Skip to main content
This course, accredited by the Institute of Biomedical Science, provides an in-depth understanding of disease processes and diagnostic techniques. It links academic knowledge to the practical applications of biomedical science, particularly in relation to modern diagnostic methods. You can choose to study one of two pathways – haematology or medical microbiology. Taught by researchers and expert practitioners, the course content is kept up to date through extensive links with leading healthcare and research laboratories such as GlaxoSmithKline, the Institute of Cancer Research and local hospitals. In addition, key features of the course include the following.
|Full time||1 year||2 days a week||
|Full time||2 years including professional placement||2 days a week plus placement year||
|Part time||2 years||1 day a week||
If you are planning to join this course in the academic year 2021/22 (i.e. between August 2021 and July 2022), please view the information about changes to courses for 2021/22 due to Covid-19.
Students who are continuing their studies with Kingston University in 2021/22 should refer to their Course Handbook for information about specific changes that have been, or may be, made to their course or modules being delivered in 2021/22. Course Handbooks are located within the Canvas Course page.
Practising expert biomedical scientists are an integral part of the teaching team and ensure that the programme content reflects current practice. Academic staff at the University provide the opportunity for involvement in internationally recognised research.
The programme comprises four taught modules (two core, two specialist), plus an extended research project where students have the opportunity to apply their knowledge and to develop competences in advanced laboratory techniques.
Core modules will familiarise you with the theoretical and practical aspects of molecular medicine used in research and hospital laboratories, the molecular basis of immunological mechanisms, cellular mechanisms of disease, physiological manifestations and implications to public health. You will learn about the principles and practice of laboratory management in biomedical science, and you will acquire the skills required for researching and communicating in biomedical science. You will also study modules in your elected specialist route (Haematology or Medical Microbiology). In addition to subject-specific knowledge, the course aims to develop your communication and other skills.
In addition to the standard 12-month programme, we also offer the course as a two-year postgraduate programme with an optional integrated work placement component. This option is available for both international and full-time home/EU students of this course.
Please note that this is an indicative list of modules and is not intended as a definitive list.
For a student to go on placement they are required to pass every module first time with no reassessments. It is the responsibility of individual students to find a suitable paid placement. Students will be supported by our dedicated placement team in securing this opportunity.
The module allows students to develop and extend skills required to research and communicate in biosciences, and the principles and practice of laboratory techniques, research planning, management, data handling and presentation. The material is contextualised by lectures, practicals, workshops and directed reading around the planning and execution of experiments and interpretation of the data in a clinical setting or in clinically based studies.
It provides students with an introduction to the concepts of immunity and pathobiology. Students will become familiar with the different cells and organs of the immune system and how these function and interact to protect the body from infection. In addition, the module introduces students to the cellular mechanisms and genetic causes of disease considering both the physiological manifestations and the public health implications. The module also introduces some of the molecular processes and signalling events that are important in communication between cells of the immune system. It goes on to consider the role of cellular pathology in the context of other pathology disciplines such as clinical chemistry. Practical classes are used to allow students the opportunity to apply their basic knowledge of immunology to interpret the significance of laboratory data and the role of the immune system in disease.
This module culminates from knowledge gained throughout the course, in particular, the Research Techniques and Scientific Communication module in order to present work in formats appropriate to wider professional audiences, practising new and/or improved laboratory skills, as well as demonstrate the ability to independently solve complex problems. The research proposal assessment will usually be based on the research area that has been allocated for the research project or alternatively an external laboratory placement. The project results should be statistically analysed and scientifically presented and discussed within a 9,000-word thesis and scientific poster.
On successful completion of the module, you will be able to:
This is an option module for students taking the Haematology route of Biomedical Science MSc and Biomedical Science with Management MSc programmes.
The module explores the normal production of red cells and platelets and function of clotting factors. It then considers how acquired and hereditary abnormalities can lead to anaemia and coagulopathies, and examines how patients present clinically and are then diagnosed and treated. This includes exploring the roles played by the National Blood Transfusion and Transplant service in treatment of these disorders and considers the key clinical considerations of blood transfusion. To support understanding of the key-note lectures, additional material is provided via StudySpace, with students encouraged to actively participate in directed further study. The lectures are designed to provide the students with some real insights into genuine laboratory practice and the ways in which theory informs the day to day analysis of blood in hospital diagnostic laboratories. This is reinforced by an opportunity for the students to perform clotting analyses in the practical class.
The module initially explores how the haemotopoietic system develops through the different stages of human development and growth, and then focuses on tumours of haematopoietic and lymphoid tissues, including acute and chronic leukaemias, myeloproliferative neoplasms, multiple myeloma, and lymphomas. The module examines the molecular basis of these diseases, as well as their pathophysiology, diagnosis and available treatment Students are encouraged to develop a critical approach to the subject through the use of case studies and data interpretation. Techniques used for the diagnosis of haematological malignancies are also explored in laboratory practical sessions.
This is an option module for students taking the Medical Microbiology route of the Biomedical Science MSc and Biomedical Science with Management MSc programmes. Within the module the structural properties of microorganisms are introduced and discussed in the context of their use in taxonomic grouping and in aiding identification of microbial agents. In addition the module also explores the general principles of both traditional and molecular methods of laboratory investigation of infectious disease. Students' knowledge is developed by the in-depth consideration of a number of specific infectious diseases of contemporary importance, with key material being delivered by external specialist practitioners. The material delivered in the module is directly related to the requirements of the biomedical science workplace. The taxonomic aspects covered relate directly to current practices in the grouping of organisms, and cover both traditional and modern molecular techniques. Similarly, in the diagnostics component of the module both traditional and developing diagnostic techniques are covered, often by outside speakers from industry. This not only provides a context for the current application of these techniques, but also scope to demonstrate the requirement for continuous improvements in diagnostics. The module also re-enforces how an understanding of these techniques and developments enhance employability.
This module will address the key features of commensal and pathogenic micro-organisms and their interaction with host cells. It will introduce the theory and practice of modern diagnostic methods used in clinical microbiology as well as the current strategies used to combat infectious diseases. The normal microbial flora of healthy individuals and its contribution to health and disease are considered together with the study of pathogenic micro-organisms. The module introduces students to the factors that determine microbial pathogenicity and will link these factors to a disease. The module will also demonstrate how research in this area can help in the design of strategies to combat microbial infections. The module also critically evaluates the use of disinfection and sterilisation methods, as well as vaccines and antimicrobials in public health. Complex issues such as resistance to antimicrobial agents are also examined together with microbiological standards for food, potable water and sewage.
The Professional Placement module is a core module for those students following a masters programme that incorporates an extended professional placement. It provides students with the opportunity to apply their knowledge and skills in an appropriate working environment, and develops and enhances key employability and subject specific skills in their chosen discipline. Students may wish to use the placement experience as a platform for the major project or future career.
It is the responsibility of individual students to find and secure a suitable placement opportunity; this should not normally involve more than two placements which must be completed over a minimum period of 10 months and within a maximum of 12 months. The placement must be approved by the Course Leader, prior to commencement to ensure its suitability. Students seeking placements will have access to the standard placement preparation activities offered by Student Engagement and Enhancement (SEE) group.
Read more about the postgraduate work placement scheme.
The information above reflects the currently intended course structure and module details. Updates may be made on an annual basis and revised details will be published through Programme Specifications ahead of each academic year. The regulations governing this course are available on our website. If we have insufficient numbers of students interested in an optional module, this may not be offered.
Many postgraduate courses at Kingston University allow students to take the option of a 12-month work placement as part of their course. The responsibility for finding the work placement is with the student; we cannot guarantee the placement, just the opportunity to undertake it. As the work placement is an assessed part of the course, it is covered by a student's Student Route visa.
Find out more about the postgraduate work placement scheme.
Please note: each application is assessed on an individual basis and may be subject to additional requirements, such as undertaking short course(s), work experience and/or English language qualification(s). Meeting particular minimum entry requirements does not automatically guarantee a place.
In order to complete your programme successfully, it is important to have a good command of English and be able to apply this in an academic environment. Therefore, if you are a non-UK applicant* you will usually be required to provide certificated proof of English language competence before commencing your studies.
For this course you must pass IELTS academic test in English with an overall score of 6.5, with no element below 6.0, or meet the scores listed on the alternative online tests. Please note that we do not accept Standard XII as proof of Academic English.
Applicants who do not meet the English language requirements may be eligible to join our pre-sessional English language course.
Please make sure you read our full guidance about English language requirements, which includes details of other qualifications we'll consider.
* Applicants from one of the recognised majority English speaking countries (MESCs) do not need to meet these requirements.
A wide range of assessments are provided in the programmes. Assessments can be either formative or summative, the formative assessments being designed to provide students with the opportunity to practice assignments and receive feedback as a form of ‘feed-forward' for the summative assessments.
Assessments are designed to assess advanced skills and evaluation of information. In addition to formal examinations, coursework assessment formats are varied in nature and include written reports and essays, poster and oral presentations, a research proposal and in-class tests. They are often authentic in nature, designed around problem-solving exercises and case studies to develop students' research abilities and critical thinking. The research project, which comprises one third of the programme, is designed as a ‘capstone' project and aims to give students the opportunity to use and synthesise the knowledge and skills they have acquired during their degree.
Considerable effort is made to ensure that assessment loading for students is manageable, and assessment points are appropriately spread throughout the year. Each module has no more than three summative assessments, including any formal examination.
When not attending timetabled sessions you will be expected to continue learning independently through self-study. This typically will involve reading journal articles and books, working on individual and group projects, coursework assignments and presentations, and preparing for exams. Your independent learning is supported by a range of excellent facilities including online resources, the library and CANVAS, the online virtual learning platform.
As a student at Kingston University, we will make sure you have access to appropriate advice regarding your academic development. You will also be able to use the University's support services.
36% of your time is spent in timetabled teaching and learning activity.
Assessment typically comprises exams (eg test or exam), practical (eg presentations, performance) and coursework (eg essays, reports, self-assessment, portfolios, dissertation).
We aim to provide feedback on assessments within 20 working days.
You will be part of an intimate cohort of students which provides dedicated academic guidance and advice as well as the opportunity to build a life-long network of colleagues. Some modules are common across other postgraduate programmes, therefore you may be taught alongside postgraduates from other courses.
This course is delivered by the School of Life Science in the Faculty of Science, Engineering and Computing.
The Faculty's wide selection of undergraduate and postgraduate courses covers a diverse range of subject areas, from aerospace to geography; from maths and computing to biotechnology; and many more. Our collaborative set-up provides new opportunities for our students, and we design our courses with industry professionals to ensure you stay up to date with the latest developments.
The School of Life Sciences is a dynamic and forward-looking School within the University, which has grown steadily since it was founded in 1989. Our diverse range of courses is taught by well-qualified academics, and aims to provide students with the skills they need to be successful in the modern world.
The School has invested heavily in developing its labs for both teaching and research. As well as specialist instrumentation laboratories, there are subject labs for biochemistry; microbiology; histology; anatomy; immunology; cell biology; nutrition; radiotracer studies; and physiology and sports science (including biomechanics and an environmental testing chamber).
Postgraduate students may run or assist in lab sessions and may also contribute to the teaching of seminars under the supervision of the module leader.
If you start your second year straight after Year 1, you will pay the same fee for both years.
If you take a break before starting your second year, or if you repeat modules from Year 1 in Year 2, the fee for your second year may increase.
Kingston University offers a range of postgraduate scholarships, including:
If you are an international student, find out more about scholarships and bursaries.
We also offer the following discounts for Kingston University alumni:
Depending on the programme of study, there may be extra costs that are not covered by tuition fees which students will need to consider when planning their studies. Tuition fees cover the cost of your teaching, assessment and operating University facilities such as the library, access to shared IT equipment and other support services. Accommodation and living costs are not included in our fees.
Where a course has additional expenses, we make every effort to highlight them. These may include optional field trips, materials (e.g. art, design, engineering), security checks such as DBS, uniforms, specialist clothing or professional memberships.
Our libraries are a valuable resource with an extensive collection of books and journals as well as first-class facilities and IT equipment. You may prefer to buy your own copy of key textbooks, this can cost between £50 and £250 per year.
There are open-access networked computers available across the University, plus laptops available to loan. You may find it useful to have your own PC, laptop or tablet which you can use around campus and in halls of residences. Free WiFi is available on each of the campuses. You may wish to purchase your own computer, which can cost between £100 and £3,000 depending on your course requirements.
In the majority of cases written coursework can be submitted online. There may be instances when you will be required to submit work in a printed format. Printing, binding and photocopying costs are not included in your tuition fees, this may cost up to £100 per year.
All field trips that are compulsory to attend to complete your course are paid for by the University. There may be small fees incurred for optional field trips such as travel costs and refreshments.
Travel costs are not included in your tuition fees but we do have a free intersite bus service which links the campuses, Surbiton train station, Kingston upon Thames train station, Norbiton train station and halls of residence.
If the placement year option is chosen, during this year travel costs will vary according to the location of the placement, and could be from £0 to £2,000.
Examples of recent graduate destinations include:
The Faculty of Science, Engineering and Computing has a specialist employability team. It provides friendly and high-quality careers and recruitment guidance, including advice and sessions on job-seeking skills such as CV preparation, application forms and interview techniques. Specific advice is also available for international students about the UK job market and employers' expectations and requirements.
The team runs employer events throughout the year, including job fairs, key speakers from industry and interviews on campus. These events give you the opportunity to hear from, and network with, employers in an informal setting.
I became a State Registered Biomedical Scientist in a local NHS microbiology laboratory in 1983. In 2002, having raised a family, I turned my attention back to my career. After applying for a senior post at a neighbouring trust it became apparent that if I wanted to progress I would need to undertake an MSc accredited by the Institute of Biomedical Sciences (IBMS).
Any reservations I had about resuming my education were rapidly dispelled. As a group, the lecturers at Kingston challenged us and encouraged us to challenge them in return. This and the diversity within the class created a proactive, dynamic atmosphere where information and ideas flowed freely and productively. We were inspired and motivated by lecturers that made studying a pleasure.
My graduation in 2004 gained me a promotion at work and Fellowship of the IBMS. The MSc has opened career opportunities and choices that were previously closed to me. After completing a leadership course run by my employers last year, I have now been offered the post of deputy laboratory manager in microbiology.
As a result of the findings of my MSc project I have recently made the decision, with the backing and support of Kingston University and my colleagues at work, to continue with the work for my PhD. I am now looking forward to the new challenges at work and the continuation of my academic development within the community at Kingston University.
Our links with industry provide a practical base for our courses. They also help us to ensure your studies are kept up to date and relevant to the workplace.
This course includes:
Many of our staff in the Faculty of Science, Engineering and Computing are research active. This ensures they are in touch with the latest thinking and bring best practice to your studies.
Science research is organised into several research areas. The Biomedical and Pharmaceutical Sciences Research Group is an interdisciplinary group shared by Kingston University and St George's, University of London.
Research focuses on the interaction of chemistry and life sciences with medicine. It is divided into three main sub-areas;
We work with a variety of employers such as hospitals, community health care, NHS foundation trusts, academic publishers, and pharmaceutical companies, many of which also offer professional experience opportunities for our Biomedical Science with Management Studies MSc students.
Competition to gain professional experience is fierce and places are not guaranteed. During Induction Week, you will be introduced to the scheme and the Kingston University Careers and Employability Centre resources where you will find a CV and covering letter template.
All applications must use these CV and covering letter templates, which are accessed via your KU account. Therefore, to apply for the Professional Experience opportunities, you must first be a student enrolled on an eligible MSc programme.
The KU Careers and Employability Centre will help you to complete your CV and covering letter, so that you can make your best application for the scheme. CVs and covering letters are reviewed by employers and students chosen for interview are supported to prepare by the Careers and Employability Centre.
Please email Lori Snyder for any general information you need about the professional experience scheme.
The experience of delivering courses in 2020/21 under the various Covid-19 restrictions has enabled us to better prepare and plan the delivery of our courses in 2021/22. We are confident the course can be delivered as planned and, therefore, we do not anticipate having to make any further changes to the course, i.e. number of modules or credits in a year, in response to issues arising from the pandemic. However, if this becomes necessary, the changes will be highlighted to students via email before enrolment.
Unless government advice instructs otherwise, Study Abroad programmes will take place in 2021/22. The safety of all our students is paramount, therefore, as per normal practice, all Study Abroad activities must also be approved by the University's insurers to ensure that students are adequately protected during their period abroad. We will provide updates as the pandemic situation stabilises and/or further government advice is released.
Changes can be made to courses as part of normal enhancement processes in order to keep our courses up to date with current developments in that subject area and in response to feedback from students and other key stakeholders. Any such changes made to the composition of the course will be highlighted to students by email before enrolment.
The experience of delivering courses in 2020/21 under the various Covid-19 restrictions has enabled us to better prepare and plan the delivery of our courses in 2021/22. We are confident the course can be delivered as planned and, therefore, we do not anticipate having to make any further changes to module titles and summaries or to the availability of modules in response to issues arising from the pandemic.
Changes can be made to modules as part of normal enhancement processes in order to keep our courses up to date with current developments in that subject area and to provide a high quality student experience. Any such changes made to module titles, module summaries and/or availability of modules will be highlighted to students by email before enrolment.
We expect to deliver the course within the planned timescales to enable successful students to progress through and graduate from the course without delay.
In exceptional circumstances the sequence of learning and teaching activities may be changed in 2021/22, e.g. moving those modules which can be delivered more effectively to the first teaching block and moving back those – such as practical modules and placements – which may be more difficult to deliver due to some ongoing restrictions.
In some cases, it may be necessary to delay placement modules which may then impact the length of the course. In these circumstances the University will guide students through the appropriate options available to ensure students are able to make informed choices.
We have not changed entry requirements as a direct result of the pandemic.
We have not changed entry requirements for international students as a direct result of the pandemic.
As we transition from the pandemic restrictions, we expect to steadily increase the proportion of on-campus teaching. We will continue to provide a proportion of online learning, as experience has shown that this enriches and supports the student learning experience.
If the pandemic affects teaching and learning activities in 2021/22 more than we currently anticipate, the proportion of online learning will increase. However, unless a lockdown is enforced, we will ensure that all courses provide a reasonable percentage of their teaching and learning activities on campus.
Should your circumstances prevent your attendance at on-campus sessions, you should still be able to engage with your course remotely in a way that allows you to progress. Where this is not possible, for example on courses with high practical content, your course team will be able to advise you on the options available to you.
The University will continue to closely monitor government announcements and advice in relation to the pandemic and, where required, will take any necessary action in order to comply with such advice.
In the event that a further lockdown is enforced in 2021/22 the University will aim to deliver the course fully online once more. The majority of our courses are prepared to be delivered fully online if the situation requires it. Where the quality of the student experience may be compromised, or the course is unable to be delivered fully online, the University may need to suspend the delivery of that course until a time that it can be delivered. Students will be supported in these situations to ensure they are able to make the right choices for their particular circumstances.
Changes to the overall breakdown of scheduled learning and teaching hours, placements and guided independent study hours were not and will not be made as a direct result of the pandemic.
‘Scheduled learning and teaching' includes teaching delivered online, either live or recorded/on demand.
Your individualised timetable for teaching block 1 (i.e. up to December 2021) should be available by the end of August. Timetables for teaching block 2 (i.e. from January 2022) will not be available until the autumn. We make every effort to ensure timetables are as student-friendly as possible.
In 2020/21 it was agreed that scheduled learning and teaching could take place on any day of the week between 9am and 9pm, to maximise the time available for teaching in order to accommodate smaller group sizes and social distancing. This meant we sometimes had to use Wednesday afternoons and enrichment week for additional teaching slots. If we need to accommodate smaller group sizes and social distancing in 2021/22 we expect to adopt a similar approach. Timetables for part-time students will depend on the modules selected.
The experience of delivering courses in 2020/21 under the various Covid-19 restrictions has enabled us to better prepare and plan the delivery of our courses in 2021/22. We are confident the course can be delivered as planned and, therefore, do not anticipate having to make any further changes to the course, i.e. to the overall methods of assessments, in response to issues arising from the pandemic. However, if this becomes necessary, the changes will be highlighted to students via email before enrolment.
Changes are made to modules, including how they are assessed, as part of normal enhancement processes to keep our modules up to date with current developments in that subject area and in response to feedback received from students and other key stakeholders. Any changes to the overall methods of assessment for Year 1 of the course will be highlighted to students by email before enrolment.
If social distancing or lockdown restrictions are in place in 2021/22, online alternative options to formal on-campus examinations, including practical examinations, will be made available to students where possible.
No changes are expected to the general level of experience or status of staff involved in delivering the course.
Staff are engaged in Continuous Professional Development activities to develop their teaching expertise, as part of the normal enhancement processes, to ensure that course teams have the required breadth of expertise.
There will be no changes to published tuition fees for 2021/22.
As we transition from the pandemic restrictions, we expect to be able to increase student access to on-campus facilities. Students will therefore have access to University computers and library facilities.
If, due to an increase in social distancing requirements or the enforcing of a lockdown, it becomes necessary to significantly increase the proportion of teaching delivered online, students will need a personal laptop or computer and access to the internet to participate in online teaching and learning activities. Students who are able to travel will have access to computers on campus, however, it should be noted that access to on-campus facilities might be restricted if social distancing requirements are enforced.
The University is committed to supporting students who are unable to access suitable technology to ensure equity of access in a blended delivery mode.
There will be no changes to any existing University funding arrangements for 2021/22. Currently there are no indications from the UK government that there will be any changes to government funding arrangements.
There will be no changes to published tuition fees or funding arrangements specifically relating to international students for 2021/22.
We are anticipating that placements (including work and clinical placements) and field trips included as part of the course will go ahead in 2021/22. However, to ensure students gain maximum value from placement activities, it may be necessary to reschedule them to later in the year, when any impacts from the pandemic restrictions are minimised.
Any proposed changes to placements or field trips would go through the University's agreed processes where the impact of the change will be carefully considered.
In the interests of the health and wellbeing of our students, all placement arrangements must be approved by the University's insurers and the appropriate risk assessments made before students are sent on a placement.
Courses which require placements or field trips to be completed in order to pass relevant modules will have contingency plans in place in the event that a placement or field trip cannot be completed due to another lockdown or more stringent social distancing measures.
No changes will be made to the qualification awarded, e.g. BSc (Hons), MSc, etc., as a direct result of the pandemic.
Changes can be made to courses, including the qualification awarded (although very rare), as part of normal enhancement processes in order to keep our courses up to date with current developments in that subject area. Any changes made to the qualification awarded for the course will be highlighted to students by email before enrolment.
The experience of delivering courses in 2020/21 under the various Covid-19 restrictions has enabled us to better prepare and plan the delivery of our courses in 2021/22. We are confident the course can be delivered as planned and in accordance with any professional body requirements. We do not anticipate making any further changes to courses in response to any issues arising from the pandemic and which would put at risk any professional body accreditation status.
International students should maintain awareness of the UK government's and their home country's government's advice on possible travel restrictions. The University will closely monitor advice and guidance published by the UK government and assess its impact on our international students. Appropriate advice and guidance will be provided as and when required.