The aim of the Master’s Programme in Pharmaceutical Research, Development and Safety is to provide a comprehensive overview of the life cycle of drugs and their use. The academic activities in the personal study plan provide 120 credits (ECTS), the equivalent to two years of full-time studying. The target degree earned by the studies is Master of Science. In contrast to degree programme yielding Master in Pharmacy degree, this does not qualify for legalized healthcare professional status in the EU area. The courses are taught by an international faculty of world class scientists in a research oriented environment using state of the art pedagogical methods and incorporates their cutting edge research into the learning material.
The ageing population and the need for rapidly evolving medication solutions are factors that highlight the growing role and need of experts in pharmaceuticals, their use and regulatory processes in society.
In the Master’s Programme in Pharmaceutical Research, Development and Safety, you will:
- acquire a comprehensive overview of the life cycle of drugs and their use.
- obtain a unique perspective of Green and Sustainable Pharmacy as well as essential knowledge for managing the global sustainability challenge.
- be trained for research and development (R&D) oriented positions and as professionals for healthcare regulatory, management, policy-making and pharmaceutical industry positions.
- earn a Master of Science degree from a programme hosted by the Faculty of Pharmacy, a top-level drug research institute, with an extensive network of partners and considerable external research funding.
Please note that the degree earned in this programme does not qualify for legalized healthcare professional status in the EU area.
Do you want to conduct multidisciplinary life science and health science studies as a member of a scientifically vibrant academic community? Do you have career goals e.g. in academia, the pharmaceutical industry or with public sector authorities? Are you interested in becoming a professional in the pharmaceutical sciences and seek for an education that is more research oriented than the Master of Pharmacy degree? Then this programme might be something for you. If you seek for an education yielding proficiency as a legalized healthcare professional, consider applying in Master in Pharmacy programme instead.
A Bachelor's degree is a prerequisite for being eligible to apply. Applications are welcome from motivated and skilled candidates with a broad range of backgrounds, but the expectation is that the successful candidates have sufficient prior knowledge in pharmacy, chemistry or life science in order to complete the education in two years.
In 2022, up to 20 students will be enrolled in the programme. The admission criteria applied for ranking the applicants will be published in June 2021.
The scope of the Master’s Programme in Pharmaceutical Research, Development and Safety is 120 credits (ECTS), the equivalent to two years of full-time studying. The target degree earned by the studies is Master of Science.
The two-year curriculum of the programme starts with a core study module on drug development and use, common for all enrolled students. In addition, the first semester studies include courses for acquiring transferable academic skills as well as an induction to our research themes. The students are encouraged to take an active role in becoming oriented with the research that is carried out in the department right from the beginning of their studies.
Starting from the second semester, each student will conduct studies according to a personalised study plan. Guidance is available from a nominated faculty member acting as a supervisor throughout the studies. To assist the tailoring of the elective elements of the curriculum, courses are organised under three study tracks:
1. Drug design and pharmacology
Goals of the study track:
- to understand the drug discovery process
- to acquire expertise in pharmacology and widely used screening and experimental models therein
- to understand drugability approaches; chemical (small/large/biological molecules) or physical of combined
- to understand research carried out at the cutting edge of drug design and pharmacology: immunotherapy, regenerative pharmacology and other topics within the therapy areas covered by the faculty's research activities.
2. Drug delivery and development
Goals of the study track:
- to understand the scope of absorption, distribution, metabolism, and excretion (ADME), pharmacokinetics and toxicology studies
- to understand research carried out at the cutting edge of drug delivery: nanomedicine and other topics related to the rational design of drug delivery mechanisms
- to understand the reasoning and the range of preclinical and clinical studies.
3. Medication safety & effectiveness
Goals of the study track:
- to understand the principles and methods of medication safety risk management and pharmacovigilance
- to understand principles and methods in effectiveness research and economic evaluation of pharmaceuticals and medication safety procedures in healthcare
- to understand principles and methods for applying real-world data (RWD) in medication safety and effectiveness research.
The student may also choose studies in an interdisciplinary manner according to her/his own interests. However, there will be only a certain amount of placements available at the different study tracks, and therefore, the placement according to the first preference of the student cannot be guaranteed at the time of applying to the Master’s Programme. The personal study plan may also include courses from other Master’s programmes at the University of Helsinki or studies conducted during an international exchange period.
Structure and content of the Master's Programme. Please note that this curriculum is tentative and subject to change.
The aim of the master’s thesis is to develop skills for independent scientific work and critical evaluation of scientific data.
The master’s thesis in the programme consists of a literature review (10 credits) and a research project (30 credits) under the supervision of a principal investigator within the faculty.
In addition to the research groups operating in the faculty, students are encouraged to explore the possibility of finding their thesis project within our extensive collaborative networks or suggest a topic of research according to their own interests.
Student life and especially the student organisation culture is exceptionally rich and diverse in Finland. More than 250 student organisations operate within the Student Union of the University of Helsinki (HYY), ranging from faculty and subject organisations to political and societal organisations, and from choirs and orchestras to sports and game clubs. Their activities include anniversary celebrations, academic dinner parties, cultural events, get-togethers and excursions.
As a student and member of the Student Union (HYY), you are entitled to many benefits and services. For example, affordable student housing, low-cost sports services and student-priced meals. You also get numerous discounts, for example on public transport fees across the country.
Read more about student life, services and benefits when studying at the University of Helsinki.
Do you have questions about studies or student life? You can get answers to your questions by chatting directly with University of Helsinki students. Chat with our students!