The MSc in Biomedicine at Lancaster offers an intensive 12-month programme in a world-class environment with teaching and supervision by research-active staff. We aim to develop your intellectual, practical and transferable skills as you obtain a highly sought-after postgraduate qualification.
We are passionate advocates of academic curiosity and lifelong learning. The programme combines taught modules with a substantial dissertation research project, each making up half of the required points for assessment. This dual approach consolidates crucial skills whilst offering the flexibility to pursue a semi-independent research agenda.
The MSc lectures and workshops are aligned with the Division of Biomedical and Life Sciences core research themes and showcase the wide diversity of biomedical research; we use them to explore its application to human health and disease.
The course focuses on several hot topics in biomedicine, including global health, cancer biology, diseases of the brain, infectious disease, drug discovery and biomedical ethics. These provide a springboard for your independent research project. Your dissertation provides you with the opportunity to produce a robust scientific argument, to formulate and test hypotheses and to assess contrasting scientific theories.
As well as obtaining practical experience of cutting-edge techniques during your research project, you will improve your autonomous problem-solving and decision-making skills. Throughout the Masters, you will apply the principles of biomedical ethics and learning techniques to scientific problem-solving exercises. Our academic staff will encourage, support and guide you to ensure that you graduate with increased competence and confidence.
Our graduates are highly-regarded for their communication skills, analytical ability, confidence in critical evaluation, and their competence in interpreting data in a biomedical context. This opens doors to careers in the NHS, industry, government and charities. Our MSc programme also provides an excellent grounding for those who wish to pursue further academic research at PhD level.
2:1 Hons degree (UK or equivalent) in an appropriate Biosciences subject such as Biology, Biomedical Sciences or Biochemistry. Eligible related subjects are also considered. If you have any queries regarding the suitability of your undergraduate degree please contact the admissions team.
We may also consider non-standard applicants, please contact us for information.
If you have studied outside of the UK, we would advise you to check our list of international qualifications before submitting your application.
English Language Requirements
We may ask you to provide a recognised English language qualification, dependent upon your nationality and where you have studied previously.
We normally require an IELTS (Academic) Test with an overall score of at least 6.5, and a minimum of 5.5 in each element of the test. We also consider other English language qualifications.
If your score is below our requirements, you may be eligible for one of our pre-sessional English language programmes.
Contact: Admissions Team +44 (0) 1524 592032 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
You will study a range of modules as part of your course, some examples of which are listed below.
The research project, which accounts for 50% of the overall MSc credits, provides students with experience in planning and executing a successful research project. Project titles and supervisors are assigned in Michaelmas Term, allowing students to commence background reading at the start of their MSc course; however laboratory work takes place after Easter with a deadline for submission of a 12,000 word dissertation in August. Research projects are also examined by viva voce examination. The research project allows students to apply, and enhance, scientific skills learnt during research skills modules, and also provides experience in the presentation of scientific data in written, oral and poster formats. Projects are typically offered in the areas of infection (including tropical diseases), the molecular and cellular basis of cancer, neurobiology, and healthy ageing.
Fundamental Research Skills
This module provides students with an understanding of the tools and methods routinely used by biomedical researchers. Students are also taught skills in experimental planning, equipment operation, data capture and analysis. There are no credits associated with this compulsory module, however, students are required to produce: (i) a short literature review; (ii) short report on laboratory practical work undertaken; and (iii) demonstrate competency in the use of statistical analysis software.
Diseases of the Brain
This module introduces the concept of protein misfolding disorders, and expands this through consideration of two major neurodegenerative diseases; Alzheimer’s disease and Parkinson’s disease. The role of oxidative stress and proteases in neurodegenerative diseases is covered in detail, before examining the role of lipids in various brain disorders. The module also considers how animal models can be used to study both normal brain aging and neurodegenerative diseases.
Drug Development (from concept to clinic)
This module introduces principles involved in the discovery and development of a new drug from initial concept to the identification of a candidate compound to first use in man. This knowledge is extended by learning how the pharmaceutical industry and small biotech companies use contemporary scientific advances to identify drug targets and develop new drugs. How new drug entities are tested, developed and ultimately reach the market is examined using ‘real life’ examples in the form of case studies.
Emerging Therapeutics in Immunology
The aim of this module is to provide a broad understanding of the human immune system, more detailed knowledge of human immunological disorders and the application of cutting edge immunological research to biomedical science and clinical practice. Technical skills associated with this course include experience and data analysis of advanced flow cytometry techniques and insight into how research findings are reported and presented to the scientific community and media.
Microbes and Disease
This module aims to provide students with a broad understanding of a range of pathogens and their impact on human health, and to understand how the human body responds to these challenges. Students are also introduced to the new challenges faced by healthcare systems including emerging/re-emerging infectious diseases and antibiotic resistance and so develop an awareness of the challenges and realities of controlling infectious diseases. Students also develop an appreciation of the role of epidemiological and mathematical modelling in predicting and controlling pathogenic organisms.
Models of Disease
The aim of this module is to provide students with a broad understanding of the different types of model systems used in research on human diseases, an appreciation of the advantages and disadvantages of each model, and an awareness of some major discoveries that have been made using these disease models.
Molecular Basis of Cancer
This module provides insight into the underlying molecular events in the development of cancer, how cancers spread through the body and explain how an understanding of the molecular basis of cancer has led to the development of novel cancer treatments. Workshops allow students to study the aetiology and progression of one particular type of cancer in depth, and also to understand how cancer is studied in practice.
Information contained on the website with respect to modules is correct at the time of publication, but changes may be necessary, for example as a result of student feedback, Professional Statutory and Regulatory Bodies' (PSRB) requirements, staff changes, and new research. Not all optional modules are available every year.
Fees and Funding
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Scholarships and bursaries
At Lancaster, we believe that funding concerns should not stop any student with the talent to thrive.
We offer a range of scholarships and bursaries to help cover the cost of tuition fees and/or living expenses.
There may be extra costs related to your course for items such as books, stationery, printing, photocopying, binding and general subsistence on trips and visits. Following graduation, you may need to pay a subscription to a professional body for some chosen careers.
Specific additional costs for studying at Lancaster are listed below.
Lancaster is proud to be one of only a handful of UK universities to have a collegiate system. Every student belongs to a college, and all students pay a small College Membership Fee which supports the running of college events and activities.
For students starting in 2022 and 2023, the fee is £40 for undergraduates and research students and £15 for students on one-year courses. Fees for students starting in 2024 have not yet been set.
Computer equipment and internet access
To support your studies, you will also require access to a computer, along with reliable internet access. You will be able to access a range of software and services from a Windows, Mac, Chromebook or Linux device. For certain degree programmes, you may need a specific device, or we may provide you with a laptop and appropriate software - details of which will be available on relevant programme pages. A dedicated IT support helpdesk is available in the event of any problems.
The University provides limited financial support to assist students who do not have the required IT equipment or broadband support in place.
Application fees and tuition fee deposits
For most taught postgraduate applications there is a non-refundable application fee of £40. We cannot consider applications until this fee has been paid, as advised on our online secure payment system. There is no application fee for postgraduate research applications.
For some of our courses you will need to pay a deposit to accept your offer and secure your place. We will let you know in your offer letter if a deposit is required and you will be given a deadline date when this is due to be paid.
The information on this site relates primarily to 2022/2023 entry to the University and every effort has been taken to ensure the information is correct at the time of publication.
The University will use all reasonable effort to deliver the courses as described, but the University reserves the right to make changes to advertised courses. In exceptional circumstances that are beyond the University’s reasonable control (Force Majeure Events), we may need to amend the programmes and provision advertised. In this event, the University will take reasonable steps to minimise the disruption to your studies. If a course is withdrawn or if there are any fundamental changes to your course, we will give you reasonable notice and you will be entitled to request that you are considered for an alternative course or withdraw your application. You are advised to revisit our website for up-to-date course information before you submit your application.
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