Master of Science in Drug Discovery and Development (MDD)

The Master of Science in Drug Discovery and Development (MDD) is a pharmaceutical sciences thesis-based research program offered in collaboration with top-universities in the US including University of Arizona. The master’s program focuses on three major disciplines associated with preclinical drug development including drug design and synthesis, drug delivery, pharmacology, and pharmacogenomics.

The program outcomes are constructed to address the required competencies for researchers in pharmaceutical sciences wishing to pursue a career in academia, research and development, or join a PhD program in pharmaceutical sciences or other relevant fields. Graduates of relevant undergraduate programs other than pharmacy may join the program after taking bridge course(s) if required by the graduate committee. The study plan of the program is structured to deliver 33 credit hours over 4 semesters.

The Master of Science in Drug Discovery and Development (MDD) is accredited by the Commission for Academic Accreditation (CAA), Ministry of Education, Higher Education Affairs, UAE. The master’s program in Drug Discovery and Development is the newest addition to the college with three main research areas:

  1. Drug Design and Medicinal Chemistry.
  2. Pharmacology and Pharmacogenomics.
  3. Drug Delivery and Targeting.

Program Highlights:

  1. The program is accredited by the Commission for Academic Accreditation (CAA), Ministry of Education, Higher Education Affairs, UAE.
  2. Pharmaceutical sciences thesis-based research program offered in collaboration with top-universities in the US including University of Arizona.
  3. Opportunities for research placements at the University of Arizona.
  4. Offered to graduates of Pharmacy, Medicine, Dentistry, Biomedical Sciences, Science and other relevant degree programs.
  5. Two-year program with three major research areas including drug design and medicinal chemistry, pharmacology and pharmacogenomics, and drug delivery and targeting.
  6. State of the art research facilities in areas of drug design, pharmaceutical analysis, pharmaceutics, pharmacology, and pharmacogenomics.

Goals

The goals of the Master of Science in Drug Discovery and Development:

  • Advance knowledge in the field of drug discovery and development including design and synthesis of drugs, pharmacological models, formulation techniques and drug delivery systems.
  • Build-up research capabilities in the most recent and advanced pharmaceutical aspects.
  • Specialize knowledge and skills to develop new biologically active compounds and/or advanced drug delivery systems.
  • Manage complicated issues in research ethics, multidisciplinary team dynamics, critical appraisal of research articles.
  • Demonstrate self-directed learning and innovation in their industrial/entrepreneur/academic practice and research.

Program Learning Outcomes

Knowledge

  • A1: Explain different strategies in drug design, synthesis techniques and identification of the synthesized compound(s).
  • A2: Analyze different pharmacological models used for in vivo drug characterization.
  • A3: Assess physicochemical characteristics and in vivo performance of active ingredients.
  • A4: Discuss pre-formulation and formulation techniques used for development of conventional and advanced drug delivery systems.

Skills

  • B1: Design and synthesize different compounds of pharmaceutical interest with proper characterization.
  • B2: Evaluate the current and new pharmaceutical compounds using different pharmacological and tissue-based models.
  • B3: Formulate and evaluate conventional and advanced drug delivery systems.
  • B4: Suggest ideas and write research proposals in the assigned area of pharmaceutical sciences.
  • B5: Perform pharmaceutical research both independently as well as in a team.
  • B6: Read, write, understand, interpret and criticize research articles.
  • B7: Analyze sets of data and findings using different statistical methods and software.

Competencies

  • C1: Demonstrate respectful and responsible attitudes in professional practice.
  • C2: Manage self-directed and lifelong learning in advancing one’s own competencies.
  • C3: Play efficient roles either as an independent researcher or part of a research team.
Name of the ProgramMaster of Science in Drug Discovery and Development
Credit Hours33
Semesters4 Semesters
Duration2 Years
In Collaboration withUniversity of Arizona

 

The program is composed of 33 credit hours spread over 4 semesters. The program study plan is shown below:

Semester 1
CodeCourseCH*LH**NLH***Pre/Co-requisite
MDD 611Research Ethics and Scientific Integrity22
MDD 612Research Methodology and Applied Biostatistics22
MDD 613Drug Discovery and Development33
MDD 614Research Techniques212
MDD 615Seminar I12
 Total1084 

 

Semester 2
CodeCourseCHLHNLHPre/Co-requisite
MDD 621Elective course I33
Elective course II33
Elective course III33
MDD 622Seminar II12
MDD 623Directed Research24
 Total1296 

 

Semester 3
CodeCourseCHLHNLHPre/Co-requisite
MDD 711Thesis I48MDD 612 -MDD 615 & MDD 623
MDD 712Seminar III12
 Total510 

 

Semester 4
CodeCourseCHLHNLHPre/Co-requisite
MDD 721Thesis II510MDD 612 -MDD 615 & MDD 623
MDD 722Seminar IV12
 Total612 

*CH: Number of credit hours, **LH: Number of lecture hours, ***NLH: Number of non-lecture hours.

Total Credit Hours: 33

 

Elective Courses

A student shall take three courses after discussion with the supervisor and approval of the program director. Elective Courses are displayed in the table below:

CodeCourse
MDD 621-1Drug Design
MDD 621-2Advanced Drug Synthesis
MDD 621-3Molecular Pharmacology
MDD 621-4In Vivo Pharmacological Models
MDD 621-5Advanced Physical Pharmacy and Biopharmaceutics
MDD 621-6Drug Delivery and Targeting
MDD 621-7Spectrometric Identification of Organic Compounds
MDD 621-8Advanced Pharmacogenomics
MDD 621-9Novel Drug Carriers

 

Bridging Courses:

Graduates from colleges other than pharmacy who lack the basic knowledge in organic chemistry, pharmacology, or pharmaceutics may have to take non-credit bridging course(s). Students may take one or more bridge courses based on the decision of the program committee. Non-credit bridging courses are shown in the table below:

CodeBridging CourseLH
MDD BR1Organic Chemistry3
MDD BR2Pharmacology3
MDD BR3Pharmaceutics3

Admission Requirements Academic Year 2020-21

General Admission Requirements

  • All applicants shall meet all criteria for admission into each program offered by the University as laid down in the Standards for Licensure and Accreditation published by the Ministry of Education (MOE)
  • All applicants shall first be screened for eligibility for the program applied for before being interviewed by the Program Director or the Department Chair.
  • The applicant shall be a graduate of an accredited Pharmacy, Medicine, Dentistry, Biomedical Sciences, Science or any other relevant discipline.
  • The Admission Committee shall interview the individuals for their readiness, ability, aptitude, academic credentials, communication skills, motivation and integrity.
  • No applicant shall be discriminated on the basis of sex, race, age, religion, color, national origin or disability status.
  • The University shall require the submission of official transcripts of credit earned from all institutions of higher education previously attended.
  • Students from outside the country are required to complete the following steps in their countries where they completed their bachelors before submitting the application to the Ministry of Education in UAE;
    • Ministry of Education attestation stamped on their original documents: Bachelor or undergraduate degree.
    • Ministry of Foreign Affairs attestation stamped on their original bachelor.
    • UAE Embassy attestation stamped on original bachelor.
    • In the UAE, students from outside the country are required to attest their original bachelor from Ministry of Foreign Affairs before submitting their application to the Ministry of Education in UAE.

Specific Admission Requirements

Qualified candidates are welcome to apply to GMU for the Master of Science in Drug Discovery and Development Program. GMU provides the highest standards of education to all students irrespective of the financial aspects. Applicants should satisfy certain standards to be admitted to GMU.

The following are the minimum requirements for admission into the Master of Science in Drug Discovery and Development Program at GMU.  The candidate must show capability to pursue an academic career and research. Minimum requirements include:

  • A bachelor degree of Pharmacy, Medicine, Dentistry, Biomedical Sciences, Science, or any other relevant degree from a University/Institute recognized by the ministry of education, UAE
  • Distinct undergraduate performance of GPA of 3 on a 4-point scale, or equivalent grade (“B”)
  • English language proficiency test score of 1400 for EmSAT, 550 for TOEFL or 6.0 for IELTS.

Full Admission Requirements

  • All applicants for Master programs offered by the University shall have a recognized bachelor degree in Pharmacy, Medicine, Dentistry, Biomedical Sciences, Science, or any other relevant degree earned in a discipline appropriate for the prospective graduate study with a cumulative grade point average of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale or its established equivalent.
  • All applicants admitted into programs delivered in English as a medium of instruction shall have demonstrated proficiency in English, for example, having attained a minimum EmSAT score of 1400, TOEFL score of 550  (213  CBT,  79  iBT)  or  its  equivalent  in  a  standardized English language test such as 6.0 IELTS or another standardized, internationally recognized test that is approved by the Ministry of Higher Education, UAE. Students who have completed undergraduate education in an English-medium institution might be allowed admission into a graduate program without demonstrating TOEFL score of 550 (or equivalent). This exemption can be applicable only to those students who undertook all their schooling (K-12) plus a Bachelor’s degree in English in a reference English speaking country (e.g. UK, USA, Australia, New Zealand).

Conditional Admission Requirements Read More

  1. A student with a recognized bachelor degree in Pharmacy, Medicine, Dentistry, Biomedical Sciences, Science, or any other relevant degree and a minimum TOEFL score of 530 on the Paper based test, (197 CBT or 71 iBT), 5.5 IELTS academic, or its equivalent on another standardized test approved by MOE may be admitted conditionally to a Master’s program. This student must meet the following requirements during the period of conditional admission or be subjected to dismissal from the program:
    1. Must achieve an EmSAT score of 1400 or equivalent, by the end of the student’s first semester of study.
    2. may take a maximum of six credit hours in the first semester of study, not including intensive English courses.
    3. The student must achieve an overall GPA of 3.0 on a 4.0-point scale or its established equivalent, in the first six credit hours of credit-bearing courses studied for the graduate program.
  2. A student with a recognized bachelor degree of Pharmacy, Medicine, Dentistry, Biomedical Sciences, Science, or any other relevant degree with a CGPA between 2.50 and 2.99 on a 4.0-point scale, or its established equivalent, and who meets the English language requirements for general admission requirements may be admitted conditionally. This student can take a maximum of 9 credit hours out of 12 in the first semester. The student must meet the following requirements during the period of conditional admission or be subjected to dismissal from the program:

The student must achieve an overall GPA of 3.0 on a 4.0-point scale or its established equivalent in the first semester of the master program.

  1. Join academia as a lecturer in higher education institutions.
  2. Pursue a PhD in pharmaceutical and biomedical sciences.
  3. Pharmaceutical and biotechnology industries:
    • Research and development
    • Quality control
    • Quality assurance
  4. Intellectual property and Regulatory affairs.
  5. Governmental regulatory authorities related to pharmaceutical industry.