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  • Tuition Fee:
  • / Year
  • Foreign: $ 17k / Year
  • Languages of instruction:
  • English

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    The pharmaceutical industry is financially strong and growing rapidly. At all times, the industry needs to recruit a sufficient number of graduates with a focused background in the pharmaceutical sciences. As a pharmaceutical scientist you will be in demand in the pharmaceutical industry internationally and in the Danish biotech, medico-tech and pharmaceutical industries that hold a key position in the international arena.

    The programme is offered in English.

    The MSc in Pharmaceutical Sciences allows you to choose between three academic tracks within the pharmaceutical sciences, which will give you access to the aspect of the field that interest you the most.

    Profile and Career

    The pharmaceutical industry is financially strong and growing and developing rapidly. At all times, the industry needs to be able to recruit a sufficient number of graduates with a focused background in the pharmaceutical sciences. As a graduates in Pharmaceutical Sciences you will be in heavy demand in the pharmaceutical industry internationally and in the Danish biotech, medico-tech and pharmaceutical industries that hold a key position in the international arena.

    If you hold a bachelor’s degree with a background in chemistry and biology, the MSc in Pharmaceutical Sciences gives you the opportunity to tailor a two-year master’s programme weighted with drug-oriented courses. The programmes of The School of Pharmaceutical Sciences include pharmacy courses not found at other Danish universities.
    If you are thinking of a career in the pharmaceutical industry, a Master of Science degree in the pharmaceutical sciences from the University of Copenhagen is an excellent springboard.

    Career opportunities

    An MSc in the pharmaceutical sciences will give you an educational ballast that will supplement other experts in the field. Your educational profile will be much in demand thanks to your BSc in a technical, natural science or health science field combined with a pharmaceuticals-oriented MSc that focuses on medicines and the development of drugs and related products.

    The University of Copenhagen is located in the midst of one of the world’s leading biotech areas – Medicon Valley – home to almost 300 ‘life science’ companies. The School of Pharmaceutical Sciences is known for its extensive cooperation with industry. One of these cooperative endeavours is the School of Pharmaceutical Sciences’s own Drug Research Academy (DRA), where a number of Danish biotech and pharmaceutical companies co-finance PhD scholarships. DRA covers all key research areas in drug development from research, development and production to clinical testing.

    This close concentration of biotech and pharmaceutical companies in the region coupled with the Faculty’s cooperation with industry provides good opportunities for students to build contacts to future employers already while they are studying. The location presents optimal opportunities to find student jobs related to the field and to initiate thesis projects at one of the many companies in the area.

    Bridge-builders in complicated processes

    The development of new drugs and medicinal products is a long and complicated process that starts with the glimmer of a new idea and ends with the effective marketing of a finished product.

    In the pharmaceutical industry project-oriented teamwork in a combination of fields is typical. Someone with an MSc in Pharmaceutical Sciences is ideal for this type of team effort and has the skills to build bridges between people with various specialist backgrounds. Pharmaceutical companies as well as biotech companies have shown great interest in hiring graduates with the skills provided by the The School of Pharmaceutical Sciences’s MSc programme.

    The pharmaceutical industry considers people with MSc degree in the pharmaceutical sciences to be a highly relevant supplement to pharmacists. Pharmaceuticals companies as well as biotech companies have shown great interest in hiring graduates with the skills provided by the The School of Pharmaceutical Sciences ’s programme.

    Please note that the Master of Science degree in Pharmaceutical Sciences does not qualify graduates to practice as pharmacists at community or hospital pharmacies in Denmark and other EU countries.

    Programme Structure

    The two-year MSc in Pharmaceutical Sciences is based on compulsory and elective courses and a final thesis. All courses are taught in English.
    You can choose to specialise in one of 3 tracks that are connected to the various phases of the drug development process:

    • Drug Discovery
    • Drug Development
    • Medicines and Society

    Once you have selected your track, you will be able to ‘weave’ courses from the other two tracks into your study plan as electives. That will allow you to gain a multifaceted picture of the pharmaceutical sciences. The flexibility in choice of electives gives you the opportunity to form a programme that is highly focused but also one with a broader palette.

    The first semester of all 3 programme tracks starts with courses in Drug Discovery and Development, Pharmaceutics and Drug Development and Principles of Pharmacology. These three courses form a common scientific basis regardless of which track you have chosen. You will then take three compulsory courses specific to your track which, together with further specialisation through elective courses and theses, will give you a definitive scientific profile.

    At the University of Copenhagen (UCPH) and abroad

    As an MSc student in Pharmaceutical Sciences, you will spend much of your time at the School of Pharmaceutical Sciences on the North Campus of UCPH where you will become part of the unique, prizewinning study environment.

    For some semesters it will be possible for you to take courses at other UCPH faculties or other universities in Denmark and abroad. There are also good opportunities available for you to write your thesis in industry in Denmark or abroad.

    Track I: Drug Discovery

    Behind all new drugs lies a good idea, a discovery or a hypothesis. Drug Discovery denotes this early phase where scientists are hunting for new effective pharmaceutical substances. The objective is to discover or synthesize new chemical or biological compounds and to map their therapeutic but also possible unwanted effects in animals and people.

    In the discovery phase, work is often conducted in research groups that include experts in pharmacology and medicinal chemistry, among others. With Drug Discovery as a basis, you can continue in a professional position within drug discovery of the pharmaceutical industry, or in a PhD programme at the School of Pharmaceutical Sciences.

    Compulsory courses:

    • Medicinal and Biostructural Chemistry
    • Pharmacology: From Physiology to Therapy
    • Advances in Medicinal Chemistry Research
    Track II: Drug Development

    There is continuous development of new chemical substances that act effectively on their targets, such as brain receptors. However, most of them are useless as drugs because they will never reach their target in the organism. They may be degraded or metabolized too quickly, or they cannot penetrate biological barriers and reach the tissue they need to affect, such as brain tissue.

    Here is where pharmacy comes into the picture. When pharmaceutical scientists know the chemistry of substances, how they interact with the body, how they are metabolized and eliminated, they can develop drugs that release the right amount of active substance at the right point in the right place in the body. Advanced analytical chemistry is an integral part of drug development work.

    Compulsory courses:

    • Medicinal and Biostructural Chemistry
    • Pharmaceutical Analytical Chemistry
    • Research Project in Pharmaceutics and Drug Delivery
    Track III: Medicines and Society

    Medicines have enormous impact on the people and societies that use them. Before new medicinal compounds can be approved for the Danish market, their efficacy and safety must be documented in clinical trials. Both patients and society have an interest in getting the most effective, safest and cheapest drugs from manufacturers to users. Next, the optimal use of the drugs is essential in order to avoid overuse, misuse or other irrational use. Information and communication are vital factors here.

    Compulsory courses:

    • Social Pharmacy
    • Pharmacology: from Physiology to Therapy
    • Clinical Drug Development

    Program requirements

    To qualify for admission to the MSc programme in Pharmaceutical Sciences, applicants must have a relevant Bachelor's degree, courses in biological and chemical subjects, and meet the language requirements.I) Relevant Bachelor's DegreeApplicants must have completed a Bachelor’s degree in the natural, health, or technical sciences, or a corresponding qualification at bachelor’s level. Previous applicants have held Bachelor's degrees in, among other, Pharmacy, Chemistry, Pharmaceutical Sciences, or Biotechnology.Applicants who have already completed a Master’s degree will only be admitted if there are vacant places. The same goes for applicants who have been enrolled on a programme of higher education on two prior occasions without completing a degree. In special circumstances, the university can make an exception.Applicants must have completed the Bachelor´s degree within five years of enrolment in the MSc programme in pharmaceutical sciences.II) Course RequirementsApplicants must have accumulated at least 120 ECTS credits (2 full academic years) in chemical and/or biological subjects.Applicants must have accumulated at least 15 ECTS credits (1/4 of a full academic year) in biological subjects in the subject areas biochemistry and/or molecular biology and/or microbiology.Applicants must have accumulated at least 15 ECTS credits (1/4 of a full academic year) in chemical subjects, of which at least 10 ECTS credits (1/6 of a full academic year) must be in the subject area of organic chemistry.III) Language RequirementsScandinavian applicants (including Danish applicants) are required to document proficiency in English corresponding to at least English B level; cf. Section 11 of the Danish Ministerial Order on Admission at Universities.If you come from an English-speaking country and/or have completed your Bachelor's degree in English, this is considered to be sufficient documentation for your English proficiency, and all you need to do, therefore, is to certify that your Bachelor's degree was indeed accomplished in English.Applicants from outside of Scandinavia, who speak or write English as a second language, must pass the International English Language Testing System (IELTS/Academic) or the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) to document their qualifications in English. The minimum acceptable score for IELTS is 6,5 and the minimum acceptable score for TOEFL is 560 on the paper test, or 83 on the internet-based test. For more information about the tests: www.ielts.org and www.toefl.org. IV) CapacityAdmission capacity has been set at 50 Danish and foreign students annually.If more than 50 applicants meet the admission requirements, applicants with the highest grade point average for all programme modules taken as part of the qualifying Bachelor's degree, including the Bachelor's project, will be given highest priority. English Language Requirements IELTS band: 6.5 TOEFL paper-based test score : 560 TOEFL iBT® test: 83
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