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Pharmacology BSc (Hons)

Key Facts

  • Level:


  • Duration:

    3 years full time
    4-6 years part time
    4 years with foundation year

  • Starting:


  • Fees UK:

    Full Time: £9,250
    Part Time: £1,465 per 20 credit module Integrated Foundation Year: £6,780

  • Fees International:

    Full Time: £13,000

  • Location:


Get in touch

For questions regarding study and admissions please contact us:

UK/EU Students enquiries
0300 303 2772

International Students enquiries
+44 (0)1604 894503


Course subject to validation – for September 2022 start. 

Pharmacology is the study of drugs and how they interact and work on the body.

On the Pharmacology BSc (Hons) degree you will learn how drugs are made into medicines. How drugs and other chemicals interact at the molecular, cellular and systems levels in the body.

Pharmacologists have been key to the development of drugs and vaccines that have improved the treatment of many of the diseases of modern society, including:

  • The treatment of bacterial infections with antibiotics
  • HIV with anti-retroviral drugs
  • Mental health with antidepressant drugs and antipsychotics
  • Cardiovascular diseases with statins and antihypertensives

This course is suited to those wanting to pursue a career in the pharmaceutical industry or in biomedical research as well as graduate entry to medicine

Updated 23/09/2021


  • Flexible programme of study that will allow you to meet your career aspirations
  • Practice and practical application sessions for a more engaging experience
  • Our graduates will be equipped with a variety of transferable skills that employers are seeking
  • HP laptop and software included with this course for eligible students*

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Course Content

  • Pharmacologists will be at the forefront of the development and design of next generation medicines for the treatment of diseases of the 21st century. As a student of Pharmacology BSc (Hons), you will be preparing to meet the challenges of developing molecules into medicines.

    In studying our pharmacology programme, you will gain an in-depth understanding of the principles and biological action of drugs and chemicals, at the molecular, cellular and systems level and their use as medicines for the treatment of diseases.

    Our course has been designed to meet the standards of the British Pharmacological Society’s (BPS) undergraduate core curriculum.  Course modules are structured using a variety of methods including lectures, seminars and laboratory practical classes. Our aim is to provide you with opportunities to be actively involved in your learning. This is facilitated by an active blended learning approach which combines face-to-face sessions with integrated online learning, implemented in our Northampton Interactive Learning Environment (NILE). For each 20 credit module you can expect approximately 48 hours of contact time during the academic year.

    Accreditation of this programme is being sought from the Royal Society of Biology – the leading professional body for the biological sciences in the United Kingdom.

  • Standard entry requirements apply. A typical offer would be BCC at A Level or DMM at BTEC Extended Diploma (in Applied Science, Applied Human Biology or Pharmaceutical Science or similar science subject).

    For A Levels, you are expected to have studied two science A Level subjects (one at Grade C in Biology or Chemistry, and one other in Biology, Chemistry, Human Biology, Maths or Physics), or equivalent qualification.

    In addition, you will be expected to have achieved GCSE English Language and Maths at Grade C/4 or above or equivalent.

    For more information on how to make an application, please visit our How to Apply page.

    For more information on how to apply as an International student, please visit our How to Apply page.

    Integrated Foundation Year (IFY) Entry Requirements

    Admission to this foundation course is normally DEE at A Level or MPP at BTEC. However, we would also like to hear from you if you have professional or industry experience instead, a range of other qualifications or self-developed subject knowledge that relates to the course you wish to study.

    English Language Requirements

    All International and EU students applying for a course with us must meet the following minimum English language requirements:

    • IELTS 6.0 (or equivalent) with a minimum of 5.5 in all bands
      for study at undergraduate level

    For information regarding English language requirements at the University, please see our IELTS page.

    If you would like information on making an application, please see our How to Apply page.

  • 2021/22 Tuition Fees

    Fees quoted relate to study in the Academic Year 21/22 only and may be subject to inflationary increases in future years.

    UK – Full Time: £9,250
    UK – Part Time: £1,465 per 20 credit module
    UK – Integrated Foundation Year: £6,780 as part of a four year programme (subsequent years will be charged at standard BSc rate)
    International – Full Time: £13,000
    International – Integrated Foundation Year: £13,000 as part of a four year programme (subsequent years will be charged at standard BSc rate)

    Additional costs

    There are no additional costs for this course for students beginning their studies in September 2021. Should this change, applicants and students will be contacted by the university with details of the costs.

    2020/21 Tuition Fees

    Fees quoted relate to study in the Academic Year 20/21 only and may be subject to inflationary increases in future years.

    UK and EU – Full Time: £9,250
    UK and EU – Part Time: £1,450 per 20 credit module
    UK and EU – Integrated Foundation Year: £6,750
    International – Full-time: £12,900
    International – Integrated Foundation Year: £12,900

    Additional costs

    There are no additional costs for this course for students beginning their studies in September 2020. Should this change, applicants and students will be contacted by the university with details of the costs.

    For information on the scholarships available to you, please see our scholarships page.

  • At the University of Northampton, everything we do, from funded trips to paid internships, is to give you everything you need to make a difference when you leave.

    If you join this full time degree at Northampton you will receive a laptop when your course begins. The laptops are built to a bespoke custom specification ideal for use in the seminar room, collaborative group work or studying at home.

    Whatever your ambitions, we’re here to help you to achieve them. We’ll support you to identify the skills you’re learning during your course, find your strengths and secure practical experience so that when it comes to applying for jobs or further study you’ll feel confident in standing out from the crowd. We’ve created the Northampton Employment Promise because we are so confident that if you focus on your studies and complete one of our awards you’ll be highly employable by the time you graduate. Putting you in a great position to secure employment or continue your studies.

    To check out the full list of perks visit our Student Perks page.

  • The Integrated Foundation Year (IFY) offers a new and exciting route into studying for a degree, attracting ambitious and driven students who are willing to learn and advance.

    If you have non-standard qualifications or do not quite meet the admissions requirements we can offer you a fantastic opportunity to study a four year programme which includes an Integrated Foundation Year. The Integrated Foundation Year will help you develop the theoretical/practical and academic skills you need, in order to successfully progress to the full award.

    Featuring a reduced tuition fee in the first year, our four-year courses will enable you to successfully follow the degree pathway of your choice while gaining essential study skills. The foundation year of your chosen degree will be studied on a full-time basis and is aimed at supporting the transition to higher education. Years two, three and four are then studied as a standard degree programme.

  • An optional placement year is available for students who have successfully completed their stage 1 and 2 studies. Advice will be given to help find placements. This will give you the opportunity to gain a year‘s extra work-based learning experience in a science related placement, spent either in the UK or abroad.

  • How will I be taught?

    We aim to provide an environment that maximises engagement, involvement and enjoyment in your studies.  You will participate in a variety of activities that support and enhance your learning. This will include traditional face to face lessons, laboratory practicals, tutorials and online sessions through our virtual classroom.

    How many hours per week of teaching/ personal tutoring?

    In a typically week you will have between 12-14 hours of taught content and an additional hour available with your designated tutor

    How will I be assessed?

    In each of the modules you take each semester, you will typically have 2 assessments per module. These will be through coursework and formal examinations throughout your study. An estimate of the different forms of assessment is as follows:

    • Essays 30%
    • Examinations 20%
    • Practical work 25%
    • Presentations, posters 20%
    • Time constrained tests 5 %

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Careers and Employability

A pharmacology degree is an excellent foundation for a wide range of careers. Our graduates will be equipped with a variety of transferable skills that employers are seeking. These include gathering, analysis and interpretation of data, communication both orally and in writing, presentation skills and teamworking.

For example, on the British Pharmacological Society website careers in pharmacology pages there are details of a range of opportunities available to graduates.  These include jobs in:

  • Pharmaceutical and biotechnology industry
  • Clinical Pharmacology​
  • Science communication and public engagement​
  • Patent Law and technology transfer​
  • Teaching​
  • Lecturing and training​
  • Monitoring and licensing of medicines​
  • Regulatory affairs​
  • Research Management and coordination​
  • Managing research funding
  • Finance and business​


Our graduates are well-qualified to undertake a wide range of careers or training for a higher degree such as an MSc or PhD – with graduates continuing to study in medicine, dentistry and other related fields.

Is this course for you?