Universitat de Barcelona

Drug Research, Development and Control

Introduction

This master's degree provides advanced, specialized, multidisciplinary training and equips students with the tools needed to begin research in the area of drug development and control. On completion of the course, students will be equipped to work in research centres and companies in the pharmaceutical sector and related industries.
The master's degree in Drug Research, Development and Control is offered by the Faculty of Pharmacy within the framework of the European Higher Education Area. The course is interdisciplinary and spans more than one faculty: eight departments in two UB faculties (Pharmacy and Food Sciences and Medicine and Health Sciences) take part in the teaching.
Today, highly qualified professionals are needed to meet the new challenges in business and research areas of the pharmaceutical sector. This master's degree is an ideal platform for acquiring advanced knowledge of the stages of drug development. One of the main challenges in the pharmaceutical industry is the research and development of new active principles and new drug formulations with high added value. In this context, drug analysis and control is an essential activity to ensure the safety and efficacy of pharmaceutical products. Consequently, the aim of the master's degree is to provide advanced, specialized, multidisciplinary training to equip students with the tools needed to begin research in the area of drug development and control. On completion, students will be able to work in research centres and companies in the pharmaceutical sector and related industries.
The master's degree is drawn from the doctoral programme of the same name and has received a quality award from the Ministry of Education (MCD-2006-00525). It provides the training required for admission to the doctoral programme Drug Research, Development and Control (which received the excellence award MEE2011-0420 for 2011-2013) or to other doctoral programmes in related areas.

Since its introduction, this master's degree has attracted graduates from Spanish regions and from other EU and non-EU countries. Clearly, one reason for the appeal of the degree is the reputation of the teaching staff, who belong to various consolidated research groups recognized by the Regional Government of Catalonia. The lecturers have extensive teaching experience and most are members of UB teaching innovation groups. They are all leaders in research. Prestigious professionals from the industrial sector, as well as national and international researchers of recognized merit, also contribute to teaching the degree. Their involvement contributes to the interdisciplinary nature of the master's degree and ensures excellence in teaching. As a result, the course has received various awards, both in its initial stage as a doctoral programme and subsequently as a master's degree. These include the SPDE grant from the AGAUR for doctoral programmes with business participation (2005-2006 academic year), three teaching research projects (REDICE) 2006 (A0601-08), 2010 (1002-15) and 2012 (12-2064-01), and various teaching innovation projects (PID 2010, 2012, 2020). All of the above has helped to improve the quality of the master's degree, making it one of the most prestigious in the pharmaceutical sector.

Learning objectives

  • Acquire solid, multidisciplinary training in theory and methodology in the areas of drug research, development and control so that quality research can be carried out in all stages of drug development, and specifically research related to the development of new pharmaceutical formulations.
  • Display a capacity for analysis and synthesis.
  • Learn to work in interdisciplinary and multicultural teams.
  • Work creatively to achieve quality research that enables the development, leadership and management of research projects in the pharmaceutical field.
  • Gain the cognitive skills needed for inductive reasoning, develop the critical and reflective ability to solve problems in the professional arena, and lead and manage teams in the main areas of the pharmaceutical industry.

Basic Information

Number of ECTS credits awarded:
 60
Language(s) of instruction:
 Catalan (10%), Spanish (85%) and English (5%).
Number of places available:
 40
Approximate price:
 27,67 euros per credit ( 82 euros for students who are not EU nationals and do not currently reside in Spain). Fees for the academic year 2021-2022
Faculty or school:
  Faculty of Pharmacy and Food Science
Master's degree course homepage:
  Master's degree course homepage

Recommended applicant profile

The preferred degrees for access to the programme (pre-EHEA bachelor's degrees and diplomas, and new EHEA bachelor's degrees) are pharmacy, chemistry, biochemistry, food science and technology, biology, medicine, biotechnology, veterinary science, environmental sciences, chemical engineering and agricultural engineering. Other equivalent or related degrees from international universities will also be considered. For all other qualifications, admission to the course will depend on the suitability of the candidate's previous studies and their academic transcript, according to the criteria of the master's degree Admission Committee.
All candidates must have English and Spanish language skills at level B1 in the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages, or a recognized equivalent. Official certification must be presented at the time of enrolment. If candidates do not have official certification, the Academic Committee may test their language level to ensure that they can complete the degree successfully.

Admission requirements

In accordance with Article 16 of Royal Decree 1393/29 October 2007, students must hold one of the following qualifications to access university master's degree courses:
  • An official Spanish degree.
  • A degree issued by a higher education institution within the European Higher Education Area framework that authorizes the holder to access university master's degree courses in the country of issue.
  • A qualification from outside the framework of the European Higher Education Area. In this case, the qualification should be recognized as equivalent to an official Spanish degree. If it is not recognized, the University of Barcelona shall verify that it corresponds to a level of education that is equivalent to official Spanish degrees and that it authorizes the holder to access university master's degree courses in the country of issue. Admission shall not, in any case, imply that prior qualifications have been recognized as equivalent to a Spanish master's degree and does not confer recognition for any purposes other than that of admission to the master's degree course.

Specific requirements

From an educational perspective, candidates must have previous knowledge of pharmacy, pharmaceutical technology, biopharmacy, pharmacokinetics and human physiology to be admitted to the master's degree. If candidates cannot prove their knowledge (for example, through a pre-EHEA or EHEA bachelor's degree in pharmacy, another master's degree in this knowledge area or professional experience in the pharmaceutical sector or a related industry), they must complete specific bridging courses, which will be taught in September, prior to the start of the master's degree:
  • Introduction to Galenic Pharmacy
  • Introduction to Biopharmacy and Pharmacokinetics
  • General Principles of Human Physiology

Students who are required to complete bridging courses must enrol for one or more of the bridging subjects, as indicated by the Coordination Committee.

Skills and competences

Upon completion of the master's degree, students will be able to:
  • Use leadership skills, a capacity for initiative, entrepreneurial spirit and command of management techniques to lead activities in pharmaceutical companies, research projects or research groups.
  • Work as part of multidisciplinary teams and collaborate with other professionals.
  • Integrate advanced technological knowledge and improve the skills and abilities needed to work in an experimental laboratory in the field of drug R&D;
    plan and implement a research project to develop and control drugs of natural and synthetic origin, and apply the knowledge acquired to the development of new pharmaceutical products and to innovation.
  • Identify current therapeutic approaches to the treatment of various diseases and the main advances in the discovery and development of new drugs and new drug targets.
  • Demonstrate the skills and abilities to develop and formulate drugs and to design and plan new nanostructured, controlled drug delivery systems;
    apply advanced instrumental analysis techniques to drug research, development and control.
  • Demonstrate the skills and abilities to develop and validate new analytical methods and to apply them to the analysis and control of natural and synthetic drugs.

Pre-enrolment calendar

  • 15 February - 15 July 2021.


Notes:
  • Pre-enrolment fee: A pre-enrolment fee of 30,21 euros is charged. Students who apply to more than one master's degree must pay the fee for each pre-enrolment request. Pre-enrolment requests cannot be processed until this fee has been paid.Fees will only be refunded if the master's degree in question is suspended.
  • Reserved places: A maximum of 5% of the new places of the master's degree are reserved for students who meet the general and specific access requirements and accredit the recognition of a degree of disability equal to or greater than 33%.

Required documentation

  • Pre-enrolment application
  • Photocopy of degree certificate or equivalent qualification. In case of admission, foreign degrees that require so should be translated and authenticated through diplomatic channels before completing the enrolment.
  • Other specific documentation related to the selection criteria

Where to submit the documentation:
Secretary's Office for Students and Teaching Staff at the Faculty of Pharmacy.

Selection criteria

To be considered for the master's degree, all candidates must have pre-enrolled on line, provided proof of English and Spanish level B1 or equivalent, and submitted all of the required documents. The following will be taken into account:
  • Curriculum vitae (50%).
  • Academic transcript (40%).
  • Compatibility of previous studies (5%).
  • Statement of interest, outlining the candidate's reasons for applying (5%).

Once the Admissions Committee has evaluated the candidate's specific merits, it may ask the candidate to attend a personal interview to complete the application process.

Notification

The selection and admission of students is carried out by the master's degree Coordination Committee, which is comprised of the coordinator, a teaching staff representative from the departments that teach at least 20% of the master's degree, a student, and the head of the Secretary's Office for Students and Teaching Staff or his/her delegate.
The Committee will notify candidates of its decision by email, in June and September, depending on the pre-enrolment period. If a candidate disagrees with the Committee's decision, he/she can make a written request for a review. The letter should be sent to the Secretary's Office of the school or faculty no later than ten days after receiving email notification of the decision.

Enrolment

Closed Enrolment