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Medical Research & Innovation (MSc/PgDip/PgCert)

n/a (full-time) / n/a (part-time) / part-time study: 3 years (MSc); 2 years (PgDip); 1 year (PgCert) (distance / e-Learning)

The Masters Programme in Medical Research and Innovation has been developed to provide life science and healthcare graduates with advanced knowledge, understanding and skills allowing them to contribute to the rapidly evolving fields of diagnostics and medical device development and to the management of clinical innovation.

The Programme has been developed in conjunction with industrial partners in the life science and healthcare sectors. The programme is built around a set of core modules and a variety of optional modules, allowing students to tailor their programme to meet their own educational needs and interests. Graduates from the programme will be skilled and knowledgeable in the whole process of innovation, making them highly attractive to potential employers in research, industrial, commercial and healthcare establishments.

close-up of lab scientist with equipment
Working in the life sciences or medical technology industry? The MSc / PgCert / PgDip could be just what you need to take your next step on the career ladder.

Course Aims

The aim of the course is to provide individuals with the opportunity to explore and analyse the emerging trends in clinical innovation.   This exciting field is developing rapidly and the programme aims to enhance students’ knowledge and skills to allow them to actively contribute to the rapidly evolving fields of diagnostics and medical device development and the management of clinical innovation.

Who is this Programme for?

Life science and healthcare graduates; individuals working in or hoping to work in the life science, medical technology  and technology industries.

Special Features


Course Description

The MSc in Medical Research and Innovation is a part time distance learning programme designed in a linear modular format.  Students study a series of core modules initially and are then able to choose specialist and application modules to match their interests and career aspirations.

By the end of the programme students will have achieved the following learning outcomes and will be able to:

Those completing the MSc stage will also have

Appreciate the strengths and weaknesses of their own data and recommend potential remediation.

Course Structure

The MSc programme is offered part-time over three academic years. The MSc consists of 180 credits at level 7 (Master’s), of which 120 are contained in six ‘taught’ modules, and the remaining 60 credits are contained in the research dissertation project. 

The taught modules are of three main types: ‘Core’, ‘Application’ and ‘Specialisation’ modules.

Module structure

Year 1 (PgCert)

MET901 (20 credits* / level 7**) : Research Skills and Environment – delivered over 8 weeks.  The aim of this module is to provide students with the skills necessary for building on their undergraduate training and greater knowledge of the research environment they are entering into.  Students will gain understanding and experience in the philosophy and ethics of research, experimental design and record keeping and the critical analysis and presentation of experimental data.

MET 902 (20 credits / level 7): Innovation in the Clinical Sciences – delivered over 8 weeks. The aim of this module is to provide students with key knowledge and skills required for innovation in the health and life science sector.  The module focuses on assessing the validity of an idea, the scope for development and potential for translation / commercialisation.  The importance of recognising and protecting intellectual property and the process of obtaining a patent are examined.   The module also looks at regulatory processes and requirements for product development.

MET903 (20 credits / level 7): Clinical Research Trials Management – delivered over 8 weeks.  The aim of this module is to provide students with key knowledge and understanding of basic clinical trial design, governance and management.  The module focuses on the key tenets of clinical trial design and management and their role in ensuring validity of data obtained and the role of trials in the development and accreditation of new pharmaceutical agents, devices and the accreditation of diagnostic methods. After completing this module students should be able to develop a trial design and present it in a format acceptable to grant funding bodies, company executive board or local ethics committees.

Please note: A 20 credit module is considered as being equivalent to approximately 200 hours of study time (this includes lectures, discussions, group work, completing assessments and reading of course materials and directed text and independent reading). Level 7 indicates modules are at Masters level.

Year 2 (PgDip)

MET904 (20 credits / level 7): Data analysis for Biomedical Research – delivered over 8 weeks. The aim of this module is to provide students with the skills necessary for working in biomedical research, building on their undergraduate training.  Students will gain understanding and experience in the appropriate handling and analysis of research data, including critical appraisal of published research data, appreciating strengths and weaknesses and their effect on the validity of claims made. They will gain an understanding of the need for appropriate study design and will learn how to select the most appropriate statistical test.

Optional Application module (choose 1):

MET905 (20 credits / level 7): Developing Diagnostic Assays – delivered over 8 weeks. The module aims to provide students with an opportunity to explore the field of diagnostic assay development and the potential impact on human health through early intervention and targeted treatment. Students will systematically review the processes, regulatory frameworks and key progress points involved in product development. Students will develop an understanding of the potential roadblocks in the development process and design strategies to avoid and circumvent unnecessary hurdles.

Or

MET906 (20 credits / level 7): Developing Medical Devices – delivered over 8 weeks. The module aims to provide students with an opportunity to explore the field of medical device technology and its impact on human health and examine in-depth the processes involved in the medical device technology development.  Students will systematically review the processes, regulatory frameworks and key progress points involved in the product development. Students will develop an understanding of the potential roadblocks in the development process and design strategies to avoid and circumvent unnecessary hurdles.

And...

Optional Specialisation module (choose one):

MET907 (20 credits / level 7): Biomedical Laboratory Techniques – delivered over 8 weeks. The aim of this module is to provide students with an in depth understanding of a wide range of current and emerging biomedical research methodologies. Students will develop an understanding of the appropriate use of these methodologies, their strengths and limitations, and alternative approaches to achieve specific research goals.  

Or

MET908 (20 credits / level 7): Laboratory Techniques in Molecular & Experimental Medicine – delivered over 8 weeks. The aim of this module is to provide students with an in depth understanding of a wide range of current and emerging biomedical research methodologies. Students will develop an understanding of the appropriate use of these methodologies, their strengths and limitations, and alternative approaches to achieve specific research goals.  The module will cover a wide variety of methodologies placed in context with their use in molecular and experimental medicine, focusing on the research strengths of the School of Medicine

Or

MET909 (20 credits / level 7): Laboratory Techniques in Infection & Immunity Research – delivered over 8 weeks. The aim of this module is to provide students with an in depth understanding of a wide range of current and emerging biomedical research methodologies. Students will develop an understanding of the appropriate use of these methodologies, their strengths and limitations, and alternative approaches to achieve specific research goals.  The module will cover a wide variety of methodologies placed in context with their use in Infection & Immunity Research.  This is an area of research strengths within the School of Medicine.

Or

MET910 (20 credits / level 7): Epidemiology – delivered over 8 weeks. The module aims to provide the student with an understanding of basic epidemiological principles and the different quantitative and qualitative research methodologies used in Health-related Population Research and their contribution to the understanding of health and wellbeing.

Please note: A 20 credit module is considered as being equivalent to approximately 200 hours of study time (this includes lectures, discussions, group work, completing assessments and reading of course materials and directed text and independent reading). Level 7 indicates modules are at Masters level.

Year 3 (MSc)

MET900 – Dissertation (60 credits / level 7)

The Dissertation Research Project will give students hands-on experience of research as an independent worker within their own research environment or within a School of Medicine Research group, with support from Cardiff University staff.  The aims of this module are:

  • To provide experience of a period of substantial independent study within an area of internationally competitive research
  • To assess and critically evaluate the research as appropriate
  • To collate and analyse data
  • To present the project as a 20,000 word dissertation (or work based portfolio).

Studies at MSc dissertation level will consist largely of guided independent study and research, making use of the extensive learning and research facilities available. A project supervisor will be allocated to support and advise you on researching and writing up your specific dissertation topic. Students can choose to submit a traditional Masters Thesis or a work-based portfolio, dependent on the dissertation topic and whether it will be completed in conjunction with Industry.

Please note: Level 7 indicates modules are at Masters level.

Teaching Methods

All taught modules will be delivered online.  The programme is designed so that the learning outcomes are achievable through the combination of online learning and your application of the knowledge and skills gained within your current workplace – normally a laboratory, industrial, clinical or healthcare setting. Your learning will be supported by online learning materials, online tutor groups and discussions, formative assessments and feedback. All students will be assigned a personal tutor, who will support their academic development.

Assessment

Assessments vary between modules, but include written assignments, online examinations and preparation of a poster.

Module
Assessments
Module weighting
Due date
MET901 Poster Presentation 25% October
Critical Appraisal Assignment (3,000 words) 75% December
MET902 Product SWOT Analysis Assignment (3,000 words) 75% March
Objective test items (online test) 25% March
MET903 Clinical Trial Protocol Assignment (4,000 words) 100% June
MET904 Data Analysis and Interpretation (online exam) 50% December
Data Handling and Analysis Assignment 50% December
MET905 Project Development Plan (3,000 words) 75% March
Comparison of diagnostic methods or risk assessment for a proposed medical device (1000 words) 25% March
MET907, MET908 Methodological Review (1,000 words) 25% June
MET909 Research Proposal Assignment (3,000 words) 75% June
MET910 Unseen Inline Exam (1 hour) 25% June
Research Proposal Assignment (3,000 words) 75% June
MET900 Dissertation Research Project (20,000 word Dissertation) 100% September

Resources & Facilities

The programme is part time and distance learning, with delivery of teaching materials and student support being facilitated via the online virtual learning, Learning Central.  Students will have an induction to the programme, which will familiarise them with each other, the Programme, the course team, using the VLE, and practical things like accessing library resources and submitting assessments.   Students will be allocated a personal tutor, who will support your academic development.

Tutors


Skills Acquired

Studying at Master's level should provide you with a wealth of skills and abilities you can apply to any professional setting. In addition to greater conceptual understanding of current knowledge, issues and methods, you will practice and develop abilities in critical analysis, the application of evidence based medicine and in dealing with complex issues systematically and creatively. Your studies should also help you develop your problem solving and decision making abilities by enabling you to utilise evidence effectively and communicate important concepts to colleagues and others. Through the research focused elements you will develop and enhance skills in literature review, critical evaluation, research design, research methodologies, data collection, data analysis and research principles.

Generic skills practised and developed will include (but are not limited to):

Career Prospects

Graduates from the programme will be skilled and knowledgeable in the whole process of innovation in the biomedical sciences, making them highly attractive to potential employers in research, industrial, commercial and healthcare establishments.

Entry Requirements

Candidates (at the discretion of the Board of Studies) will normally possess an initial degree in a relevant Life sciences (minimum 2(ii)), awarded by a recognised Institution. Relevant subjects include Biology, Chemistry, Engineering, Professions Allied to Medicine, Bioscience, Biomedical Sciences, Bioinformatics, Computing, , Medicine, or a cognate subject.

 Applicants whose first language is not English must satisfy the Cardiff University General Entrance Requirements including the English Language requirements*. Please see our English language requirements webpages for further information.

*Applicants who do not meet the qualification criteria listed under the English language requirements in the above link should contact the course team to discuss whether alternative evidence of English language competence may be sufficient (e.g. evidence of successful completion of a first or subsequent degree entirely in the medium of English, for a minimum of one year).

Admissions Process

Your personal statement should provide evidence of the following:

Applications can be submitted through the University's Online Application System.

Applications will be made on a continuous basis throughout the year and based on your written application and the references received.


Available Funding

International candidates should visit our International funding webpages.

Tuition Fees 2016/17

Fees quoted are for the academic session 2016/17. For programmes lasting more than one year, tuition fees for subsequent years of study are subject to an increase of no more than 4.5% per year.

  UK & EU International
Full-time n/a n/a
Part-time PgCert: £3,875
PgDip: £3,875
PgCert: £5,625
PgDip: £5,625
Deposit Includes a £1,000 deposit. More information about our deposit policy. Includes a £1,000 deposit. More information about our deposit policy.
Notes    

Next intake: September each year

School Contact

Name: Beverley Fleming (Medical Research & Innovation)  

Telephone: +44 (0) 29 2068 8580 

Fax:  

Email: postgradmedic@cardiff.ac.uk  

School Website: http://www.cardiff.ac.uk/medicine/courses/postgraduate-taught

School Contact

Name: Dr Robert Steadman  

Telephone: +44 (0)29 2074 8390  

Fax: +44 (0)29 2074 8470 

Email: steadmanr@cardiff.ac.uk  

School Website: http://www.cardiff.ac.uk/medicine/courses/postgraduate-taught

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