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MSc-PGDip in Clinical Biochemistry with Molecular Biology

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  • Objectives
    Clinical biochemistry is the meeting point of several disciplines of which analytical chemistry, medical biochemistry, immunology, molecular biology and clinical medicine are among the most important. This programme is designed to give an integrated picture of the mechanisms underlying human diseases and the current approaches to their investigation. The programme aims to provide you with a comprehensive and sound theoretical background and the relevant practical experience necessary to appreciate the contemporary issues in medical research and laboratory medicine. This should enable you to initiate and develop appropriate analytical strategies for research or diagnostic service, to evaluate the findings and to communicate them both orally and in writing. Programme modules cover: Biochemical Medicine; Analysis and Instrumentation; Molecular Biology; Clinical Endocrinology; Immunology; Biochemical Toxicology; Laboratory Exercises; Management of Clinical Laboratories. In addition, part-time block-release students receive structured professional training in designated hospital biochemistry laboratories in their employing health authority region. All students undertake a novel practical research project. Our MSc programme enjoys a high reputation both nationally and internationally. This qualification is strongly recommended for a career in the biomedical science sector, whether in research, service or industrial establishments. The programme combines excellent academic teaching, research and laboratory training to which experts from a large number of medical schools and hospitals contribute substantially, focusing on modern applications.
  • Academic Title
    MSc/PGDip in Clinical Biochemistry with Molecular Biology
  • Course description
    MSc/PGDip in Clinical Biochemistry with Molecular Biology Module overview

    Term 1
    The year starts with an induction programme, the aim of which, in addition to providing information about programme regulations and University facilities, is to develop skills in information retrieval, data handling, statistics, the oral and written presentation of results and software applications. Modules taught include: Biochemical Medicine I and II, Analysis and Instrumentation I, Molecular Biology I. These will be complemented by Laboratory Exercises.

    At the weekly clinical meetings held at the Royal Surrey County Hospital (RSCH), medical consultants will introduce topics related to a wide variety of clinical investigations. Students are encouraged to participate in the clinical discussions.

    Participation in a weekly journal club will develop awareness of current clinical biochemistry issues. This will involve giving a short oral presentation and critique on a current research publication. In addition, coursework will include two essays on analytical biochemistry and pathophysiology, and a written class test.

    Research Project
    All students are required to undertake a three-month practical research project on a topic related to contemporary issues in clinical/medical biochemistry. The subject is chosen by the student in consultation with a member of the academic staff.

    Term 2
    Four lecture modules are taught this term - Biochemical Medicine III, Analysis and Instrumentation II, Immunology and Clinical Endocrinology. These modules build on the foundations previously acquired.

    The weekly clinical meetings at the Royal Surrey County Hospital, journal clubs and tutorials continue. Students submit the written coursework scheduled for this term.

    During the term each full-time student prepares a literature review of their chosen research project, making use of online databases available at the University. One day per week is set aside for research project work so that students acquire the necessary skills and techniques.

    One (full-time) and two (block-release) days per week are available for private study.

    Term 3
    Four modules are taught during this term: Biochemical Medicine IV, Biochemical Toxicology, Molecular Biology II, and Management of Clinical Laboratories.

    Students may also have the option of attending a three-day course on The Fundamentals of Clinical Research and Good Clinical Practice held annually in the Faculty. It is designed and undertaken by Visiting Professor Hutchinson of Brookwood International Academy of Healthcare Research and provides students with a basic understanding of the subject to prepare them for jobs in clinical research.

    Typical entry requirement
    sA good honours degree in biochemistry or an allied discipline; alternatively, a degree in medicine. The block-release students are required to apply for admission to the MSc programme only after they have been appointed to a Grade A Trainee Clinical Biochemist post. Although there is no last date as such for admission to the programme, full-time students are advised to apply early.
    Programme length
    12 months full-time, 24 months part-time (block-release)

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