MPharm Pharmacy with a Placement Year

Full Time
Degree of Master of Pharmacy

UCAS Course Code
A-Level typical
AAB (2018/9 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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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

(2014 Research Excellence Framework)


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

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This course is designed to give international students the chance to become a fully registered pharmacist and graduate concurrently. Many international students face difficulties with securing Tier 2 working visas once they have graduated in order that they can go on to register as a Pharmacist in the UK. As a result, we 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 have been top of the National Student Survey for Pharmacy six times in the last ten years and our graduates’ registration success rates are extremely high.


UEA is one of the best places to study pharmacy in the UK, ranking in the Top 10 for Pharmacology and Pharmacy in The Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2018.

We are also one of the few universities in the UK to offer a five year integrated MPharm degree. Your first three years will largely follow the same structure as our four-year MPharm course, but the final two years each involve a six-month placement, one in a hospital setting and the other in a community pharmacy setting.

This structure means you remain a student for the duration of your course, which removes the need to seek a separate Tier 2 visa after graduation and risk missing out on your pre-registration training.

This course is intended for international students that wish to become a registered Pharmacist in the UK. If you wish to register in your home country we recommend you check this course is acceptable for that purpose in your country. 

UK or EU students should apply for our four year MPharm programme (B230).

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 with Placement course is a 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 the course, your two pre-registration modules and passing the pre-registration assessment you will 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 has 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 will introduce you to pharmaceutical science and the profession of pharmacy, with topics 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. 

Third Year

At the start of your third year, you will attend a selection day (interviews and practical assessments with employers), for which support and preparation will be provided by the University.  A successful outcome on this day will result in your pre-registration placements being allocated to you at this stage. If you are unsuccessful then you would be required to transfer to the 4 year MPharm, and be responsible for securing your own pre-registration training position and corresponding Tier 2 visa. See MPharm with Placement FAQ guide for more information. 

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 firstly undertake the first of your six-month pre-registration placements, and on return to University you will be able to select a pharmaceutical subject which is of special interest to you to study alongside the core teaching.

In the fifth year, you will firstly bring all of your learning together into your final year project, 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 provided all associated modules and assessment are passed.

NB: Since you remain a student of UEA during your placement, you will 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 placements that constitute 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 secure a Tier 2 working visa after graduation and therefore miss out on the opportunity to gain a placement in the UK.

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

The placements are guaranteed, provided a successful outcome is achieved on the previously mentioned selection day. We have developed links with many local hospitals and pharmacy multiples – including Cambridge University Hospitals trust, Guys & St. Thomas NHS Foundation Trust and Day Lewis Plc in order to provide these placements.


The MPharm with Placement 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
  • Team-based learning
  • Group project work reports
  • Scientific paper writing
  • Staff and peer assessment

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

Course Modules 2017/8

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 consideration 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. In some cases optional modules can have limited places available and so you may be asked to make additional module choices in the event you do not gain a place on your first choice. Where this is the case, the University will endeavour to inform students.

Further Reading

  • Our Students

    Hear from Jess about studying the MPharm Pharmacy degree at UEA.

    Read it Our Students
  • Our Students

    Hear from Tom about studying the MPharm Pharmacy degree at UEA.

    Read it Our Students
  • UEA Award

    Develop your skills, build a strong CV and focus your extra-curricular activities while studying with our employer-valued UEA award.

    Read it UEA Award

Entry Requirements

  • A Level AAB including Chemistry and a second science or Mathematics. All science A levels must include a pass in the practical element
  • International Baccalaureate 33 points including HL Chemistry at 6 and one other science or Mathematics at HL 6. If no GCSE equivalent is held offer will include Mathematics and English requirements
  • Scottish Highers Only accepted in combination with Scottish Advanced Highers
  • Scottish Advanced Highers BBC including Chemistry and a second science or Mathematics. A combination of Advanced Highers and Highers may be acceptable
  • Irish Leaving Certificate AAAABB or four subjects at H1 and two subjects at H2, including Chemistry and a second science or Mathematics
  • Access Course Pass the Access to HE Diploma with Distinction in 36 credits at level 3 and Merit in 9 credits at level 3, including 12 credits of chemistry and 12 credits of a second science. Science pathway required.
  • BTEC DDD in a relevant subject. Excluding Public Services. Applied Science and Applied Science (Medical Science) preferred. BTEC and A level combinations are considered - please contact us
  • European Baccalaureate 80% overall including 70% in Chemistry and 70% in one other science or Mathematics

Entry Requirement

GCSE requirements: GCSE Mathematics grade 5 and English Language grade 6 or grade 5 plus IELTS 

General Studies and Critical Thinking are not accepted 

Applicants with Access or BTEC qualifications who receive an offer will also be asked to complete a chemistry test at the University during the summer.

UEA recognises that some students take a mixture of International Baccalaureate IB or International Baccalaureate Career-related Programme IBCP study rather than the full diploma, taking Higher levels in addition to A levels and/or BTEC qualifications. At UEA we do consider a combination of qualifications for entry, provided a minimum of three qualifications are taken at a higher Level. In addition some degree programmes require specific subjects at a higher level. 

This course is intended for international students that wish to become a registered Pharmacist in the UK. If you wish to register in your home country we recommend you check this course is acceptable for that purpose in your country. 





Students for whom English is a Foreign language

We welcome applications from students from all academic backgrounds. We require evidence of proficiency in English (including speaking, listening, reading and writing) at the following level:

IELTS: 7.0 overall (minimum 6.0 in any component)

We will also accept a number of other English language qualifications. Review our English Language Equivalences here.

INTO University of East Anglia 

If you do not meet the academic and/or English language requirements for this course, our partner INTO UEA offers progression on to this undergraduate degree upon successful completion of a foundation programme and an interview. Depending on your interests and your qualifications you can take a variety of routes to this degree:

INTO UEA also offer a variety of English language programmes which are designed to help you develop the English skills necessary for successful undergraduate study:


Interviews are required as part of the selection process 

Gap Year

We welcome applications from students who have already taken or intend to take a gap year, believing that a year between school and university can be of substantial benefit. You are advised to indicate your reason for wishing to defer entry and may wish to contact the appropriate Admissions Office directly to discuss this further. 


The School's annual intake is in September of each year. 

Alternative Qualifications

We encourage you to apply if you have alternative qualifications equivalent to our stated entry requirements. Please contact us for further information.


Course Open To

International students only

Fees and Funding

Undergraduate University Fees and Financial Support

Tuition Fees

Information on tuition fees can be found here:

UK students

EU Students

Overseas Students

Scholarships and Bursaries

We are committed to ensuring that costs do not act as a barrier to those aspiring to come to a world leading university and have developed a funding package to reward those with excellent qualifications and assist those from lower income backgrounds. 

The University of East Anglia offers a range of Scholarships; please click the link for eligibility, details of how to apply and closing dates.

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.

    Next Steps

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