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PED3008 : Advanced Topics in Neuropharmacology

  • Offered for Year: 2022/23
  • Module Leader(s): Dr Sarah Judge
  • Lecturer: Dr Richard McQuade, Dr Gavin Clowry, Dr Fiona LeBeau
  • Owning School: Biomedical, Nutritional and Sports Scien
  • Teaching Location: Newcastle City Campus
Semester 1 Credit Value: 10
ECTS Credits: 5.0


The aims of this module are to provide students with the opportunity to gain a current understanding of:

• morphological, neurochemical and functional correlates of neuropsychiatric disorders.
• pharmacological mechanisms and approaches used to treat and understand the biological basis of that neuropsychiatric disorders.

Outline Of Syllabus

The module will focus on the neuropharmacology of specific neuropsychiatric disorders - depression, schizophrenia, and anxiety disorders. In the initial sessions you will learn about the anatomy of the brain, its gross organisation and neural pathways associated with these diseases. Following this, groups will be dedicated to each of the disorders. You will learn about specific molecular, neurochemical and anatomical pathologies of these disorders and how targeting these pathologies with pharmacological agents is often the most effective way of treating the disorder. Emphasis will also be placed on new approaches used to devise more effective therapeutic strategies in neuropharmacology. All teaching sessions are delivered by leading researchers in biological psychiatry.

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesLecture131:0013:00PIP including module introduction talk
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion128:0028:00In-course open book
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesPractical12:002:00PIP
Structured Guided LearningStructured research and reading activities41:004:00Preparation for small group teaching
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesSmall group teaching41:004:00PIP
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesDrop-in/surgery10:300:30Sync online. Generic feedback on in-course assessment.
Guided Independent StudyIndependent study148:3048:30Writing up lecture notes, revision and general reading
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

The practical class will enable students to be introduced to the anatomy of the CNS.

Lectures and activities based on this material will support students to engage with the factual content.

Seminars will provide a forum for discussion of appropriate and relevant topics and allow students to further their knowledge and understanding of the field.

Assessment Methods

The format of resits will be determined by the Board of Examiners

Description Length Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Written Examination902A708 hour open book exam (1 essay from choice of 2). 1000 words (online remote)
Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Essay1M30In course open book essay. 1000 words
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

The open book essay in semester 1 will provide the students with the opportunity to practice their essay writing skills under exam conditions and be provided with feedback in preparation for the final exam. The final exam will allow assessment of the individual student’s ability to retrieve and apply their taught and researched knowledge to answer particular neuropharmacological questions.

FMS Schools offering Semester One modules available as ‘Study Abroad’ will, where required, provide an alternative assessment time for examinations that take place after the Christmas vacation. Coursework with submissions dates after the Christmas vacation will either be submitted at an earlier date or at the same time remotely.

Reading Lists