BSc (Hons) Pharmaceutical Science (Including Foundation Year)

The foundation route is designed for students who do not meet the admissions criteria for the BSc (Hons) Pharmaceutical Science degree. You’ll start by completing a foundation year, which provides well structured support, allowing you to develop your scientific skills and knowledge.

The Pharmaceutical Science course has a strong basis in the chemical and biological sciences, and you’ll study subjects in the broad areas of fundamental chemistry, analytical chemistry and spectroscopy, biochemistry, and drug design, delivery and regulation. You’ll also gain an excellent knowledge of the industry and develop the skills that employers value most highly.

UCAS Code Study Mode
Duration Start Date Campus Campus Code
3WBH Full-time 4 Years September Glyntaff A
UCAS Code Study Mode
Duration Start Date Campus Campus Code
3WBH Full-time 4 Years September Glyntaff A

The first year provides you with well structured support, allowing you to develop your scientific skills and knowledge.

In the second year, you will study a variety of modules which will provide you with a strong grounding in chemistry that will prove invaluable during the rest of your degree and working life. To begin to understand the biological action of drugs and their impact, you will also be introduced to fundamental human biology and biochemistry. All of these modules involve practical work and you will gain hands-on experience using equipment in our state-of-the-art laboratories. You would also be taught mathematics to enable you to understand the relevance of mathematics and statistics in the field of chemical and pharmaceutical science.

The third year focuses on chemical synthesis, drug design, drug action and chemical analysis. In your fourth year you will continue to develop your knowledge and skills in chemical synthesis and analysis, quality control and quality assurance regulatory affairs as well as use industry standard instruments/ equipment.

Year One

  • Foundation Chemistry
  • Physical Science
  • Essentials of Science
  • Foundation Biology
  • Foundations of Mathematics
  • Foundation Statistics
  • Introduction to Anatomy and Physiology

Year Two

  • Organic Chemistry
  • Physical Chemistry
  • Fundamental Inorganic Chemistry
  • Key Skills for Chemical and Forensic Scientists
  • Mathematics Workshop for Chemical and Pharmaceutical Sciences
  • Microorganisms and the Dynamic Cell
  • Biological Chemistry

Year Three

  • Synthetic Organic Chemistry
  • Spectroscopy
  • Analytical Chemistry
  • Heterocyclic Chemistry and Intro to Drug Design
  • Bioinorganic Chemistry
  • Metabolism and Biochemistry

Year Four

  • Advanced Organic Chemistry
  • Advanced Analytical Chemistry
  • Professional Practice, Employability and Project for Pharmaceutical Science
  • Advanced Drug Design and an Introduction to Formulation Science
  • Quality Control and Management in the Pharmaceutical Industry
  • Clinical Biochemistry and Pharmacology


You will be taught by highly qualified chemists, some of which have years of experience of providing training to the pharmaceutical sector itself and teaching pharmaceutical science at HE level. The modules themselves will be delivered through a blend of traditional lectures, tutorials, workshops, and practical laboratory sessions complimented by the resources of our newly built facilities. Self-directed study is supported by Blackboard, our online learning resource.


You will be assessed using a range of techniques such as report writing, general coursework, oral presentations, on-line tests, and portfolios as well as exams.


Dr Rehana Karim, course leader

Entry criteria detail typical offers but USW considers all applications on an individual basis which means that we could make offers based on qualifications, personal profile and experience. Combinations of qualifications are acceptable and other qualifications not listed may also be acceptable.

Typical A-Level Offer

EE to include one A Level in a relevant Science subject but to exclude General Studies

Typical Welsh BACC Offer


Typical BTEC Offer

BTEC Extended Diploma Pass Pass Pass or BTEC Diploma Pass Pass in a relevant subject

Typical IB Offer

Pass IB Diploma or two IB Certficates at Higher level to include Science or Maths.

Typical Access to HE Offer

Pass Maths or Science Diploma with 60 credits overall to include 45 level 3 credits all Passes

Additional Requirements

GCSEs: The University normally requires a minimum 3 GCSEs including Mathematics and English at Grade C or above, or their equivalent but consideration is given to individual circumstances

International Entry Requirements

We also welcome international applications with equivalent qualifications. Please visit the country specific pages on our international website for exact details.

English Requirements

In general, international applicants will need to have achieved an overall IELTS grade of 6.0 with a minimum score of 5.5 in each component.

However, if you have previously studied through the medium of English IELTS might not be required, but please visit the country specific page on our international website for exact details. If your country is not featured please contact us.

All fees are per year. Once you have started your course, your fee will remain the same for each year of study.

August 2017 - July 2018 Fees

  • Full-time UK and EU:  £9000 
  • Full-time International:  £11900 

August 2018 - July 2019 Fees

  • Full-time UK and EU: TBC
  • Full-time International: TBC

Additional Costs

Students have access to a wide range of resources including textbooks, publications, and computers in the University’s library and via online resources. In most cases they are more than sufficient to complete a course of study. Where there are additional costs, either obligatory or optional, these are detailed below. Of course students may choose to purchase their own additional personal resources/tools over and above those listed to support their studies at their own expense. All stationery and printing costs are at a student’s own expense.

UK and EU students

Apply via UCAS if you are a UK/EU residing applicant, applying for year 1 of a full-time undergraduate degree, Foundation Year, Foundation Degree or HND and you have not applied through UCAS before. If you are applying to study part-time, to top up your Foundation Degree or HND, or to transfer to USW from another institution, please apply directly

International students

Apply directly to the University if you live outside the UK/EU

Apply now 

Admissions statement

This course provides you with the theoretical knowledge and practical skills that will make you highly marketable to employers in the pharmaceutical sector. Being one of the largest employers of scientists in the UK, jobs for scientists within the sector are quite varied. While approx. 48% are employed just in research and development, scientists may also find themselves in roles that may range from a purely lab-based position, to marketing, patent filing, quality assurance/regulation, or even as a sales representative.

Our Careers and Employability Service

As a USW student, you will have access to advice from the Careers and Employability Service throughout your studies and after you graduate.

This includes: one-to-one appointments from faculty based Career Advisers, in person, over the phone or even on Skype and through email via the "Ask a Question" service. We also have extensive online resources for help with considering your career options and presenting yourself well to employers. Resources include psychometric tests, career assessments, a CV builder, interview simulator and application help. Our employer database has over 2,000 registered employers targeting USW students, you can receive weekly email alerts for jobs.

Our Careers service has dedicated teams: A central work experience team to help you find relevant placements; an employability development team which includes an employability programme called Grad Edge; and an Enterprise team focused on new business ideas and entrepreneurship.