Biomedical Science MSc

With an innovative curriculum in Biomedical Science, this online MSc course will equip professionals with existing biomedical qualifications with further key transferable skills and lifelong learning. You’ll blend academic theory with hands-on, practical techniques.

Accredited by the Institute of Biomedical Science (IBMS), the course lets you specialise in your chosen area of expertise. You’ll acquire advanced skills and build on your existing subject knowledge, learn to reflect critically on current practice and policy, and develop creative and strategic problem-solving techniques.

The combination of distance learning modules and a Research Project you carry out under supervision in your own place of work* means you will be able to fit your learning around existing personal and professional commitments. With no need to travel to campus and a flexible timetable, you can work from anywhere, at any time, at a pace that suits you.

*This programme requires you to have access to a workplace laboratory. See entry requirements for more details.

  • Type
    Master of Science, Online
  • Length
    Minimum two years, part-time
  • Faculty
    Faculty of Life and Health Sciences
  • School:
    School of Biomedical Sciences
  • Intakes
    September and November 2021 and January, May and July 2022
  • Fees
    £7,995
  • Typical Entry Requirements
    Second class BSc honours degree or above in Biomedical Science, or Biological Science which includes a significant amount of biomedical science.

Typical Entry Requirements

  • A 2.2 UK Honours Degree or above in Biomedical Science or in Biological Science with a significant amount of biomedical science, or an international equivalent.
  • You must be working as a trainee or qualified biomedical scientist in a hospital, research laboratory or equivalent or have access to similar laboratory facilities.
  • Evidence of competence in written and spoken English (GCSE grade C or equivalent).

English language requirements

  • Academic IELTS 6.0 (with no band score less than 5.5), or a Trinity ISE Pass at level III.

Modules

  • Introduction to Personalised Medicine and Pharmacogenomics
  • Applied Research Methods
  • Advances in Medical Biotechnology and Healthcare Delivery
  • Evidence-Based Practice in Healthcare Sciences
  • Research Project

Students must choose one of these two optional modules

  • Quality Management
  • Biomedical Informatics

Optional specialism – choose one of these four modules

  • Advances in Cellular Pathology
  • Recent Advances in Clinical Chemistry
  • Haematology in Health and Disease
  • Advances in Medical Microbiology

Assessments

Methods used to track your success vary by module but include exams, coursework, or a combination of the two. The Research Project which you will carry out in your place of work also makes a significant contribution to your final result.

Fees

Total Course fees: £7,995 

Fees are payable flexibly on a module-by-module basis.
Fees shown above are applicable for the 2021/22 academic year of entry and are subject to increase at the start of each academic year. Terms and conditions apply.

Funding

Flexible options allow students, sponsors or their employers to make payment as easy as possible. A 10% Alumni Discount is available for eligible candidates.

Additional costs

As well as your tuition fees above, you should budget for the following additional costs associated with university study. These include (but are not limited to) computer equipment, learning materials, books, journals, graduation ceremonies, exam resits, etc.

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About the Course

Ulster University’s Biomedical Science MSc degree continues to attract applications from the UK, Republic of Ireland and overseas.

As well as opening new, state-of-the-art research facilities at the Coleraine campus, Ulster has been ranked 26th in the UK for Biomedical Science. This is a jump of 11 places from the previous year’s Complete University Guide rankings. The University is positioned 44th in the UK (up 16 places) overall for 2022.

You will study six modules plus a Research Project. This programme can be completed in a minimum of two years. Students have the opportunity to pause their studies if their work or life commitments require.

Depending on your career plans and your area of specialisation, you will be asked to choose between the Quality Management module and the Biomedical Informatics module.

You’ll then select one of four specialist modules: Cellular Pathology, Clinical Chemistry, Haematology or Medical Microbiology.

All students will then undertake a hands-on Research Project in their own place of work.

Who Is This Course For?

This MSc is principally aimed at Biomedical Scientists with some work experience in a healthcare setting. You may be working in a hospital’s clinical laboratory or for an independent organisation in bio-pharmaceuticals or bio-industries, be it as an Analytical Chemist, a Clinical Scientist, Forensic Scientist, Microbiologist, Toxicologist or in an associated field.

You will be expected to have a BSc Honours degree in Biomedical Science, or have a related biological science degree with a significant Biomedical Science element.

You will be looking to develop skills in one of the following key areas: Cellular Pathology, Clinical Chemistry, Haematology or Medical Microbiology (each of which is an optional module on this course).

You’ll be strongly motivated, looking to advance your career and move to a more senior position with greater in-depth knowledge of your specialism.

This online course will appeal to those who wish to keep working while studying, without the need to take time out of their career. The content of the course will directly benefit both students and their employers, especially the Research Project which will be carried out in each student’s own workplace.

Seasoned practitioners with suitable qualifications and experience will also be considered, whether they’re returning to work after a career break or wanting to refresh their skills and knowledge.

Note: This MSc is not a suitable qualification for the purposes of Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) registration in the UK. It is the applicant’s sole responsibility to determine whether attainment of a particular qualification is an acceptable route to registration as a Biomedical Scientist or equivalent.

This MSc is also not suitable as a conversion course into Biomedical Science from another discipline. You must have a related undergraduate degree and access to laboratory facilities. 

Fees

Total Course fees: £7,995

Fees are payable flexibly on a module-by-module basis.

Fees shown above are applicable for the 2021/22 academic year of entry. Fees are subject to increase at the start of each academic year. Terms and conditions apply.

Additional costs

As well as your tuition fees above, you should budget for additional costs associated with university study. These include (but are not limited to) computer equipment, learning materials, books, journals, graduation ceremonies, exam resits, etc.

Funding & Scholarships

Flexible options allow students, sponsors or their employers to make payment as easy as possible. A 10% Alumni Discount is available for eligible candidates. 

Intakes

Start when it suits you with 2021/22 intakes in
September, November, January, May & July.

Entry Requirements

  • A 2.2 Honours Degree or above in Biomedical Science, or in Biological Science with a significant amount of biomedical science, from any university in the UK, the Republic of Ireland, from a national awarding body or an international equivalent.
  • OR An equivalent standard (normally 50%) in a Graduate Diploma, Graduate Certificate, Postgraduate Certificate or Postgraduate Diploma, or an approved alternative qualification.
  • OR In exceptional circumstances, individuals with substantial and significant experiential learning and written evidence that they meet the necessary criteria as determined by the Course Committee may also be considered for the course.

Professional Requirements

  • You should be employed as a Biomedical Scientist, Trainee Biomedical Scientist or equivalent in a hospital or research laboratory.
  • When you apply, you will need to confirm that you will have access to a laboratory to enable you to complete the Research Project.
  • You will need to provide a signed agreement from your employer that they will appoint a mentor to supervise your project.
  • During the application process, you will also have to choose the specialism that is most relevant to your career aspirations. Choose one of these four pathways:
  • Medical microbiology
  • Haematology
  • Clinical chemistry
  • Cell pathology

For these specialist modules, students must provide evidence that they have studied that specialism at level 5, or demonstrate the ability to undertake the module through the accreditation of prior experiential learning.

English language requirements

  • You will need to provide evidence of competence in written and spoken English (GCSE grade C or equivalent).
  • If English is not your first language, the minimum requirement is Academic IELTS 6.0 (with no band score less than 5.5), or a Trinity ISE Pass at level III. Ulster University also recognises a number of other English language tests and comparable IELTS equivalent scores.

Modules

  • Introduction to Personalised Medicine and Pharmacogenomics (15 credits)
  • Applied Research Methods (15 credits)
  • Advances in Medical Biotechnology and Healthcare Delivery (15 credits)
  • Evidence-Based Practice in Healthcare Sciences (30 credits)
  • Research Project (60 credits)

Students must choose one of these two optional modules

  • Quality Management (15 credits)
  • Biomedical Informatics (15 credits)

Optional specialism – choose one of these four modules

  • Advances in Cellular Pathology (30 credits)
  • Recent Advances in Clinical Chemistry (30 credits)
  • Haematology in Health and Disease (30 credits)
  • Advances in Medical Microbiology (30 credits)

Students must complete 180 credits.

Each module is offered on a carousel basis, with sequences and dates dependent on when you begin the programme.

As part of your course induction, you’ll receive details of how the course, assessments and timetable are managed.

Assessments

Methods used to track your success vary by module but include class tests, written assignments, report writing, and sessional examinations. The Research Project which you will carry out in your place of work also makes a significant contribution to your final result.

Distance Learning Experience

Because the vast majority of students on the course are already working in some capacity as Biomedical Scientists, this MSc programme has been designed to offer maximum flexibility.

Course modules are offered on a cyclical carousel model: depending on when you start the course, the sequence of modules will vary, but in any event, you’ll have the flexibility to take a planned break if you need to, then pick up the course again at a later date.

Core material for all taught modules is delivered through our online platform. In addition, modules may include some or all of the following:

  • Student-led online seminars
  • Group tutorials
  • Case study oriented problem-based learning exercises
  • Private study
  • Module assignments

Over the two years of part-time study, you should plan on working approximately 10 hours per credit. This equates to 25 hours per week during teaching periods.

Along with a tutor to guide and mentor you through each of the online modules, you will carry out a 60-credit Research Project in the laboratory at your place of work, under the supervision of a colleague. When you enrol for the course, we will ask you to appoint an appropriately qualified supervisor.

Throughout your course, you’ll also have access to a dedicated Student Success Advisor, on hand to help with any non-academic issues, advice about timetables, how to plan carousel phases – and any other aspect of the distance learning experience.

Programme Outcomes

Graduates of the programme will emerge with advanced skills in Biomedical Science and a critical awareness of professional practice, ready to progress to management positions.

The programme aims to enhance your career prospects, developing specific skills and subject knowledge in order to increase your awareness of – and suitability for – senior roles in the biomedical science sector.

The MSc in Biomedical Science can make you eligible for membership to the IBMS and subsequently qualify for Chartered Scientist status in the UK.

During the online course, you can expect to develop:

  • A flexible approach to problem-solving in the field of Biomedical Science
  • Improved skills, knowledge and the competency to take on a greater supervisory role
  • The ability to independently reflect on your practice and the initiative to solve diverse problems
  • The ability to critically appraise the relative merits and limitations of the techniques used in your chosen specialism
  • A critical awareness of the principles that relate to professional practice, scientific integrity and ethical issues in Biomedical Science.
  • A responsible approach to the promotion of new developments and the maintenance of standards within the biomedical science sector.

Career Focussed

Ulster’s MSc in Biomedical Science has been designed to ensure the curriculum has real-world relevance.

Context of healthcare 

Graduates will understand how the clinical diagnosis and management of patients is influenced by commercial decisions, public sector policies, regulations and ethical considerations.

Evidence-based practice 

There is a growing emphasis on practice and policy having a scientific evidence base. You will learn how to critically reflect on your performance as a practitioner in order to ensure that the service you provide meets the needs of your clients and patients.

Biomedical informatics 

As part of your medical research, you will become familiar with the need to collate, integrate, analyse and interpret clinic-pathological data, and data generated by experimental techniques.

Research Methods 

Well-planned research is the basis for improving Biomedical Science. On the course, you will gain an understanding of how an intellectual approach is essential for the successful execution of a research project.

Ethical theory 

In research and in practice, healthcare scientists are required to follow codes of practice and legislation which are underpinned by ethical theory. As you complete your Masters, you’ll fully appreciate the importance of understanding this theory and how it informs current practice.

The Faculty

The Faculty of Life and Health Sciences is a leading provider of health-related education.

The School of Biomedical Science offers an extensive portfolio of accredited degree and research programmes covering seven exciting yet diverse disciplines. Its awards include:

  • 95% of its research impact was scored world leading (4*) and internationally excellent (3*)
  • 81% of its published research papers were judged as world leading and internationally excellent (4* and 3*)
  • 100% Research environment – Top Five UK universities for Biomedical Science Research (source: REF 2014)

As part of the School, the Biomedical Sciences Research Institute (BMSRI) provides state-of-the-art equipment, specialist laboratories and infrastructure that can offer clinical and translational services to its academics. The institute is committed to providing scientific support for the knowledge-intensive, high added-value biotechnological and biomedical industries in Northern Ireland.

Teaching Staff

Course leaders, lecturers, academic and research staff delivering the Biomedical Science MSc have many years’ experience, both within the university and out working in the industry. Their skills will be complemented during your course by insights from visiting contributors from professional clinical and laboratory disciplines.

The majority of our Module Leaders on the Biomedical Science course are research-active staff and core members of the BMSRI (Ulster’s BioMedical Sciences Research Institute). Together, they produce world-class research in their field, which in turn informs their teaching and contributes to the university’s national and international reputation for excellence in research, scholarship-driven learning and teaching.

Meet Your Faculty