affected offspring, would be counselled.
    The aims of this module are aligned with the qualification descriptors within the Quality Assurance Agency’s, Framework for Higher Education Qualifications. The module aims to help students develop their understanding of genetic mutations and how they relate to human disease. It will enable students to relate disease phenotype to mutations in gene products or aberrations in gene expression. The module develops an understanding of how human biology has been enriched through the huge increase of genetic data now available. The lectures and practicals enable students to appreciate how these data have allowed the development of novel therapeutic strategies, predictive testing and illustrate how an affected family may be counselled with respect to their inherited condition, in the UK NHS. This module aims to provide students with the qualities and transferable skills necessary for employment requiring: the exercise of initiative and personal responsibility; decision-making in complex and unpredictable contexts; and, the learning ability needed to undertake appropriate further training of a professional or equivalent nature.

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  • This module currently runs:
    • all year (September start)

    One year of work based learning. Work experience based full-time in an organisation with roles relevant to the academic programme of study and at an appropriate level of responsibility. Relevant organisations include; NHS, research, industrial and private medical laboratories. Learning would be driven by practical experience in the work place. Progress and development will be assessed against an agreed framework of objectives as defined in the learning agreement. For part-time students in appropriate employment they can complete the module over an extended period during their degree rather than take a year out.

    The aims of this module are aligned with the qualification descriptors within the Quality Assurance Agency’s, Framework for Higher Education Qualifications.

    The module aims to: Provide experience of the technical expertise, knowledge, pressures and opportunities within the context of the scientific workplace; increase awareness of the scope, structure and operation of the host organisation, from a career perspective; develop generic competencies as outlined in the registration portfolio or work based learning portfolio; maximize employabilty by developing the student’s ability to work (at a certain threshold level) in a proffesional capacity.

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  • This module currently runs:
    • autumn semester - Monday afternoon

    This module characterises the aetiology, pathophysiology, clinical investigation and treatment of selected systems diseases that make a significant contribution to morbidity and mortality within healthcare. Aspects covered begin with an overview of pathology, followed by a systems approach to disease, including cardiovascular, respiratory, renal, gastrointestinal, endocrine, immune disorders, obesity, diabetes, inborn errors of metabolism, nutritional deficiencies, and cancer
    The aims of this module are aligned with the qualification descriptors within the Quality Assurance Agency’s, Framework for Higher Education Qualifications. More specifically the module aims to provide an opportunity for in-depth study of selected body systems with reference to the pathogenesis of disease, its diagnosis and therapeutic options. The module will also highlight the pivotal role of pathology in the prevention, diagnosis, treatment and prognosis of disease. In addition students will be shown how body structure and function continues to change throughout the lifespan with reference to the increasing incidence and pathophysiology of selected “age-related” systems diseases. Students’ ability to research and evaluate biomedical issues and present their findings in a cogent manner will be developed.
    This module aims to provide students with the qualities and transferable skills necessary for employment requiring: the exercise of initiative and personal responsibility; decision making in complex and unpredictable contexts; and, the learning ability needed to undertake appropriate further training of a professional or equivalent nature.

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  • This module currently runs:
    • spring semester - Monday afternoon

    Description: This module will focus on the structure, genome and replication strategy of viruses, their role in disease, epidemiological factors that facilitate transmission and their control with antiviral drugs and vaccines.
    This module aims to provide students the opportunity to study the genome classification, structure, function, and replication strategy of viruses using specific examples where appropriate. Students will explore virus-host interactions and will need to appreciate some of the epidemiological factors facilitating transmission and strategies for disease control. These control measures will include some consideration of human behaviour and animal husbandry, vaccination/immunisation and the use of antiviral drugs. Finally the applications of recombinant viruses in medicine and biotechnology will be introduced.

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  • This module currently runs:
    • autumn semester - Thursday morning
    • spring semester

    This module provides the student with the opportunity to consolidate and complement their academic learning with vocational experience in medical or related laboratories or within a field related to studies. The placement provides supervised training and work experience in a relevant field. Placements should give students the opportunity to gain skills specific to their subject or industry of choice as well as the employability skills required for real-life work. It also increases their knowledge of an industry or sector, allowing them to make better informed decisions about future career choices.

    Read full details.

Modules for this course are to be confirmed. Please check back at a later date or call our course enquiries team on +44 (0)20 7133 4200 for details.

What our students say

“I really enjoyed the Pharmacology course and a huge part of this was due to excellent lab facilities. I found lecturers and tutors helpful, and they were able to engage me in the subjects they taught. I can truly say that I'm glad that I've chosen this university and course."

“I would recommend London Met not only because of the great opportunities it offers to students but also because the lecturers are passionate and dedicated to forming the next generation of scientists. Additionally, London Met is a vast, multicultural and very enriching place to study; I would definitely recommend it. The course prepared me very well for a career in science and offered me all the necessary tools and opportunities to become what I always wanted to be.”

After the course

Pharmacologists are in high demand and there are opportunities to work in a wide variety of areas such as drug development, clinical trials and toxicity studies. Our previous graduates have gone on to find employment with companies such as Parexel.

Alternatively, you could choose to work in universities in either teaching or research, or continue your studies at postgraduate level.

You’ll also develop transferable skills such as team-working and research that can be applied to jobs in non-science industries, such as financial services, journalism and marketing.

Additional costs

Please note, in addition to the tuition fee there may be additional costs for things like equipment, materials, printing, textbooks, trips or professional body fees.

Additionally, there may be other activities that are not formally part of your course and not required to complete your course, but which you may find helpful (for example, optional field trips). The costs of these are additional to your tuition fee and the fees set out above and will be notified when the activity is being arranged.

Unistats - key information set

Unistats is the official site that allows you to search for and compare data and information on university and college courses from across the UK. The widget(s) below draw data from the corresponding course on the Unistats website. If a course is taught both full-time and part-time, one widget for each mode of study will be displayed here.

How to apply

If you're a UK/EU applicant applying for full-time study you must apply via UCAS unless otherwise specified.

UK/EU applicants for part-time study should apply direct to the University.

Non-EU applicants for full-time study may choose to apply via UCAS or apply direct to the University. Non-EU applicants for part-time study should apply direct to the University, but please note that if you require a Tier 4 visa you are not able to study on a part-time basis.

When to apply

The University and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS) accepts applications for full-time courses starting in September from one year before the start of the course. Our UCAS institution code is L68.

If you will be applying direct to the University you are advised to apply as early as possible as we will only be able to consider your application if there are places available on the course.

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