MSc (Pharmaceutical Sciences & Technology) Programme

From 2011 to 2015, the government committed $16 billion to develop Singapore into a global research and development hub, through the Research, Innovation and Enterprise (RIE) 2015 Plan. To maintain the momentum, additional $19 billion have been invested from 2016 to 2020 in the RIE2020 plan. Advanced manufacturing and engineering, as well as health and biomedical sciences are among the 4 strategic domains.

 

In 2015, the manufacturing sector contribute 20% to the total Singapore GDP, out of which pharmaceutical and biological output account for more than 6%. During the past 15 years, the pharmaceutical and biological industry output have grown from 5 to 17 billion dollars and became a significant industrial sector in Singapore.

 

Excellent infrastructures, such as the Tuas Biomedical Park, attracted major biopharmaceutical companies to Singapore. Abbott, GlaxoSmithKline, Lonza, MSD, Novartis, Pfizer and Sanofi-Aventis, have already established their manufacturing sites locally. These companies manufacture a wide range of pharmaceutical, biological and nutritional products. Particularly, biologics manufacturing has made major progress, with Baxter, Lonza, GlaxoSmithKline and Roche announcing up to US$2 billion investment.

 

It has been shown that a constant and strong demand for skilled workforce in biopharmaceutical industry, in the areas of formulation, quality assurance, process development and regulatory affairs, etc. The National University of Singapore’s Master of Science in Pharmaceutical Sciences & Technology program aims to address this gap in manpower training. To make our student relevant in the future pharmaceutical and biological industry, we have adopted a broad-based approach in our curriculum, to encompass the various stages of biopharmaceutical development.

 

Prospective students who are already working or aspiring to enter the Biopharmaceutical industry are invited to apply for this program. Currently, the program is only available in part-time mode and students are allowed to complete the course in up to 4 years. Upon graduation, the graduates are capable of contributing in various aspects of biopharmaceutical industry, ranging from research, manufacturing, processing, formulation, regulatory compliance, quality assurance and product management.

To be admitted into the MSc (PST) part-time programme, candidates must be holders of at least a 2nd Class Lower Honours classification in one of the following degrees, or their equivalent:

 

  • Bachelor of Science (Honours) in Chemistry, OR
  • Bachelor of Science (Honours) in Life Sciences, OR
  • Bachelor of Applied Science (Honours) in Food Science & Technology, OR
  • Bachelor of Applied Science (Honours) in Applied Chemistry (Drug Option), OR
  • Bachelor of Science in Pharmacy (Honours), OR
  • Bachelor of Engineering (Chemical Engineering) (Honours)

 

Special Criteria for Admission:

  1. Candidates, who do not have Honours classification in the degree pre-requisites as stipulated above, may apply for admission with GRE results. Candidates, who hold equivalent degrees from overseas universities, may apply for admission with GRE and TOEFL results. Such candidates, if found to be suitable, would be considered on a case-by-case basis.
  2. Candidates who have not read and passed the following 4 essential Pharmacy modules, namely PR1102, PR2101, PR3102 and PR4106 or their equivalents, will have to read and obtain a good pass for the bridging module PR3301 Pharmaceutical Dosage Forms prior to admission.
  • PR1102 Physical Pharmacy
  • PR2101 Dosage Form Design I
  • PR3102 Dosage Form Design II
  • PR4106 Dosage Form Design III

For application, please apply online via http://www.science.nus.edu.sg/graduate-studies/coursework-overview/application-information

 

Closing date for August (Semester 1) intake : 15 March of the same year

Closing date for January (Semester 2) intake : 15 September of the previous year

 

Important note:

The University has not engaged any external agencies to undertake graduate student recruitment on its behalf. Candidates interested in our graduate programmes are advised to apply directly to the University and not through any agents. Candidates who apply through agents will not have any added advantage in gaining admission.

Candidates admitted into the Master degree program must read and pass a total of 10 modules (40 MC), comprising 6 essential modules and 4 elective modules:

 

6 Essential Modules (24 MC)

  • PR5301 Food and Drug Laws
  • PR5302 Regulation of Drug Development
  • PR5303 Good Regulatory Practices
  • PR5213 Pharmaceutical Process Validation
  • PR5217 Formulation Science
  • PR5218 Practical In Product Development – Lab rotation
    (PR5217 Formulation Science is a pre-requisite module for PR5218; module quota applies, registration for module is by invitation only)

 

4 Elective Modules (To be chosen from any of the following; 16 MC)

  • PR5211 Pharmaceutical Analysis IV
  • PR5212 Advanced Topics in Medicinal Chemistry
  • PR5214 Advances in Tablet Technology
    Pre-requisites: PR5217 Formulation Science
  • PR5216 Advances in Drug Delivery
  • PR5219 Product Quality Management
  • PR5220 Bioprocess Technology
  • PR5221 Molecular Targets in Drug Discovery
  • PR5222 Drug Metabolism

 

Click here for the module descriptions.

 

As the programme progresses, the Department will introduce new modules to suit the changing needs of the pharmaceutical industry.

Fees payable shall be self-financing. Employers of candidates may provide financial support.

 

Tuition Fees (S$ per annum)
Singapore Citizen, Permanent Resident, International Student
Bridging Module 1500
MSc (PST) Modules 3,000 per module

*AY – Academic Year which consists of August and January intakes.

 

Mandatory Miscellaneous Fees:
Details on Mandatory Miscellaneous Fees can be found at this link: http://www.nus.edu.sg/registrar/education-at-nus/graduate-education/fees.html#MiscellaneousStudentFees

 

All fees are payable every semester, unless specified otherwise.

All fees indicated above are inclusive of Goods and Services Tax with effect from January 2004. The fees indicated above are subject to change at any time.

 

Fees can be paid by

  1. GIRO
  2. Nets – only mode accepted at Student Centre (max SGD $2000.00 per day)
  3. Cheque or bank draft
  4. Internet banking
  5. Credit/Debit card – via Student Center in myISIS
  6. Cash only – payment at Singpost Post Offices
  7. Telegraphic transfer

I do not have the equivalent degrees stated in the admission requirements, but I have some years of working experience in the pharmaceutical industry. Am I eligible to apply for the programme?

Ans: Interested applicants with relevant working experience may apply for the programme, even though they may not have the equivalent degrees. The Department welcome applicants, who are enthusiastic to upgrade themselves in the pharmaceutical field, and the admission committee will review the suitability of each application based on their background and merits for admission. Applicants without the equivalent degrees will have to take the bridging module, PR3301 Pharmaceutical Dosage Forms, before commencing on the Masters programme.

 

I do not have the required honours degree and I would need to take the Graduate Records Examination (GRE) test. When I went to the GRE website (www.ets.org/gre), I saw that it has option for GRE General Test and GRE Subject Test. May I know which test should I register for?

Ans: You should register for the GRE General Test. A satisfactory GRE score will be necessary to grant admission into the Masters programme.

Verbal: 500 (153)
Quantitative: 700 (155)
Analytical Writing: 3.5

Effective 1 Aug 2011, there are updates to the GRE scoring system. For more information please visit: http://www.ets.org/gre/institutions

 

Is there any way for me to get exemption from the GRE test, eg. via an admission interview, before consideration for admission to the Masters programme?

Ans: Unfortunately, no exemption from the GRE test can be granted. Note that GRE scores are only valid for 2.5 years. GRE scores should accompany each application for applicants who do not meet required honours degree.

 

What is the cancellation policy for this Masters programme?

Ans: Upon submission of your application forms and fees, you will be issued an acknowledgement via email. You may cancel the application after the acknowledgement of receipt, however, the application fee will not be returned to the applicant.

 

What will be the Continuing Professional Education (CPE) accreditation for this course? Will CPE points be given by modules taken or by semester?

Ans: CPE accreditation for this programme will follow the guidelines stipulated by the Singapore Pharmacy Council (SPC). You may contact SPC (http://www.spc.gov.sg/html/SPB_Home.html) directly for more details.

 

It is mentioned that either original scrolls/transcripts should be provided for application. May I know will the original documents be returned to the applicants?

Ans: Supporting documents, originals or photocopies (which have been certified true copies), submitted for application will not be returned to applicants.

 

Certified True Copies of scrolls/transcripts have to be submitted in place of originals. May I know whom should I approach to certify the photocopies?

Ans: NUS graduates will have to approach the Student Service Centre (http://www.nus.edu.sg/osa/ssc/) to certify their documents. For foreign graduates, if you wish to submit your transcript together with your application form, the offical transcript must be enclosed in a SEALED envelope with its flap bearing the security seal of the university and the signature of the Registrar or his representative. You are responsible for requesting your transcript from the university concerned. Please use the enclosed Transcript Request Form within the Application Forms for this purpose. If you have attended more than one university, you should make photocopies of the Transcript Request Form as required.

 

How many intakes per year are there for this Masters programme?

Ans: There are 2 intakes per year in January and August. Application deadline for January intake is 15 September of the previous year; for August intake, the application deadline is 15 March of the same year.

 

Upon graduating from this Masters programme, can I be a registered pharmacist with the Singapore Pharmacy Board (SPB)?

Ans: No, the objective of this Masters programme is not to train registered pharmacists.

 

When do I need to submit a TOEFL (Test Of English as a Foreign Language) score?

Ans: If English Language is not applicant’s native language or the medium of instruction for undergraduate degree programme, applicants will have to submit the TOEFL scores. Alternatively, applicants may also submit IELTS (International English Language Testing System) scores as it is equivalent to TOEFL scores. Note that TOEFL and/or IELTS scores are only valid for 2.5 years. The minimum TOEFL score is 580 (Paper-based Test); 260 (Computer – based Test) and 85 (Internet-based Test). The minimum IELTS score is 6.

 

I graduated from NUS with a Bachelor’s Degree. Do I need to submit originals/photocopies of the scrolls/transcripts for application? Can the Department refer to my information internally?

Ans: Applicants, who are alumni of NUS, will still be required to submit the required supporting documents just like other applicants.