MSci Chemistry with Medicinal Chemistry
Focus on the industrial development, production and quality control of new drugs in this specialist chemistry course.
Three A-level offer: AAA
Applications : admissions ratio
6 : 1
Based on 2017 entry data
Chemistry at Imperial is designed to produce chemists of the highest calibre, who are capable of pursuing a career in the chemical sciences.
All of our Chemistry courses are professionally accredited by the Royal Society of Chemistry and cover modules in inorganic, organic and physical chemistry in all years of study.
This degree combines our Single Honours MSci Chemistry degree with modules that focus on the identification, development and production of new drugs. It is ideal for students intending to work in the pharmaceutical and similar industries, and for those interested in biomedical research.
Years one and two of all of our chemistry courses follow the same core lecture module content supplemented by two ancillary modules. These modules are not always chemistry modules, and have been chosen to support specific degree programmes.
Your study reaches Master’s level in the fourth year. Our wide choice of advanced topics makes it possible for you to follow a broad or specialised programme to suit your individual interests. You will also complete a substantial research project.
All of our Chemistry courses include a high level of laboratory experience, designed to develop the practical, analytical and theoretical skills required to work in the sector.
You will take part in a wide range of laboratory-based activities in the Department, which vary from year two depending on which course you choose.
As well as traditional synthetic chemistry labs, you will also be trained in measurement science, analytical chemistry and molecular modelling, helping you gain confidence in applying a large number of different experimental techniques.
You will also take part in theoretical and mathematical methods laboratories, workshops and IT laboratories.
White City Campus
The Department of Chemistry is currently based at Imperial's South Kensington Campus. From 2018, it will also occupy the Molecular Sciences Research Hub on the College's brand new White City Campus. This will provide us with state-of-the-art research facilities and exciting opportunities for collaboration with industry.
Final-year undergraduate projects and some third- and fourth-year lectures will take place at White City. A free shuttle bus service runs between the campuses.
BSc or MSci?
We offer both Master in Science (MSci) degrees and Bachelor of Science (BSc) degrees.
Our MSci degrees cover more in-depth chemistry study than our BSc degrees, making them more suited to students who are considering a career in research or who may wish to progress to further study such as a PhD.
Our MSci degrees also include a substantial individual project in the final year, which gives you the chance to work in a research environment; you also engage with more advanced research-led lecture modules.
Transfer between degrees
Years one and two of our Chemistry degrees follow the same core course content, supplemented by optional modules designed to match your chosen course of study. This structure offers you the opportunity to transfer between Chemistry degrees at a later stage providing you have studied the appropriate optional subjects, and as such you should apply to only one degree within the Department of Chemistry.
You may need to meet a certain academic standard to be eligible for placements in industry or abroad.
If you are an international student, transferring to a different course could have an impact on your Tier 4 visa. Please visit our International Student Support webpage for further information.
Please note that the curriculum of this course is currently being reviewed as part of a College-wide process to introduce a standardised modular structure. As a result, the content and assessment structures of this course may change for your year of entry. We therefore recommend that you check this course page before finalising your application and after submitting it as we will aim to update this page as soon as any changes are ratified by the College.
Find out more about the limited circumstances in which we may need to make changes to or in relation to our courses, the type of changes we may make and how we will tell you about changes we have made.
- Chemistry Coursework 1
- Inorganic Chemistry 1
- Introduction to Chemistry
- Medicinal Chemistry 1
- Organic Chemistry 1
- Physical Chemistry 1
- Chemistry Coursework 2 for Medicinal Chemists
- Inorganic Chemistry 2
- Medicinal Chemistry 2
- Organic Chemistry 2
- Physical Chemistry 2
- Advanced Chemistry
- Advanced Chemistry Research Topics for Medicinal Chemists
- Chemistry Coursework 3 for Medicinal Chemists
- Chemistry Coursework 4 for Medicinal Chemists
- From Molecules to Medicine
You choose two modules from below.
- Advanced Catalysis
- Advanced Stereo-Chemistry, Synthesis and Biosynthesis
- Chemistry of Nanomaterials
- Membrane Biophysics
- Molecular Imaging
- Plastic Electronics from Materials Chemistry to Device Applications
- Renewable Energy from Solar Cells to Fuel Cells
- Robot Chemistry
Download the programme specification [PDF] – this is the most up-to-date version available for this course. It may change for your year of entry. If/when changes to this course are approved by the College, we will update this document and the information on this course page.
This degree leads to a Master’s level qualification and is professionally accredited by the Royal Society of Chemistry (RSC).
In the global market, chemistry graduates are increasingly mobile with employers looking for the best graduates across international markets. The Royal Society of Chemistry accreditation is respected around the world and helps students, parents and advisers choose high quality degree programmes which address the needs of both employers and students.
Our MSci degrees fully satisfy the RSC's academic requirement for professional registration as a Chartered Chemist (CChem). A CChem is an internationally recognised qualification earned by professionals working in the chemical sciences, which can lead to higher earning potential and better career prospects.
Our accreditation agreement with the Royal Society of Chemistry is renewed every five years.
The current accreditation agreement is due to be renewed for students starting their studies in the 2020–21 academic year. The Department expects to be accredited into the future.
As well as your main Imperial degree, you will also receive the award of the Associateship of the Royal College of Science (ARCS) on completion of this course.
The Royal College of Science is one of three historic Colleges that came together to form Imperial College London in 1907.
Find out more about our Associateships.
Teaching and assessment
You will be taught through a combination of lectures, tutorials, practical workshops and guided laboratory work.
There will also be group work, literature reports and research projects in order to ensure our degrees provide a strong set of additional skills, such as presentational and communicative skills.
Teaching, independent study and placement hours
|Year 1||Year 2||Year 3||Year 4|
|Lectures, seminars and similar||389 hours||472 hours||452 hours||833 hours|
|Independent study||1,111 hours||1,030 hours||1,048 hours||667 hours|
|Based on the typical pathway through the course|
Our Chemistry degrees use a variety of assessment methods, the below list provides a guide to what you can expect:
- Written examinations
- Oral presentation
- Written reports
- Academic posters
|Year 1||Year 2||Year 3||Year 4|
|Based on the typical pathway through the course; percentages have been rounded to the nearest whole number|
At Imperial, you will be taught by a range of teachers of all levels from Professors to PhD students, including some who undertake groundbreaking research and are regarded as experts in their field.
You may also experience peer teaching and be taught by specialists external to the College.
Compare this course
See how this course compares with similar courses at different institutions using the Unistats information below.
You can use the Unistats website to find out how this course compares in areas such as student satisfaction and what our graduates are doing six months after completing this course.
We welcome students from all over the world and consider all applicants on an individual basis – see selection process below.
For advice on the requirements for the qualifications listed here please contact the Department (see Contact us).
We also accept a wide range of international qualifications. If the requirements for your qualifications are not listed here, please see our academic requirements by country page for guidance on which qualifications we accept.
Minimum entry standards
Our minumum entry standard for 2019 entry is AAA overall, to include:
- A*/A in Chemistry
- A*/A in Mathematics
- A in another subject (Physics, Biology or Economics is preferred)
General Studies and Critical Thinking are not accepted.
Typical offer range
As a guide, here are the typical offers made in 2017 to at least 85% of applicants studying A-levels:
Three A-level offer: A*AA–A*A*A
Practical endorsement (practical science assessment)
If you are made an offer you will be required to achieve a pass in the practical endorsement in all science subjects that form part of the offer.
Minimum entry standards
Our minumum entry standard for 2019 entry is 38 points overall, to include:
- 7 in Chemistry at higher level
- 6 in Mathematics at higher level
- 6 in a third subject at higher level (Biology, Economics or Physics is preferred)
Typical offer range
As a guide, the typical offer made in 2017 to at least 85% of applicants studying IB was 38–39 points overall.
Our minimum requirement for this course is grades 5, 5, 5 to include:
- 5 in Chemistry
- 5 in Calculus BC
- 5 in another subject
Assessing your application
Admissions Tutors consider all the evidence available during our rigorous selection process and the College flags key information providing assessors with a more complete picture of the educational and social circumstances relevant to the applicant.
Some applicants may be set lower offers and some more challenging ones. It is the College’s policy to not make offers below three A’s at A-level in relevant subjects, 38 IB points with at least a grade 6 at higher level in relevant subjects, or their equivalent.
A typical range of offers made by this Department in 2017 (encompassing at least 85% of applicants who studied A-level or IB) is shown above.
Post-application open day and interview
If your UCAS application indicates that you are likely to satisfy our requirements and you live within reasonable travelling distance of the College you will be invited to visit the Department.
After a talk by the admissions tutor about the College, the structure of the course and other opportunities available you will experience a lecture given by one of our academics, highlighting the breadth and depth of research being conducted in the department and the way in which undergraduates have contributed to this research. You will have the chance to talk to current undergraduates over lunch and will be taken on a tour of the department and College.
Each applicant will be interviewed individually in the afternoon. The interview will comprise a discussion with two academics who will be looking to assess an applicant’s motivation for studying chemistry and their potential for the future. Although the discussion may begin with topics mentioned in the UCAS personal statement, the conversations will likely expand to cover topics that the applicant may not be so familiar with, this enables the panel to observe how an applicant things and how they reason their way through a problem.
The interview teams are highly experienced and are able to see through nerves and silly mistakes so you should not worry about answering the questions, there are no trick questions, if an answer seems obvious it might be just that.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
The Department of Chemistry have put together a list of frequently asked questions that often arise during the admissions process.
English language qualifications (all applicants)
All candidates must demonstrate a minimum level of English language proficiency for admission to the College.
For admission to this course, you must achieve the higher College requirement in the appropriate English language qualification. For details of the minimum grades required to achieve this requirement, please see the English language requirements for undergraduate applicants.
Academic Technology Approval Scheme (ATAS)
An ATAS certificate is not required for overseas students who apply for this course.
For more information about the Academic Technology Approval Scheme (ATAS), please see the International Student Support website.
Tuition fees and funding
We charge tuition fees for every year that your course lasts. The fee you will be charged is based on your fee status, which is determined by government regulations.
Tuition fees (Home and EU students)
|£9,250 per year|
The above fee applies to the academic year 2018–19 only as a guide.
The fee for Home students is controlled by the UK government and has not yet been confirmed for 2019 entry.
Please note that the fee you pay may increase annually by an amount linked to inflation and approved by Parliament under the Student Fees (Inflation Index) Regulations 2006 – currently the measure of inflation used is the RPIX.
If you're a Home student, you can apply for a Tuition Fee Loan from the UK government to cover the entire cost of tuition for every year of your course.
You can also apply for a means-tested Maintenance Loan to help towards your living costs.
The UK government has not yet confirmed the funding arrangements for EU students starting a course in 2019.
For the latest updates for EU students please see the Imperial and the European Union website.
Tuition fees (Overseas and Islands students)
|£29,100 per year|
The tuition fees for Overseas and Islands students are set by Imperial College London.
The fee above is listed as a guide and the fee for 2019 entry is yet to be confirmed by the College.
You should expect and budget for your tuition fee increasing each year by an inflationary amount. The measure of inflation used will be the Retail Price Index (RPI) value in the April of the calendar year in which the academic session starts e.g. the RPI value in April 2019 will apply to fees for the academic year 2019–2020.
Additional course costs
This section outlines any additional costs relevant to this course, which are not included in your tuition fees. It is possible that all, or only some, of these will be relevant to you.
Please note that the figures provided are usually based on the cost in the most recent academic year. These are likely to change from year to year. However, it is useful for you to be aware of the types of things you may have to pay for and their approximate cost to help you budget for student life at Imperial.
This section indicates whether any additional costs that apply are mandatory or optional. Mandatory costs are those that you will need to pay to fully participate in and complete your studies. Optional costs are not essential to your studies so you will be free to opt out of these.
|Description||Mandatory/optional||Guide to cost|
|Equipment (course materials)||Mandatory||Provided|
|Personal Protective Equipment||Mandatory||Provided|
|Please review the information below for more information on the costs listed in the table.|
Lab equipment and materials
The Department provides the materials you will need in the laboratory, such as glassware (with no replacement charge for breakages), printed laboratory manuals and chemicals.
Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)
Wearing personal protective equipment is compulsory for some activities on this course. Where this applies, the Department of Chemistry will provide you with the necessary PPE free of charge to ensure you can undertake lab work safely. This includes:
- Lab coat
- Safety spectacles*
* we do not usually provide prescription spectacles
If you lose an item, such as your lab coat, you will be required to pay a fee to cover the cost of its replacement.
We will charge you the same amount that we originally paid for the item. This fee is donated to ChemSoc, the student-run departmental society, to help to support their activities.
You will not be charged for a replacement if it is for another reason, such as theft or as a result of the item becoming worn out.
Accommodation and living costs
Living costs, including accommodation, are not included in your tuition fees.
Over 90 per cent of Imperial undergraduates choose to live in our halls of residence in their first year. You can compare costs across our different accommodation options on our Accommodation website.
A rough guide to what you might expect to spend to live in reasonable comfort in London is available on our Fees and Funding website.
Bursaries and scholarships
Chemistry graduates are recruited into practically every branch of industry. About half of our graduates pursue a PhD, while others work in roles as diverse as industrial development, production and quality control of processes, marketing, and teaching. Importantly, our MSci programmes ensure that our degrees are recognised throughout Europe, where longer undergraduate degree programmes are the norm.
Recent graduates of the Department have become:
- API Process Chemist, Aesica Pharma
- Research Scientist, Merck
- Graduate Scientist, Ministry of Defence
- Consultant, Accenture
- Management Consultant, Deloitte
How to apply
UCAS key information
- UCAS course code: F124
- UCAS institution code: I50
UCAS Apply system
To apply to study at Imperial you must use the online application system managed by the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS).
All applications, other than those which include choices for medicine at Imperial, must be submitted to UCAS by 18.00 (UK time) on 15 January 2019 for entry in September 2019.
The deadline for medicine courses at Imperial starting in 2019 is 18.00 (UK time) on 15 October 2018.
Tracking your application
Once you’ve completed and submitted your application through UCAS’s online Apply service, you can use UCAS’ Track system to follow its progress and manage your choices.
See our How to apply section for further guidance.
You may also be interested in the following related departments and the courses they offer:
Living in London
London’s fusion of culture and charm will give you a student experience unlike any other, and our first-year accommodation guarantee means that you'll have the perfect base from which to explore this exciting city.
We want to attract the very best students, regardless of their financial background. That's why we offer the most generous bursary scheme of any UK university, as well as a range of scholarships.
Imperial is proud to be the most international university in the UK, welcoming students from over 130 countries.