Pharmacy MPharm (Hons) Modules
Year 1 | Year 2 | Year 3 | Year 4
Introduction to Pharmacy and the Patient – Professional Portfolio
This is the first of a series of non-credit bearing modules throughout the MPharm programme. This module focusses on the development of essential professional and prescribing skills required of a practising pharmacist. A variety of practical and clinical competencies, including communication and consultation skills will be assessed through short-timed practical assessments and signoff through in-practice observations by practitioners during placements as part of their portfolio. Students will be introduced to essential numeracy skills required in clinical practice and their competency in these will be confirmed through an online test.
Personal tutors will support their students to reflect on their learning journey and personal wellbeing both within timetabled sessions and extra-curricular activities throughout the year to develop their own professional learning objectives within the portfolio.
Integrated Science for Pharmacy
This module provides an overall introduction to how scientific knowledge and clinical skills integrate in the practice of pharmacy. Biological sciences are introduced through sessions on topics such as cell biology, microbiology, with basic anatomy and physiology. An understanding of the safe and legal use of medicines is established through an introduction to pharmacy law and practice. Interactive basic core communications skills, psychosocial science and ethics sessions start the journey of developing future person-centred healthcare professionals with an awareness of the importance of equality, diversity and inclusivity in practice.
The Patient: Sensory and Topical Body Systems
This module starts to integrate an understanding of biological sciences as applied to the skin, eye, ear and nose to the safe and appropriate use of medicines for these physiological systems. This incorporates normal physiological structure and function, cell biology, biochemistry, microbiological principles and the recognition of common disorders or situations encountered in clinical practice. Students will also learn of the challenges of formulating medication for application to the skin, eye, ear and nose and how physicochemical principles are applied to the development of a range of products such as creams, ointments, lotions, drops and transdermal patches. Students are supported with practical laboratory skills to develop accurate working, confident numeracy skills and attention to detail.
Quality medicines: Design, Development and Analysis
This module is focused on the formulation and development of safe and effective oral dosage forms and integrates and applies knowledge from the physical and biological sciences to the work of the practising pharmacist. Key knowledge and skills are taught through a series of interconnected practical sessions in which students develop products, evaluate their suitability as medicines and consider their use in practice. Students will be introduced to the principles of pharmacokinetics, and drug modes of action and are encouraged to take a holistic view of medicines and how pharmacists can ensure they are used safely in individual patients. Concepts such as quality assurance and regulatory affairs are also introduced, and some of the challenges in ensuring the availability of safe and effective medicines for all worldwide in line with the UN SDGs.
The Patient: Internal body systems
This module is focused on developing a holistic understanding of the gastrointestinal system, associated conditions and nutrition. Students will gain an overview of the principles of physiology and therapeutics associated with the gastrointestinal system and the effective absorption and metabolism of nutrients. Students will learn about conditions commonly encountered in primary care, and how patients can be supported to manage their symptoms safely at home. They will gain an understanding of how to differentiate between conditions and identify potentially more serious disease requiring referral to a GP or management in secondary care.
This module will also explore the complex scientific, social, and behavioural factors that influence nutrition. Building on an understanding of nutritional intake, and the absorption and metabolism of nutrients, students will learn about the impact of obesity, malnutrition and nutrient deficiencies on health and medicines use.
Introduction to co-morbidities and person centred-care – Professional portfolio
This is the second of a series of non-credit bearing modules throughout the MPharm programme. This module continues the development of essential professional skills and competencies required of a practising pharmacist. Practical and clinical competencies, including communication and consultation skills will be assessed through both short-timed practical assessments and signed off through in-practice observations by practitioners during placements. Students will continue to develop numeracy skills required in clinical practice, and their competency in these will be confirmed through a written assessment.
The immune response: Infection and inflammation
This module outlines the immune and inflammatory responses in health and disease. The overall aim is to facilitate an understanding of the pathophysiology of a range of inflammatory and infective conditions in patients that may have other chronic medical conditions. Students will gain an understanding of how bacteria, viruses and fungi can cause disease and how the immune system works to fight off infection and the potential consequences of a defective immune system and how immunisation can help control infectious disease.
Introductory microbiology and sterile products laboratory practical classes will explore some of the challenges of drug development and formulation, particularly of the parenteral dosage form, in the context of treating infection/inflammation.
Introduction to cardiovascular disease and respiratory systems
The module adopts a patient-centred approach to learning about cardiovascular and respiratory function and disease, and students are introduced to patients who have more than one health condition. Learning in this module will centre around clinical case studies to ensure that underpinning scientific knowledge remains patient focused and considers social and personal preferences to their care or treatment. The physiology of the cardiovascular and respiratory systems is explored, with particular emphasis on the cellular and molecular targets for drugs used in the treatment of the studied conditions.
The pharmacological principles and medicinal chemistry of the prescribed drugs will be explored, alongside the consideration of physicochemical properties and formulation design of drugs used for respiratory patients. Students will be introduced to the relevant evidence-based national guidelines and how these can form a framework to inform patient choice.
Infectious and inflammatory conditions and their management
This module builds on the material covered in earlier modules to understand the appropriate diagnosis and management of a range of inflammatory and infective conditions. Drug action and resistance will be explored including concepts such as antimicrobial spectrum of activity, drug design and mechanisms of action, selective toxicity, mechanisms of drug resistance
Factors such as adjunctive therapies, lifestyle modifications, infection control, antibiotic resistance and consultation skills for improved patient outcomes will be considered alongside drug treatment for infectious and inflammatory conditions. Challenges of ensuring equal access to inclusive healthcare for the diverse local and global populations are considered with reference to HIV/AIDS and immunisation.
Ischaemic cardiovascular disease, hepatic and renal
In this module, students will be introduced to patients with more complex cardiovascular disease and the renal and hepatic systems. Patients will continue to have co-morbidities which will require students to consider the application of science to clinical practice, more complex pharmacokinetics, evidence-based medicine, the concept of person-centred care and the application of professional judgement.
The function of the renal and hepatic systems will be explored, and the impact on the patient and the use of medicines if these systems fail. The pharmacological principles and medicinal chemistry of the prescribed drugs will be explored, alongside aspects of their absorption, distribution, metabolism, and excretion (ADME), pharmacokinetics, and adverse drug reactions.
Personalised medicines and the complex patient - Professional portfolio
Professional Portfolio 3 is the third of a series of non-credit bearing modules throughout the MPharm programme. This module continues the development of essential professional skills and competencies required of a practising pharmacist. Practical and clinical competencies, including communication and consultation skills will be assessed through both short-timed practical assessments and signed off through in-practice observations by practitioners during placements. Students will continue to develop more complex numeracy skills required in clinical practice, and their competency in these will be confirmed through a written assessment.
The patient: The Central Nervous System
Students will gain essential knowledge on the function of the central nervous system (CNS) and the pharmacodynamic, pharmacokinetic and physicochemical properties of medicines targeting this system. Collaborative teaching by both expert scientists and specialist clinical practitioners in these fields will facilitate the integration and application of this knowledge in a clinical context.
National guidelines for the management of CNS conditions will be explored to develop an understanding of how therapeutic knowledge is used in practice. Within this framework the concept of making individualised therapeutic choices is discussed, whilst ensuring patient acceptability and preference are considered. The application of relevant legal frameworks, including the Mental Capacity Act and consent will also be explored in this context.
Biomarkers and biopharmaceuticals
This module demonstrates how relevant biomarkers, physiological tests and point-of-care testing can be used as part of diagnosis, to influence treatment choices and in the ongoing monitoring of disease and/or treatment. Novel biopharmaceuticals will be introduced with an understanding of their design and their place in therapy for conditions where this has therapeutic benefit, for example Inflammatory Bowel Diseases. Data interpretation skills will be developed, so that students understand the validity and reliability of published data from sources such as clinical audits, trials and meta-analysis.
The Patient: The endocrine system
Students will gain essential knowledge on the function of the endocrine system and the pharmacodynamic, pharmacokinetic and physicochemical properties of medicines targeting this system. Collaborative teaching by both expert scientists and specialist clinical practitioners in these fields will facilitate the integration and application of this knowledge in a clinical context.
The provision of inclusive, ethical care for people of all genders with reference to therapeutic areas including menstrual issues, contraception, the menopause, erectile dysfunction and prostate issues will be included. The importance of consent, confidentiality and Fraser competence in the provision of safe, person-centred care will be emphasised.
Precision medicine and cancer therapy
This module introduces precision medicine and factors influencing choice of therapy and the personalisation of medicines based on a more complex patient. Novel therapeutics and the application of genomics will be detailed, with a focus on cancer. The mechanisms for the proliferation of disease, cancer types and therapeutic options are detailed, including holistic cancer care such as complementary and herbal therapies.
The principles of palliative care and end-of-life care are discussed, and the importance of effective communication in challenging situations and ensuring that patients feel empowered in their decision-making.
Future pharmacist: Healthcare professional and expert in medicines – Professional portfolio
Professional Portfolio 4 is the last in a series of non-credit bearing modules throughout the MPharm programme. This module continues the development of essential professional skills and competencies required of a practising pharmacist. Practical and clinical competencies, including communication and consultation skills will be assessed through both short-timed practical assessments and signed off through in-practice observations by practitioners during placements. Students will continue to develop more complex numeracy skills required in clinical practice, and their competency in these will be confirmed through a written assessment.
Future pharmacist: Research skills for the pharmacist
This module provides students with the opportunity to conduct an independent research project in a topic area directly related to pharmacy. It builds on the students' knowledge of research methods and aims to develop skills of intellectual enquiry, time and project management and independent study skills in preparation for practice. The module allows students to develop a practical understanding of how techniques of research and enquiry are used to interpret new knowledge in pharmaceutical science and practice and to demonstrate the capacity for independent thought, creativity and rigour in the application of their knowledge.
The module enables progressive student-centred learning in order to assess cognitive, practical and communication skills in preparation for future professional practice.
The patient: Advanced clinical skills, expert in practise (prescribing)
This module will build on advancing clinical expertise including application of diagnostic skills as well as developing prescribing confidence with focus on communication skills that work towards shared decision making in relation to health. Students will learn to recognise the needs of diverse and complex patients and be expected to show that they can work effectively within a multi-disciplinary team to provide person centred care.
Future pharmacist: Leadership and management skills and behaviours
This module offers students the opportunity to develop and demonstrate personal leadership and management skills and behaviours. The module will advance the student’s knowledge regarding the structure of the NHS and financial movement around the health service; students will identify how pharmacy can contribute to financial planning within health organisations and explore the concept of bids for NHS services.
The patient: Clinical practice expertise (prescribing)
This module brings together the clinical knowledge required by a future pharmacist independent prescriber to choose and carry out appropriate diagnostic techniques, determine the most appropriate course(s) of action and monitor the patient appropriately. This module will focus on developing clinical expertise including application of knowledge of anatomy and physiology and evidence-based therapeutics from across the programme, in order to make clinical decisions about complex patients. This will include differential diagnosis, clinical examination skills, clinical reasoning and complex decision making to develop professional competence and confidence in relation to prescribing. Students will continue to learn with other health and social care students and practitioners.