School of Biomedical Sciences

MSc Biomedical Science

Biomedical science focuses on the understanding of human health and disease, developing diagnostics and treatments that inevitably save and improve lives. Our research-informed MSc Biomedical Science programme aligns to the research disciplines within our newly formed Plymouth Institute of Health and Care Research (replacing the Institute of Translational and Stratified Medicine – ITSMed), allowing you to focus your MSc in either cancer, neuroscience, or infection & Immunity.

Our programme provides you the opportunity to broaden your knowledge and practical skills and supports those interested in pursuing research at postgraduate level.

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First choice for health

Delivered by professional experts, our programmes are tailored to you and your career. Together, we address today's most challenging healthcare issues, through research-informed teaching and active, real-world learning.


MSc Biomedical Science (specialist) pathway options:

Students on the MSc Biomedical Science programme undertake three core modules plus one specialist pathway from three available options:

  • Cancer Biology – examines the fundamentals of various cancers and real-world diagnostics to set you up for a future career in advanced cellular science.
  • Clinical Neuroscience – teaches the essentials of neurobiology with special focus on cause and treatment of neurodegenerative diseases (commences September 2021).
  • Infection & Immunity – explores molecular and cellular basis of infections and disease pathogenesis, antibiotic resistance, and immune system response.

This gives each student core knowledge in molecular biology, theoretical and practical-based teaching in their chosen specialist area, and the option to undertake a pathway-focused research project with a dedicated supervisor. This forms the MSc Biomedical Science (specialist) programme with students able to graduate with their named specialist pathway - e.g. MSc Biomedical Science (Cancer Biology).

Applications are accepted up until September (for a mid-September start) or until a pathway is full. A two-year part-time route is available for this programme. Please contact for further information.

Key features

  • Choose to specialise in either Cancer Biology, Clinical Neuroscience* or Infection and Immunity.
  • Dedicated core content covering genomics, proteomics and transcriptomics.
  • 50+ hours of practical-based learning on each pathway (laboratory and computational-based).
  • 15-week, independent wet- or dry-laboratory research projects available, supported by a dedicated supervisor.
  • Significant financial investment in laboratory infrastructure including our recently built Derriford Research Facility.
  • Programme professionally accredited by the Institute of Biomedical Science (IBMS).
  • An international reputation in translational research; ranked 1st in the UK for Research Output in Clinical Medicine for REF 2014.
  • 100% overall student satisfaction in the 2019-20 Postgraduate Taught Experience Survey (University of Plymouth).
  • Ranked 41st best UK University in the Guardian best UK universities 2022 rankings.
*Clinical Neuroscience pathway has been approved by the University for a September 2021 start and is undergoing IBMS accreditation.

Course details
  • Programme structure

  • The MSc Biomedical Science programme enables you to specialise in one of three areas through our research-aligned, biomedical pathways:

    • Cancer Biology
    • Clinical Neuroscience*
    • Infection and Immunity
    Each pathway comprises two discipline-specific modules covering specialist and application teaching, along with three core modules in molecular genetics and proteomics, project design and development, and a research dissertation project aligned to your pathway choice. All modules are assessed through a variety of coursework types, including written elements, presentations and timed/practical elements, and a written project dissertation. This enables you to gain broad, transferable skills and experience.

    Core modules

    • BIOM5001 Molecular Biology: Genomics, Transcriptomics and Proteomics
    • BIOM5005 Project Design and Development
    • BIOM5006 Research Project
    Students also select one dedicated pathway from the following three options:

    1) Cancer Biology pathway

    • BHCS5009 Cancer Biology and Therapeutics
    • BHCS5010 Contemporary Applications in Cancer Biology and Therapeutics

    2) Clinical Neuroscience pathway*
    • BHCS5011 Basis & Clinical Neuroscience
    • BHCS5012 Contemporary Applications in Neurobiology

    3) Infection and Immunity pathway
    • BHCS5008 Infection and Immunity
    • BIOM5003 Contemporary Science of Infection and Immunity

    Every postgraduate taught course has a detailed programme specification document describing the programme aims, the programme structure, the teaching and learning methods, the learning outcomes and the rules of assessment.

    * Clinical Neuroscience pathway has been approved by the University for a September 2021 start and is undergoing IBMS accreditation.

    We recommend that you apply as early as possible stipulating your desired pathway. Once a pathway is full, we are unable to guarantee further pathway-specific projects so reserve the right to close applications or offer out an alternative project.

Every postgraduate taught course has a detailed programme specification document describing the programme aims, the programme structure, the teaching and learning methods, the learning outcomes and the rules of assessment.

The following programme specification represents the latest programme structure and may be subject to change:

MSc Biomedical Science programme specification 4797

The modules shown for this course or programme are those being studied by current students, or expected new modules. Modules are subject to change depending on year of entry.
Entry requirements

  • Applicants should have a good honours degree, or equivalent, awarded by a UK institute of higher education in a biomedical or biological-related subject. Those with a lower second-class honours degree, an alternative subject qualification, or relevant work-based experience are encouraged to apply and will be considered on an individual basis.
  • This programme accepts applications from medical, dental and veterinary students who wish to intercalate their studies.
  • For overseas applicants, you can check how your qualification compares with the UK equivalent through UK ECCTIS, who provide an advisory service.

If your first language is not English, you will be required to provide evidence of competence in English language:

  • International English Language Testing System (IELTS) score of 6.5 or above with no less than 6.0 in each category (speaking, listening, reading, & writing) will be required.
  • Please visit our entry requirements for international students page for more information.

We welcome applicants with international qualifications. To view other accepted qualifications please refer to our tariff glossary.

Fees, costs and funding

The UK is no longer part of the European Union. EU applicants should refer to our Brexit information to understand the implications.

New Student 2021-2022 2022-2023
Home £9,950 £10,200
International £15,200 £15,700
Part time (Home) To be confirmed To be confirmed
Full time fees shown are per annum. Part time fees shown are per a number of credits. Please note that fees are reviewed on an annual basis. Fees and the conditions that apply to them shown in the prospectus are correct at the time of going to print. Fees shown on the web are the most up to date but are still subject to change in exceptional circumstances. For more information about fees and funding please visit
How to apply

When to apply

Most of our taught programmes begin in September. Applications can usually be made throughout the year, and are considered until programmes are full. 

Before you apply

Familiarise yourself with the information required to complete your application form. You will usually be required to supply:
  • evidence of qualifications (degree certificates or transcripts), with translations if not in English, to show that you meet, or expect to meet the entry requirements
  • evidence of English language proficiency, if English is not your first language
  • a personal statement of approximately 250-400 words about the reasons for your interest in the course and outlining the nature of previous and current related experience. You can write this into the online application form, or include it as a separate document
  • your curriculum vitae or résumé, including details of relevant professional/voluntary experience, professional registration/s and visa status for overseas workers
  • proof of sponsorship, if applicable.
If you require further information take a look at our application guidance.

Disability services

If you have a disability and would like further information about the support provided by University of Plymouth, please visit our Disability Services website. 

International students

Support is also available to overseas students applying to the University from our International Office via our how to apply webpage or email

Submitting an application

Once you are happy that you have all of the information required you can apply using our online postgraduate application form (the blue 'Apply now' icon on this page).

What happens after I apply?

You will normally receive a decision on your application within four weeks of us receiving your application. You may be asked to provide additional information; two academic/professional references, confirming your suitability for the course; or to take part in an interview (which in the case of overseas students may be by telephone or video conference) and you will be sent a decision by letter or email.

We aim to make the application procedure as simple and efficient as possible. Our Admissions and Course Enquiries team is on hand to offer help and can put you in touch with the appropriate faculty if you wish to discuss any programme in detail.

If you would like any further information please contact the Admissions and Course Enquiries team:

Telephone: +44 (0)1752 585858

Admissions policy

More information and advice for applicants can be referenced by downloading our Student Admissions Policy Prospective students are advised to read the policy before making an application to the University.

Programme Q&A

We hold in-person open days and virtual Q&A sessions via Zoom throughout the year. If you have any questions, these are a good place to start. Details of the next session is below:

The next open evening is scheduled for 16:00–19:00, Wednesday 13 October 2021. Book your place

For informal inquiries, please email the programme lead, Dr Philip Warburton (

Soraya Williams – MSc Biomedical Science graduate

Biomedical science can be a broad subject to narrow down, so it is essential to find what you enjoy by putting yourself out there.
Find out more about Soraya

James Butler – MSc Biomedical Science graduate

There is an active research community in the School of Biomedical Sciences which I knew would provide me with the mentoring, guidance and resources I needed to develop my research skills and run my own project.
Find out more about James

Student insight

The programme has given me a vast amount of knowledge in many medical and scientific approaches. It has made me into a more critical-thinking person in regards to what is written and in the presented arguments.

Fatemah Alqallaf is a current student of the MSc Biomedical Science programme

Find out more about what Fatemah has to say about studying with us

Biomedical Research Group

Non-invasive pre-natal testing. Self-disseminating vaccines. Molecular cell biology. With its impressive facilities and research activity, the Biomedical Research Group is leading the way in cellular and molecular biomedical science research.

Find out more about the Biomedical Research Group

Meet our staff

Specialising in a range of research areas, from stem cell transplantation to skeletal pathology, our team reflects the multi-disciplinary nature of biomedical science. You’ll benefit from their knowledge, expertise and insights during your course.

Focused research is the foundation of biomedical science.



Students from around the world study biomedical science at the University of Plymouth. We offer the latest facilities, research, support and teaching expertise. So you’ll leave ready for your career, or to further your academic study.

Career possibilities for our graduates include healthcare science, research support, government science and areas relating to scientific media.