Master's Programme in Pharmaceutical Modelling

120 credits

Are you curious about how to design new drugs with an optimal affinity for pharmaceutical targets? Do you want to know more about how predictive modelling can be used to understand and control how drugs are absorbed by, distributed in and eliminated from the human body? Modelling techniques are increasingly used in all aspects of drug discovery, development and usage. The Master's Programme in Pharmaceutical Modelling prepares you for a career in this exciting area.

Autumn 2023 Autumn 2023, Uppsala, 100%, On-campus, English

Autumn 2024 Autumn 2024, Uppsala, 100%, On-campus, English

The Master's Programme in Pharmaceutical Modelling will provide you with theoretical and practical knowledge of the use of advanced modelling techniques in the various disciplines of drug discovery, development and usage. A special focus is on the practical application of modelling techniques, and the communication of modelling results both within and outside the discipline.

The programme is built on the broad competence in computational modelling of drug discovery and development that exists within the Faculty of Pharmacy at Uppsala University. At the faculty of Pharmacy, a lot of research in drug development often takes place in collaboration between experimental methods and modelling. Therefore, some of the courses in the program address how modelling can be used in conjunction with experimental results.

Examples of modelling techniques included in the programme are:

  • computational chemistry,
  • modelling of clinical and preclinical data,
  • machine learning and artificial intelligence,
  • bioinformatics,
  • pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics,
  • biopharmaceutics,
  • basic programming skills.

Student profile

The typical student on the programme has a background in pharmaceutical sciences, chemistry, biology or similar. You will gain competencies and skills needed for a career in modelling in the pharmaceutical industry and biotech companies (both big pharma and SMEs), in government agencies or for further PhD studies. The programme has a very international profile with many nationalities, both within and outside the EU, represented among the students.


The programme leads to the degree of Master of Pharmaceutical Science (120 credits) with Drug Discovery and Development as the main field of study.

The programme is taught full-time over four semesters.

The first semester gives an overview of the drug discovery and development fields and provides the tools needed for subsequent courses and future professional life.

The second and third semesters provide in-depth knowledge of various tools and modelling techniques used in the pharmaceutical sciences. At the end of the third semester, you will have the opportunity to specialise in the direction you desire by choosing elective courses.

The fourth semester is given in the form of a degree project of 30 credits. It can be carried out at one of the research departments at the university, externally at governmental agencies or within the pharmaceutical or biotech industry.

Courses within the programme

Semester 1

  • Drug Discovery and Development, 7.5 credits
  • Biopharmaceutics, 7.5 credits
  • Introduction to Programming in Python and R for Biosciences, 7.5 credits
  • Preclinical and Clinical Data Analysis in Predictive Drug Discovery/Development, 7.5 credits

Semester 2

  • Pharmaceutical Bioinformatics with Sequence Analysis, 7.5 credits
  • Computational Medicinal Chemistry, 7.5 credits
  • Advanced Molecular Modelling Applied to Drug Discovery, 7.5 credits
  • Clinical Pharmacokinetics and Pharmacodynamics, 7.5 credits

Semester 3

  • Molecular Physical Pharmacy, 7.5 credits
  • Models for Biological Systems, 7.5 credits
  • Elective courses, 15 credits

Semester 4

  • Degree Project/Thesis, 30 credits

Theory and practice are interwoven into the courses, and instruction takes place in the form of lectures, computer exercises, seminars and projects. The lectures aim to introduce different modelling techniques and their applications. Through group work, laboratories and seminars, your knowledge in pharmaceutical modelling is deepened in different ways. The independent project work focuses on responsibility, and great freedom is given to explore a specific area further.

The lecturers are active researchers in their respective fields, and teaching subjects will cover research topics of current importance. Practical exercise sessions are often connected directly to ongoing research in different labs or the recent scientific literature.

The programme is taught entirely in English.

A Master's degree in Pharmaceutical Modelling from Uppsala University will provide you with an internationally recognised qualification that opens doors to both academic research and a career in the pharmaceutical industry, in Sweden and internationally. Aside from a continued career within academia as a PhD-student, previous students on the programme are working with, for example, programming in the pharmaceutical industry, project management and as lab and research engineers.

Rapid developments in the fields of drug discovery, development and usage, with increasing amounts of data and costs, are leading to the implementation of diverse modelling approaches to analyse complex datasets, optimise workflows, and understand the complex and dynamic effects of pharmaceutical drugs.

The need for training within modelling and simulation in the industry is constantly growing, as more and more pharmaceutical companies realise the benefits of in silico methods in the drug discovery process. Competence within the various disciplines of pharmaceutical modelling is therefore expected to be increasingly valuable in industrial, governmental and academic settings alike.

When evaluating the programme in 2022, a survey was conducted among graduated students about how they had found employment following their studies. Among those that responded to the survey, roughly 80 % of students (22 out of 28) found work in less than 12 months after graduating.

Career support

During your time as a student, UU Careers offers support and guidance. You have the opportunity to take part in a variety of activities and events that will prepare you for your future career.