The three Drug Discovery-based degrees – Biological Chemistry and Drug Discovery, Drug Design and Mechanisms and Biomolecular Drug Discovery – are concerned with healthcare – the design, chemical synthesis and testing of new medicines. Drug Discovery is a practical science at the interface between Chemistry, Pharmacology and Biology that includes modern computational methods. We live in a new era with detailed knowledge of genes and the abilities to determine three-dimensional molecular structures and to create complex molecules. These Drug Discovery degrees utilise these facets to identify drug targets against diseases such as cancer, diabetes, malaria and AIDS and to design and create new cures and safer, more effective drugs whilst also allowing you to specialise in one of three areas, namely chemistry, biochemistry or pharmacology.
The College of Life Sciences is superbly placed to deliver these Drug Discovery degrees. The University of Dundee's world-renowned research activities in molecular and cell biology and drug design mean that students are taught by a team of experts who work at the cutting edge of their field. Each of the three Drug Discovery Honours degrees is available either as a five-year programme with a year in industry or a four-year programme without a year in industry. Advanced Entry at Level 2 of these programmes is available for suitably qualified students. The degrees with a year in industry provide an exciting opportunity for work experience with a leading local or international biotechnology or pharmaceutical company with which the University of Dundee has close links.
"I have observed placement students, at Axis-Shield Diagnostics, grow in their confidence and willingness to contribute to research programmes. This will benefit them in their return to University and also their future careers." Dr Murdo Black, (R&D Director, Axis-Shield Ltd, Dundee).
Any one of these related degrees can lead to a wide range of careers including research and development in the pharmaceutical or biotechnology industries; chemical, pharmaceutical or biomedical research in universities or research institutes; teaching in further or higher education; scientific publishing; scientific patenting or further professional education and training. The interdisciplinary nature of the programmes also provides generic skills that are applicable to many careers. These degrees are recognised by The Royal Society of Chemistry for associate membership (AMRSC).
Teaching and Assessment
We use a variety of teaching methods, with lectures and practicals forming the core. In addition, we use workshops, tutorials, computer-aided learning, and field excursions, as appropriate to each module.
All modules are assessed by a combination of in-course and end-of-course procedures. Regular in-course assessments (e.g. practical reports, computer-based exercises, essays and data processing exercises) provide feedback on your progress and help you prepare for end-of-module examinations. On-line assignments are used extensively at Levels 1 and 2, with access via a PC on or off campus. Peer assessment operates in many team projects.
There are regular meetings of staff-student liaison committees. While this provides a forum for formal contact, there is also opportunity for informal contact between you and academic staff, whom you will find friendly and approachable.