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Study pharmaceutical sciences at Aston University

Expert advice on MSc Pharmaceutical Science by Dr Afzal R Mohammed who teaches Novel Formulation Design And Development at Aston University, Birmingham

Antony Chacko

Pharmaceutical graduates from our institution have secured jobs in companies like Pfizer, GSK and 3M. A few other graduates have secured jobs in Contract Research Organisations (CRO) based in the UK.

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Want to have an "expert view" on Pharmaceutical Sciences and MSc Drug Delivery? Read on... Dr Afzal R Mohammed who teaches Novel Formulation Design And Development at Aston University, Birmingham discusses below the popularity of the subject among students, career options and funding opportunities.

Q. What are the main objectives of this course?

A. The primary objective of the course is to cover recent developments in the area of formulation development. The course begins with introduction to formulation development, analytical characterization and first principles of drug absorption and distribution.  This ensures that students from diverse backgrounds are able to interact and engage with the program. The course then progresses on to covering developments in the pharmaceutical field over the last decade and the lecture material provides information on current research findings and progress.

Q. Is this a popular course amongst Indian students? How many Indian students do you have on this course?

A. This is a popular course with Indian students. Annually we have around 35-40% of the total students on the program from India.

Q. What qualities do you think students need in order to succeed on this course?

A. We recruit students from diverse undergraduate backgrounds including Pharmacy, Chemistry, Pharmacology, medicine, biochemistry, chemical engineering and material science. In addition to possessing a recognized undergraduate degree,a strong personal statement reflecting keen desire to build a career within the pharmaceutical field is essential.

Q. What advice would you give to Indian students who are applying to enroll?

A. If you are interested in our courses, please see our website at
Alternatively you can contact  me at for any further advice and information.
Our dedicated team always ensures that we respond to student queries and assist them with any information requested.

Q. What career options are open to Indian graduates from this course?

A. We have been running a successful program over the last few years which has enabled our graduates to pursue various career options both within the pharmaceutical industry (including formulation development, analytical validation) in the UK as well as abroad. Some of our students also have been successful with securing fully/partially funded PhD studentships in the UK.

Q. Are there any companies that have recruited students who have completed this course?  

A. Our students have secured jobs with Pfizer, GSK, 3M as well as other contract research organizations (CRO) operating in the UK.

Q. How does the course prepare students for the professional world and/or further study?

A. The course includes transferable skills including effective written and oral communication, team working, report writing, critical analysis and core IT skills including presentation skills. The course is designed to equip the students with up to date developments in the pharmaceutical field and the research project enables the students to acquire a range of laboratory skills in our state of the art research facilities. The students have the opportunity to interact with PhD students and Research Fellows working in our laboratories.  All the research projects are focused on finding solutions to the currents issues facing the pharmaceutical industry.

Q. Are there any funding opportunities available for Indian students who are applying to enroll?

A. Commonwealth Shared Scholarship Scheme
These scholarships are for students from developing Commonwealth countries who would not otherwise be able to study in the United Kingdom. These are fully funded scholarships and include living stipend.

To be eligible for the scholarship, students must be a national of a developing Commonwealth country, permanently living in this country, and must hold a conditional or unconditional offer for MSc in Drug Delivery, MSc in Pharmacology or the MSc in Biotechnology programme. The conditions of the offer should be met before 1 May 2012. The deadline for the applications for the 2012/13 academic year is 1 May 2012.

Find out more about the Commonwealth Shared Scholarship Schemebefore you download and complete the following forms:
Commonwealth Scholarship application form and Candidate declaration form.  
Print off the documents, complete them and return them by email or post.

LHS Scholarship Scheme for International Students
Aston University School of Life & Health Sciences is pleased to announce a Scholarship Scheme for international students entering any full time MSc taught programme for 2012/13 academic year. The value of the scholarship is £6,000. We encourage students to apply for the 8 available scholarships as soon as possible to ensure that their application is received in time to be considered.
Applicants must submit an application in the form of an 800-1000 word essay answering the following questions:

  1. How does the Aston University course you are applying for fit into your planned career progression?
  2. How would the skills and knowledge that you will gain from this course benefit your home country?

The closing date is 17 May 2012. All successful candidates will receive an email from the admissions team before end of May 2012. Please submit your applications to

The Jubilee Scholarship for Indian Students (for Postgraduate Masters students only)
Each award will cover:

  • University tuition fee
  • Living expenses for the duration of the scholarship (for a maximum of 12 months) and a one month internship in the UK  
  • Return airfare
  • UK visa

For more information on the eligibility and how to apply for the scholarship please visit: British Council Scholarship page, closing date 30th April 2012.

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