Faculty of Life and Health Sciences
School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences
This course is taught online so you can study where you want, when you want.
26 September 2022
For full instructions on how to apply for postgraduate short courses, please contact the Centre for Flexible and Continuing Education - FlexEd@ulster.ac.uk
This course provides participants with the ability to select and apply appropriate methods and instrumentation for quality control/quality assurance.
This course helps participants to develop an understanding and expertise in the qualitative and quantitative analysis of pharmaceutical products and GLP.
Successful participants will be able to:
This course can be taken individually or combined over a period of time towards a Postgraduate Certificate of Professional Development.
In this section
The content of this course aligns with UNESCO Sustainable Development Goals 3 and 9 by providing participants with an understanding of how analysis pays a key role in drugs design, development and manufacture, thereby contributing to good health and wellbeing as well as providing for management of healthcare resource in a sustainable manner. This also reinforces the impact of analysis on the development of novel pharmaceuticals.
History of Pharmaceutical Analysis.
Revision of functional groups
Chromatography. Mechanisms of chromatographic separation - partition, ion exchange, exclusion, affinity.
Atomic Absorption. Absorption process of atoms in flames. Instrumental set-up for aspiration of solutions. Hollow cathode lamps. Application in drug analysis
UV/IR Part 1 Electronic transitions in UV. Chromophores and conjugation. Beer Lambert Law. Quantitative analysis of drugs.
UV/IR Part 2 Characteristic vibration frequencies in IR. Qualitative analysis of selected drugs by IR. Application to BP.
UV/IR Part 3 Characteristic vibration frequencies in IR. Qualitative analysis of selected drugs by IR. Application to BP.
Qualitative and quantitative analysis of drugs by various chromatographic methods Part 1.
Qualitative and quantitative analysis of drugs by various chromatographic methods Part 2. Qualitative and quantitative analysis of drugs by various chromatographic methods Part 3.
GMP/ GLP 1. MHRA, FDA, Medicines Act, QA, GMP, GLP, QC, Audits.
Fluorescence Part 1. Theory of fluorescence following UV absorption. Fluorescing molecules.
Fluorescence Part 2. Mathematical relationship for quantitative analysis.Fluorescence sensors. Mechanisms (eg.,PET) and designs.
Fluorescence Part 3. Mathematical relationship for quantitative analysis.
NMR Part 1. The NMR signal and instrumentation. Chemical shift. Spin-spin coupling, and nuclear Overhauser effect.
NMR Part 2. Select NMR experiments for structure elucidation. NMR spectra of selected molecules and application to pharmaceutical analysis.
NMR Part 3. Select NMR experiments for structure elucidation. NMR spectra of selected molecules and application to pharmaceutical analysis.
Mass Spectrometry Part 1. Principles of mass spectrometry.
Mass Spectrometry Part 2. Ionisation modes such as electron impact and electrospray. Mass analyzers such as ion trap, triple quadrupole, QTOF.
Mass Spectrometry Part 3. Ionisation modes such as electron impact and electrospray. Mass analyzers such as ion trap, triple quadrupole, QTOF.
Structure Elucidation by spectroscopy 1. Use of spectroscopic information from UV, IR, MS and NMR in structure elucidation.
Structure Elucidation by spectroscopy 2. Use of spectroscopic information from UV, IR, MS and NMR in structure elucidation.
Structure Elucidation by spectroscopy 3 Use of spectroscopic information from UV, IR, MS and NMR in structure elucidation.
Mass Spectrometry 4. Applications of mass spectrometry to drug analysis.
Mass Spectrometry 5. Applications of mass spectrometry to pharmaceutical quality control.
(1) Essay (4000 words) on an analytical technique and its application in pharmacy and pharmaceutical science (60%).
(2) Spectral interpretation for given spectra (2000 words) (40%).
This course is fully online for 12 weeks starting 26 September 2022 with no on campus attendance requirements.
A degree with subject specialist knowledge of chemistry, pharmaceutics, or drug delivery.
Applicants whose first language is not English must meet the minimum English entrance requirements of the University and will need to provide recent evidence of this (certified within the last two years).
Most of our courses require a minimum English level of IELTS 6.0 or equivalent, with no band score under 5.5. Trinity ISE: Pass at level III also meets this requirement.
Please see details of the English language qualifications and certificates we can accept - https://www.ulster.ac.uk/__data/assets/pdf_file/0005/177404/Other-english-language-tests-and-qualifications-2017.pdf
International applicants will also require a short-term study visa. Further information is available at https://www.ulster.ac.uk/international/visa-immigration
The content for each course is summarised on the relevant course page, along with an overview of the modules that make up the course.
Each course is approved by the University and meets the expectations of:
As part of your course induction, you will be provided with details of the organisation and management of the course, including attendance and assessment requirements - usually in the form of a timetable. For full-time courses, the precise timetable for each semester is not confirmed until near the start date and may be subject to change in the early weeks as all courses settle into their planned patterns. For part-time courses which require attendance on particular days and times, an expectation of the days of attendance will often be included in the letter of offer. A course handbook is also made available.
Courses comprise modules for which the notional effort involved is indicated by its credit rating. Each credit point represents 10 hours of student effort. Undergraduate courses typically contain 10- or 20-credit modules and postgraduate course typically 15- or 30-credit modules.
The normal study load expectation for an undergraduate full-time course of study in the standard academic year is 120 credit points. This amounts to around 36-42 hours of expected teaching and learning per week, inclusive of attendance requirements for lectures, seminars, tutorials, practical work, fieldwork or other scheduled classes, private study, and assessment. Part-time study load is the same as full-time pro-rata, with each credit point representing 10 hours of student effort.
Postgraduate Masters courses typically comprise 180 credits, taken in three semesters when studied full-time. A Postgraduate Certificate (PGCert) comprises 60 credits and can usually be completed on a part-time basis in one year. A 120-credit Postgraduate Diploma (PGDip) can usually be completed on a part-time basis in two years.
Class contact times vary by course and type of module. Typically, for a module predominantly delivered through lectures you can expect at least 3 contact hours per week (lectures/seminars/tutorials). Laboratory classes often require a greater intensity of attendance in blocks. Some modules may combine lecture and laboratory. The precise model will depend on the course you apply for and may be subject to change from year to year for quality or enhancement reasons. Prospective students will be consulted about any significant changes.
Assessment methods vary and are defined explicitly in each module. Assessment can be via one method or a combination e.g. examination and coursework . Assessment is designed to assess your achievement of the module’s stated learning outcomes. You can expect to receive timely feedback on all coursework assessment. The precise assessment will depend on the module and may be subject to change from year to year for quality or enhancement reasons. You will be consulted about any significant changes.
Coursework can take many forms, for example: essay, report, seminar paper, test, presentation, dissertation, design, artefacts, portfolio, journal, group work. The precise form and combination of assessment will depend on the course you apply for and the module. Details will be made available in advance through induction, the course handbook, the module specification and the assessment timetable. The details are subject to change from year to year for quality or enhancement reasons. You will be consulted about any significant changes.
Normally, a module will have four learning outcomes, and no more than two items of assessment. An item of assessment can comprise more than one task. The notional workload and the equivalence across types of assessment is standardised.
The class of Honours awarded in Bachelor’s degrees is usually determined by calculation of an aggregate mark based on performance across the modules at Levels 5 and 6 (which correspond to the second and third year of full-time attendance).
Level 6 modules contribute 70% of the aggregate mark and Level 5 contributes 30% to the calculation of the class of the award. Classification of integrated Masters degrees with Honours include a Level 7 component. The calculation in this case is: 50% Level 7, 30% Level 6, 20% Level 5. At least half the Level 5 modules must be studied at the University for Level 5 to be included in the calculation of the class.
All other qualifications have an overall grade determined by results in modules from the final level of study. In Masters degrees of more than 200 credit points the final 120 points usually determine the overall grading.
Figures correct for academic year 2019-2020.
The University employs over 1,000 suitably qualified and experienced academic staff - 59% have PhDs in their subject field and many have professional body recognition.
Courses are taught by staff who are Professors (25%), Readers, Senior Lecturers (20%) or Lecturers (55%).
We require most academic staff to be qualified to teach in higher education: 82% hold either Postgraduate Certificates in Higher Education Practice or higher. Most academic staff (81%) are accredited fellows of the Higher Education Academy (HEA) by Advanced HE - the university sector professional body for teaching and learning. Many academic and technical staff hold other professional body designations related to their subject or scholarly practice.
The profiles of many academic staff can be found on the University’s departmental websites and give a detailed insight into the range of staffing and expertise. The precise staffing for a course will depend on the department(s) involved and the availability and management of staff. This is subject to change annually and is confirmed in the timetable issued at the start of the course.
Occasionally, teaching may be supplemented by suitably qualified part-time staff (usually qualified researchers) and specialist guest lecturers. In these cases, all staff are inducted, mostly through our staff development programme ‘First Steps to Teaching’. In some cases, usually for provision in one of our out-centres, Recognised University Teachers are involved, supported by the University in suitable professional development for teaching.
Figures correct for academic year 2021-2022.
Northern Ireland, Republic of Ireland and EU Settlements Status Fees: £1,068.30
England, Scotland, Wales and the Islands Fees: £1,068.30
International Fees: £2,559.90
Information about how to pay for a course including different payment options is available at
It is important to remember that costs associated with accommodation, travel (including car parking charges) and normal living will need to be covered in addition to tuition fees.
Where a course has additional mandatory expenses (in addition to tuition fees) we make every effort to highlight them above. We aim to provide students with the learning materials needed to support their studies. Our libraries are a valuable resource with an extensive collection of books and journals, as well as first-class facilities and IT equipment. Computer suites and free Wi-Fi are also available on each of the campuses.
There are additional fees for graduation ceremonies, examination resits and library fines.
Students choosing a period of paid work placement or study abroad as a part of their course should be aware that there may be additional travel and living costs, as well as tuition fees.
See the tuition fees on our student guide for most up to date costs.
Telephone: (+44) 028 9536 7199