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Molecular Pathology of Cancer - Blended Learning

Molecular Pathology (MP) is a rapidly growing discipline in 21st century medicine. It integrates genomics and bioinformatics with modern pathology to underpin molecular diagnostics, theranostics and clinical trials delivery within the academic, health services and industry sectors in an era of precision medicine.

This MSc is an exciting, innovative blended and learning programme aimed to enhance the participant’s theoretical knowledge and practical skills in Molecular Pathology. It will to empower successful candidates to pursue a career in academia, healthcare or industry. The Molecular Pathology MSc has a strong focus on innovation and entrepreneurship.

The programmes of education with Molecular Pathology at QUB have been developed with a number of options in order to provide maximum flexibility of training. PgCert Molecular Pathology of Cancer candidates take the three modules delivered between September and January. PgDip candidates can take the Diploma in Molecular Pathology of Cancer and if successful can chose to progress to Masters level instead of graduating with the award. MSc candidates can take the Certificate/Diploma/MSc in Molecular Pathology of Cancer, which will provide a solid foundation for those wishing to study Molecular Pathology at PhD level. The full-time MSc is also available as an intercalated degree for Medical and Dental students.

In additional to the Molecular Pathology programmes, the three modules which are offered by Distance Learning are available as a ‘stand-alone’ Certificate in Pathology Informatics and Business Application.

Entry requirements

Entrance requirements
Graduate
A 2.1 Honours degree or equivalent qualification acceptable to the University in a relevant biological subject is required. Evidence of equivalent professional qualifications (MBBS, BDS or BVSc) or experience will be considered on an individual basis.

Intercalating Applicants
Intercalating medical and dental students within QUB will also be considered if they have successfully completed the third year of their course at first attempt and achieved at least an upper second class honours standard. Intercalating applicants should also ensure they have permission to intercalate from either the Director for Medical Education or Dentistry as appropriate.

An external medical or dental student wishing to intercalate must be ranked in the top half of their year cohort to have their application considered. Applicants must have passed all assessments at first attempt for the year in which they are applying.

INTERNATIONAL STUDENTS
For information on international qualification equivalents, please check the specific information for your country.

English Language Requirements
Evidence of an IELTS* score of 6.5, with not less than 6.0 in any component, or an equivalent qualification acceptable to the University is required *taken within the last 2 years.

International students wishing to apply to Queen's University Belfast (and for whom English is not their first language), must be able to demonstrate their proficiency in English in order to benefit fully from their course of study or research. Non-EEA nationals must also satisfy UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) immigration requirements for English language for visa purposes.

For more information on English Language requirements for EEA and non-EEA nationals see: www.qub.ac.uk/EnglishLanguageReqs.

If you need to improve your English language skills before you enter this degree programme, INTO Queen's University Belfast offers a range of English language courses. These intensive and flexible courses are designed to improve your English ability for admission to this degree.
•Academic English: an intensive English language and study skills course for successful university study at degree level
•Pre-sessional English: a short intensive academic English course for students starting a degree programme at Queen's University Belfast and who need to improve their English.

Duration

1 year full-time.

Learning and Teaching
At Queen’s, we aim to deliver a high quality learning environment that embeds intellectual curiosity, innovation and best practice in learning, teaching and student support to enable student to achieve their full academic potential.

The MSc and Postgraduate Diploma programmes are delivered via blended learning. During the first semester, students are required to attend three modules in Belfast, the mode of teaching delivery is more traditional and is a combination of course lectures, seminars, practical experiences and self-directed learning. The classes vary in timing throughout the morning and afternoon. In the second semester, this includes the teaching for the Postgraduate Certificate in Pathology Informatics & Business Application,the teaching is delivered online as digital learning modules utilising a bespoke virtual learning environment. For those candidates undertaking the MSc a research project will be undertaken and potential project areas include, cancer immunology, liquid biopsies and cancer, digital molecular pathology, biobanking, molecular diagnostic, bioinformatics and molecular neuropathology.

Examples of the learning opportunities on this course include; lectures, practical experiences, using E-Learning technologies, Self-directed study all of which give experiences to enhance employability.

Careers or further progression

Career Prospects
Introduction
This MSc will produce high calibre candidates who can thrive in the academic, health care delivery or bio-industry sector.

Queen's postgraduates reap exceptional benefits. Unique initiatives, such as Degree Plus and Researcher Plus bolster our commitment to employability, while innovative leadership and executive programmes alongside sterling integration with business experts helps our students gain key leadership positions both nationally and internationally.

Further enquiries

School of Medicine, Dentistry and Biomedical Sciences
Postgraduate and Professional Development
Whitla Medical Building
97 Lisburn Road Belfast BT9 7BL
Tel: +44 (0) 28 9097 2615
Email: pgoffice.smdb@qub.ac.uk

Subjects taught

Course Structure
Introduction
Taught component - Formal teaching will extend over two semesters.

Semester 1
All candidates will undertake traditional ‘face to face’ teaching for the three modules in Semester 1. This will be timetabled teaching. Some of the teaching sessions within the modules also form aspects of formal teaching for other PG programmes, providing the students with the opportunity to interact with other Masters students from different disciplines, which we feel enhances the student experience. Collectively, the modules would be sufficient for a Certificate in Molecular Pathology

(1) Cancer Biology, Immunology and Genomics (15 CATs)

(2) Molecular Pathology – Diagnostics and Technologies (25 CATs)

(3) Translational Research (20 CATs)

Students are also introduced to basic processed to support bioinformatics but this is not formally assessed in semester 1

Semester 2
Candidates will complete three modules which will be available ‘online’ as digital learning modules. Successful completion of Semester 1 modules plus Semester 2 modules without the research dissertation would be sufficient for a Diploma in Molecular Pathology. Collectively, the modules in Semester 2 without the Semester 1 modules would be sufficient for a Certificate in Pathology Informatics and Business Application.

(1) Digital Pathology (20 CATs)

(2) Biostatistical Informatics (20 CATs)

(3) The Academic-Industry Intersect (20 CATs)

Molecular Pathology of Cancer Research Project
Students will be able to plan their research project and work on their literature review during semester 1; beginning the practical work for their research project in Semester 2, as they wish. Research projects will be available across a variety of subjects. Potential project areas for the MSc will include – Cancer Immunology; Application of liquid biopsies in Molecular Pathology; Digital Pathology; Biobanking; Molecular Diagnostics; Bioinformatics and Molecular Neuropathology. A number of projects will be put forward from the network of CRUK Accelerator Partners for those students with CRUK Accelerator bursaries who may wish to undertake their research as a placement at one of the partner sites.

This programme is delivered by blended learning and can be taken on a full-time or part-time basis.

Full-time option: Candidates are required to attend classes in Belfast for the first semester and the second semester modules are delivered on-line. The Research Project is completed over the Summer.

Part-time option: taken over a 3 year period. Year 1 would include attendance in Belfast for the first three modules which are taught as a block in the Autumn semester. The second three modules are delivered by Distance Learning in the second semester of Year 2 and the Research Project is completed in Year 3.

Comment

Molecular Pathology of Cancer highlights
Queen's Molecular Pathology programme is supported by Cancer Research UK.

Internationally Renowned Experts
•Queens University Belfast (QUB) has an international reputation for the application of Molecular Pathology in high quality translational research. An integrated Molecular Pathology research environment has been established within the QUB Centre for Cancer Research and Cell Biology (CCRCB) through the creation of the Northern Ireland Molecular Pathology Laboratory (NIMPL) and the Northern Ireland Biobank (NIB). This enhanced research infrastructure also hosts a regional NHS Molecular Diagnostics service for solid tumours. The MSc in Molecular Pathology of Cancer has a clear resonance with the Doctoral Training Programme in Precision Cancer Medicine in the Centre for Cancer Research and Cell Biology; it also complements the School of Medicine Dentistry and Biomedical Science’s MRes in Translational Medicine (with which it shares teaching) and the MSc in Bioinformatics and Computational Genomics.

Assessment method

Assessment is by a combination of oral presentations and written coursework. The research project is assessed as a written paper and an oral presentation of the key research findings.

Application date

Postgraduate Taught
Closing dates do apply for some of our courses, and details of these are available on our Course Finder. We advise you to apply as early as possible, particularly for those courses where there is a high demand for places. Early application is also important for international applicants to allow sufficient time to obtain a student entry visa.

How to Apply
Apply using our online Postgraduate Applications Portal go.qub.ac.uk/pgapply and follow the step-by-step instructions on how to apply. See application weblink below.

Enrolment and start dates

Entry year: 2018

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