MChem On Campus

Medicinal and Biological Chemistry

The University of Edinburgh

60 months
30400 GBP/year
1820 GBP/year
Tuition fee
Apply date
Start date


The Medicinal and Biological Chemistry programme at The University of Edinburgh is concerned with understanding biological mechanisms and processes at the level of the atoms and molecules involved.


You will learn how breakthroughs in the understanding of the molecular basis of diseases are being combined with cross-disciplinary advances in:

  • chemistry
  • biology
  • nanotechnology

In addition, you will understand how these advances are helping to create new generations of innovative therapeutics.

The Medicinal and Biological Chemistry programme at The University of Edinburgh teaches a thorough understanding of the diverse range of molecules and macromolecules needed to build a living organism, including their:

  • structures
  • properties
  • syntheses (in the lab and in vivo)

You will learn how biological molecules cooperate in finely tuned networks and pathways or are organised into:

  • macromolecular complexes
  • membranes
  • organelles
  • cells
  • tissues

This degree programme provides the intellectual framework for understanding this topic, building upon a solid foundation in chemistry and cell and molecular biology - from the fundamentals to the frontiers of current research.

The degree focuses strongly on the wide range of analytical and experimental skills necessary to practice the subject. It also provides insight into research via a final-year research project working at the cutting edge of the subject.

You may choose to undertake your project:

  • as a member of a research group in the University of Edinburgh
  • at one of our partner universities overseas
  • or in a company or research institute in the UK or abroad

Career opportunities

Medicinal and Biological Chemistry graduates find careers in a range of technology sectors and industries like:

  • chemical
  • pharmaceutical
  • biotechnological

Many graduates also find careers in:

  • academia
  • education
  • scientific publishing
  • the research-support sector
  • consultancy

They also utilise their acute numerical, problem-solving and analytical skills in sectors such as:

  • IT
  • finance
  • marketing
  • advertising

All our programmes include:

  • training, practice, and feedback in communication skills
  • team working and collaboration
  • exposure to the latest technology of scientific information retrieval and organisation

A high proportion of our graduates progress to a higher degree, typically a PhD.


The MChem Medicinal and Biological Chemistry degree programme is accredited by the Royal Society of Chemistry.

Programme Structure

Year 1

You will spend approximately a third of Year 1 in:

  • chemistry lectures
  • laboratory classes
  • small-group tutorials

You will also take a mathematics course.

You can choose the remainder of your curriculum from a broad range of courses from across the University.

Year 2

You will continue with your chemistry course, which will take up about a third of your time.

You may be required to take additional or recommended courses for your specific programme such as:

  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Data-Driven Chemistry
  • Chemical Pharmacology
  • courses in physics or mathematics 

Year 3

You will study compulsory chemistry courses that provide a foundation for the remaining honours years. 

Year 4

In the final year of your BSc, or the penultimate year of your MChem or MChemPhys, you will take compulsory courses from your programme. 

Year 5

You will undertake a full-year research project and choose one of two paths.

Key information


  • Full-time
    • 60 months

Start dates & application deadlines


600 alternative credits


On Campus

Academic requirements

We are not aware of any academic requirements for this programme.

Other requirements

General requirements

The standard entry requirement is:

  • SQA Highers: AAAA - AAAB (achievement by end of S5 preferred). BBB must be achieved in one year of S4-S6.
  • A Levels: AAA - ABB.
  • IB: 37 points with 666 at HL - 32 points with 555 at HL.

Tuition Fee

To alway see correct tuition fees
  • International

    30400 GBP/year
    Tuition Fee
    Based on the tuition of 30400 GBP per year during 60 months.
  • National

    1820 GBP/year
    Tuition Fee
    Based on the tuition of 1820 GBP per year during 60 months.
  • Home - RUK fees: £9,250

Living costs for Edinburgh

725 - 1167 GBP /month
Living costs

The living costs include the total expenses per month, covering accommodation, public transportation, utilities (electricity, internet), books and groceries.


Studyportals Tip: Students can search online for independent or external scholarships that can help fund their studies. Check the scholarships to see whether you are eligible to apply. Many scholarships are either merit-based or needs-based.

Our partners

Medicinal and Biological Chemistry
The University of Edinburgh


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