MPharm Pharmacy with a Placement Year

Full Time
Degree of Master of Pharmacy

UCAS Course Code
A-Level typical
AAB (2016/7 entry) See All Requirements
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Our Pharmacy degree is highly acclaimed for its innovative content and teaching methods.

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Key facts

(2014 Research Excellence Framework)


Experience is vital when preparing for a career. That's why, when UEA pioneered a new kind of teaching, it inspired widespread change in pharmacy education.

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Key facts

(Guardian University League Table 2017)


Are we closer to understanding a disease that affects nearly 40 million people?

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Chemistry & Pharmacy Summer School 2 – 4 July 2017

Offering Year 12 students the chance to experience an exciting and interactive two-day residential to help enhance their personal statement for the UCAS application.

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Our MPharm with Placement course is designed to give international students the chance to become a fully registered pharmacist before graduating. Many international students need to extend their visas once they’ve graduated so that they can register in the UK. As a result, we’ve introduced this integrated five-year course to allow you to remain on a student visa during that crucial year.

The degree focuses on practical experience, both in the lab and in the dispensary. We give you the opportunity to attend placements from the very start of your degree, encourage you to build a professional portfolio during the course and provide extensive professional skills training.

We pride ourselves on our innovative, contemporary teaching methods and our students really recognise the benefits; we’ve been top of the National Student Survey for Pharmacy six times in the last nine years and our graduates’ registration success rates are extremely high.


Our five-year degree

UEA is one of the best places to study pharmacy in the UK.

We’re also one of the few universities to offer an integrated five-year degree that ensures our international students can register and graduate at the same time. UK or EU students should apply for our four year MPharm programme (B230). Your first three years will largely follow the same structure as our four-year MPharm, but the final two years each involve a six-month placement in a hospital or pharmacy.

That means you remain a student for the duration of your year-long placement, so you won’t need to seek a separate visa and risk missing out on your pre-registration.

Firsts in Pharmacy

UEA’s School of Pharmacy has always been forward-thinking in its approach, conducting cutting-edge research and promoting innovative teaching methods.

We were the first Pharmacy course in the UK to:

  • Provide our students with significant professional experience, by including first year placements and portfolio assessments.

  • Give students a more practical and broad-based experience, through Problem-based learning and Interprofessional learning.

  • Offer strong support to prepare our students for future employment, through extensive careers advice and in-depth research projects.

These firsts for Pharmacy education have translated into firsts for UEA Pharmacy in teaching and research. We came first in the Research Excellence Framework 2014 for research output.

Benefit from our excellence

The MPharm course is the product of all our innovation in teaching and quality in research.

The course allows you to study a wide range of subjects which integrate science and healthcare, with a strong focus on the practical experience that the pharmacy sector prizes.

You will develop your skills and knowledge of practice and patient care, helping you to prepare for your professional career as a pharmacist. You will work directly with patients to help them gain the maximum benefit from the medication prescribed to them and, after completing your two pre-registration modules, you’ll be a fully qualified pharmacist.

Throughout the course you will have the opportunity to see where your professional interests lie and establish links with practices where you might secure a placement and future employment. You will be given every opportunity to develop your own areas of interest and expertise, while receiving exceptional tuition on the core requirements. Pharmacists can expect to command competitive salaries and there are excellent opportunities for career progression within the sector, whichever path you choose.

The course has been specifically designed to reflect recent developments in pharmaceutical science and changes in practice, and to meet the needs of students from a variety of backgrounds. It’s also been approved by the General Pharmaceutical Society of Great Britain, but will only receive full accreditation once the first cohort of students has completed the course (this is standard practice for new degrees).

Course Structure

This five-year course follows a carefully structured degree programme, in which you will study a number of compulsory topics on essential pharmaceutical theory and methodology. You will also undertake a research project in your final year and take two six-month pre-registration placement modules.

First Year
Your first year of study is made up of four compulsory modules that introduce you to pharmaceutical science and the profession of pharmacy, with modules including ‘Life Sciences Chemistry’ and ‘Foundations in Pharmacy Practice’.

Second Year
In your second year, you will continue to follow a carefully designed programme, increasing your awareness and knowledge of all pharmaceutical subjects. You will engage with more specific and complex topics as well as carrying out further practical laboratory work and learn how to safely and effectively supply medicines. At the end of your second year, you will be interviewed to determine whether you will continue onto the full five-year programme or transfer to the four-year MPharm.

Third Year
Your third year is designed to develop your pharmaceutical and clinical knowledge and enhance your patient consultation skills.

Fourth and Fifth Years
Your final two years enable you to use all your previously learned knowledge in complex situations for the benefit of patients. In the fourth year, you will be able to select two pharmaceutical subjects which are of special interest to you, and you will undertake the first of your six-month pre-registration placements.

In the fifth year, you will bring all your learning together into your final year project, which can be undertaken either abroad or in the UK, and will be supervised by a leading edge researcher. This will be followed by the second of your pre-registration placements, leaving you a fully qualified pharmacist.

NB: Since you remain a student of UEA during your placement, you’ll be required to pay full fees for the five-year duration and secure accommodation during your placements.

Examples of areas of study for the research projects:

  • Novel drug delivery systems

  • Tissue culture methods

  • Synthesis of new drugs for the treatment of neurological diseases

  • Introduction of electronic prescribing systems

Your pre-registration placement

The unique and attractive aspect of this particular course is the integrated pre-registration placement that constitutes most of your fourth and fifth years of study.

All future pharmacists need to spend at least one year working in an actual pharmacy before they become fully registered and enter the job market – while this is not a problem for most Pharmacy graduates, International students (those from outside the EU) can struggle to extend their visa after graduating and therefore miss out on the opportunity to gain a placement in the UK.

To make sure this doesn’t happen to our students, we’ve integrated the pre-registration placement into the five-year degree so you become fully registered at the same time as you graduate.

The placements aren’t guaranteed, but we’ve developed links with many local hospitals and commercial pharmacies – including Cambridge University Hospitals trust and Guys & St. Thomas – so we can help our graduates as much as possible. You’ll be interviewed by potential employers when securing your placements, so we also provide full support in interview techniques and presentation skills. To succeed, you’ll need to demonstrate the values of the National Health Service, have competency in the English language and complete practical tasks.

If, for any reason, you are unsuccessful in securing a placement you can still transfer onto our four-year course, and find a placement afterwards.


The MPharm incorporates innovative assessment methods that are based on procedures you will use as a qualified pharmacist, including portfolio-based assessment and objective clinical pharmacy examinations. The current assessment tools used within the school include:

  • Short answer and multiple choice papers

  • Essays and laboratory reports

  • Pharmaceutical Care Plans

  • Objective structured clinical  examinations

  • Portfolios

  • Unseen critical appraisal assessments

  • Oral and poster presentations

  • Group project work reports

  • Scientific paper writing

  • Staff and peer assessment

For further information about the innovative teaching methods we use, see ‘Why Choose Us’.

Need to know more? Read our Integrated MPharm FAQ guide to have all your questions answered.

Course Modules

Students must study the following modules for 120 credits:

Name Code Credits


This module introduces the student to fundamental cellular structure, function and biochemistry. The biological and biochemical properties of each of the major classes of cellular (life) molecules are presented, together with details of some of the essential processes in which they are involved. The unit also provides a basis of understanding of the principles of molecular biology, including the role of DNA and genetics in diseases, and the application of human genomics and biotechnology in medicine. Some of the inter- and intra-cellular signalling processes in cells are uncovered, including receptors and drugs. The student will understand the physiology of the major organ systems and a knowledge of basic principles of pharmacology. This unit provides the underlying knowledge of cell biology, physiology and pharmacology which form the basis of more advanced studies in future years.




This module introduces students to the world of pharmacy. Students will study the structure and functions of the UK health system and develop an understanding of the role pharmacists play. Students will learn about the legal and ethical frameworks pertaining to pharmacists and begin to develop some of the core skills needed to practice as a pharmacist including: dispensing, clinical interpretation of simple prescriptions, communication, calculations and reflective practice. In addition, they will begin to explore the wider issues relevant to health care including public health, evidence based medicine and health services research. This module uses a range of teaching methods including problem based learning, dispensing workshops and electronic supportive assessments.




The unit aims to provide the student with an introduction to the basic chemical principles that underpin understanding of the bonding interactions that hold drug molecules together, the structures and reactivities of carbon based compounds, and the specificities of drug-target interactions. In the practical element of this module the students will be introduced to basic laboratory etiquette and techniques used in pharmaceutical analysis of raw materials and formulated products. Students will be introduced to the requirements of "Good Control Laboratory Practice" and the discipline and documentation required for pharmaceutical quality control. They will then carry out practical work covering a wide range of basic analytical methods commonly encountered in the British Pharmacopoeia while testing raw materials and familiar formulated products. In the second semester the unit will build on the students' chemical knowledge and will introduce the student to fundamental cellular structure, function and biochemistry. The biological and chemical properties of each of the major classes of cellular (life) molecules are presented, together with details of some of the essential processes in which they are involved.




This module introduces students to Physical Pharmacy. They will study the underpinning physical and chemical sciences as they pertain to the development, manufacture and analysis of pharmaceutical products intended for human use. Students will be instructed in the small-scale manufacture of a range of conventional liquid and semi-solid pharmaceutical formulations and will be expected to show competence in their production.



Students must study the following modules for 120 credits:

Name Code Credits


This module will provide underpinning medicinal chemistry principles and relate this to drug design, mechanism of action and metabolism. Students will be instructed in basic organic synthesis as well as complementary spectroscopic techniques.




This module will provide underpinning physical chemistry and material science and relate this to design, manufacturing and in vivo performance of pharmaceutical formulations. Students will be instructed in basic microbiology and the formulation of sterile products. Students will be instructed in pharmacokinetics and dose calculations.




This module introduces pharmacy students to the laws and standards surrounding medicines supply, the processes required to minimise risk and to basic statistical tests underpinning the application of evidence based medicine.




This module explains the peripheral nervous and endocrine systems to students and introduces disease and therapies for major diseases of the endocrine system.



Students must study the following modules for 120 credits:

Name Code Credits


This module explains the immune system to students and introduces inflammatory and infectious diseases. It will provide students with a detailed knowledge of the aetiology and pathophysiology of common inflammatory disease and the pharmacology of the associated therapeutic interventions as well as infectious diseases and their treatment options and prevention strategies.




This module builds on physiology and pharmacology, endocrinology and peripheral nervous system modules and covers the physiology of the heart, vascular system and kidney. It will provide students with a detailed knowledge of the aetiology and pathophysiology of common cardiovascular, cerebrovascular and renal diseases and the pharmacology and evidence base of associated therapeutic interventions. By the end of the module students will be able to prepare pharmaceutical care plans, review therapeutic approaches, solve pharmaceutical problems and describe appropriate pharmaceutical and non-pharmaceutical interventions of the above disease states. The module will introduce students to the concepts of health services research and on completion they will be able to perform basic critical appraisal of health services research and simple descriptive and comparative data analysis.




The module enables students to be able to supply medicines legally, accurately and safely, whilst recognising ethical dilemmas and responding appropriately to them. It provides students with some of the skills required for effective communication, management and leadership. On completion of the module the students will also be fully prepared to undertake their subsequent pre-registration placements.




This module provides students with a detailed knowledge of gastrointestinal diseases and cancer. It covers the physiology of the gastrointestinal tract, the basic biology of cancer, the role of nutrition in preventing disease and the aetiology and pathophysiology of common gastrointestinal diseases and cancers. Conventional therapeutic interventions will be discussed, alongside innovative approaches, nutraceuticals and novel delivery systems. The role of natural products in these diseases will be highlighted. The module builds on physiology and pharmacology, medicinal chemistry and drug delivery modules in the previous years.



Students must study the following modules for 120 credits:

Name Code Credits


This module focuses on the pathophysiology, pharmacology and treatment of common diseases of the central nervous system (including psychiatric disorders).




The module will evaluate the management of patients with multiple pharmaceutical needs. Students will be expected to demonstrate leadership and management skills, engage in multidisciplinary team working and demonstrate appropriate communication behaviours with patients and healthcare professionals. Students will also prepare for their research project by conducting a literature review.




Students will undertake a 6 month placement in a pharmacy setting where they will follow the GPhC pre-registration training programme under the supervision of a tutor. Students will be required to collect evidence to demonstrate their competence against the GPhC performance standards.




This module is separate from, but complementary to, the other modules taught on the Level 4 MPharm. course. It draws upon the investigative techniques developed in the Pharmaceutical Research Project and builds on knowledge and skills developed in all modules in Levels 1, 2 and 3 of the course. In this module the student will study two (of a range) pharmaceutically-related special topics in depth and develop an extensive knowledge in these selected areas.



Students must study the following modules for 120 credits:

Name Code Credits


This module utilises all the concepts gained throughout the course to date and further develops the skills required by a pharmacist in practice, with focus on complex patients with multiple conditions in real life situations. The module utilises student experiences from placement to inform the development of a pharmaceutical business case for the purpose of commissioning a novel pharmacy service. Leadership and management skills will be developed further through consideraton of a variety of scenarios.




This module develops the student's understanding of how the boundaries of pharmaceutical knowledge are advanced through research and the research and communication skills associated with best scientific practice. The student will conduct a research project, in collaboration with an academic supervisor, leading to an expertise or in-depth knowledge in a selected area of pharmaceutical research at the forefront of the academic discipline. Following the project work, the student will prepare a research paper commensurate with journal publication.




Students will undertake a 6 month placement in a pharmacy setting where they will follow the General Pharmaceutical Council (GPhC) pre-registration training programme under the supervision of a tutor. Students will be required to collect evidence to demonstrate their competence against the GPhC performance standards. At the end of the placement students should reach a satisfactory level where their tutor can sign them as being competent to register as a pharmacist upon passing the GPhC registration assessment.




Whilst the University will make every effort to offer the modules listed, changes may sometimes be made arising from the annual monitoring, review and update of modules and regular (five-yearly) review of course programmes. Where this activity leads to significant (but not minor) changes to programmes and their constituent modules, there will normally be prior consultation of students and others. It is also possible that the University may not be able to offer a module for reasons outside of its control, such as the illness of a member of staff or sabbatical leave. Where this is the case, the University will endeavour to inform students.

Entry Requirements

Fees and Funding

Undergraduate University Fees and Financial Support: International Students

Tuition Fees

Please see our webpage for further information on the current amount of tuition fees payable for International Students. You will pay full international fees for the five years of the degree.


We offer a range of Scholarships for International Students – please see our website for further information.

How to Apply

Applications need to be made via the Universities Colleges and Admissions Services (UCAS), using the UCAS Apply option.

UCAS Apply is a secure online application system that allows you to apply for full-time Undergraduate courses at universities and colleges in the United Kingdom. It is made up of different sections that you need to complete. Your application does not have to be completed all at once. The system allows you to leave a section partially completed so you can return to it later and add to or edit any information you have entered. Once your application is complete, it must be sent to UCAS so that they can process it and send it to your chosen universities and colleges.

The UCAS code name and number for the University of East Anglia is EANGL E14.

Further Information

If you would like to discuss your individual circumstances with the Admissions Service prior to applying please do contact us:

Undergraduate Admissions Service
Tel: +44 (0)1603 591515

Please click here to register your details via our Online Enquiry Form.

International candidates are also actively encouraged to access the University's International section of our website.

    Next Steps

    We can’t wait to hear from you. Just pop any questions about this course into the form below and our enquiries team will answer as soon as they can.

    Admissions enquiries: or
    telephone +44 (0)1603 591515