Taught course

Drug Discovery and Medicinal Chemistry

University of Birmingham · School of Chemistry

Entry requirements

Applicants must have a minimum of a high 2(i) degree in chemistry, or equivalent.

Months of entry


Course content

This multidisciplinary one year programme is intended to act as a springboard into the fine chemical, pharmaceutical and biotech sectors for those with a good first degree in chemistry.

You will widen your knowledge of chemistry and will develop new skills and competencies in a range of areas key to drug discovery, including synthesis, molecular modelling, toxicology, pharmacology, medicinal chemistry and information science.
The programme includes a multidisciplinary project, and has course components delivered by industry experts.
Modules include:
Total Synthesis of Natural Products
Natural products and their analogues are an important focus for the pharmaceutical industry, and synthetic methodology employed in academic synthetic work is important in making drug candidates.
Bio-related Chemistry
Overview of bioinorganic chemistry, metals in medicine, biological carbohydrate chemistry.
Molecular Modelling in Drug Discovery
An interactive and practical course on molecular modelling.
Metabolism and Excretion of Xenobiotics
The module describes the disposition of foreign compounds within the body of living organisms. It covers the methods used to study xenobiotic metabolism; their absorption and distribution and excretion, and includes the application of molecular biology techniques to drug metabolism and pharmacogenetics.
Pharmacology of Drug Discovery and Development
Including aspects of lead compound identification, preclinical assessment, clinical trials.
Essentials of Medicinal Chemistry R&D and Process Development
Delivered by industry experts, this course will take students through the scientific, inventive and commercial aspects of turning an organic ‘hit’ molecule into a clinical medicine.
Information, Patents and IPR in the Pharma Sector
Delivered by industry experts, this course will help students to understand information, sources of information (databases), search strategies, intellectual property and patents.
Research Project
An extended multi-disciplinary project.

Explore postgraduate study at Birmingham at one of our on-campus open days (Friday 13 November 2015 and Friday 4 March 2016). Register to attend at: www.birmingham.ac.uk/pgopendays

If you can’t make it to one of our on-campus open days, our virtual open days run regularly throughout the year. For more information, please visit: www.pg.bham.ac.uk

Fees and funding

UK students
£7,650 FT
International students
£20,250 FT

Please visit: www.birmingham.ac.uk/pgfunding

Qualification and course duration


full time
12 months

Course contact details

Postgraduate Enquiry Service
0121 414 5005