MSc (Toxicology)

College of Science

Course overview

Toxicology is the study of poisons, drawing heavily on life and physical sciences, as well as being an applied practically-based subject. It is designed to acquaint students with the breadth of Toxicology, with a considerable emphasis on its practical application. The first semester consists of a foundation in Pharmacology and Toxicology and their applications. Workshops provide students with a theoretical basis in data handling and interpretation.


The second semester consists of lectures in advanced topics such as Risk Assessment, Target Organ Toxicity, Reproductive and Regulatory Toxicology. In addition there is more emphasis on laboratory mini-projects (in vivo, in vitro & molecular projects) that introduce students to the practical elements of toxicity testing and data interpretation. There are also a number of written projects on toxicity testing used in the drug industry as well as recent advances in toxicity assays which involve self-directed learning.


In the third semester, there is a 3-month research project to investigate an aspect of toxicology and deliver a seminar on this area. This involves the student preparing a research proposal, carrying out the lab-based project and preparing a thesis on the findings.

The objectives of the programme are to:

  • Gain a sound theoretical knowledge of toxicology.
  • Develop a variety of analytical and writing and presentation skills.
  • Become familiar with the importance of experimental design and statistical analysis.
  • Conduct a research project which allows these skills to be further developed.

Key facts

Entry requirements

Successful students will normally hold at least a Second Class Honours Level 8 degree (2.2 minimum) from a diversity of undergraduate disciplines, ranging from Chemistry through Life Science subjects. Students are also considered who have a Level 7 degree and three years relevant work experience. IELTS score of 6.0+ (with not less than 5.5 in any one component) is required for students where English is not their native language.

Duration: 1 year, full-time

Next start date: September 2015

ECTS weighting: 90

Average intake: 10

Closing date:  Please refer to review/closing dates website.

Mode of study: Taught

Course outline

Programme content (subject to change)

The programme is divided into three trimesters (each of 30 ECTS) in the following manner:

Trimester One

Introduction to Toxicology: 5 ECTS

Applied Toxicology: 5 ECTS

Fundamental Concepts in Pharmacology: 5 ECTS

Applied Concepts in Pharmacology: 5 ECTS

Experimental Methods in P