Pharmacy MPharm

Studying the MPharm degree at Aston University gives you the skills, insight and capability to keep our communities healthy and safe in a rewarding career.

Course type

Full-time (Hons)

Course format

Experiential learning

Duration

4 years

UCAS code(s)

B230

Start date

Overview
Explore Pharmacy MPharm at Aston University

Pharmacy graduate Jenny talks about her time studying at Aston and previous role at Royal Derby Hospital.

Amandeep Singh

"One of my best highlights of my course was the recognition Aston got in the pharmaceutical field for providing life changing research. The best lecture we had was one from an industrial Pharmacist who was active in world leading research. They provided a whole new insight into life as a Aston Graduate. This experience opened my eyes to all the opportunities that open up once you graduate with an Aston Degree."

Amandeep Singh
Graduate: Pharmacy 
 

Amandeep Singh

"One of my best highlights of my course was the recognition Aston got in the pharmaceutical field for providing life changing research. The best lecture we had was one from an industrial Pharmacist who was active in world leading research. They provided a whole new insight into life as a Aston Graduate. This experience opened my eyes to all the opportunities that open up once you graduate with an Aston Degree."

Amandeep Singh
Graduate: Pharmacy 
 

Course outline and modules

About

Studying at Aston Pharmacy School will help you to develop the skills, knowledge and outlook required to become an outstanding pharmacist. You’ll experience work-based learning through our extensive network of industry partners; develop your skills in dedicated specialist facilities, and benefit from the experience and insight of our expert teaching staff.

With our roots stretching back to the establishment of the Birmingham Pharmaceutical Institution in 1847, and strong links with the NHS and healthcare industry, Aston is the ideal place to learn about this fascinating, and ever-changing profession.

Accreditation

Our Pharmacy MPharm degree is accredited by the General Pharmaceutical Council (GPhC), which is one of the key requirements to practice as a pharmacist in the UK. The programme was fully accredited in 2019 by the GPhC for the maximum permitted period.

The MPharm programme is due to be re-accredited early in 2023 to the new 2021 GPhC Standards. These include prescribing skills that will prepare students to register as pharmacist prescribers following completion of the MPharm programme and Foundation Training Year.

Integrated placements and interprofessional learning

You will benefit from extensive patient contact throughout the course. Both within the University, and through a series of professional experiences in different workplace environments such as hospitals, community pharmacies, GP surgeries and primary care settings. We also have a strong focus on interprofessional practice and collaborative care, offering opportunities for you to learn with, from and about other healthcare specialities.


International students and post-study work visa

Aston University is a diverse, close community and welcomes international students. Students from over 120 different countries choose to study with us every year. Aston is not only a great place to study, based in the centre of Birmingham it’s also a great place to live.

For international students who are interested in completing their Foundation training (formerly known as pre-registration training) year in the UK, you can find more information about visa requirements here. Additionally, the new post-study work visa enables international students to remain in the UK for two years after they have completed their studies to find work. For more information visit the government website.

Course outline 

As the only Pharmacy School in the UK to hold a prestigious Regius Chair in Pharmacy, studying at Aston means you’ll be learning in the best possible environment to have an outstanding career that changes and improves many lives.

We have a long-standing track record of teaching excellence, student satisfaction and graduate prospects, and at Aston, you’ll be provided with the opportunities, experience and expertise needed to prepare for your pre-registration training year and successful future career as a pharmacist.

You’ll have access to our student support team and personal tutor who are there to help you through your studies, supporting your personal and professional development. In addition, you will have a great peer support network through the highly active and student-led Aston Pharmacy Association.

Our open and inclusive curriculum structure allows you to see how the material you learn throughout the course is connected.

You’ll study twelve integrated themes, within three broad areas of study:

The Professional

Four themes focusing on the safe and effective delivery of healthcare and supporting you in the development of your professional identity as a pharmacist. Themes include:

  • Personal professional development
  • Population and public health
  • Delivery of care
  • Fundamentals of practice
The Medicine

Four themes focusing on how medicines are discovered, formulated and used in practice, including the latest developments in individualised medicines. Themes include:

  • Drugs to market
  • Enteral drug delivery
  • Parenteral drug delivery
  • Personalisation of pharmaceuticals
The Patient

Four themes focusing on the care of patients, covering a wide range of both individual and multiple clinical conditions. Themes include:

  • Inflammation and immunity
  • Musculoskeletal and central nervous system
  • Cardiovascular, respiratory and renal
  • Gastrointestinal and endocrine

Running throughout each of these themes are three key central learning threads:

  • Person-centred care
  • Deliberative practice
  • Collaborative practice, via inter-professional learning with other healthcare professionals and students, such as those from the Schools of Medicine, Optometry and Audiology.

Entry Requirements

 

GCSEs

Five GCSEs which must include Maths and English Language all at grade C/4. Please note we do not accept Key skills or Functional skills in place of these.

A Levels
  • ABB must include Chemistry and one other science subject from: Biology, Maths OR Physics.
  • BBB must include Chemistry and one other science from Biology, Maths or Physics, for contextual offer students*

The following subjects will not be considered as one of the core three A Levels - General Studies, Critical Thinking, Citizenship Studies.

We welcome applications from students who have tried to improve their examination grades by taking a maximum of one set of resits. We treat these applications in exactly the same way as other applications.

BTEC
BTEC Qualification NameBTEC grades requiredA Level Requirements
Extended Diploma (QCF) National

Distinction*, Distinction*, Distinction*
(D*D*D*)

The BTEC subject must be Applied Science with which you do not require an additional A Level.
Extended Diploma (QCF/National)

Distinction, Distinction, Distinction
(DDD)

With this BTEC you must achieve grade BB in two science subjects including Chemistry PLUS Biology, Physics or Maths.

Diploma (QCF)National Diploma

Distinction, Distinction (DD)With this BTEC you must achieve grade BB in two science subjects including Chemistry PLUS Biology, Physics or Maths.

If you are taking the BTEC in Applied Science subject, you must also achieve grade B in A- Level Chemistry.
Subsidiary Diploma (QCF)
National Extended Certificate
Distinction (D)With this BTEC you must achieve grade BB in two science subjects including Chemistry PLUS Biology, Physics or Maths.
90 Credit Diploma (QCF)Distinction, Distinction (DD)With this BTEC you must achieve grade BB in two science subjects including Chemistry PLUS Biology, Physics or Maths.

National Foundation Diploma

Distinction (D)

With this BTEC you must achieve grade BB in two science subjects including Chemistry PLUS Biology, Physics or Maths.

 

T Level

Students completing T levels in 2022
T levels in the following subjects are not accepted for entry to this course: Design, Surveying and Planning for Construction; Digital Production, Design and Development; Education and Childcare.  Please note that where a T level is listed as 'Not acceptable' this is because the T level does not cover subject specific knowledge that we normally require at A level.  If you have taken both a T level and an additional A level or A levels please consult the admissions team for advice in relation to any degrees where T levels are listed as 'not accepted.'

Students completing T levels in 2023 and beyond
There are now an additional seven T Level qualifications in: building services; engineering for construction; digital business services; digital support and services; health; healthcare science; onsite construction and science. The first student cohorts from these subjects will complete their courses in the summer of 2023. We will publish details of the progression opportunities to our degree programmes from these T Levels by September 2022.

International Baccalaureate Diploma

Standard offer: 32 points overall in the IB Diploma, which must include 6, 5, 5 in Higher Level subjects. These subjects must include Chemistry and one other science subject from Biology, Maths OR Physics. You must also have Standard Level grade 5 in both Maths and English Language. 

Contextual offer: 31 points overall, three Higher Level subjects at 5 5 5. These subjects must include Chemistry and one other science subject from Biology, Maths OR Physics. You must also have Standard Level grade 5 in both Maths and English Language for contextual offer students.*
 

Access to Higher Education

This qualification is not accepted for this course.

Foundation programmes

Foundation Programme in Science: Biosciences and Pharmacy (Aston University)

It is also possible to gain entry to this course by completing the Foundation Programme in Science: Biosciences and Pharmacy.

External Foundation Programmes from another university

We consider external foundation programmes for entry into our year 1 programmes on a case-by-case basis. We will always require applicants to have met the following criteria prior to application:

  • 5 GCSEs at grade C/4 or above including Maths and English.
  • You need achieve a total of three A Levels, BBB in any subjects OR CCC including one science from Chemistry, Biology, Physics, or Maths.

Any conditional offers made will be based on meeting a specific grade in your foundation programme. In order to be considered you will need to submit a UCAS application as we do not accept direct applications.

International Students

International qualifications

Applicants whose first language is not English will be required to provide evidence of an English language qualification. Find out more about our English language requirements. International students can discover more about the qualifications we accept on our international pages.

International foundation programmes

If you don’t meet our entry requirements, we have a range of pathway programmes offered by our partner, ONCAMPUS Aston, which you can complete to progress onto one of our degrees.

Other

Degree

We consider applicants for year 1 entry who are undertaking a degree in a related field elsewhere. You must meet the GCSE requirements and have at least BBB at A Level including Chemistry and one other science subject from: Biology, Maths OR Physics. A typical offer would be to achieve a 60% overall with no fails in any units. It is also expected that you have not previously attempted the second year of a programme elsewhere. In order to be considered you will need to submit a UCAS application as we do not accept direct applications and this must include an academic reference. The equivalency of the programme is reviewed by the Admissions Tutor and you will be required to provide an official copy of the programme specification of this.

Please note we do not accept year 2 transfers in any circumstance. This is due to integrated placements aspect of the course which starts from year one and also the accreditation of the content is for the whole course.

View our Transfers Policy

For further information regarding the transfers policy and Student Transfer Arrangements please check:  https://www2.aston.ac.uk/study/student-transfer

Further requirements

Due to the nature of this course and in line with national requirements, you will be required to complete a series of checks and screenings, in addition to adhering to a number of regulations and policies. Full details can be found here.

Enhanced Level Criminal Records Bureau check (known as a DBS check) Fitness to Practise Regulations Health screening assessments: All accepted candidates to the MPharm programme will be required to undergo an online health screening assessment during the first year of the course and provide appropriate evidence of immunisation against rubella, measles, tuberculosis, varicella and hepatitis B. Please note:

  • Hepatitis B immunisation takes several months; therefore, prospective students are strongly advised to start the vaccination course in good time and undertake the vaccination schedule as per the Hepatitis B immunisation information for public health professionals contained in the Green Book.
  • A number of the patient facing learning and teaching sessions will require students to be immunised. Non-immunised students will not be allowed access into some clinical environments and this may result in failure of modules within the programme or failure of individual elements of assessment within modules.
  • Following the health screening assessment some students may be contacted by the Enabling Team to review any health concerns that may affect their ability to take part in patient facing activities.
  • A hardship fund is available for eligible students to assist with vaccination costs (of up to £160). Those applying for reimbursement upon commencement of the programme should ensure they have retained receipts for any vaccination undertaken.

Aston Pharmacy School policies: There are also further policies that all Pharmacy students must comply with and you should be aware of these before you apply.

  • Student Policy for Raising Concerns
  • Professional Appearance Standards
  • Pregnancy Risk Assessment
  • Infection Control Policy.
Age of qualifications

Applicants must normally have achieved their eligible academic qualifications for entry onto this course within the last two years. Applicants presenting qualifications older than two years will be considered on a case-by-case basis by the Academic Admissions Lead.

View our Admissions Policy under the 'Respect' tab on our Principles and Policies page. 

Whilst the grades listed here are our entry requirements, we understand that predicted grades are only an estimate. We will therefore consider applicants with predicted grades that fall below these entry requirements if the application is of a high standard (however, initial offers will not be lower than stated above).

*For details on our Aston Ready contextual offer scheme, please see here.

The information contained on this website details the typical entry requirements for this course for the most commonly offered qualifications. Applicants with alternative qualifications may wish to enquire with the relevant admissions teams prior to application whether or not their qualifications are deemed acceptable. For less commonly encountered qualifications this will be judged on a case-by-case basis in consultation with the academic admissions tutor.

Learning, teaching and assessment

Learning and teaching

You will benefit from working with our highly qualified and knowledgeable team of academics, scientists, leading researchers and practising pharmacists from a variety of healthcare areas.

Our interconnected course structure enables us to put all teaching firmly in the context of delivering patient care as part of a multi-disciplinary team. We have a strong and deliberate focus on interprofessional practice and collaborative care, working closely with Aston’s many healthcare courses to increase the opportunities for you to learn with, from and about other healthcare specialities.

Your learning will be delivered via a range of teaching methods from problem-based learning and video recording sessions, to computer aided learning and patient-simulators. We utilise a range of learning technologies, which are combined with high-fidelity simulations of healthcare practice to provide you with a realistic and safe environment in which to learn skills and develop your knowledge.

Each year of study is worth 120 credits, with each credit equivalent to 10 learning hours. The learning hours may include but are not limited to lectures, seminars, tutorials, lab sessions, practicals, online activity, reading, other independent study, reflecting on assignment feedback and practice-based learning.


Assessment

Our recently revised MPharm curriculum utilises a range of different assessment types which may include written examinations, coursework, oral presentations, poster presentations, clinical simulations activities and laboratory assessments.

 

Fees and Scholarships

UK students (2023/24)

Annual tuition fees: £9,250

During placement year: £1,250

International students/EU students* (2023/24)

Annual tuition fees: £20,100*

During placement year: £2,500

*The United Kingdom government has confirmed that European Union (EU), other European Economic Area (EEA) and Swiss nationals commencing academic courses in England from August 2021 will no longer be charged the same tuition rates as Home students.

Further information 

*Tuition fees are reviewed annually and may increase in subsequent years in line with inflation linked to the Retail Price Index (RPI) to take account of the University’s increased costs of delivering the Programme. Any such increase shall always be in accordance with the law. When undertaking a placement year a placement year fee applies.

More information on fees https://www2.aston.ac.uk/study/undergraduate/student-finance

Scholarships

At Aston University we are committed to supporting the most talented and hardworking students to achieve their potential by providing a range of scholarships to help lower tuition and living costs. Find out more about our scholarships here. https://www2.aston.ac.uk/scholarships

Career prospects

As an MPharm student at Aston, you will have access to a wide range of services and support as you embark upon your first career steps.

Our dedicated Careers and Placements team offer interview support, CV surgeries and specialist careers fairs. Of course, you will also have the Aston Pharmacy School team on hand to assist with any questions you have about securing your foundation training post or other career of choice. Support for Health Education England’s (HEE) national recruitment scheme for foundation pharmacist training is built into the course. For more information on the scheme see the HEE website.

Our graduates enter a variety of careers in:

  • Community pharmacies like Boots, Cooperative, LloydsPharmacy, Superdrug and small-chain or independents
  • GP surgeries
  • Integrated Care Boards
  • Hospitals
  • Pharmaceutical industry with organisations such as GSK, Pfizer and Britannia Pharmaceuticals Ltd
  • Pharmaceutical research
  • Further study through postgraduate programmes such as MSc or PhD

 

Frequently asked questions

Why study Pharmacy at Aston?

At Aston, we give all our students the ideal preparation for their foundation training year, through working with other healthcare professionals, and focusing on the needs and experience patients and pharmacists, as well as getting to really understand medicine. You’ll learn in specialist facilities from experts in their field, giving you great links into pharmacy practice and industry, and the ideal preparation for a career in pharmacy.

What learning facilities can I expect?

As a Pharmacy student, you will have access to a range of specialist facilities in our recently redeveloped Wilson Pharmacy Suite. This includes our clinical skills area, with a mock hospital bay set up, medicines supply and patient counselling suites with discrete video recording capabilities. You will also have access to and use a range of cutting edge laboratory equipment used in the design, development and testing of drug products which includes tabletting machines, high-performance liquid chromatograph, gas chromatography, NMR spectroscopies and dissolution vessels.

What will my career prospects be like after studying Pharmacy at Aston?

Our graduates go on to work in a variety of career paths, from community-based practices, GP surgeries and hospitals, to pharmaceutical research and industry. 

Organisations who have recently employed Aston graduates include:

  • NHS Trusts
  • Primary care
  • Major high street pharmacy chains (including Boots, Cooperative, Lloyds Pharmacy and Superdrug)
  • Small chain and independent pharmacies
  • Large Pharmaceutical firms such as Glaxo Smith Kline, Pfizer and Britannia Pharmaceuticals Ltd.
Why should international students choose Aston University?

Study at Aston University and you will be part of a multi-cultural community located at the heart of the dynamic city of Birmingham. Our courses are practical, inspired by industry and many have internationally recognised accreditations. Renowned for our employability prospects and connections to business and industry, we provide outstanding careers support, advice and placement opportunities.

For those interested in working in the UK after they have graduated, the UK Government has created a new post-study work visa. Click here for more information on post-work visas.

 

Chat with current students

 
Register your interest form


The information you provide will be used by Aston University to contact you about the University, courses you may be interested in and events you may wish to attend, for anything outside of this purpose we will obtain your consent. Your data is subject to Aston University’s privacy policy and cookie policy.  For further information, please visit www.aston.ac.uk/dataprotection