Oncology Pharmacy Practice Certificate of Professional Development By Online Distance Learning

Medicines Use in Cancer

Masters Certificate of Professional Development in Medicines Use in Cancer

Level 7, 20 credits

Course aims

To provide clinical knowledge and skills that are relevant to the needs of healthcare professionals working with medicines in oncology and to facilitate the professional development of the student, including fostering development of an enquiring, open-minded attitude, tempered with scientific discipline for oncology, which encourages lifelong learning. 

Course length

It is anticipated that you will complete the course in 10 months.

Course structure

The programme structure is in line with the LJMU Academic Framework. The programme is composed of two module that each have a credit value of 10 credits. In order to obtain an MCPD, students must pass both modules. 

Module code Module title Credits Assessment method


Medicines Use in Cancer: Clinical Basis


Online examination (multiple choice questions)


Medicines Use in Cancer: Application to Practice


Professional practice portfolio


You will undertake the module through distance learning, using the University’s virtual learning environment, Canvas.

Course content

The programme has evolved from the amalgamation of enthusiasm and expertise which has been generated over the years in the University and in Oncology pharmacy departments in the North West of England. The course is designed to permit a degree of student choice and learning outcomes associated with student-selected topics, achieved through open learning.

The programme provides opportunities for you to develop and demonstrate knowledge and understanding, skills, qualities and other attributes in the following areas:

  • Overview of cancer: Cancer prevention, early detection, risk, survival and causes. Cancer cell biology - cell cycle, malignant transformation (oncogenes, tumour suppressors) tumour nomenclature. National standards for cancer care, strategies and cancer registries
  • First principles: Early warning signs of cancer, staging of disease (TNM), principles of surgical and radiation oncology. Chemotherapy, targeted therapy and combined treatment
  • Cancer kinetics: Cellular and tumour kinetics, principles of combination therapy, dose intensity, cellular resistance
  • Aetiology, incidence, screening, diagnosis, treatment and management of common cancers: Such as: Lung Cancer; Breast Cancer; Colorectal Cancer; Gynaecological Cancer; Urological Cancer; Skin Cancer; Lymphoma; Leukaemia; Myeloma; Myeloproliferative disorders 
  • Monitoring patients and prescription review: Medicines optimisation and patient safety
  • Managing toxicity: Managing chemotherapy and targeted therapy induced toxicities
  • Oncologic emergencies: SVCO (Superior Vena Cava Obstruction), SIADH (Syndrome of inappropriate antidiuretic hormone), febrile neutropenia, hypercalcaemia, raised ICP (Intra-cranial pressure)/spinal cord compression, tumour lysis syndrome
  • Administration of chemotherapy and technical aspects: Extravasation, Intrathecal chemotherapy, ambulatory pumps, care of indwelling catheters, safe handling, reconstitution and disposal
Course fees

Spring 2020 entry (Home/EU): £800
Spring 2020 entry (International): £1,500

Entry requirements

Students entering the programme must be a health professional (e.g. pharmacist, medical practitioner, nurse), registered with the relevant professional body in the UK, or with a professional body recognised to be of similar standing to the UK regulator bodies.

Where English is not the student's first language, we would normally require a score of 6.5 in the IELTS system (or equivalent), with scores of greater than 5.5 in each of the domains. This is to ensure that the student is able to complete the necessary reading, communication with the programme team and assessments, which must all be completed in English.

Students must be working in an environment that will provide sufficient access to patients with cancer to provide opportunities to develop skills in applying knowledge to real-life cases and collect evidence for the professional practice portfolio. This may include placements, provided that the placement provider can confirm that sufficient access/involvement in care will be possible during the placement and that the placement duration is of sufficient length to allow full development of the relevant skills. 

The suitability of the access an individual has will be assessed by the programme team prior to admission, but guidance can be obtained prior to application by contacting the programme administrator.

How to apply
  1. Download and complete the supplementary application form
  2. Complete the online application form, taking note of the below:
  • Select the course that you would like to study from the drop-down menu. Please ensure you select the ‘Postgraduate Taught’ option under ‘Level of Entry’ and ‘Continuing Professional Development’ under ‘Mode of Study’. Select ‘Browse Courses’ and search for the course (Medicines Use in Cancer), entry point (March or September) and year
  • Ensure that you have provided details of your professional qualification and any other university qualifications (note, A-Level and GCSE/equivalent qualifications do not need to be listed) 

Upload the following documents to your online application: 

  • Certificate(s) for any qualifications listed in your application 
  • A copy of your IELTS certificate (if English is not your first language and you have not recently completed a university level qualification in English)
  • A copy of the Purchase Order authorising payment of the course from your place of work

Please note: all documents must be attached to your application within 24 hours of submission – if you wish to attach documents after this date, you will need to email them to the School office: PBS-Office@ljmu.ac.uk

Application deadlines

Intake: Spring 2020
Deadline: Monday 27 January 2020 (midnight)

Please note that six places are available on this course.

Start date

Mid-March 2020


All study is web-based

Further information

For further information please contact the School office:

School of Pharmacy and Biomolecular Sciences
Liverpool John Moores University
Byrom Street Liverpool L3 3AF
Tel: 0151 231 2248
Fax: 0151 231 2170
Email: PBS-Office@ljmu.ac.uk

The University may make changes to a programme of study or module where such changes are deemed to be beneficial to students, are minor in nature and unlikely to impact negatively upon students or become necessary due to circumstances beyond the control of the University.

Further guidance on programme changes