Postgraduate Certificate/Diploma/MSc General Pharmacy Practice

Foundation stage programmes and linked MSc for hospital pharmacists

Medway School of Pharmacy General Pharmacy Practice is a work-based programme for foundation pharmacist practitioners. Programme structure empowers learners to plan and develop their own learning pathway.

students students 2


The programme has been designed in close collaboration with NHS partners to support the development of foundation stage pharmacist practitioners following registration. It develops the practitioner student's underpinning knowledge and skills in clinical pharmacy practice and medicines management. The overall aim of this programme is to provide general-level pharmacists with the core skills and competencies required to provide holistic pharmaceutical care in the practice setting.

We work on a philosophy of student-centred workplace learning, supported by workbooks and learning sets facilitated by experienced pharmacy practitioners. The practitioner students are expected to take responsibility for managing their learning and achieving the course objectives in support of their continuing professional development (CPD).

Students will gain the understanding needed to conduct effective consultations with patients respecting their diverse needs and with regard to confidentiality and consent and to identify, prioritise and resolve complex pharmaceutical care issues.


The postgraduate Diploma in General Pharmacy practice is a predominantly work-based programme that develops competencies using the Foundation Pharmacy Framework (FPF), a validated competency framework accredited by the Royal Pharmaceutical Society. Student practitioners are allocated an educational supervisor (practice tutor) who helps them plan learning in the workplace and an academic facilitator who offers support throughout the course. Self-directed learning in the workplace is underpinned by study days (or learning sets) at the university co-ordinated by an academic facilitator.

Postgraduate Certificate (PGCert): There is one intake each year for students starting on the certificate level of the programme. Students begin in March of each year and attend eight learning sets over a period of 18 months. By October of the following year, if all the assessments have been passed, students can either exit with a postgraduate certificate or transfer to the postgraduate diploma.

Postgraduate Diploma (PGDip): The postgraduate diploma consists of two separate courses which each run for six months, starting in March and October. Both courses are delivered via three learning sets. Most students complete the certificate and then transfer immediately to the diploma. There is flexibility in the system and students can delay before transferring if necessary. Students must complete within six years of the certificate start date.

Master's degree (MSc): Students who have successfully completed the postgraduate diploma in general pharmacy practice can elect to continue to the MSc. This consists of a research project, supported by academics with expertise in practice research. Students will gain expertise in research techniques, be supported to write a protocol and complete either an NHS or university ethics application and collect and analyse data. Start dates are in September, January and April.


PG Cert / Dip: Students are assessed through objective structured clinical examination, multiple-choice questions, assignments, a literature review, an audit, a change management project, case study presentation and a competency-based portfolio review. A range of formative workplace assessments help student practitioners plan their learning and assess current levels of competency against the FPF.

MSc: Research project thesis, poster, abstract and two personal reflections


This programme provides progression for pharmacists towards advanced practitioner status.

Completion of the practice elements of the course leads to the award of the Certificate of Completion of General Pharmacist Training from an accredited training centre.

General Information

Award: Postgraduate Certificate General Pharmacy Practice, Postgraduate Diploma General Pharmacy Practice, MSc General Pharmacy Practice

Length: 18 months part-time (Certificate only), two and a half years part-time (Certificate and Diploma), four year and a half years part-time (Certificate, Diploma and MSc).

Location: Contact days will require attendance at the Medway School of Pharmacy, or the University of Brighton or other locations in Surrey.

Hospital pharmacists working in the NHS within Kent, Surrey or Sussex may be able to receive funding to undertake the course from Health Education England - Kent, Surrey, Sussex (HEE KSS). Hospital pharmacists working outside the area covered by HEE KSS can either arrange for sponsorship from their individual hospital trust or self fund.


The structure of the programme empowers adult learners to plan and develop their own learning pathway towards the achievement of the academic and practice awards, thereby addressing their own personal and professional development needs. Student practitioners assess their own progress through the programme matrix and develop individual learning plans based on prior knowledge and skills acquisition. Students present themselves for summative assessment when they and their educational supervisor and academic tutor feel they are ready. Regular progress reviews enable the identification of failing students so that remedial action can be planned and implemented.


For further information about the programme please contact the postgraduate administrator via

Tel +44 (0) 1634 202945

The programme comprises of three compulsory courses followed by a research project for those continuing to MSc:

Certificate / Foundation Stage 1
  • PHAM 1133 Practitioner Development and Establishment of Professional and Clinical Practice (60 credits)
Diploma / Foundation Stage 2
  • PHAM 1134 Module A: Developing Self, Others and your Operational Management Skills (30 credits)
  • PHAM 1135 Module B: Ensuring Patient Safety and a Quality Service (30 credits)
  • PHAM 1128 Research Project

Police and health checks

Any offer will be subject to satisfactory Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) and relevant health checks.

Applicants will be pharmacists registered with the General Pharmaceutical Council (GPhC).

In addition practitioners must have an accredited practice base from which to operate and have access to an accredited educational supervisor.

To apply for the Postgraduate Certificate / Diploma in General Pharmacy Practice please contact the postgraduate office in the first instance.

To apply for the MSc in General Pharmacy Practice please use the University of Greenwich Online Application Form. You are applying for MSc General Pharmacy Practice.


Tel: +44 (0) 1634 202935
Fax: +44 (0) 1634 883927

Copyright © Medway School of Pharmacy
Last Updated 06/11/2018