Clinical Pharmacy Course PgDip/MSc

MSc Clinical Pharmacy Practice

1. Overview

Apply now final deadline 19 January 2015. Scholarships available

This course has been designed to provide you with a broad education in Clinical Pharmacy in line with opportunities to focus your studies more specifically to your area of practice. It will equip you with the necessary knowledge and skills to enhance your career.

It provides the opportunity for pharmacists to develop professional practice as clinical practitioners involved in making decisions about patient care. Practitioners working in both primary and secondary care contexts will benefit from the development of a range of skills to enhance career prospects and benefit service delivery.

It has been developed to be compatible with competency clusters outlined in the RPS Foundation/ Advanced Pharmacy Framework and is mapped to core dimensions within the NHS Knowledge and Skills Framework.

In view of the unique nature of the multidisciplinary input to the course and the fact that it has been designed in collaboration with employers in both primary and secondary care, career prospects for holders of the postgraduate qualification in hospital or community practice are extremely good.

2. What you will study

PgCert stage

The first two modules of the course (PgCert stage) are common but you then choose from a number of elective modules to complete the PgDip stage. View CPP routes as table

The first two modules of the course are common to both routes and studied over two semesters:

PHM031 Pharmaceutical Care Planning

PHM032 Therapeutics 


PgDip stage

During the PgDip stage of the course you are required to chose two 30credit modules out of four possible options:

PHM028 Pharmacist Independent Prescribing
The aim of this module is to prepare pharmacists to meet the standards set by the General Pharmaceutical Council (GPhC) for registration as a pharmacist independent prescriber. In order to be eligible for this module you must hold a current registration with the GPhC or PSNI as a practising pharmacist and have at least two years appropriate patient orientated experience following pre-registration year.

View more information 

PHM026 Developing and implementing models of care

The aim of this module is to critically explore successful approaches to practice that ensure safe, effective and efficient use of medicines through collaborative working. You will take a closer look at the processes required for the safe, effective and efficient management of medicines, key factors that may impact prescribing choices, aspects that support seamless care and team working skills in the context of medicines management.

PHM036 Developing and implementing models of care

The aim of this module is to critically investigate the structures, processes and outcomes of a variety of pharmacy services in specialist areas including hospital, community and primary care. You will analyse current national and local policy contexts and critically evaluate structures in relation to pharmacy service provision. You will synthesise, document and justify evidence based care plans in the context of your own practice as well as your organisational and national pharmacy service provision.

PHM037 Person Centred Care

The aim of this module is to enable you to develop an understanding of person centred care with a focus on pharmaceutical care and service provision. You will gain an appreciation of complex healthcare needs, the influences on individuals engagement with their own health , explore elements that contribute to shared decision making and person centred care planning.


MSc Stage

Students can chose between either module:

PHM038 Health Services Research

Students progressing to the MSc stage have an opportunity to develop skills and expertise in relation to research and development of pharmacy services. The project area is chosen by you and therefore relevant to your practice and should produce outcomes that allow you to evaluate and develop local services.
 

PHM039 Advanced Pharmacy Practice

This module will enable you to develop relevant knowledge, skills, attitudes and competencies required for effective advanced practice. The content is mapped with the RPS Advanced Pharmacy Framework clusters in mind enabling you to develop into an advanced practitioner.

3. How you will learn

You will be taught via our virtual learning environment CampusMoodle, allowing you to develop clinical knowledge and skills whilst remaining in employment. The modules are delivered part-time.

All your materials will be provided online and are designed to allow self-assessment of learning needs then subsequent acquisition and application of knowledge in practice-related problem-based scenarios. These scenarios may involve you carrying out a range of activities including: participation in online discussion forums, formative peer-assessed essays, short answer problem/case study questions and multiple-choice questions.

Additionally, you will be supported by e-tutors who are all practising clinical pharmacy practitioners. E-tutors review the learning materials, provide 'real life' case scenarios and participate in the marking of practice related assessments. They facilitate discussion and learning within the modules and bring a unique practice related perspective to learning. 

Each module is sub-divided into a number of topics and you are encouraged to use materials to identify and address your own learning needs.

The Course Leader is a central point for information and support with regard to the delivery of the course. It is also recommended that you have a work-placed mentor to provide local support and encouragement.

Assessment

You will be assessed by continuous assessment. This takes many different forms including: responding to case studies, developing care plans and essay responses to specific topics and contribution to online discussion forums. 

4. Entry requirements

Applicants should have an undergraduate degree in pharmacy from a UK university or overseas equivalent, at a minimum of honours level and one years post-registration experience OR an integrated masters degree in pharmacy (MPharm) and professional registration OR in consultation with the course leader.

English Language Requirements

All international students, for whom English is not their first language, must provide evidence of linguistic ability by gaining either IELTS 6.5 (Minimum of 5.5 in any one element) or its equivalent in TOEFL prior to receiving an unconditional offer of a place on the course.

Please note, UKVI are currently not accepting TOEFL as proof of English Language for Full Time International Student Visas.

Please be aware that any applications made too close to the closing date, requiring an IELTS test may result in deferment of the offer until the following academic year (Starting date January)


Applicants from Malta

English is taught as a first language in Malta and applicants from Malta are required to meet, and evidence, the following criteria:

  • must have obtained their Pharmacy Undergraduate degree at Masters level from the University of Malta, which is a provider of an undergraduate Pharmacy degree at masters level which is delivered and assessed in English.
  • must have at least one year experience of working as a qualified Pharmacist.

Any Maltese applicant failing to meet these criteria will be subject to the standard University English language requirements.


International Students

International students seeking an English language waiver are required to meet, and evidence, the following criteria:

(i) Must have obtained their Pharmacy Undergraduate degree at Masters (MPharm) level from a UK University

OR

(ii) Must have obtained their Pharmacy Undergraduate degree at BSc (Hons) level from an international University equivalent to a UK BSc (Hons) degree recognised by UK NARIC and must be registered with the General Pharmaceutical Council (GPhC) and have worked in the UK

Any international applicants who do not meet these criteria will be subject to the standard University English language requirements.

5. Student Funding

The School of Pharmacy & Life Sciences is pleased to offer a number of merit scholarships to outstanding students who wish to study at the School starting in January 2015.

Find out more about Merit Scholarships

In addition, the University offers a 15% Alumni discount for all previous RGU graduates.

For further information and finance options, see student finance pages.

6. Course Fees

For Academic Year 2014/2015

UK/EU Students

  • £2,550 PgCert and PgDip (each) Scottish students
  • £2,815 PgCert and PgDip (each) RUK and EU students
  • £1,700 MSc dissertation stage Scottish students
  • £1,870 MSc dissertation stage RUK and EU students

International Students

  • £3,340 PgCert
  • £3,450 PgDip
  • £2,300 MSc dissertation stage

For Academic Year 2013/2014

UK/EU Students

  • £2,425 PgCert and PgDip (each) Scottish students
  • £2,690 PgCert and PgDip (each) RUK and EU students
  • £1,690 MSc dissertation stage Scottish students
  • £1,870 MSc dissertation stage RUK and EU students

International Students

  • £3,340 PgCert
  • £3,340 PgDip
  • £2,220 MSc dissertation stage

For Academic Year 2012/2013

UK/EU Students

  • £2,323 PgCert
  • £2,323 PgDip
  • £1,614 MSc Project stage

International Students

  • £3,223 PgCert
  • £3,223 PgDip
  • £2,135 MSc Project stage

For Academic Year 2011/2012

UK/EU Students

  • £1,575 MSc Project Stage
  • £2,265 PgCert
  • £2,265 PgDip

International Students

  • £3,140 PgCert
  • £3,140 PgDip
  • £2,075 MSc Project Stage

All course fees are reviewed annually and subject to change. Published fees apply to the course's mode of delivery.

For further information see Student Finance pages

 

7. How to apply

For further information on this course please email pharmdip@rgu.ac.uk

Applications for admission to postgraduate taught courses can be made via Apply Online. Closing date for applications for commencing the course in January 2015 is 12 January 2015. Apply at www.rgu.ac.uk/applyonline.

8. Prospects

This course has been designed in collaboration with employers in both primary and secondary care ensuring that the course is kept up to date and in line with current practice and the demands of the workplace. The multi-disciplinary nature of the course enhances its appeal to employers and as a result, career prospects remain buoyant in both hospital and community practice.

Employers will benefit from their staff completing this course since it is designed to enable practitioners to develop in the key competency areas for clinical practice. This will mean that staff are able to make valuable contributions to the provision of clinical pharmacy services through the application of aspects of their learning in areas such as direct patient care, personal, problem solving and management and organisation.

9. Meet your course leader and the Team

Anita Weidmann

Anita is a registered pharmacist with the General Pharmaceutical Council (GPhC) and a member of the Royal Pharmaceutical Society (RPSGB) and Canadian Pharmacists Association (CPhA).

She graduated from the Robert Gordon University in 2001 with an MPharm (Hons) and in 2008 with a Ph.D in Molecular Biology. Anita joined RGU after working in Hospital Pharmacy in Cambridge, UK and Ottawa, Canada as well as working in community Pharmacy in the UK. Since she has a varied background encompassing both science and practice Anita’s research interests include both scientific and pharmacy practice applications of the treatment of diabetes and obesity.

Dr Anita Weidmann's Full Staff Profile

10. Additional information

Accreditation of Prior Learning (APL)

The University recognises two types of prior learning - certified (APCL) and experimental (APEL). This may afford the applicant advanced entry or exemption of certain modules

The following applicants may be eligible for APL:

  • Applicants who have already completed part of a postgraduate degree in a professional pharmacy discipline
  • Applicants who have completed the Scottish Hospital Vocational Training Scheme (VTS) Stage 2.
  • Applicants with sufficient work based practice and professional development courses

APL is permissible for up to 50% of the total degree credits and must be approved by the Course/Programme Managment Team as part of the student application process.

A separate APCL form and evidence of/or part of a successfully completed postgraduate degree in a professional pharmacy discipline must be submitted together with the online application form.

Course Frequently asked questions (FAQs)

Pharmacist Independent Prescribing

Other Course FAQs

Back to distance and flexible learning

Pharmacist Independent Prescribing

As part of the PgDip stage you may elect to take the Pharmacist Independent Prescribing module.

Can I elect to do the Independent prescribing module if I am not registered with the GPhC?

In order to be eligible to elect the Pharmacist Independent Prescribing course you will have to be registered with either the General Pharmaceutical Council (GPhC) or the Pharmaceutical Society of Northern Ireland (PSNI). If you work as a Pharmacist in a different country and are not registered with either organisation above you will not be eligible to elect this module.


What are the requirements to elect the Pharmacist Independent Prescribing module at the PgDip stage?

  1. You must have a current registration with GPhC or PSNI as a practising pharmacist in the UK or Northern Ireland.
  2. Have at least two years appropriate patient orientated experience following your pre-registration year. (NB: This is counted from the time the module starts in September of each year NOT the start of the course).
  3. You must have identified an area of clinical practice and the need in which to develop your prescribing skills.
  4. Have up-to-date clinical, pharmacological and pharmaceutical knowledge relevant to your intended area of prescribing practice.
  5. Demonstrate how you reflect on your own performance and take responsibility for your own CPD
  6. Demonstrate how you will develop your own networks for support, reflection and learning.
  7. You must have a Designated Medical Practitioner who has agreed to supervise the period of learning in practice.

He/She must be able to demonstrate 3 years medical responsibility for a group of patients in the relevant field of practice; they are a GP, specialist registrar, clinical assistant or a consultant within an NHS Trust or other NHS employer; has experience or training in teaching and/or supervision in practice.


Is the Pharmacist Independent Prescribing Module accredited by the GPhC?

Yes, The Pharmacist Independent Prescribing module is fully accredited by the GPhC and allows you to practice as a Pharmacist Independent prescriber after its completion. After ratification of your successful completion by the assessment board you can apply to the GPhC for annotation of your qualification to the register.  

Frequently asked questions


When does the course start and how long does it take to complete?

The course starts in January of each year.

PgCert: Jan – August

PgDip:  September– June

MSc: July – April/September


Can I stop at any stage?

Yes you can stop after any of the three stage PgCert, PgDip or MSc.

There is no requirement for you to continue on to the end of the MSc.


Do we get a study break?

While there is no extensive break as you would expect from an undergraduate or taught degree you will have certain breaks between modules. The study calendar for the full course is available to you from the start in January and should help you plan your holidays etc.


What happens if I need to take some time out?

The distance learning course tries to be as flexible as possible because we appreciate that you have a full time job as well as other family and personal commitments. If you need extra time for an assessment you can apply for an extension (up to 4 weeks). If for some reason you will need to take a longer leave of absence you can apply for a suspension of studies. You may suspend for up to 1year but please note that you can only suspend once during the duration of the course. When you return after a period of suspension you will join the next available cohort starting at the stage you are at.


How much does it cost?

A detailed breakdown of the fees by stage are available on the course website: http://www.rgu.ac.uk/health-professions/study-options/part-time-learning/clinical-pharmacy-practice. Just click on the tab entitled “course fees”.


Do I have to pay the course fees all in one go?

No, you will be charged by stage (i.e. PgCert, PgDip and MSc) and for each stage student finance has many different payment options available for you from lump sums, instalments and payment plans. The student finance department will actively work with you to find a payment option that works best for you.


Do I need to attend any classes at RGU in Aberdeen?

No there is no need for you to attend any classes at RGU in Aberdeen*. We recognise that it is often difficult to get time away from work and also adds to the cost of the course, so the course is entirely taught and assessed by distance learning.

 *NB: The only exception to this is a one week residential period if you elect the Pharmacist Independent Prescribing module. This will take place in January of each year.


My IELTS exam is not until the middle of January, can I still apply?

Yes of course you may still apply but you won’t be able to start until you have completed the IELTS test and have successfully fulfilled the entry qualifications. This may lead to a delay in your course start. It is your responsibility to make up the lost time. We recommend that students who do their IELTS test after January of each year should defer entry to the course until January the following year as you would miss too much of the course.

Do I need to work as a Pharmacist in order to be accepted onto the course?

There is no direct requirement for you to be working in a patient facing role when you apply for the course. However the course is designed to improve you as a practitioner and both the PgCert and PgDip stage work very much alongside your own professional practice. You will be required to bring in your own cases from your practice and reflect on your current practice. So while not essential it helps you to be successful and to get the most out of your investment in the course.

You will need to be practicing in order to complete the MSc stage as the research project is carried out within your own work environment and we recommend that you have a workplace mentor for this stage of the qualification.


I have been out of work for a while and would like to do the course to help me get back into the job. Is this appropriate?

If you haven’t worked for a while this course is not the most appropriate one to get you back into the work environment as it is designed to run alongside your current practice in order to develop you as a practitioner.

If you would like to return to work after a period of absence from the profession then have a look at the help provided by the Royal Pharmaceutical Society.


I work in Community Pharmacy is this course still relevant for me?

Absolutely, the course is designed to be relevant to all Pharmacists irrespective of their area of practice or speciality. We offer a range of elective modules so everybody can tailor it more specifically to their individual development need.


Why are there so many elective options within the PgDip and MSc stage of the course?

Pharmacy is a very diverse profession and we want to ensure that you get the most relevant education for your own professional development.


How does the mapping of the course against the Foundation and Advanced Pharmacy Framework benefit my practice?

The Royal Pharmaceutical Society of Great Britain has published both the Foundation and Advanced Pharmacy Framework to help support the development of each and every Pharmacist irrespective of their area of practice. As the course is fully mapped against both Frameworks it provides you with a distinct career and development progression. This will not only help to demonstrate to your employer how you have developed and what you have achieved but also allows you to identify areas of practice you may want to gain more experience in or develop into.

Once you reach the advanced stages of practice you may wish to use some of the evidence you collect as part of your submission to gain professional credentialing by the RPS Faculty. Please note completion of this course or the Advanced Pharmacy Practice Module does not mean a successful submission for credentialing by the RPS Faculty but it will prepare you for your journey as an advanced practitioner.


Is the qualification accredited and recognised around the world?

While there is no need for the MSc in Clinical Pharmacy Practice accredited by the General Pharmaceutical Council*, the course is fully validated by both the University and a national panel of experts and is subject to rigorous quality assurance procedures on a continuous basis. The final award of PgCert, PgDip and MSc is fully recognised around the world.

*NB: The Pharmacist Independent Prescribing module is fully accredited by the GPhC and allows you to practice as a Pharmacist Independent prescriber after its completion. After ratification of your successful completion by the assessment board you can apply to the GPhC for annotation of the qualification to the register.  


Are there any placement options available during this course?

As this is a distance learning course there are no placement options available during the course.


How is the course assessed?

The course uses a range of different assessments. These take the form of case studies, forum postings/ discussions, reflective essays/ worksheets, portfolios of evidence, oral presentations and research reports (*OSCE – Pharmacist Independent Prescribing module only)

All assessments are done by electronic submission.


What from do the teaching materials take?

Again this is varied and depends on the topic you are studying. All our materials are developed by specialist pharmacists who are subject experts in their field and practice both within the UK and internationally. During the respective topic you will have access to these experts for advice and guidance through forum postings and discussions. All materials are reviewed yearly to ensure we provide you with the most up to date knowledge and evidence based materials.

There is no requirement for you to buy any books or additional materials.


Can I elect to do the Independent prescribing module if I am not registered with the GPhC?

In order to be eligible to elect the Pharmacist Independent Prescribing course you will have to be registered with either the General Pharmaceutical Council (GPhC) or the Pharmaceutical Society of Northern Ireland (PSNI). If you work as a Pharmacist in a different country and are not registered with either organisation above you will not be eligible to elect this module.

 
What are the requirements to elect the Pharmacist Independent Prescribing module at the PgDip stage?

  1. You must have a current registration with GPhC or PSNI as a practising pharmacist in the UK or Northern Ireland.
  2. Have at least two years appropriate patient orientated experience following your pre-registration year. (NB: This is counted from the time the module starts in September of each year NOT the start of the course).
  3. You must have identified an area of clinical practice and the need in which to develop your prescribing skills.
  4. Have up-to-date clinical, pharmacological and pharmaceutical knowledge relevant to your intended area of prescribing practice.
  5. Demonstrate how you reflect on your own performance and take responsibility for your own CPD
  6. Demonstrate how you will develop your own networks for support, reflection and learning.
  7. You must have a Designated Medical Practitioner who has agreed to supervise the period of learning in practice.

He/She must be able to demonstrate 3 years medical responsibility for a group of patients in the relevant field of practice; they are a GP, specialist registrar, clinical assistant or a consultant within an NHS Trust or other NHS employer; has experience or training in teaching and/or supervision in practice.


Is the Pharmacist Independent Prescribing Module accredited by the GPhC?

Yes, The Pharmacist Independent Prescribing module is fully accredited by the GPhC and allows you to practice as a Pharmacist Independent prescriber after its completion. After ratification of your successful completion by the assessment board you can apply to the GPhC for annotation of your qualification to the register.  

If you have any additional questions please contact the Postgraduate Programmes Leader Dr. Anita Weidmann directly (a.e.weidmann@rgu.ac.uk)

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Award
PgDip/MSc
Start date
January
Course length
PgDip 60 weeks of study MSc 90 weeks of study
Mode of Attendance
Online Distance Learning, Part-time
Academic school
School of Pharmacy & Life Sciences
More information:
Dr Anita Weidmann Senior Lecturer
+44 (0) 1224 262547
  1. Ruth Theuma - Clinical Pharmacy Graduate

    Ruth Theuma, Clinical Pharmacy MSc graduate.

    Ruth Theuma, Clinical Pharmacy MSc graduate from Malta tells why she enjoyed her course at Robert Gordon University and how it has helped her career.

    Ruth Theuma Clinical Pharmacy Course PgDip/MSc

Postgraduate Guide


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