MSc in Clinical Oncology


Read more about this program on the school's website

Program Description

For health care professionals from diverse backgrounds who wish to expand their knowledge of theoretical and practical aspects of oncology, this full-time programme is particularly suitable for medical professionals with an interest in clinical, medical, surgical and translational oncology. Unique to this programme is an exciting opportunity to gain clinical observership status and log your hours observing in a UK based hospital.

Aiming to allow you to understand the research process, this programme draws on examples from within this renowned research Institute and its associated Clinical Trials Unit. A key part of the Master's programme is the planning, execution and reporting of a piece of independent study leading to the submission of a dissertation.

At all levels, we aim to encourage interactive rather than didactic learning and lecturing. Therefore, in addition to assembling and learning facts, you will also be encouraged to consider some of the philosophical challenges which underlie the treatment of cancer.

You can opt for a Postgraduate Diploma on completion of the core modules and 30 credits of optional modules, or a Masters on successful completion of the taught programme and an independently researched dissertation.

Why Study this Course?

Birmingham is a major Centre for Cancer Treatment, both adult and paediatric, is home to the West Midlands Genomic Medicine Centre, part of the 100,000 genomes project, led from University Hospital Birmingham and has a CR-UK Cancer Centre which was re-established at the University of Birmingham in 2017.

The aim of this programme is to give you a scientific understanding of the cellular basis of cancer. We then discuss how understanding the molecular pathology of the disease can help in stratifying patients to personalised cancer therapeutic approaches and disease management.

This course:

  • Offers a unique opportunity to undertake a clinical observership in a West Midlands hospital.
  • Is run at the Birmingham Cancer Research UK Centre.
  • Draws on expertise from staff within the Institute of Cancer and Genomic Sciences and clinical staff from Birmingham Hospitals plus invited speakers from across the country.
  • Will provide overseas full-time students with a unique opportunity to gain clinical observership status and log your hours observing in a UK based hospital.
  • Can contribute towards career development and open up further career progression opportunities.
  • Can be tailored to suit your own interests by selecting your own choice of modules.
  • Has part-time or full-time versions available.
  • Is taught in week-long blocks of study.
  • Meets the training requirements of the FRCR part I exams.
  • Will increase your personal knowledge of the practices and principles of clinical oncology.
  • Will give you the ability to improve the standards of clinical oncology practised at your institute or place of work.

Entry Requirements

As this programme is focused around professional practice It is essential that you have at least six months experience working in an oncology environment. This may include experience in medicine, surgery, pharmacy and the pharmaceutical industry, nursing, radiography, clinical trials, and other related disciplines.

You will also need an undergraduate degree in a suitable subject. This could include, but is not restricted to, the following fields: medicine, radiography, pharmacy, or relevant and equivalent experience/professional qualifications.

The University accepts Accreditation of Prior Learning (APL).

International Students

Academic requirements

We accept a range of qualifications, our country pages show you what qualifications we accept from your country.

English language requirements

You can satisfy our English language requirements in two ways:

English to IELTS 6.5 (with a minimum of 6.0 in each component).

If you need help with your English language skills then support is available.

The English for Academic Purposes Presessional course is for international students who have a conditional offer to study at the university, but who do not currently meet the English language requirements. The course is tailored to your level of English and allows you to meet the English language requirements for your programme without retaking IELTS. The EAP programme runs throughout the year and offers different programme lengths ranging from 42 weeks to 6 weeks. The length of course you need depends on your future course, your existing IELTS score and the English level you need for your university degree.


If you are thinking about a career in Clinical Oncology you'll find the Royal College of Radiologists web pages a useful source of information with videos and case studies.

Dr Selvi Radhakrishna, a graduate from the PG Diploma in Clinical Oncology programme here at the University of Birmingham, has written a book that presents the various cultural issues an Indian woman might face when diagnosed with breast cancer. This New Indian Express article tells the story.

Several MSc Clinical Oncology students have gone on to have papers published based on their dissertations (examples can be found in the links below):

Careers Network – We can help you get ahead in the job market and develop your career

We recognise that as a postgraduate student you are likely to have specific requirements when it comes to planning for your next career step. Employers expect postgraduates to have a range of skills that exceed their subject knowledge.

Careers Network offers a range of events and support services that are designed for all students, including postgraduates looking to find their niche in the job market. The Careers Network also has subject-specific careers consultants and advisers for each College so you can be assured the information you receive will be relevant to your subject area.

Last updated Feb 2020

About the School

The College of Medical and Dental Sciences at the University of Birmingham is a major international centre for research and education in medicine, medical sciences, dentistry, nursing and physiotherap ... Read More

The College of Medical and Dental Sciences at the University of Birmingham is a major international centre for research and education in medicine, medical sciences, dentistry, nursing and physiotherapy. Read less