MSci Medical Biochemistry

Course Overview

Medical Biochemistry is the study of how cells work at the molecular and sub-molecular levels and has been described as the basis of modern medicine. Medical biochemists develop new ideas and products that are applied to the biggest health challenges we face today.

*Medical Biochemistry students may be guaranteed an interview for Graduate Entry Medicine MBBCh at Swansea University by choosing the appropriate pathway, performing satisfactorily and meeting the minimum entry criteria at the time of application to Graduate Entry Medicine*

Key Features

This degree will:

  •  train you to work in areas such as cancer research, medical laboratories and the pharmaceutical industry
  • prepare you for further study that enables you to take up research positions in industry
  • equip you with the skills and knowledge to work in the biotechnology, agrochemical and food industries
  • provide you with transferable skills, including team working, communication, presentation, problem-solving, and analytical skills
  • provide specialist training in a broad range of laboratory techniques

In the final year, you will complete an advanced research project under the guidance of a professional research scientist. By working as an independent researcher, you will develop effective project management skills and will be trained to design experiments and plan work programmes.

The Medical Biochemistry degree also provides appropriate training for students who wish to undertake further study to become a medical doctor.  Many of our students who decided to follow this career path have successfully gone on to study Graduate Entry Medicine at Swansea.

For more information, view the BSc Biochemistry Programmes e-brochure


Disclaimer: Module selection options may change.

Year 1 (Level 4)

FHEQ 4 Degree / HECert

Students choose 120 credits from the following:

Compulsory Modules
Module CodeSemesterCreditsModule Name
PM-127Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)10Energy and Metabolism: The Reactions of Life
PM-130Semester 1 and 2 (Sep-Jun Taught)10Biochemistry Skills Development
PM-131Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)10Chemistry of Life
PM-132Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)10Eukaryotic Cell Biology
PM-133Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)20Evolutionary and Molecular Genetics
PM-134Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)10Microbiology
PM-135Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)10Human Physiology
PM-139Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)10Human Physiology I
PMC100Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)10Atoms and Molecules, Chemical Bonding and Structure; an Introduction for Life Sciences.
PMC101Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)10Organic Chemistry: Structure, Transformation, and Energetics; an Introduction for Life Sciences.
PMC102Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)10Chemical Analysis: from Composition to Structure Elucidation; an Introduction for Life Sciences.
PMC103Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)10Organic Chemistry of Functional Groups: Structure, Reactivity and Mechanism; an Introduction for Life Sciences
Optional Modules
Rule 1 

Choose Exactly 10 credits from the following Modules:

NOTE : You must choose 10 credits from the following optional modules

Module CodeSemesterCreditsModule NameGuidance
PM-141Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)10Human Physiology II
PMC102Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)10Chemical Analysis: from Composition to Structure Elucidation; an Introduction for Life Sciences.

Year 2 (Level 5)

FHEQ 5 Degree / HEDip

Students choose 120 credits from the following:

Compulsory Modules
Module CodeSemesterCreditsModule Name
PM-238Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)10Biostatistics
PM-240Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)10Carbohydrate Metabolism and Glycobiology
PM-243Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)10Clinical Biochemistry & Physiology
PM-245Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)10Metabolic Regulation: Enzymes & Signal Transduction
PM-246Semester 1 and 2 (Sep-Jun Taught)10Biochemistry Skills Development II
PM-248Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)10Amino acids, lipids and steroids
PM-249Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)10Human Immunology
PM-253Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)30Techniques in Molecular Biology
Optional Modules
Rule 1 

Choose Exactly 20 credits from the following Modules:

NOTE : You must choose exactly 20 credits from the following optional modules.

Module CodeSemesterCreditsModule NameGuidance
PM-226Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)10Human and Medical Genetics
PM-250Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)10Infectious Disease and Parasitology
PM-251Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)20Microbial Molecular Genetics


During each year of your degree, you will be required to study 120 credits, made up of compulsory and optional modules.  The Medical School offers undergraduate degree programmes in Biochemistry, Medical Biochemistry, Genetics, Medical Genetics and a combined honours in Biochemistry & Genetics.  To compare what you could study in these five pathways, click on  BSc and MSci modules available 2016-17 to find a spreadsheet showing the modules available.

(If you download this Excel spreadsheet and save it on your PC, then click on the title of each module in the second column whilst connected to the internet, you should see further details from the module catalogue. These links from the spreadsheet may not work with some browser settings, nor iPad, iPhone, Android, etc.)

Below is a sample of some of the modules that you could study at each level:

Year 1

Biochemistry Skills Development
Energy and Metabolism: The Reactions of Life
Macromolecules: Form and Function
Metabolic Regulation and Molecular Physiology
Genetics and Evolutionary Processes
Chemistry of Life
Introductory Organic Chemistry
Instrumental and Analytical Chemistry
Organic Chemistry of Functional Groups
Atomic Structure and Chemical Periodicity
Cellular and Microbial Biology

Year 2

Clinical Biochemistry and Physiology
Carbohydrate Metabolism and Glycobiology
Amino Acids, Lipid and Steroids
Biochemistry Skills Development II
Biomolecular Techniques
Metabolic Regulation: Enzymes and Signal Transduction
Biomolecular Mass Spectrometry and Proteomic Analysis
Human and Medical Genetics
Gene Expression
Molecular Mechanisms of Disease and Diagnostics
Cell and Immunobiology

Year 3

Biomolecular Research Project
Aspects of Human Sensory and Metabolic Biochemistry
Membranes and Energy Transduction
Nucleic Acids: Components, Metabolism and Modification
Membrane Trafficking
Biochemistry of Natural Products
Medical Genetics
Mutations and Human Health
Genetics of Cancer
Biochemistry Literature Review and Communication

Level 4

Advanced Biomolecular Research Project
Communicating Ideas and Public Understanding of Science
Entrepreneurship in Life Sciences

Entry Requirements

A typical offer is AAB at A-Level [or equivalent for other qualifications: 136 UCAS tariff points].

You must have good grades in Chemistry and Biology.

IB: 34 (including good HL grades in Chemistry and Biology).

We make individual offers for your circumstances after reading your UCAS personal statements and references.

Find out the entry requirements for an International Student.

Tuition Fees

Annual tuition fees for entry in the academic year 2017/18 are as follows:

UK/EU International
MSci (Hons) Full-time £9,000 £16,500

Tuition fees for years of study after your first year are subject to an increase of 3% for International students and at the capped fee rate as set by the UK Government for UK/EU students.

You can find further information on fees and how to pay on our tuition fees page.

You may be eligible for funding to help support your study. To find out about scholarships, bursaries and other funding opportunities that are available please visit the University's scholarships and bursaries page.

Current students: You can find further information of your fee costs on our tuition fees page.

Additional Costs

The tuition fees do not cover the costs of purchasing books or stationery, printing, thesis binding or photocopying costs.

There are no mandatory additional costs specified for this course.

MSci and BSc - what is the difference?

The new four-year MSci is an advanced undergraduate degree, adding a further research-focused year to our current three-year BSc degrees. Most of the first three years will be in common for these schemes, but the MSci offers specialist training in a broad range of laboratory techniques during the third year as preparation for an intensive year-long advanced research project during the fourth year.

Welsh Language Provision

The College of Medicine is working toward enhancing and developing their Welsh language provision.

Students Studying Medical Biochemistry will be given the opportunity to have a Welsh speaking personal tutor, as well as being able to register for the Welsh version of Biochemistry Skills Development (PM-130) in the first year of their studies.

For more information, please contact Dr. Heledd Iago - - 01792 602402

Funding opportunities

Click here to learn more about fees and funding

Return to medical school

Click here to return to medical school