Queen's University Belfast

Pharmaceutical Analysis

Queen's University Belfast
In Belfast City

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Important information

Typology Master
Location Belfast city (Northern Ireland)
Duration 1 Year
Start Different dates available
  • Master
  • Belfast city (Northern Ireland)
  • Duration:
    1 Year
  • Start:
    Different dates available

Acquire the skills, knowledge and hands-on experience for a career as a Pharmaceutical Analyst in Industry or Academia. WHO ARE YOU?

You are probably a recent physical or life sciences graduate – chemistry, pharmacy and biology. But you could equally be in work and want to develop your professional skills. If you are, we offer this course part-time as well, one day per week. WHY STUDY THIS COURSE?

Our industrial partners are always telling us they need people like you. Analysts are among the most sought after professionals with some of the highest employability rates. Why Queen's? Our industrial partners have influenced the course structure, to tell us what they need from the latest analytical graduates. We have guest lectures from industry to tell you about the issues they face, out in the field. Employability is a major perk of the course. Ireland, north and south, is a major hub for the Pharmaceutical industry. FACILITIES

Everything is on-campus, and the course is very hands-on and interactive. You’ll use equipment such as: State of the art X-Ray and NMR facilities HPLC and GC instrumentation Thermal analysis equipment Electron microscopes


Dr Panagiotis Manesiotis, the course director, has a background in analytical and materials chemistry. His research covers: Plastic antibodies: making from polymers what nature makes from proteins: creating more robust and less expensive antibodies. Environmental clean-up: engaging with the food industry and environmental protection agencies to recover valuable resources from waste and recycle them into useful materials – including phosphorus and nitrogen in food production waste, and even heavy metals from waste water.  Did you know? This programme is taught jointly between the School of...

Facilities (1)
Where and when



Belfast City (County Antrim)
See map
University Road, BT7 1NN


Different dates availableNow taking bookings

To take into account

· Requirements

Normally a 2.2 Honours degree or equivalent qualification acceptable to the University in Chemistry, Pharmacy or a closely allied subject.  Applicants with relevant work experience will be considered on a case-by-case basis. INTERNATIONAL QUALIFICATIONS For information on international qualification equivalents please select Your Countryfrom the list on our International Students website. ADDITIONAL INFORMATION FOR INTERNATIONAL STUDENTS International students (for whom English is not their first language), must be...

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What you'll learn on the course

Part Time
Full Time

Course programme

Course Details

You’ll learn the theory behind state-of-the-art analytical techniques and have an opportunity to practice your skills using the most modern instrumentation.

You’ll be trained on techniques such as:

  • Liquid and gas chromatography (HPLC, GC)
  • Mass spectrometry (MS)
  • Thermal Analysis (DSC, TGA)
  • X-ray crystallography (PXRD, XRD)
  • Nuclear Magnetic Resonance (NMR) spectroscopy

You will also receive training on QA/QC aspects of the Pharmaceutical Industry. For your research project, you’ll spend 2-3 months in a laboratory. You have the option to do this in industry, for example in Almac.

The course comprises four taught modules, two of which will run during the entire academic year (Sept-May) and two semester-long modules; the first running Sept-Jan and the second Feb-May.

  • Advanced Separation Science: (Sept-Jan) will cover the most important separation techniques relevant to the Pharmaceutical Industry as well as method validation, stability of pharmaceutical compounds and sample preparation methods (20 CATS points).
  • Chemical, Biochemical and Spectroscopic Analytical Methods: (Sept-May) will cover the majority of modern spectroscopic techniques and their applications in pharmaceutical analysis as well as aspects of GMP and GLP (40 CATS points).
  • Solid State Pharmaceutical Analysis Methods: (Sept - May) will discuss a series of solid state characterisation techniques and their application in pharmaceutical analysis (40 CATS points).

These three modules include a large number of practical sessions, which involve conduct of experimental work using state-of-the-art analytical techniques and instrumentation, literature search and preparation of scientific reports.

  • Quality Assurance/Control in the Pharmaceutical Industry: (Feb-May) will cover QA and QC aspects of the Pharmaceutical Industry (20 CATS points) and is assessed exclusively by class tests and group assignments.

During the summer semester (June-September) the students will undertake a laboratory based research project with an accompanying dissertation.

The research project will provide training in how to tackle a research problem in chemistry and will include a strong emphasis on the development of critical thinking, analysis of data and independent research.


  • Full-time: Two Modules
  • Part-time: One Module


  • Advanced Separation Science
  • Chemical, Biochemical and Spectroscopic Analytical Methods
  • Solid State Pharmaceutical Analysis Methods
  • Quality Assurance/Control in the Pharmaceutical Industry
  • Research Project

Indicative Proportional Mix of Time in Classes, Tutorials/Seminars/Labs, and Private Study in a Teaching Semester

Contact time:
Lectures / Seminars 56 hrs.
Laboratory / Workshop classes 48 hrs.

Study time:
Coursework 50 hrs
Preparation of written/oral reports 96 hrs.
Private study / revision 150 hrs.

Assessment & Feedback

A combination of written examinations, continuous assessment and a dissertation thesis based on a three-month research project.

Learning and Teaching

Teaching takes place in the morning and afternoons.

The course accommodates both full-time and employed part-time students.

Lectures/practicals will be run over a single day each week to accommodate day-release schemes. Teaching may be available outside normal teaching hours to support employed part-time students.


  • Full-time: 12-20 hours
  • Part-time: 8-12 hours

Additional information

This programme is designed to prepare students for employment as analysts in the pharmaceutical and related industries. There is currently a high demand, both locally and internationally, for graduates with analytical skills in this sector. WHERE YOU MIGHT BE IN FIVE YEARS' TIME? You might be working as a laboratory analyst or senior analyst, in quality assurance or quality control or in an industrial R&D facility. You could be managing graduate recruits of your own, signing off the analysis and the quality of drugs and releasing...

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