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Master of Science (MSc) in Pharmacology

Overview

A Master of Science in Pharmacology enables you to gain employment as a research assistant or allows you to be eligible for entry into the doctoral programme.

It consists of a full year of research which will develop your skills in:

  • Critical thinking
  • Experimental design
  • Experimental techniques
  • Statistical analysis 
  • Interpreting data
  • Oral and written communication of results

The transferable skills you gain from this degree has enabled past Pharmacology Master’s students to obtain employment with the NZ National Poison Centre and as a drug representative for pharmaceutical companies. Others have used it for graduate entry into medicine or to continue onto a PhD.

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Information for new applicants and programme requirements

You have two options for obtaining a MSc.

MSc by papers and thesis

If you have a Bachelor’s degree (BSc), then you may do a MSc by paper and thesis which takes a minimum of two years full-time study. Due to the challenging nature of this degree, the grade average is set at B+ (75–79%) for all pharmacology papers in your BSc.
In your first year of your MSc you must do:

  • PHAL 421 General Pharmacology and Toxicology (20 points: first semester)
  • PHAL 495 Masters Thesis Preparation (40 points: full year)

and three of the following:

  • PHAL 423 Neuropharmacology (20 points: full year)
  • PHAL 426 Clinical Pharmacology (20 points: full year)
  • PHAL 427 Special Topic: Cancer Research (20 points: second semester)
  • PHAL 428 Current Research Literature in Toxicology (20 points: full year)
  • PHAL 430 Advanced Topics in Pharmacology and Toxicology (20 points: each semester)
  • PHAL 431 Special Project (20 points: each semester)

The research project (PHAL5) is carried out in the second year in one of the research laboratories. To enter the second year, you must have demonstrated satisfactory progress in your first year. This is defined as a B+ or above average in all of your 4th year papers as well as a B+ or above in PHAL495.

A thesis is submitted for external examination.  

MSc by thesis only

If you have a BSc with Honours then you may do a MSc by thesis only. Due to the challenging nature of this degree, the grade average is set at B+ (75-79%) for all pharmacology papers in your BSc (Hons). This degree consists of a research project carried out in one of the research laboratories. A thesis is submitted for external examination.

The application form for either the MSc by papers and thesis or MSc by thesis alone should be submitted via eVision

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Regulation for the Degree of Master of Science (MSc)

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Scholarships for Master of Science in Pharmacology

The University of Otago offers scholarships during the research component of the MSc. Note that pre-research papers are not covered by these scholarships. The following scholarships are offered:

There are no closing dates for these scholarships.

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Contact details

For further information about post-graduate study at the Pharmacology and Toxicology Department, please contact us directly:

Email pharmacology@otago.ac.nz

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Useful links

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