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Chemistry with Medicinal Chemistry MChem Honours

  • UCAS code: F123
  • Full time
  • 4 years

This professionally accredited MChem degree equips you with a thorough understanding of all the main areas of chemistry and includes a year of advanced study at master's level. It also provides a good basis for a PhD or career in research.

You are currently viewing course information for entry year: 2024

Next start date:

  • September 2024

Fees (per year)

  • Home: £9250
  • International: £26400

Entry requirements and offers

  • A-Level: AAB
  • IB: 33 points

UCAS Institution name and code:

  • NEWC / N21

Course overview

Chemistry touches every part of our lives. From food and medicine to biotechnology and renewable energy, its influence is endless. As a Chemist, you can have a great career and make a difference in the world.

Medicinal Chemistry is the discovery, design and synthesis of new clinical drugs.

Our MChem degree follows the normal BSc curriculum, plus a further year of advanced study. The MChem programme is perfect for those pursuing a career within scientific research.

This exciting degree allows you to broaden your interests as you discover the subject. You'll explore the role of chemistry in:

  • drug design
  • cancer chemotherapy
  • enzymology
  • toxicology

You'll study organic, inorganic, physical and structural chemistry. You'll investigate modern analytical techniques and computational chemistry. You can create your own distinct learning experience at Newcastle. You'll explore your interests as you discover the subject.

BSc or MChem?

The MChem programme is perfect for those pursuing a career within scientific research.

Our MChem degree follows the normal BSc curriculum, plus a further year of advanced study. You'll undertake a research project in the fourth year. You'll gain valuable experience of working in a research environment.


Your course and study experience - disclaimers and terms and conditions  
Please rest assured we make all reasonable efforts to provide you with the programmes, services and facilities described. However, it may be necessary to make changes due to significant disruption, for example in response to Covid-19.

View our Academic experience page, which gives information about your Newcastle University study experience for the academic year 2023-24.

See our terms and conditions and student complaints information, which gives details of circumstances that may lead to changes to programmes, modules or University services.

Additional information

Flexible degree structure

Our chemistry degrees share a common first year. This ensures that you develop a solid foundation in chemistry and its many forms.

Quality and ranking

Professional accreditation and recognition

All professional accreditations are reviewed regularly by their professional body.

Modules and learning


The information below is intended to provide an example of what you will study.

Most degrees are divided into stages. Each stage lasts for one academic year, and you'll complete modules totalling 120 credits by the end of each stage. 

Our teaching is informed by research. Course content may change periodically to reflect developments in the discipline, the requirements of external bodies and partners, and student feedback.

To find out more please see our terms and conditions.

Optional module availability
Student demand for optional modules may affect availability.

Full details of the modules on offer will be published through the Programme Regulations and Specifications ahead of each academic year. This usually happens in May.

Our chemistry degrees share a common first year. This ensures that you develop a solid foundation in chemistry and its many forms. You’ll explore the fundamentals of organic, inorganic and physical chemistry.


Compulsory Modules Credits
Chemical Laboratory Skills 1 20
Chemical Skills and Professionalism 10
Fundamentals of Organic Chemistry 20
Fundamentals of Inorganic Chemistry 20
Fundamentals of Physical Chemistry 20
General Chemistry 10
Additional compulsory module information
If you have A Level Maths grade C or below you take the following compulsory module:
Optional Modules Credits
Natural Science Research Impact 10
Climate Change and the Earth System 10
Mathematical Skills for Chemists 10
Introduction to Scientific Computing for Chemists 10
Fundamentals of Biological Chemistry 10

You'll explore concepts in medicinal chemistry including pharmacokinetics, pharmacodynamics, enzymes and drug design. You’ll be introduced to structure-based drug design using CCP4 Molecular Graphics software.

You'll take an employability module that includes a Professional Awareness Event. You'll have the opportunity to interact with a range of companies.


Compulsory Modules Credits
Sustainable Solutions 10
Chemical Laboratory Skills 2 20
Structural Chemistry 10
Organic Chemistry 20
Inorganic Chemistry 20
Physical Chemistry 20
Medicinal Chemistry 10
Optional Modules Credits
Applied Computational Medicinal Chemistry 10
Chemistry of the Atmosphere 10

You'll discover more advanced concepts in medicinal chemistry including toxicology, enzymology, cancer chemotherapy and chemotherapy of infectious diseases.

You’ll also study advanced organic and inorganic chemistry, exploring topics including chemical nanoscience, synthesis and bioinorganic chemistry.

You’ll also complete an independent research literature project. This will help to develop your skills in reviewing, critiquing and presenting research material.


Compulsory Modules Credits
Professional Development and Employability Skills for Chemists 10
Advanced Organic Chemistry 20
Advanced Inorganic Chemistry 20
Advanced Medicinal Chemistry 20
Advanced Structural Chemistry 10
Chemical Laboratory Skills 3M 20
Analytical Chemistry in Practice 20

In your final year, you’ll complete an investigative project. This involves creating original, unpublished work in a modern area of chemistry. As part of the project, you'll generate a researcher development record. This record highlights the specialist skills you’ve acquired from your research project.

You will also choose from a range of optional modules on specialist topics. These include catalysis and synthesis of organic compounds.


Compulsory Modules Credits
Research Project 70
Advanced Problem Solving 10
Advanced Methods in Chemical Biology and Drug Discovery 10
Optional Modules Credits
Selectivity and Stereocontrol in Organic Synthesis 10
Pericyclic and radical reactions 10
Chemistry Far From Equilibrium 10
Contemporary Catalysis: Principles and Applications 10
Modern aspects of inorganic chemistry 10
Energy and Materials 10

Teaching and assessment

Teaching methods

You'll learn through:

  • lectures/seminars
  • laboratory practicals
  • computational practicals
  • research project
  • small group tutorials

Assessment methods

You'll be assessed through a combination of:

  • Assessments

  • Assignments – written or fieldwork

  • Coursework

  • Dissertation or research project

  • Essays

Skills and experience

Practical skills

You'll have the opportunity to develop professional laboratory skills through practical experience in our high-spec teaching labs.

You'll also develop strong analytical and problem-solving skills. These will enable you to pursue careers outside of Chemistry, including:

  • accountancy
  • patent law
  • marketing

Business skills

You’ll develop professional and employability skills. You’ll have the opportunity to interact with alumni and leading companies.

You're able to develop business skills through:

  • employability skills modules across all stages
  • work placements
  • study abroad opportunities
  • industrial visits

You'll develop key skills, including:

  • writing proposals
  • writing scientific reports and papers
  • delivering presentations

You'll also network with industry at our Professional Awareness Day, empowering you to make decisions about your career.

Research skills

Research is at the heart of what we do. Our latest research discoveries feed into your curriculum. You'll learn on the cutting-edge of Chemistry. Our discoveries include:

  • discovery of new anti-cancer drugs
  • development of battery technology
  • creation of nanoscale electronics


Study abroad

Experience life in another country by choosing to study abroad as part of your degree. We also offer Chemistry with Medicinal Chemistry (with Study Abroad) MChem Honours degree. 

You spend Stage 3 studying chemistry at one of our partner institutions abroad. We have partners in:

  • Europe
  • North America
  • Asia 

The year abroad is assessed on the basis of a research project you conduct while overseas. You also take distance learning modules in advanced organic and inorganic chemistry.

You’ll be encouraged to embrace fun and challenging experiences, make connections with new communities and graduate as a globally aware professional, ready for your future.

Find out more about study abroad

Industrial training year

We also offer Chemistry with Medicinal Chemistry (with Industrial Training Year) MChem Honours degree. The placement takes place in Stage 3.

An industrial training year is a great opportunity to gain first-hand work experience. If you impress your host company, it could even result in a job offer on graduation.

It's also an opportunity to build valuable skills such as teamwork, communication and project management. 

The placement year is assessed, and you'll complete a research project and distance learning modules in advanced organic and inorganic chemistry.

In the past students have found placements throughout the UK and, occasionally, overseas with companies including:

  • Akzo Nobel
  • AstraZeneca
  • Corus
  • GlaxoSmithKline
  • P&G

Facilities and environment


During your studies, you'll be based in the School of Natural and Environmental Sciences at our city-centre campus.

You'll have the opportunity to study in well-resourced research laboratories and synthetic chemistry teaching laboratories. Our facilities also include:

  • physical chemistry laboratory
  • mechanical, glassblowing and electronic workshops, staffed by highly trained technicians
  • facilities for the synthesis and characterisation of novel materials
  • extensive computational resources for molecular modelling and dynamics
  • a centralised NMR facility which includes 200, 300 and 500 MHz spectrometers


To support you in your studies, all new students entering year 1 or year 2 will receive:

  • a tablet so you can download the online learning resources you'll need for your course (helping us to make our campus more sustainable)
  • a lab coat for laboratory practicals

You'll have the support of an academic member of staff as a personal tutor throughout your degree to help with any issues.

Your future

Join a network of successful graduates

Employers hold our graduates in high regard. Our graduates go on to work in a wide variety of sectors, including:

  • drug development
  • pharmacologist
  • data analyst
  • laboratory technician

Benefit from strong industry links

You'll also benefit from our well-established links with organisations within the industry, such as:

  • Astra Zeneca
  • GlaxoSmithKline
  • Proctor & Gamble

Enterprising students

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Careers support

During your second year, you'll attend our Professional Awareness Day. We invite a broad mix of businesses to the event, carry out mock interviews and hold Q&A sessions with alumni. You're empowered to make decisions about your future career.

In your final year, you will have one-to-one meetings with an academic to discuss your professional future.

Our award-winning Careers Service is one of the largest and best in the country, and we have strong links with employers. We provide an extensive range of opportunities to all students through our ncl+ initiative.

Visit our Careers Service website

Recognition of professional qualifications outside of the UK

From 1 January 2021 there is an update to the way professional qualifications are recognised by countries outside of the UK

Entry requirements

All candidates are considered on an individual basis and we accept a broad range of qualifications. The entrance requirements and offers below apply to 2024 entry.

International Baccalaureate

Other UK and the Republic of Ireland qualifications

Contextual Offers

Through one of our contextual routes, you could receive an offer of up to three grades lower than the typical requirements.

What is a contextual offer? Find out more and if you’re eligible for this or our PARTNERS Programme supported entry route.

Qualifications from outside the UK

English Language requirements

Entrance courses (INTO)

International Pathway Courses are specialist programmes designed for international students who want to study in the UK. We provide a range of study options for international students in partnership with INTO. 

Find out more about International Pathway Courses

Admissions policy

This policy applies to all undergraduate and postgraduate admissions at Newcastle University. It is intended to provide information about our admissions policies and procedures to applicants and potential applicants, to their advisors and family members, and to staff of the University.

Credit transfer and Recognition of Prior Learning

Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) can allow you to convert existing relevant university-level knowledge, skills and experience into credits towards a qualification. Find out more about the RPL policy which may apply to this course.

Tuition fees and scholarships

Tuition fees for 2024 entry (per year)

Qualification: MChem Honours

Home students

full time 4 years

Tuition fees (per year)


International students

full time 4 years

Tuition fees (per year)


Year abroad and additional costs

For programmes where you can spend a year on a work placement or studying abroad, you will receive a significant fee reduction for that year. 

Some of our degrees involve additional costs which are not covered by your tuition fees.


Find out more about:

Open days and events

How to apply

Apply through UCAS

To apply for undergraduate study at Newcastle University, you must use the online application system managed by the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS). All UK schools and colleges, and a small number of EU and international establishments, are registered with UCAS. You will need:

  • the UCAS name and institution codes for Newcastle University (NEWC/N21)
  • the UCAS code for the course you want to apply for
  • the UCAS 'buzzword' for your school or college

If you are applying independently, or are applying from a school or college which is not registered to manage applications, you will still use the Apply system. You will not need a buzzword.

Apply through UCAS

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International students often apply to us through an agent. Have a look at our recommended agents and get in touch with them.

Visit our International pages

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