A pharmacist advising a female patient on medicine in a pharmacy

Pharmacy MPharm (Hons)

Play a part in the pharmaceutical advances of the future and learn how to use modern drug tech to make a difference to society with this GPhC-accredited degree.

Key information

UCAS code:



This course is Accredited

Typical offer:

120-128 from 3 A levels, or equivalent, to include 80 UCAS points in specific subjects

See full entry requirements
Study mode and duration
Start date

Showing content for section Overview


Gain insight into the pharmaceutical advances of the future and learn how to use modern drug technology with this accredited MPharm (Hons) Pharmacy degree.

Practise using the skills and knowledge you learn under supervision from GPhC (General Pharmaceutical Council) registered pharmacists and out in the field. Achieve valuable on-the-job experience with patients and the public on placements as you prepare for practice and independent prescribing.

Once you graduate, you'll need to complete a foundation training year in a pharmacy setting, and pass the registration assessment, to register as a Pharmacist with the GPhC. You could also go onto a career in areas such as drug development and formulation, and clinical trials.

Course highlights

  • Learn from qualified Pharmacists who have backgrounds in community and hospital pharmacy settings
  • Practise applying your skills and scientific knowledge in a fully-stocked model pharmacy and in simulated consultation rooms, a care home, surgery and hospital wards
  • Check and dispense real prescriptions, counsel patients on medicine use, respond to symptoms and undertake medical histories
  • Study alongside students from other healthcare disciplines to get an understanding of all stages of the patient experience 
  • Take opportunities to get further pharmaceutical experience in settings such as GP surgeries and mental health hospitals
  • Get support arranging your foundation training year after the course


in the UK for pharmacy and pharmacology courses

(The Guardian University Guide, 2024)

GPhC accreditation

This course is accredited by the General Pharmaceutical Council (GPhC).

Course overview video

Watch this video to meet the course leader and hear from students as you take a look at some of the modern equipment and facilities you'll use on this Pharmacy course.

Dr Helen Hull: The pharmacy course at the University of Portsmouth is designed for our students who are interested in public health, helping patients get the most out of their medicines and general wellbeing of our patients of today.

Jonathan: What I love most about the pharmacy course is you can learn around each subject as you wish.

Heidi: The facilities at the University of Portsmouth are state of the art. We have the mannequins so we can treat them, we have arms as well so we can take blood pressure, we have heads so you can look in otoscopes. We also have the labs for the chemistry elements of the course as well.

Dr Helen Hull: Students have the opportunity to practice within a safe simulated environment, on each other or with our simulated patients when they come in to volunteer.

Heidi: Three qualities a student needs to succeed on the course would be: organisation, probably time management, and being able to adapt to different scenarios.

Dr Helen Hull: We offer a huge opportunity within placements, and they spend a whole week in a community setting and that can be with a large multiple or one of our local pharmacies. In addition to that, within a hospital setting too.

Jonathan: Be yourself, try your hardest and everything will be alright. If you need any help there will always be someone to help you.

Contact information


+44 (0) 23 9284 5566

Contact Admissions

Entry requirements​

MPharm (Hons) Pharmacy entry requirements

Typical offers

  • A levels - ABB-BBB
  • UCAS points - 120-128 from 3 A levels, or equivalent, to include 40 points from A level Chemistry, and 40 points from an A level in a second Science subject or Mathematics. Other qualifications are considered including BTEC Extended Diploma in Applied Science at DDM plus A level Chemistry. For A levels which include a separate science practical component, a pass is desirable and may strengthen an application. (Calculate your UCAS points)
  • BTECs (Extended Diplomas) - DDM  
  • International Baccalaureate - 29-30

Selection process

  • All shortlisted applicants will be invited to attend an online values based interview, including situational judgement test, which will be used alongside your application to determine your suitability for this course.
  • Applicants should be aware that any offer on the course is subject to passing an Enhanced Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check, and occupational health assessment of fitness to study, which will be conducted after enrolment on the course.

*Please note: A levels in Applied Science, General Studies, Critical Thinking and Citizenship Studies are not normally accepted.

You may need to have studied specific subjects – find full entry requirements and other qualifications we accept.

English language requirements

  • English Language proficiency at a minimum of IELTS band 6.5 with no component score below 6.0.

See alternative English language qualifications.

We also accept other standard English tests and qualifications, as long as they meet the minimum requirements of your course.

If you don't meet the English language requirements yet, you can achieve the level you need by successfully completing a pre-sessional English programme before you start your course.

If you don't meet the entry requirements, you may be able to join this course after you successfully complete a foundation year.

We look at more than just your grades

While we consider your grades when making an offer, we also carefully look at your circumstances and other factors to assess your potential. These include whether you live and work in the region and your personal and family circumstances which we assess using established data.

Explore more about how we make your offer

Your facilities

Nursing students working with a medical manikin in our Simulation Centre

Centre for Simulation in Health and Care

This modern facility helps you develop the practical skills you need to work in the health and care-related sciences, in a safe, contextual and realistic environment.

Explore the centre

Student using model pharmacy

Model pharmacy

Part of the Pharmacy and Biomedical Science Teaching Centre, the model pharmacy allows you to practise each step of the dispensing process.

Explore this teaching centre

Pharmacology students experimenting with syringe in lab

Pharmaceutics laboratories

Develop a better understanding of the causes and consequences of diseases in these labs, as well as the skills and expertise needed to develop and test new drugs.

Find out more about the labs

Dispensary facilities and model pharmacy video

Find out how our dispensary facilities help prepare you for your career as a pharmacist with Dr Helen Hull, Course Leader for MPharm (Hons) Pharmacy.

Dr Helen Hull: Hello there, my name is Helen Hull, and I'm the course leader for the Pharmacy course here at the University of Portsmouth.

We've got state-of-the-art facilities here at Portsmouth. And today I'm just going to share with you some of the activities that you'll be doing when you come and join us as a first year Pharmacy student.

The activities in the dispensing is learning all about the legality of prescriptions. Is the prescription complete? Do we have all the information that we need to enable us to make that product? And then finally, is it clinically appropriate? We look at who the patient is and is that dose a safe dose to give to that patient.

So students will assess the prescription first, and if they're happy that prescription is legal, complete and clinically appropriate, they're then encouraged to go on and make that supply. So the first thing they would do is queue up at our dispensary with their basket and with their prescription, and they'd collect the product that they're going to dispense. They then take it back to their bench and they create a label with all those instructions that's on the prescription. And then finally they put that label on top of the item that they've selected, and they hand that in for marking. They bring it to an academic at the front desk and they slot their basket in for marking.

What we're proud of at the University of Portsmouth, on our Pharmacy course, is our students get instant feedback during these workshops. At the end of making all their prescriptions, we bring the students together in groups of maybe two or three students and they congregate around a large screen and they look at some accuracy checking activities. It's a good opportunity for them to assess those prescriptions in the exercise at the end of the workshop, where they can compare their answers and discuss with each other some of the positives and negatives of that activity. 

My favourite part of the course is the simulation labs and the workshops – the staff give so much support and help however they can!

Heidi Cole, MPharm Pharmacy

Careers and opportunities

Demand for qualified pharmacists is increasing. After completing the MPharm course, you can become a fully qualified pharmacist within a year if you successfully complete the foundation training and pass the GPhC registration examination (maximum three attempts).

Foundation training can be undertaken in one pharmacy setting or split across a variety of different settings – including communities, hospitals, and general practice. You can also secure foundation training in the pharmaceutical industry.

Foundation training support

Our Careers and Employability Service can support you in applying for your foundation year training, helping with interview techniques and the application process. You'll get help, advice and support for up to 5 years after you leave the University.

Potential salary

As a fully qualified Pharmacist in the NHS, you'll usually start at the bottom of band 6 of the Agenda for Change pay scale (£32,306 in 2021/22). As your NHS career progresses, you could reach band 9 as a chief pharmacist (£93,735–£108,075 in 2021/22).

What other roles can you do with a Pharmacy degree?

The expanding responsibilities of pharmacists means you'll have many other job options at the end of the course. Areas you could work in include:

  • drug development and formulation
  • involvement with toxicity studies
  • clinical trials
  • marketing
  • regulatory affairs
  • medical writing

Graduate destinations

Recent graduates have gone on to work for organisations including:

  • Novartis
  • Reckitt Benckiser
  • Boots
  • Superdrug
  • Goldchem
  • Virgin Care
  • Kings College Hospital NHS Foundation Trust

Pharmacy - Devan Seedher: Portsmouth Graduate Stories

Find out what Devan's role entails and how he’s applying the skills he learnt during his time at Portsmouth

Devan Seedher:

What attracted me to apply at Portsmouth was the fact that I studied one year at Kingston University, but I didn't get the experience to actually sort of live out and Portsmouth, I remember when I visited the place, I just fell in love with it. Just known for its views, being near the seafront and I heard about the incredible teaching as well and the reputation it had when it came to the pharmacy course. So I thought, why not apply and I'm really glad I did.

What made Pharmacy really special for me at Portsmouth was the fact that it wasn't just lectures, but there were workshops as well. So we had the opportunity to take what we learned from the lecturers and put them forward in practice and that's something which I've taken forward in my career as a medical governance advisor.

So I knew I didn't want to become a community hospital pharmacist, but I wanted to branch out into something that involved the pharmacy industry as a whole and that's how I got involved into Pharma. My role is to ensure that any sort of materials or activities a Pharma company does is basically compliant with the code.

What stood out to me the most when it came to my time at Portsmouth was just the amount of support the lecturers gave. They all sort of stood out to me as lecturers that really wanted to push you and actually develop you and I think in a profession such as pharmacy, that's quite important. I don't think I'd be where I’m at today without the level of support that the University of Portsmouth has given me.

What the future holds for me now is more development in my current field. That's the beauty of the pharmaceutical industry, is the fact that there's always room for more growth and more career progression. So I think right now the sky's the limit.

Placements and work experience

You'll get plenty of experience dealing with patients and the public on this course, including a 16 week placement across each year of study.

Possible placement locations include:

  • Community pharmacies in Portsmouth, the surrounding areas and nationwide (where possible)
  • Local hospital pharmacies such as Queen Alexandra in Portsmouth, St. Richard's in Chichester, Worthing Hospital, Southampton General Hospital, Royal County Hospital in Winchester, Basingstoke and North Hampshire Hospital and St. Mary's on the Isle of Wight
  • GP surgeries in Portsmouth and surrounding areas
  • Solent NHS Trust’s mental health in-patient services
  • Hampshire and Isle of Wight Integrated Care Board
  • Health in Justice – prison pharmacies

You'll also have the chance to volunteer in the local community, providing health checks to groups in the local community.

Our Careers and Employability Service can help you find further work experience opportunities during your course.

We can help you identify placements, internships and voluntary opportunities – including a summer research placement at a European university – that will complement your studies and build your CV.

 I love the freedom to learn around each subject... We all have to do the same modules but how you approach each module is up to you. 

Jonathan Alemika, MPharm Pharmacy student


What you'll study

Core modules

When you complete this module successfully, you'll be able to:

  • Identify, plan, evaluate and address personal learning needs, including the need for sound mathematical and statistical knowledge
  • Reflect on the roles and responsibilities of the pharmacist and different professions involved in the delivery of patient care.
  • Describe the principles of atomic and molecular structure, predict the shape of simple molecules, recognise functional groups
  • Demonstrate how the structure of a molecule can influence its physical and chemical properties within the context of pharmaceutical chemistry
  • Explain the basic concepts of bioinorganic, structural and mechanistic organic chemistry in relation to pharmaceutical applications and biological processes
  • Provide a basic overview of the drug development process and physicochemical principles that will inform formulating molecules into medicines in various pharmacy settings, recognising the different routes of administration and how this will inform the choice of dosage form, excipients, packaging and drug stability.
  • Describe basic human physiology and anatomy of the various organ systems, including at cellular level, their interaction with microbial organisms
  • Describe the biologically important molecules and the cellular locations and roles of the main metabolic pathways while applying the principles of enzyme kinetics.
  • Describe how different neurotransmitters affect the nervous systems, the physiological process of nerve conduction and how drugs affect transmission
  • Describe the basic concepts of pharmacodynamics and pharmacokinetics and the use of animals in biomedical research and drug discovery.
  • Understand and demonstrate the professional practice and skills, including pharmaceutical calculations, needed of pharmacists and pharmacy students, related to patient centred-care and collaboration.

Core modules

When you complete this module successfully, you'll be able to:

  • Appraise the aetiology and pathology of conditions associated with the cardiovascular, respiratory, renal, central nervous, endocrine and gastrointestinal systems and the physiological functions, interplay and control mechanisms between systems.

  • Differentiate between the pharmacological classes of drugs, the mechanism of action and the pharmacotherapeutic use to diagnose, manage, treat and or prescribe for conditions, or infections, associated with cardiovascular, respiratory, renal, central nervous, endocrine and gastrointestinal systems.

  • Discuss the basic principles of fundamental immunology and discuss the rationale, benefits and limitations of immunosuppressive and anti-inflammatory therapies and various pathogenic mechanisms in order to investigate specific human conditions.

  • Appreciate the importance of drug interactions and adverse drug reactions (their generation, monitoring, identification and reporting) and the complexities of therapeutics.

  • Solve therapeutic problems and optimise drug therapy in individual patients while identifying and employing an appropriate range of information sources.

  • Discuss the molecular design basis for the synthesis of therapeutic compounds in relation to drug development and characterisation.

  • Discuss the diversity of naturally occurring compounds as part of drug discovery.

  • Discuss the formulation principles applied in relation to solid dosage forms, parenteral and inhaled medicines and the analytical methods employed to ensure the quality of the drugs and medicines.

  • Demonstrate the professional practice and skills, including pharmaceutical calculations, needed of pharmacists and pharmacy students, related to patient centred care, including collaboration with other health professionals as part of a multidisciplinary team.

  • Analyse and evaluate public health needs to formulate solutions through the provision of targeted pharmacy services.

Core modules

When you complete this module successfully, you'll be able to:

  • Diagnose, manage, treat and or prescribe where appropriate for infections and cancer, differentiating between the therapeutic agents (antimicrobial and antineoplastic), their mechanism of action, risks and limitations.
  • Use biomarkers and other clinical testing to inform diagnoses and treatment.
  • Critically evaluate and develop the rational, design and clinical potential of specialised and targeted preparations designed for mucosal, parenteral and transdermal administration.
  • Reflect on the value of patient stratification and personalised medicine in terms of detection, clinical outcome, adverse drug reactions, drug development and pharmacoeconomics.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the different research methods and the stages involved in carrying out research, with a focus on quality improvement of care and services, including appropriate methods to collect, process, analyse and interpret data and disseminate results.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of pharmacy services and prescribing in both primary and secondary care settings through simulation, learning needs analysis, PDP, CPD and placement activities whilst maintaining competence in pharmaceutical calculations.
  • Demonstrate ethical and legal reasoning and decision making, using professional judgement, in all circumstances and settings related to patient care.
  • Reflect on the value of multidisciplinary team working and effective leadership and communication to ensure high quality person-centred care through simulated activities with other health and social care students.

Core modules

When you complete this module successfully, you'll be able to:

  • Evaluate current thinking on the aetiology, pathophysiology and features of the major mental health and neurological disorders.
  • Evaluate the range of evidence-based drug and non-drug treatment options for mental health and neurological disorders.
  • Evaluate current thinking on the cause of substance use and misuse and the current and potential strategies available for the management of these disorders.
  • Evaluate the multidisciplinary contribution to the management of individual patients suffering from mental health disorders, neurological disorders or substance use and misuse, within the context of providing patient-focussed care using a therapeutic framework approach.
  • Evaluate the challenges of formulation and drug delivery in patients with mental health and neurological disorders and the potential solutions to these challenges.

When you complete this module successfully, you'll be able to:

  • Generate hypotheses for an individualised piece of research on a pharmacy-related theme.
  • Demonstrate personal responsibility for planning, conducting and reporting upon a research project carried out within time and resource constraints, to budget and to plan.
  • Critically evaluate and reflect on project methodology and findings in the context of current knowledge and where appropriate, suggest new hypotheses to investigate in the future.
  • Communicate research findings in a written form to a given specification, including well-grounded arguments and critical debate.
  • Communicate research findings orally to a given specification.

When you complete this module successfully, you'll be able to:

  • Discuss the genetic basis to underlying patient variability and its impact on therapeutic efficacy.
  • Critically evaluate the value of patient stratification and personalised medicine in terms of detection, clinical outcome, adverse drug reactions, drug development and pharmacoeconomics.
  • Evaluate current thinking on the development of biomarkers for disease, therapy and toxicity including their detection in biological systems, such as by liquid biopsy.
  • Evaluate critically the therapeutic utility, risks and limitations associated with the major groups of anticancer chemotherapeutic agents currently in use.
  • Critically discuss the potential role(s) of the pharmacist in solving problems presented by individual patients in the overall context of patient-focused care plans for the multidisciplinary team.



When you complete this module successfully, you'll be able to:

  • Demonstrate currency with respect to legislation, including ethical considerations affecting pharmacy.
  • Appraise, apply and demonstrate knowledge of current and future roles of pharmacists with respect to clinical pharmacy, prescribing, history taking, vaccination techniques, pharmacovigilance, physical assessment and advanced consultation skills.
  • Demonstrate theoretical knowledge of medicine optimisation, therapeutic choices and a holistic approach to all patient factors, as developed throughout the MPharm programme by applying this to case studies relevant to practice.
  • Develop integrated frameworks for the therapeutic use of medicines that can be used in a professional practice setting, while critically evaluating the current evidence base for the use of medicines in major, commonly occurring clinical conditions.
  • Interpret information for application in a practice setting.
  • Demonstrate decision-making skills, practical skills and integration of knowledge previously gained, in making therapeutic choices, using appropriate evidence and a holistic appreciation of all patient factors.
  • Critically evaluate and respond to a range of scenarios in a clinically simulated environment which could include opthalmology, respiratory, cardiovascular, endocrinology, gastro-intestinal or paediatric patients.
  • Demonstrate satisfactory engagement in CPD and PDP and competence in pharmaceutical calculations

Changes to course content

We use the best and most current research and professional practice alongside feedback from our students to make sure course content is relevant to your future career or further studies.

Therefore, some course content may change over time to reflect changes in the discipline or industry. If a module doesn't run, we'll let you know as soon as possible and help you choose an alternative module.

How you're assessed

  • diagnostic tests
  • written assignments
  • simulated patient-focused case studies
  • oral and poster presentations
  • online tests
  • clinical skills assessment

You’ll be able to test your skills and knowledge informally before you do assessments that count towards your final mark.

You can get feedback on all practice and formal assessments so you can improve in the future.


Teaching methods on this course include:

  • lectures
  • seminars
  • practical laboratory work
  • simulated training

All of the modules you'll take are fully supported by online lecture and study materials, and our academic staff will share their expertise in practice and research.

You can access all teaching resources on Moodle, our virtual learning environment, from anywhere with a Web connection.

For more about the teaching activities for specific modules, see the module list above.

Many teaching activities, including lectures, are recorded so you can re-watch them at any time.

How you'll spend your time

One of the main differences between school or college and university is how much control you have over your learning.

We use a blended learning approach to teaching, which means you’ll take part in both face-to-face and online activities during your studies.  As well as attending your timetabled classes you'll study independently in your free time, supported by staff and our virtual learning environment, Moodle.

A typical week

We recommend you spend at least 35 hours a week studying for your Pharmacy degree. In your first year, you’ll be in timetabled teaching activities such as tutorials, lectures, practical classes and workshops and external visits for about 16 hours a week. The rest of the time you’ll do independent study such as research, reading, coursework and project work, alone or in a group with others from your course. You'll be expected to engage with more independent study and have less scheduled teaching in years 2, 3 and 4.

Most timetabled teaching takes place during the day, Monday to Friday. You may occasionally need to go to University and course events in the evenings and at weekends.

Term dates

The academic year runs from September to June. There are breaks at Christmas and Easter.

See term dates

Supporting you

The amount of timetabled teaching you'll get on your degree might be less than what you're used to at school or college, but you'll also get support via video, phone and face-to-face from teaching and support staff to enhance your learning experience and help you succeed. You can build your personalised network of support from the following people and services:


Your personal tutor helps you make the transition to independent study and gives you academic and personal support throughout your time at university.

As well as regular scheduled meetings with your personal tutor, they're also available at set times during the week if you want to chat with them about anything that can't wait until your next meeting.

You'll have help from a team of faculty learning support tutors. They can help you improve and develop your academic skills and support you in any area of your study.

They can help with:

  • improving your academic writing (for example, essays, reports, dissertations)
  • understanding and using assignment feedback
  • managing your time and workload
  • revision and exam techniques

As well as support from faculty staff and your personal tutor, you can use the University’s Academic Skills Unit (ASK) for one-to-one support in areas such as:

  • academic writing
  • note taking
  • time management
  • critical thinking
  • presentation skills
  • referencing
  • working in groups
  • revision, memory and exam techniques

If you require extra support because of a disability or additional learning need our specialist team can help you.

They'll help you to:

  • discuss and agree on reasonable adjustments
  • liaise with other University services and facilities, such as the library
  • access specialist study skills and strategies tutors, and assistive technology tutors, on a 1-to-1 basis or in groups
  • liaise with external services

Library staff are available in person or by email, phone or online chat to help you make the most of the University’s library resources. You can also request one-to-one appointments and get support from the faculty librarian for science.

The library is open 24 hours a day, every day, in term time.

If English isn't your first language, you can do one of our English language courses to improve your written and spoken English language skills before starting your degree. Once you're here, you can take part in our free In-Sessional English (ISE) programme to improve your English further.

​Course costs and funding

Tuition fees

  • UK/Channel Islands and Isle of Man students – £9,250 per year (may be subject to annual increase)
  • EU students – £9,250 a year (including Transition Scholarship – may be subject to annual increase) 
  • International students – £19,200 per year (subject to annual increase)

Funding your studies

Find out how to fund your studies, including the scholarships and bursaries you could get. You can also find more about tuition fees and living costs, including what your tuition fees cover.

Applying from outside the UK? Find out about funding options for international students.

Additional course costs

These course-related costs aren’t included in the tuition fees. So you’ll need to budget for them when you plan your spending.

Additional costs

Our accommodation section shows your accommodation options and highlights how much it costs to live in Portsmouth.

You’ll study up to 6 modules a year. You may have to read several recommended books or textbooks for each module.

You can borrow most of these from the Library. If you buy these, they may cost up to £60 each.

We recommend that you budget £75 a year for photocopying, memory sticks, DVDs and CDs, printing charges, binding, specialist printing and professional dress.

If your final year includes a major project, there could be cost for transport or accommodation related to your research activities. The amount will depend on the project you choose.

You’ll get free safety equipment at the start of the course. However, you may have to pay a small amount to replace lost or damaged equipment.

You will be expected to pay for travel costs to and from your placement. This could be in the region of £100 per academic year.

If you take a placement year or study abroad year, tuition fees for that year are as follows:

  • UK/Channel Islands and Isle of Man students – £1,385 a year (may be subject to annual increase)
  • EU students – £1,385 a year, including Transition Scholarship (may be subject to annual increase)
  • International students – £2,875  a year (subject to annual increase)


How to apply

UK/Channel Islands and Isle of Man students

To start this course in 2024, apply through UCAS. You'll need:

  • the UCAS course code – B230
  • our institution code – P80

 Apply now through UCAS

If you'd prefer to apply directly, use our online application form.

You can also sign up to an Open Day to:

  • Tour our campus, facilities and halls of residence
  • Speak with lecturers and chat with our students 
  • Get information about where to live, how to fund your studies and which clubs and societies to join

If you're new to the application process, read our guide on applying for an undergraduate course.

EU and international students

To start this course in 2024, please contact us.

How to apply from outside the UK

See the 'How to apply' section above for details of how to apply. You can also get an agent to help with your application. Check your country page for details of agents in your region.

To find out what to include in your application, head to the how to apply page of our international students section. 

If you don't meet the English language requirements for this course yet, you can achieve the level you need by successfully completing a pre-sessional English programme before you start your course.

Admissions terms and conditions

When you accept an offer to study at the University of Portsmouth, you also agree to abide by our Student Contract (which includes the University's relevant policies, rules and regulations). You should read and consider these before you apply.