MPharm Pharmacy with a Foundation Year

Full Time
Degree of Master of Pharmacy

A-Level typical
CCC. (2020/1 entry) See All Requirements
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Key facts

(Research Excellence Framework 2014 Times Higher Analysis)

Develop your clinical skills and the study the science underpinning medicines and health at one of the UK’s leading Pharmacy Schools.

Our five-year Master of Pharmacy (MPharm) with a Foundation Year prepares you for University-level study if you don’t have the right qualifications for direct entry to the four-year degree course.

We’ll help you develop as both a scientist and a practitioner, with embedded practical and experiential learning throughout to optimise your development. You’ll work with patients, developing your clinical skills to maximise your employability after graduation.


The foundation year of this five-year course is designed to arm you with the skills and knowledge you need to move on to study our MPharm degree. You’ll not only focus on fundamental skills in mathematics, biology and chemistry, but also specialise in principles in pharmacy. Upon successful completion of the Foundation Year, you’ll continue on the full MPharm Pharmacy four-year course.

Our MPharm degree programme has a global reputation for exceptional, innovative teaching, backed by world-class research. You’ll focus on practical experience in the lab and clinical settings, and cultivate professional skills on placements from the very beginning of this four-year course. You will benefit from extensive real-world training, and start to build your own professional portfolio before you’ve even graduated.

With support from leading researchers and practitioners, you’ll hone your knowledge of chemistry and biology, and learn how to apply it to drug design, drug delivery and pharmacology with the aim to optimising patient care. Our course covers everything needed to be a pharmacist including the following topics:

  • Disease causes, prevention and treatments
  • Drug design and discovery
  • Mechanisms of drug action
  • The science of medicine formulation
  • Improving patient care through medicines optimisation
  • Precision medicine
  • The role of the pharmacist
  • Professionalism and ethics
  • Preparation for the workplace

As well as exceptional training in the core requirements, you’ll cover a broad range of subjects integrating healthcare and science, enabling you to identify and specialise in the areas you find most interesting. And you’ll have opportunities to establish links with organisations where you might hope to secure future employment.

Whatever your focus, your course will reflect the most up-to-date developments in pharmaceutical science and the most recent advances in clinical practice and is accredited by the General Pharmaceutical Council (GPhC).

This course is intended for UK and EU students that wish to later register as a Pharmacist in the UK. If you wish to register overseas we recommend you check this course is acceptable for this purpose in that country.

Course Structure

Our five-year foundation course follows a carefully structured program. In year one – your foundation year – you’ll focus on developing fundamental skills in mathematics, biology, chemistry and pharmacy, which are needed to move onto our four year MPharm degree. 

From your second year you’ll develop as both a scientist and a practitioner, with embedded practical and experiential learning throughout to optimise your development. You’ll get to work with patients, developing your communication skills and maximising the benefits of every prescription. As well as developing your employability skills through professional development, you’ll be taught about clinical and pharmaceutical management.

Our MPharm course covers topics in an integrated way, centered around different diseases and clinical topics. Throughout your degree you will develop your skills through patient-facing experiences and placements. Some parts of your learning will be alongside other healthcare professionals, just like it would be in the workplace.

In Year 2 in the module Preparing to Become a Pharmacy Professional you will have an introduction to the different areas of pharmacy: the biology behind how drugs work (pharmacology), dosage form design (pharmaceutics), how medicines are designed and made (medicinal chemistry) and, patient care and the practice of pharmacy. Building from this, the degree is taught around different clinical topics, starting first with hypertension (high blood pressure), one of the most commonly treated clinical symptoms.

In Year 3 you will build on your knowledge in areas relating to the Management of Common Conditions such as:

  • Diabetes
  • Asthma
  • Infectious diseases
  • Cancer

You also start to develop your skills in pharmacy management, where you will work within a team to run a pharmacy within our dedicated dispensary suite.

In Year 4 you will further develop your research and clinical skills in the module Person-Centered Medicine from Bench to Bedside where you will learn about:

  • Skin disorders
  • Diseases of the gastrointestinal tract
  • Cardiovascular disease
  • Psychiatric disorders
  • Neurological diseases
  • Management of pain.

You will also study a number of more specialised areas such as veterinary pharmacy and nutraceuticals. In addition to the clinical topics, you will take part in an exciting research project as part of a group where you will decide not only how to design, test and formulate a medicine, but also how best to counsel a patient who needs to take the medication.

In your final year you’ll bring together everything you’ve learned and apply it to complex patient situations in the module Managing Complexity in Patient Care. You’ll focus on the two pharmaceutical subjects that best reflect your strengths and interests in Advanced Topics. Then, you’ll complete your final year project either in the UK or abroad at one of our European partner organisations, under the supervision of an academic working at the cutting-edge of pharmaceutical science or practice. Research in the school of Pharmacy covers a wide range of areas including fundamental frontier science for health, age related diseases and development of next generation therapeutics. You will be able to specialise in:

  • Molecular and Clinical Pharmacology
  • Chemical Biology and Medicinal Chemistry
  • Pharmaceutical Materials and Soft Matter
  • Patient Care
  • Innovations in Pharmacy Education

For details on the years of study beyond the Foundation Year, please see the course pages specific to the MPharm Pharmacy.

Teaching and Learning

Our course combines a variety of teaching methods, designed to help you make the most of your learning and your ability to perform the professional role of a pharmacist.

We promote active learning, with a large proportion of workshops, practicals and simulations designed to help you get to grips with applying your knowledge to deliver benefits to patients and the public.

You’ll work in small groups to solve problems, and teams to help you recognise your own strengths and weaknesses, and to support your development to becoming a healthcare professional.

We give you plenty of practice of the things you will need to do as a working Pharmacist from developing a portfolio to counselling a patient and preparing a care plan, everything is taught in context.

Independent study

The course is designed to give you space to reflect on the experiences to help you to maximise your potential. You’ll have opportunities to research, test and apply your knowledge in your own time, supported through tasks and activities delivered via our virtual learning environment.


We employ a range of innovative assessment methods based on the procedures you will use as a qualified pharmacist, including portfolio-based assessment and objective clinical pharmacy examinations.

We carefully select our assessment methods to:

  • Optimise student learning and development
  • Develop professionalism
  • Develop clinical decision making skills
  • Prepare students for professional and scientific practice

Support for assessment is central to our ethos.  This is achieved through provision of:

  • Mock assessments and feedback for exams
  • Feedback on first drafts of course assignments
  • Drop in sessions to provide time to support students throughout the degree

Examples of assessment types include:

  • Short answer and multiple choice tests
  • Essays and laboratory reports
  • Pharmaceutical care plans
  • Objective structured clinical examinations
  • Professional development portfolios
  • Oral and poster presentations
  • Scientific paper writing
  • Staff and peer assessment

Study abroad or Placement Year

In your final year you’ll carry out a research project, giving you the chance to gain a greater insight into a specialist subject area. You can choose to undertake it at an English-speaking laboratory or research group in a European university. We currently have arrangements with pharmacy schools in Germany, France, Spain and Norway.

After the course

After completing your MPharm degree you’ll need to complete a 12-month structured pre-registration training period, leading to registration as a pharmacist with the General Pharmaceutical Council.

Career prospects for pharmacists are excellent. In many areas of the UK there is a shortage of pharmacists, presenting exciting employment opportunities for you in community, primary care, hospital and industrial pharmaceuticals when you graduate.

Career destinations

Examples of careers that you could enter include:

  • Hospital pharmacies
  • Community practices
  • Primary care
  • Pharmaceutical industry
  • Research

Course related costs

Prior to commencing the course you’ll need to undertake a Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check, which also involves a fee. And you’ll need to undergo an occupational health check and pay for any necessary vaccinations before going on placement.

Please see Additional Course Fees for details of course-related costs.

Course Modules 2020/1

Students must study the following modules for 100 credits:

Name Code Credits


The topics covered will give you a basic grounding in biological processes including the fundamental characteristics of living things; basic metabolic processes; an understanding of evolution and knowledge of the levels of biological organisation with some focus given to organ systems. This module also gives you the opportunity to develop key transferable skills such as lab skills, report writing, assignment preparation, researching and evaluating evidence, giving and responding to presentations.




A course in chemistry intended to take you to the level required to begin a relevant degree in the Faculty of Science. The module will help you to develop an understanding of: reactions of functional groups in organic chemistry; basic thermodynamics; spectroscopic techniques; transition metal chemistry and practical laboratory skills.




In this module you will learn the essential study skills and approaches used in pharmacy education. You'll focus on the fundamentals, helping you become a reflective practitioner with knowledge of the basic principles of pharmaceutical calculations and measurements.




The topics covered on the module will give you a basic grounding in biological processes including the fundamental characteristics of living things; basic metabolic processes; an understanding of evolution and knowledge of the levels of biological organisation with some focus given to organ systems. This module also gives you the opportunity to develop key transferable skills which may include lab skills, report writing, assignment preparation, researching and evaluating evidence, giving and responding to presentations.




A module designed for you, if you are on a Science Faculty degree with a Foundation Year or Medicine with a Foundation Year. You will receive an introduction to the structure and electronic configuration of the atom. You will learn how to predict the nature of bonding given the position of elements in the periodic table. You will be introduced to the chemistry of key groups of elements. You will become familiar with key measures such as the mole and the determination of concentrations. The module includes laboratory work. No prior knowledge of chemistry is assumed.



Students will select 20 credits from the following modules:

Students will be assigned to the relevant mathematics module based on their previous qualifications.

Name Code Credits


Taught by lectures and seminars to bring students from Maths GCSE towards A-level standard, this module covers several algebraic topics including functions, polynomials and quadratic equations. Trigonometry is approached both geometrically up to Sine and Cosine Rule and as a collection of waves and other functions. The main new topic is Differential Calculus including the Product and Chain Rules. We will also introduce Integral Calculus and apply it to areas. Students should have a strong understanding of GCSE Mathematics.




This is a course in mathematics for students who have studied Maths at GCSE level gaining a grade B/C or equivalent and/or more than two years ago. The course includes some AS level material relevant to science. This module is reserved for students on the Chemistry, Biology, Pharmacy, Environmental Science or Computing Foundation Years.



Students must study the following modules for 120 credits:

Name Code Credits

Interprofessional Learning - Level 1

Interprofessional collaboration and working is proven to improve outcomes in health and social care. In this module you'll meet and work with others from across healthcare programmes at UEA in a 2 hour learning event. You will explore how teams can work in different scenarios where the focus is on cognitive impairment and communication difficulties across the lifespan. You'll begin to reflect on your personal and professional development, and begin to explore how you will collaborate and work with other professions to provide integrated person-centred care. In the 2 hour session you will also have the opportunity to become a Dementia Friend. You'll also have the option to complete a Reflective Workbook to guide your foundational learning on Dementia Awareness and Learning Disability Awareness. You will be assessed on this through a set of multiple choice questions.




In this module you will build your scientific knowledge and begin to apply it in the context of drugs and medicines, with a focus on hypertension, using a diverse range of teaching methods. You will start to develop your clinical, communication and professional skills to support safe, compassionate patient care. By expanding your transferable skills and enhancing your employability you will begin your journey to become a highly-regarded pharmacy professional.



Students must study the following modules for 120 credits:

Name Code Credits


You will build your scientific knowledge and skills in the context of a range of common medical conditions including cancer, asthma, diabetes and infections. You will develop your clinical and professional skills and apply your knowledge to manage these diseases and support patient care.



Students must study the following modules for 120 credits:

Name Code Credits


In this module you will develop advanced, integrated knowledge in the design and development of medicines and their pharmacological actions. You will recognise the relationships between medical conditions, begin to develop clinical judgement and apply evidence-based approaches to patient care. Central to this module is the "bench to bedside" project where you will apply your experimental skills to take a drug molecule from conception to administration to patients.



Students must study the following modules for 120 credits:

Name Code Credits


NEW - available in 2021/22 In this module you will apply previously acquired clinical and scientific knowledge and skills to complex situations. You will work through a range of multifaceted case studies and professional dilemmas in a variety of care environments. It will provide you with an excellent grounding to your early career as a pharmacist.




NEW - available in 2021/22 Learn how the boundaries of pharmaceutical knowledge are advanced through research and develop an understanding of the research and communication skills associated with scientific best practice. In collaboration with an academic supervisor, you'll conduct a research project 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, you'll prepare a research paper commensurate with journal publication and deliver an oral presentation at a student research conference.




This module will draw upon the investigative techniques developed in the Pharmaceutical Research Project and build on your knowledge and skills developed in all modules in Levels 1, 2 and 3 of the course. In this module you will study two (from a range of) pharmaceutically-related special topics in depth and develop an extensive knowledge in these selected areas.




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.

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Entry Requirements

  • A Level CCC. Science A-Levels must include a pass in the practical element.
  • International Baccalaureate 28 points.
  • Scottish Highers BBCCC.
  • Scottish Advanced Highers DDD.
  • Irish Leaving Certificate 6 subjects at H4.
  • Access Course Pass the Access to HE Diploma with 45 credits at Level 3.
  • European Baccalaureate 60% overall.

Entry Requirement

General Studies and Critical Thinking are not accepted.

We welcome applications from students with non-traditional academic backgrounds.  If you have been out of study for the last three years and you do not have the entry grades for our three year degree, we will consider your educational and employment history, along with your personal statement and reference to gain a holistic view of your suitability for the course. You will still need to meet our GCSE English Language and Mathematics requirements. All applicants for this course are interviewed.

If you are currently studying your level 3 qualifications, we may be able to give you a reduced grade offer based on these circumstances:

• You live in an area with low progression to higher education (we use Polar 4, quintile 1 & 2 data)

• You will be 21 years of age or over at the start of the course
• You have been in care or you are a young full time carer
• You are studying at a school which our Outreach Team are working closely with


Applicants submitting UCAS applications that include a good personal statement and academic reference as well as a sufficient academic background will be asked to attend the University on one of our Applicant Days.  

As part of our selection process on the Applicant Day there will be three different activities: an interview, a demonstration and a group exercise. You don’t need to prepare or bring anything with you, we will give you all the information you need on the day.  These activities take about an hour in total.

The selection process is designed to help us choose students with the appropriate skills and attitudes to become excellent pharmacists and pharmaceutical scientists.  

If an applicant is located outside the UK, we will arrange a structured competency based one-to-one telephone interview.  This will be held with a member of academic staff from the School of Pharmacy.  We will be in touch prior to the interview to arrange a suitable time.

Gap Year

We welcome applications from students who have already taken or intend to take a gap year.  We believe that a year between school and university can be of substantial benefit. You are advised to indicate your reason for wishing to defer entry on your UCAS application.


The annual intake is in September each year.

Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) and Occupational Health Check

During your first semester, we ask that you apply for a DBS (Disclosure and Barring Service) check. In addition to your DBS check, if you have lived outside of the UK for a continuous period of 4 months or more within the last five years, you will also be required to complete and submit a police check, (from your home country if this is not the UK) or a Certificate of Good Conduct. A template for this is provided by the Student Disclosure Service when they begin your DBS check.

You will also be required as are all UK pharmacy students to sign up to a national "Code of Conduct for Pharmacy Students". You may view this document at:

In addition to reviewing the "Student Fitness to Practice Policy and Procedures" which are developed to address any concerns about a student's fitness to practice, including issues relating to conduct and health in relation to patient safety and professional standards.

PLEASE NOTE: Non-completion of the DBS or Occupational health checks or an adverse DBS outcome may result in withdrawal from the programme.

Alternative Qualifications

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.

GCSE Offer

You are required to have Mathematics and English Language at a minimum of Grade C or Grade 4 or above at GCSE.

Course Open To

This course is open to UK applicants only. Foundation courses for international applicants are run by our partners at INTO.

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 application 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 is sent to UCAS so that they can process it and send it to your chosen universities and colleges.

The Institution code for the University of East Anglia is E14.

Further Information

Please complete our Online Enquiry Form to request a prospectus and to be kept up to date with news and events at the University. 

Tel: +44 (0)1603 591515


    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.

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    telephone +44 (0)1603 591515