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Duration: 1 year full-time, or 2 years part-time
ECTS: 90 credits


Postgraduate Certificate

Duration: 1 year full-time
ECTS: 30 credits


The MRes in Clinical Research is an umbrella programme made up of three pathways. You choose to study one pathway from:

  1. Diabetes and Obesity – this pathway introduces modern investigative techniques including MRI and metabolomics and provides a deep understanding of the underlying pathophysiology of both types of diabetes, and obesity.
  2. Human Nutrition – this pathway provides a greater insight into the academic, clinical, practical, and regulatory requirements of human nutrition and introduces the latest in cutting-edge research.
  3. Translational Medicine – this pathway explores the challenges of research in non-drug interventional research, including regenerative medicine, and illustrate the use of humans as an experimental animal. You also have the opportunity to investigate why drugs fail in development.

For the MRes programme (90 ECTS), you will undertake four core modules, in addition to a fifth elective module that is specific to the pathway you choose. The taught aspect (exams, coursework and practicals) contributes to 30% of the overall mark, with the research aspect (proposal, thesis and oral exam) covering the remaining 70% weighting of the course. The research project topic will be based on your selected pathway.

The Postgraduate Certificate in Clinical Research (30 ECTS) will comprise all taught modules only and does not include the research project.

The course is supported by both NHS clinical and Northampton College academic staff, who regularly review content and assessment methods. The programme is based at the Hammersmith campus, however, a very small number of students may undertake their projects at other campuses.




Study programme


The MRes in Clinical Research is made up of two progressional levels (PG Cert and MSc), and you can apply to either level in the first instance.

Progression from the PG Certificate to the MRes is allowed, however, the research project will commence at the start of the following academic year. Successful PG certificate students will have to apply to the MRes and progression will not be automatic. If you take a break from studies after completion of the PGCert, the award to progress to the MRes will be valid for three years. If progression to the MRes is not undertaken within this period, then the PGCert component of the MRes must be repeated.

This course provides practical experience and training in designing, implementing, and reporting clinical studies. You complete the majority of the taught elements together; the opportunity to specialise in your area of interest is provided through a pathway-specific elective taught module and extensively through the research side of the programme.

The research project allows you to implement essential research skills supported by your supervisor(s). Project options are provided by staff, however, if you have a particular topic in mind this can also be considered. The key criteria are that:

  • the research question is examined using appropriate design and methodology
  • the project is feasible given available time-scales, and
  • the scope and depth are sufficient for Master’s level study

The majority of our graduates go on to undertake PhDs in relevant fields and other graduates have gone on to work in research and clinical settings as well as Industry. Students who complete the PG Certificate can, for example, take forward knowledge and skills to develop research programmes in the workplace.




The careers open to graduates will vary depending on which pathway is chosen. Graduates have progressed to employment within research, for example, clinical trials and the food industry.

Others have continued careers and sought promotion within the health sector. A large number progress to PhD scholarships. These degrees are ideal for those wishing to progress to a PhD studentship or a research-based role within the NHS. Some graduates have gone on to successfully secure a place at medical schools.



Modules shown are for the current academic year and are subject to change depending on your year of entry.

Please note that the curriculum of this course is currently being reviewed as part of a College-wide process to introduce a standardised modular structure. As a result, the content and assessment structures of this course may change for your year of entry. We therefore recommend that you check this course page before finalising your application and after submitting it as we will aim to update this page as soon as any changes are ratified by the College.

Find out more about the limited circumstances in which we may need to make changes to or in relation to our courses, the type of changes we may make and how we will tell you about changes we have made.

Students of the MRes programme must study all compulsory modules listed below:


Compulsory modules


  • Research Conduct & Clinical Research Measures
  • Clinical Research Scenarios
  • Critical Appraisal
  • Research Project

Students of the MRes programme will choose one elective module out of the following, based on their selected pathway at registration:


Elective modules


  • Human Nutrition
  • Diabetes and Obesity
  • Translational Medicine

Students of the PG Certificate must study all compulsory modules listed below. In contrast to the MRes programme, PG Certificate students will not take the Research Project module (which is only a part of the MRes programme):


Compulsory modules


  • Research Conduct & Clinical Research Measures
  • Clinical Research Scenarios
  • Critical Appraisal

Students of the PG Certificate will choose one elective module out of the following, based on their selected pathway at registration:


Elective modules


  • Human Nutrition
  • Diabetes and Obesity
  • Translational Medicine


Teaching and assessment


Teaching methods


  • Lectures
  • Interactive workshops
  • Journal clubs
  • Online modules
  • Student presentations

Project learning


  • Group meetings
  • Oral presentations
  • Project reports
  • Research proposal

Assessment methods


  • Case studies
  • Critical appraisal reports
  • Preparing research documentation (including ethics and grants documents)
  • Practical assessment
  • Oral exam
  • Poster presentation 
  • A final thesis of your research project


Entry requirements


We welcome students from all over the world and consider all applicants on an individual basis.

Minimum academic requirement

Our minimum requirement is a 2.1 degree in medicine or life sciences.


International qualifications

We also accept a wide variety of international qualifications.

The academic requirement above is for applicants who hold or who are working towards a USA qualification.

For guidance see our Country Index though please note that the standards listed here are the minimum for entry to the College, and not specifically this Department.

If you have any questions about admissions and the standard required for the qualification you hold or are currently studying then please contact the relevant admissions team.

English language requirement (all applicants)

All candidates must demonstrate a minimum level of English language proficiency for admission to the College.

For admission to this course, you must achieve the standard College requirement in the appropriate English language qualification. For details of the minimum grades required to achieve this requirement, please see the English language requirements for postgraduate applicants.

How to apply


You can submit one application form per year of entry, and usually choose up to two courses.

We will start reviewing applications in December and will invite successful candidates to interview in the new year.

Places are filled on a first come, first served basis so we recommend submitting your application as early as possible.

Choosing your course

This course is divided into two progressional levels of study:

  • PG Certificate (PG Cert)
  • MRes

Each level of study has its own separate entry point; you can apply to either level in the first instance.

Making an application

All applicants to our Master’s courses must apply online.