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Pharmaceutical Sciences

Master of Science

TOP 1%

of All Higher-Ed Institutions

- Center for World University Rankings, 2022


Among U.S. Schools of Pharmacy in NIH Funding

- The Blue Ridge Institute for Medical Research

Quick Facts

Credits Required: 33
Cost Per Credit: $1000
Pharmaceuticals being manufactured on machinery

Graduate College

Program Details

Are you looking to pursue career advancement or explore future academic opportunities in the health sciences? The Master of Science in Pharmaceutical Sciences (MSPS) aims to provide you with a foundation in pharmaceutical sciences, pharmacology, and toxicology. Graduating from this program prepares you to pursue a rewarding career in the analysis of pharmaceutical quality, clinical pharmacology and translational research, research and discovery, quality control and assurance, and many more. 

The program's major objective is to train students to become scientists in various areas of Pharmaceutical Sciences. Research is not required for the MSPS degree. You will take courses concentrating on Drug Discovery and development, pharmacology and toxicology, pharmaceutics, and health and pharmaceutical outcomes.  

The average time to graduation is less than two years. The Graduate College allows six years to complete an MS program, but any extension beyond six years will require a petition. Courses taken in the MS program can be transferred to a PhD degree.

No thesis is required for this program, but you must complete coursework with appropriate grades and GPA and participate in seminar. Graduates of the MS in Pharmaceutical Sciences go on to find employment in pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies, universities, regulatory agencies such as the Food and Drug Administration, and national laboratories such as the National Institutes of Health.

Priority application deadline July 1, 2024 for Fall 2024 enrollment.

No more than 20% of the minimum number of units required for a master's degree can be transferred from other accredited institutions. 

Credit toward an advanced degree will only be transferred if the grade earned was A or B unless graduate credit was awarded at the former institution. Transfer credit will not be used in computing a grade-point average.

Students in this MS program must receive a "B" or better grade in all required courses, or the non-passing course must be repeated. A "C" or less grade in a required course constitutes grounds for dismissal from the Graduate Program. 

A student may petition the Pharmaceutical Sciences Executive Committee to waive the repeat requirement.

*Residents of some U.S. Territories may not be eligible. Please see our Eligibility & State Authorization page for more information.


A minimum of 33 coursework units in the major subject area must be completed, including three seminar units and two units for the final semester presentation, which will be counted toward the student’s Plan of Study. Core courses include:

PCOL 501: Introduction to Pharmacology, Drug Discovery & Pharmaceutics
PCOL 502: Pharmaceutics
PCOL 505: Current Techniques in Pharmaceutical Sciences
PCOL 520a: Cellular Communications and Signal Transduction
PCOL 530: Faculty Perspectives on Contemporary Topics in Drug Discovery, Pharmaceutics, and Molecular Toxicology
PCOL 535: General and Systems Toxicology
PCOL 596a: Journal Club & PCOL 596e Student Seminar
PHSC 670: Principles in Drug Discovery, Design, and Development



Earning your Master of Science in Pharmaceutical Sciences will build core skills, including:

  • Scientific knowledge
  • Regulatory skills
  • Operational understanding
  • Method development
  • Critical thinking
  • Scientific literacy
  • Analytical skills
  • Data analysis & interpretation
  • Teamwork
  • Organizational knowledge
  • Research skills

Graduates of the Master of Science in Pharmaceutical Sciences will be prepared to pursue careers in the following fields:

  • Pharmaceuticals
  • Scientific Writing
  • Regulatory Affairs
  • Pharmacy
  • R&D
  • Pharma Industry
  • Academia
  • Nursing
  • Healthcare
  • Entrepreneurship
  • Quality Control/Assurance
  • Clinical Research