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Welcome to the Faculty of Biology, Medicine and Health

We welcome you to the start of your Postgraduate Taught Programme in the School of Biological Sciences, Faculty of Biology, Medicine and Health at the University of Manchester. The University has a worldwide reputation based on high quality teaching and research, and I am sure that your taught programme will provide an inspirational platform for your future career success.

Within the Faculty, our goal is to create an environment that allows you to excel and reach your full potential. Offering access to first-class facilities and strong links with eminent researchers, commercial partners and regional health-service providers, our postgraduate taught programmes are designed to meet the diverse needs of all our students. The curriculum of our taught programmes provides the knowledge and skills you will need in your subject area and all our Masters programmes include an opportunity to carry out an independent research project on subjects spanning areas of life sciences and biomedical research from molecular to experimental biology and clinical medicine. While subject areas cover a broad range of disciplines, all our taught programmes have a number of common aims:

  • To enhance your knowledge, and a critical awareness of your chosen subject. Whether you are a graduate, professional or have a clinical background, the programmes have been tailored based on previous student feedback.
  • To obtain a comprehensive understanding of techniques applicable to your area of research and to develop new skills to a high level.
  • To address complex issues with originality and insight.
  • To demonstrate self-direction and an independent learning ability required for future career progression.

As a student of the Faculty of Biology, Medicine and Health, you will be expected to take responsibility for your learning, within a supportive environment that fosters your development and helps prepare you for your future career. This handbook will be a useful resource as you progress through your taught programme. It provides programme specific information that I am sure that you will find helpful throughout your study. If however, you have questions or would like some further advice, please do not hesitate to contact the people listed in this handbook for further information and assistance.

I wish you every success as you embark upon your taught programme, and in your future career.

Professor Sarah Herrick
Director for Postgraduate Taught Education for the School of Biological Sciences; Faculty of Biology, Medicine and Health


Compulsory Introductory Course

All students are automatically enrolled onto an introductory unit (BIOL62000) that provides information on health and safety, academic malpractice and academic literacy. Completion instructions for each of these sections are clearly defined within the course.

Completion of the academic malpractice and health and safety sections is mandatory for all students. All assessments must be completed as soon as possible after the programme begins, with the academic malpractice assessment completed before the first piece of coursework is submitted and no later than 31 October 2021. Completion of these assessments is monitored by the School.

All students are also strongly advised to complete the academic literacy section.

Key Contact Details

If you have any queries or concerns at any time during your period of study at The University of Manchester, there is a range of people you can approach. The Programme Administration Team will be your first point of call for general issues. Alternatively, you may wish to contact the Programme Director or Pathway Lead for specific aspects to do with the course or your Academic Advisor for career development issues. If you wish to raise a confidential matter at School level, you should approach the Deputy Head of Teaching, Learning and Student Experience – contact details below.

Responsibility for overall management of the Programme lies with the Programme Director who has assembled a Programme Committee, which meets regularly, to advise on content, structure, management, student supervision, and regulatory matters such as Programme improvement and refinement. The Committee also includes the student representative who is democratically elected by you to attend these meetings.

School PGT Director
• Professor Sarah Herrick

Deputy Head of Teaching, Learning and Student Experience
• Mrs Kelly Salimian

Programme Director
• Dr Emma Jenkinson

Pathway Lead: Genomic Counselling
• Dr Rhona Macleod

Pathway Lead: Genomics
• Dr Helen Stuart

Pathway Lead: Cancer Genomics
• Dr Paul Shore

MAHSE Office

Programme Administration Team

Your first point of call should be directed as follows:

• Student Support

• Assessments

• Curriculum

Student Representative
• To be appointed democratically

Your contact details

You will be supplied with a student e-mail address. The University will direct communications to you by using your student e-mail address and it is your responsibility to ensure that you can access and read mail from this source.  You should check your university email regularly and in turn should send all emails to the University using your student email address.



Blackboard is a web-based system that complements and builds upon traditional learning methods used at The University of Manchester. All course-related materials will be placed on Blackboard so it is essential that you familiarise yourself with the system as soon as possible. Blackboard also offers Discussion forums which you may find a useful resource to share information about assignments and other course-related queries.

Blackboard is available to students.

  • Students should access Blackboard via My Manchester
  • Queries (technical related) should be directed to the eLearning team
  • Queries (course content related) should be directed to: the Programme Administration Team


School/University Facilities

Computers and printers:

On campus, access to computers, printers, email and the internet is available at several computer clusters within the School including the Multiuser laboratories on the ground floor of the Stopford Building. Additionally, there is a Postgraduate Hub on the 3rd Floor of the Stopford Building.

Food/Drink on Campus

There is a café bar and students’ common room on the 1st floor of the Stopford Building.  Also, Innovation Cafe and Starbucks are on the Ground Floor of the Manchester Biotech Incubator Building (which is attached to the Stopford Building and can be accessed using your student card on the ground floor).

International students

The International Society is a busy centre for international students based in the Greater Manchester area. It is located on Oxford Road (see campus map).

The society offers students the opportunity to engage with social events, visit places of interest as well as language support and cultural events.

Sharing Information

The University may share appropriate information relating to your health and/or conduct with external organisations such as your professional employer(s) (for example, relevant NHS Trust, Professional and Statutory Regulatory Bodies (PSRB)), placement and training providers and/or regulator. This may occur where concerns in relation to your health and/or conduct arise and the University considers it necessary for them to be disclosed to one or more of the above organisations. The University’s Privacy Notice for Registered Students (which is accessible via this link) includes further information about how the University may use and process your personal data, including the legal basis and conditions which may be relevant to such processing (see section 6 of the Privacy Notice). The University will only disclose special category data (such as data relating to your health) to a third party organisation where one of the additional conditions are satisfied (see section 9 of the Privacy Notice), including where processing is necessary for reasons of substantial public interest.

Staying Safe – Covid-19

Feeling prepared and equipped at the present time inevitably brings thoughts of health and safety. We have followed the advice from Universities UK, Public Health England and the Foreign and Commonwealth Office to make sure our campus is a safe and happy environment for you to start your studies.

When arriving on campus, you’ll notice the changes we’ve made to keep everyone safe. For example, our buildings will have clearly marked entry and exit points; we’ll be asking everyone to sanitise or clean their hands immediately on entry; and markings on floors, stairwells and doors will help maintain social distancing.

It’s important for everyone to follow the guidelines on campus to keep themselves and others safe. We have faith that all members of our University community will do the right thing.

Our ‘Staying Safe’ microsite outlines the safety measures that are in place as well as useful information regarding:-

 Student Frequently Asked Questions is regularly updated online but if you can’t find what you are looking for, please contact your school as soon as possible.

Programme Information

The MSc Clinical Sciences (Genomic Sciences) is designed to provide students with a knowledge and understanding of the theory and practice of Genomic science. The diagram below provides a high level overview of the STP that trainees in Genomic Sciences will undertake, noting that trainees will specialise in one of the 3 areas: Genomics, Genomic Counselling or Cancer Genomics.

The MSc Clinical Science (Genomic Sciences) is a 3 year part-time programme is delivered by the University of Manchester (UoM) in collaboration with Manchester Metropolitan University (MMU), Manchester Centre for Genomic Medicine and Liverpool University.


  • Equip students with knowledge and understanding of the theory and practice of either genomic counselling, genomics or cancer genomics..
  • Produce graduates with a critical understanding of how data generated by genomic science service laboratories is employed to develop a clinical diagnosis, and how this information can be utilised in mainstream medicine.
  • Contribute to innovation, change and service developments in clinical science at both the laboratory and institutional levels by equipping students with a systematic and critical understanding of relevant knowledge, theoretical frameworks and advanced skills.
  • Enhance career-long development and promote lifelong learning in students in order to support and enhance best practice in genomic counselling, genomic science or cancer genomics.
  • Develop the students’ analytical and interpretative skills through the undertaking of a comprehensive research project.

Learning Outcomes

Knowledge & Understanding

On completion of the programme students should be able to:

  • (All pathways)Demonstrate knowledge of the normal physiology of the major organ systems of the body
  • (All pathways) Display a critical understanding of the regulatory processes and practices involved in conducting research in a health service or academic setting.
  • (All pathways) Demonstrate a knowledge and critical understanding of the use of internal and external quality assurance systems in health service laboratories
  • (All pathways) Display knowledge of the theory and critical understanding of the use of the major analytical techniques employed within the genomic science disciplines.
  • (Genomic counselling pathway only) Exhibit knowledge of the scientific basis and practice of genomic counselling, and a critical understanding the role the discipline plays in the investigation, diagnosis and management of disease.
  • (Genomics pathway only) Exhibit knowledge of the scientific basis and practice of genomics, and a critical understanding the role the discipline plays in the investigation, diagnosis and management of disease.
  • (Cancer Genomics pathway only) Exhibit knowledge of the scientific basis and practice of Cancer Genomics, and a critical understanding the role the discipline plays in the investigation, diagnosis and management of disease.
  • (All pathways) To systematically and critically employ the knowledge and understanding obtained during the taught component of the programme to address an original research question through the design and undertaking of a comprehensive research project and production of a dissertation.

Intellectual Skills

At the end of the programme students should be able to:

  • Critically reflect on and challenge their own practice, the practice of others and the organisation and delivery of clinical genomic services in order to ensure use of appropriate values and best evidence in delivering patient care and management.
  • Appraise and interpret information from different sources in order to develop a coherent critical analysis of issues relating to the practice and delivery of clinical genomic services.
  • Systematically and objectively evaluate what genomic investigations may be indicated in order to establish a genetic diagnosis in a patient with specific clinical signs and symptoms.
  • Critically evaluate the performance of new analytical technologies in the context of the specific requirements of the health service.
  • Critically analyse and objectively evaluate data from different analytical and diagnostic platforms.
  • Interpret genomic data in the context of establishing a clinical genetic diagnosis and potentially informing appropriate treatment.
  • Synthesize, analyse and systematically combine information obtained from different sources to develop a defined original research question and then to address it through the development of a coherent research project.
  • Interpret and interrogate scientific data leading to the generation of valid and defensible scientific conclusions.

Practical Skills

Students should be able to:

  • To effectively communicate with colleagues within the clinical genomic service and other clinical staff through the presentation of verbal and written reports
  • To collect, collate and record scientific data according to established health service practices
  • Contribute to the advancement of effective and timely patient diagnosis through a knowledge and understanding of the multidisciplinary environment of the clinical genomic service within the modern health service.
  • Utilise appropriate theoretical frameworks and evidence-based constructs to formulate proposals to advance clinical science practice that is responsive to the diverse needs of service users and carers.
  • Contribute to the strategies for practice development and change at both a team and organisational level to enhance access to and effectiveness of clinical science services.
  • Design a scientifically valid research strategy to address a specific research question relevant to modern clinical science practice.
  • Produce a cogent dissertation that contains a critical analysis and evaluation of data generated during research project and a concise valid interpretation of the research findings.

Transferable Skills and Personal Qualities

On completion of the programme students should be able to:

  • Communicate effectively in a variety of settings with a range of individuals.
  • Effectively utilise information technology/health informatics.
  • Demonstrate research and enquiry skills by accessing and analysing literature in order to inform and develop practice.
  • Work co-operatively and effectively with others as a member of a team.
  • Reflect on their own academic and clinical performance and utilise strategies to improve these.
  • Use logical and systematic approaches to problem-solving and decision-making.

Programme Structure and Credits

The programme is composed of a 120 credit taught component which consists of 60 credits of core teaching and 60 credits of discipline specific teaching.

The programme(s) will be constructed to a large extent from content already accredited for other Manchester Masters programmes. The new specialism content will be as follows

Core Taught Units (Year 1)

The units within this section of the programme are compulsory and will be taken by all students registered on the MSc Clinical Science (Genomic Sciences).

BIOL64560: Intro. to Healthcare Science, Professional Practice and Clinical Leadership (30 credits)

All pathways:

20credits: Professional Practice and Intro to Healthcare Sciences

10credits: Clinical Bioinformatics and Genetics

BIOL65460: Introduction to Genomics and Clinical Practice (30 credits)

Genomics pathway:

10 credits: Fundamentals of Human Genetics

10 credits: rotational option

10 credits: rotational option

Genomic Counselling pathway:

10 credits: Fundamentals of Human Genetics

10 credits: Principles & Practice of Genetic Counselling

10 credits: rotational option

Cancer Genomics pathway:

10 credits: Fundamentals of Human Genetics

20 credits: Introduction to Cancer Genomics

Year 1

BIOL64560: Introduction to Healthcare Science, Professional Practice and Clinical Leadership (30 credits)

To be fully compatible with the MSC curriculum this unit contains ‘’Introduction to Healthcare science” (20 credits) and “Introduction to clinical bioinformatics and genetics” (10 credits)

Introduction to healthcare science

NHS Trainees and qualified NHS staff are required to meet professional standards as defined by Good Scientific Practice and the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC – the regulatory body). This involves working and training in a safe, lawful and effective manner. High levels of communication skills are required to interact effectively with multidisciplinary clinical teams. It is also crucial to understand the impact that healthcare scientists have in the patient pathway.

This unit will enable trainees to gain the knowledge, skills, experience and tools to develop, improve and maintain high standards of professional practice during their training and beyond. The unit will explore the principles of good clinical practice (GCP), medical ethics, communication, clinical history taking and leadership skills. The unit also provides a broad knowledge and understanding in key areas within healthcare science which are relevant across disciplines by providing an introduction into public health, psychosocial aspects of health and disease, clinical pharmacology/ therapeutics, genomics/bioinformatics and medical imaging.

Introduction to clinical bioinformatics and genetics

This bioinformatics module will provide trainees with background knowledge of genetics and a knowledge and understanding of bioinformatics tools and infrastructure. In particular it will show how bioinformatics strategies can be used and applied to genomic and genetic data to generate information and knowledge that contributes to patient care and care pathways within a clinical setting. It will also introduce the ethical and governance framework appropriate for working with patient data in an NHS setting

BIOL65460: Introduction to Genomics and Clinical Practice (30 credits)

The overall aim of this unit is to provide trainees with the knowledge that underpins the STP work-based professional rotations in Year 1 (equivalent to three 10 credit modules, 2 compulsory and 1 optional for Genomic Counselling and 1 compulsory and 2 optional for Genomics). On the Cancer Genomics pathway this unit consists of 2 compulsory modules (one 10 credit and one 20 credit module).

Genomic Counselling

Genetics, Genomics and Molecular Science (compulsory), Principles and Practice of Genetic and Genomic Counselling (compulsory) and Principles and Practice of Reproductive Science and Diagnostic Semen Analysis (optional) or Introduction to the Principles and Practice of Histology (optional) or Investigation of Major Organ Function (Clinical Biochemistry) (optional)


Genetics, Genomics and Molecular Science (compulsory), and Principles and Practice of Reproductive Science and Diagnostic Semen Analysis (optional) or Introduction to the Principles and Practice of Histology (optional) or Investigation of Major Organ Function (Clinical Biochemistry) (optional) or Clinical Immunology (optional) or Haematology and Transfusion Science (optional) or Cytopathology (optional)

Cancer Genomics

Genetics, Genomics and Molecular Science (compulsory), and Introduction to Cancer Genomics (Compulsory module)

Genetics, Genomics and Molecular Science [Fundamentals of Human Genetics] (Compulsory all trainees)

Trainees will be provided with an introduction to human genetics, genomics and molecular science. They will understand the organisation and delivery of a genetics and genomics laboratory service.

Principles and Practice of Genetic and Genomic Counselling (Compulsory Genomic Counselling trainees, optional genomics trainees)

Trainees will be provided with an introduction to the scope and diversity of genetic and genomic counselling practice. Such practice is wholly patient-centred and key themes such as the importance of the partnership between patient and counsellor and collaborative decision-making will be explored

Principles and Practice of Reproductive Science and Diagnostic Semen Analysis (optional)

This module will provide the trainee with knowledge and understanding of the normal physiology of the male and female reproductive tracts. They will apply this knowledge as they learn to perform a range of techniques and interpret results from diagnostic semen analysis. They will also gain knowledge of current legislation and regulations

Introduction to the Principles and Practice of Histology (optional)

This module will provide the trainee with knowledge and understanding of the principles and practice of histology, as applied to clinical medicine. They will be expected to apply this knowledge and understanding in the workplace as they use a range of histological techniques and gain experience of interpreting results from patient investigations.

Investigation of Major Organ Function (Clinical Biochemistry) (optional)

This module will provide the trainee with the knowledge and understanding of the normal physiology of the major organs and the biochemical parameters in common use for the investigation and management of major organ dysfunction.

Clinical Immunology (optional genomics only)

This module will provide the trainee with an introduction to the immune system and immune responses. They will understand the organisation and delivery of a clinical immunology laboratory service

Haematology and Transfusion Science (optional genomics only)

This module will provide the trainee with the knowledge and understanding of the formation of blood cells, the mechanism of haemostasis and the relevance of blood group antigens and antibodies. They will understand the principles and practice of common methods used in haematology, haemostasis and blood transfusion.

Cytopathology (optional genomics only)

This module will provide the trainee with knowledge and understanding of cervical cytology and an overview of the role and limitations of diagnostic cytopathology.

Introduction to Cancer Genomics (Compulsory Cancer Genomics only)

This module will provide the trainee with an introduction to the principles and practice of cancer genomics including elements of both haematology and histopathology in the context of the pathogenesis of neoplastic disorders. They will understand the organization and delivery of laboratory services for patients referred with a differential cancer diagnosis. They will understand the principles and practices of common methods used in the processing of clinical samples and gain an understanding of the interpretation of patient results in a variety of clinical settings.


Year 2 and 3: Discipline Specific Taught Units (60 credits)

This section of the programme permits a student to specialise in a specific Genomic science discipline either Genomics or Genomic Counselling or Cancer Genomics. Each specialism pathway consists of a prescribed number of subject specific taught units (see Figure 1).

Please note that for administrative purposes and due to the 15 credit framework employed by the UoM for its Masters programmes the 10 credit Research Methods unit present in the MSC curriculum has been split into two 5 credit blocks, which have been incorporated into the two year 2 clinical units.

Genomic Counselling

All the subject specific units in the Genomic counselling pathway will be delivered by UoM.

Year 2

To be fully compatible with the MSc curriculum these two units delivered in year 2 each nominally contain 5 credits of research methods generic content.

Counselling and Communication skills for Genetic Counsellors (15 credits):

The overall aim of this module is to provide students with the knowledge and skills to communicate with patients and their families around genetic and genomic testing.

This module will provide the trainee with an introduction to counselling theories relevant to the practice of genetic and genomic counselling, in addition to training in counselling skills. Trainees will understand the process of psychological adaptation to a genetic or genomic diagnosis in the family, including the range of coping responses to deal with uncertainty and potential future loss. In the work-based module they will be expected to observe and participate in patient-centred genetic and genomic counselling consultations, practising and applying effective counselling and communication skills to meet the psychological, social and cultural needs of individuals and their families.

Applied Genetics and Genomics (15 credits):

This module will provide an introduction to the clinical presentation and manifestations of rare inherited and common diseases, to address how appropriate genomic testing can impact on diagnosis and management of the families concerned and to consider the patient and family perspective with respect to the role and impact of genomics. Both childhood and adult onset diseases will be covered. The module will also focus on the strategies currently used to identify gene alterations in the clinical situation. Students will learn how to identify the most frequently encountered common and rare genetic disease phenotypes and how to select cases with unmet diagnostic need that will benefit from genomic testing. A combination of lectures together with preparation and interactive discussion around individual cases will be used. The content will cover both single gene disorders and those with multifactorial or polygenic inheritance. The interactive components will be used to develop and enhance practical skills which can then be utilised directly by students involved in subsequent patient care.

Year 3

Advanced Genomic Counselling and Ethical Practice (15 credits):

This module will provide the trainee with opportunities to practice advanced communication skills and critically evaluate theories of counselling relevant to practice. The module builds on the knowledge and skills acquired in the counselling and communication skills module in Year 2, to enable trainees to develop their skills of critical reflection, including the impact of their actions on the patient and the patient’s family. It will also enable the trainee to explore a range of ethical issues that arise in genetic and genomic counselling practice, e.g. around issues of confidentiality of genetic and genomic information in the family context and the ways in which these may be approached and managed.

The module will be delivered as blended learning with interactive online materials providing opportunities for focused active learning. These are supplemented with support from tutors and group seminars

Genomics and Bioinformatics in Advanced Clinical Care (15 credits):

This module will provide the trainee with an in-depth understanding of the role of genomic testing in establishing a genetic diagnosis. They will develop the expertise to support the diagnostic process (as part of a multidisciplinary team approach) through exploration of the relationship between genotype and phenotype and develop the skills to communicate this information to families. The trainee will also extend their understanding of genomics, how the patient’s phenotype and the family history can contribute constructively, together with expertise from clinical geneticists, clinical scientists in the laboratory and in bioinformatics, as well as other specialist colleagues, in determining the pathogenicity of variants.

The module will be delivered as blended learning comprising online learning sessions (including demonstration videos, reflective exercises, and self-assessment quizzes), face to face teaching with interactive workshops and webinar case based discussions.



All the subject specific units in the Genomics pathway will be delivered by UoM, with the exception of ‘Genomics of Sporadic Cancers’, which will be delivered at Liverpool University.

Year 2

To be fully compatible with the MSC curriculum these two units delivered in year 2 each nominally contain 5 credits of research methods generic content.

Prenatal Genomics (15 credits):

This unit will provide the trainee with knowledge and understanding of the role and application of genetic and genomic testing for prenatal testing, including screening and diagnosis. It will also consider the potential impact of prenatal testing on the patient and their family. The unit employs a range of teaching and learning approaches including: lecturers, tutorials, case studies/presentations, problem-based learning and data analysis and interpretation exercises.

Paediatric Genomics (15 credits):

This unit will provide the trainee with knowledge and understanding of the role and application of genetic and genomic testing in the diagnosis and management of paediatric patients with rare inherited diseases, including the implications for other family members.

The content for this module will focus on (as exemplars): newborns who present as dysmorphic, failure to thrive, ambiguous genitalia or who are hypotonic. those patients who have a clinical suspicion of Duchenne muscular dystrophy, spinal muscular atrophy, Prader-Willi and Angelman syndrome, fragile X syndrome, myotonic dystrophy, cystic fibrosis, disorders of sexual differentiation, children with developmental delay or delayed puberty.

Year 3

Adult Genetic and Genomic Disorders (15 credits):

This unit will provide the student with knowledge and understanding of the role and application of genetic and genomic testing in the diagnosis and management of patients with adult onset genetic and genomic disorders, as well as the implications for other family members. The content for this module will focus on patients who present with features of: inherited peripheral neuropathies, neurogenetic conditions, hypertrophic and dilated cardiomyopathy, infertility (using cystic fibrosis and chromosome disorders), Fragile X testing for premature ovarian failure, inherited breast cancer and Lynch syndrome, Huntington’s disease, Myotonic dystrophy and Friedreich ataxia

The unit employs a range of teaching and learning approaches including: lecturers, tutorials, case studies/presentations, problem-based learning and data analysis and interpretation exercises.

Genomics of Sporadic Cancers (15 credits):

This module will provide the trainee with knowledge and understanding of the role and application of genetic and genomic testing in the diagnosis and management of patients with sporadic cancers.

The content for this module will focus on patients who present with acquired cancers including Chronic Myeloid Leukaemia (CML), Acute Lymphoblastic Leukaemia (ALL), Acute Myeloid Leukaemia (AML), sporadic colorectal cancer and lung cancer.

The unit employs a range of teaching and learning approaches including: lecturers, tutorials, case studies/presentations, problem-based learning and data analysis and interpretation exercises.

Cancer Genomics

All the subject specific units in the Genomics pathway will be delivered by UoM

Year 2

To be fully compatible with the MSC curriculum these two units delivered in year 2 each nominally contain 5 credits of research methods generic content.

Haematological Malignancies 1 (15 credits)

This module provides trainees with a basic working knowledge of the role of molecular pathology in the diagnosis of haematological malignancies. They are introduced to the current classification of haematological malignancies according to international guidelines (e.g. World Health Organisation, WHO) and the techniques frequently applied within the laboratory. The trainee will acquire the skills required to aid with the management of haematological malignancies, using the myeloproliferative malignancies, chronic myeloid leukaemia (CML), chronic lymphocytic leukaemia (CLL), classical hairy cell leukaemia and Burkitt lymphoma as exemplars throughout the module; all of the techniques and procedures performed can also apply to other haematological malignancies.

Solid Tumours 1 (15 credits)

This module provides trainees with an introduction into the molecular mechanisms leading to the development of solid cancer and the associated genomic testing. Using colorectal cancer and melanoma as exemplars throughout, they will understand the organisation and delivery of a diagnostic tumour genotyping service. They will perform some common methods used for diagnostic testing of these cancers and gain an understanding into both the analysis and interpretation of patient results, and the need for additional investigations and the importance of cross-discipline working in both the laboratory and wider clinical setting.

The trainee will acquire the skills required to aid with the management of solid malignancies, using colorectal cancer and melanoma as exemplars throughout the module; all of the techniques and procedures performed can also apply to other solid tumours. Other solid tumours (breast cancer, lung cancer and soft tissue tumours) will also be used as examples for the use of cancer genomics for diagnosis in solid tumours.

Year 3

Haematological Malignancies 2 (15 credits)

This unit builds on the concepts and approaches identified in the haematological malignancies 1 module by investigating more complex and heterogeneous haematological neoplasms including myeloid (AML, MDS) and lymphoid malignancies (CLL, large B cell lymphomas). Trainees will appreciate the importance of the role of molecular genetics approaches for the correct classification of heterogeneous disorders such as AML and Diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (DLBCL). Trainees will also gain knowledge of other haematological malignancies such as acute lymphoblastic leukaemia, myeloma and less common lymphoid malignancies.

Solid Tumours 2 (15 credits)

Using lung and ovarian cancer as exemplars trainees will develop an understanding of the organisation and delivery of a complex cancer genotyping service. They will learn about common laboratory methods, interpretation of genomic results and will develop an understanding of the need for additional investigations as well as use of associated targeted therapies. Trainees will build upon previous knowledge gained in the context of relapse, metastasis, resistance, as well as the roles of first and second line therapeutics. Furthermore, this module will increase the knowledge base for applications to monitor disease and use less-invasive sampling strategies. They will consider how this impacts on patient management, personalised medicine and therapeutic options. They will also develop an awareness of common central nervous system (CNS) tumours. Trainees will understand the contribution of germline mutations to cancer and the implications for patients and their families. They will recognize the importance of cross-discipline cancer genomic analysis.

Research Project in Cancer Genomics

This unit provides trainees with the opportunity to undertake a research project located within the specialism of genomic science. The research project may span scientific or clinical research, translational research, operational and policy research, clinical education research, innovation, service development, service improvement, or supporting professional service users to meet the expected learning outcomes. Research projects should be designed to take into account the research training required by individual trainees and the needs of the department in which the research is to be conducted.

All Pathways

Research Project and Dissertation (60 credits)

This permits students to develop and refine core research and transferable skills in addition to expanding their knowledge and understanding of either: genomics, genomic counselling or cancer genomics.

The research project will usually be completed during years 2 and 3 of the course. The project can be undertaken full-time over 8-10 weeks or a part-time over an extended period. The programme expects employers to allow students sufficient “protected” time to complete their projects within the time frame outlined above. If a student is having difficulties he/she should immediately contact their Academic Advisor or the Programme Director.

Please refer to the MSc Clinical Science Genomic Sciences dissertation handbook for further detailed information about the research project and guidance on Masters level dissertations. The dissertation handbook can be found on the Community Space on Blackboard.


Programme Specific Induction

Programme specific induction will be held in October 2020. Please refer to your Welcome documents sent by email.

MAHSE Induction

Induction materials will be provided online.

Deadlines for Assessed Work

The deadline for any piece of assessed work is 16:00 on the due date. Please refer to your timetable for any due dates you may have.


Please refer to the Genomic Sciences STP Dissertation handbook.

Recording Lectures

Please do not assume you can record lectures with a voice recorder or similar device. If you wish to record a lecture or other teaching session, ensure you obtain the prior permission of the lecturer. You may not share any recordings with any other person (including by electronic media) without first being given specific permission by the lecturer.


Programme Management

The programme is managed and operated in accordance with the policies, principles, regulations and procedures of The University of Manchester.

The Programme Directors, have day-to-day responsibility for the management of the programmes and are assisted by the Programme Administration Team.

Programme Committee

The Programme Committee meet 3 times a year. The committee’s functions and responsibilities are to maintain the standards of teaching, to evaluate and revise the programme in the light of feedback, to monitor student progression and to provide a forum for discussion between the University and the students.

The Programme Committee reviews the annual monitoring report and acts on recommendations arising from the annual monitoring process.

The membership of the Programme Committee includes: the Programme Directors; the Programme Administration Team; Teaching Staff and Student Representatives.

The Programme Committee report to the Consortium and School PGT Committee.

External Examiner

The External Examiners for this programme are Prof Ashild Lunde, University of Bergen (Genomic Counselling pathway), Professor Robert Taylor, Newcastle University (Genomics pathway) and Dr Michael Hubank, Institute for Cancer Research (Cancer Genomics pathway)

Please note that it is for information only and it is inappropriate for students to make direct contact with External Examiners under any circumstances, in particular with regards to a student’s individual performance in assessments. Other appropriate mechanisms are available for students, including the University’s appeals or complaints procedures and the UMSU Advice Centre. In cases where a student does contact an External Examiner directly, External Examiners have been requested not to respond to direct queries. Instead, External Examiners should report the matter to their School contact who will then contact the student to remind them of the other methods available for students. If students have any queries concerning this, they should contact their Programme Administrator in the first instance.

The role of the External Examiner

External Examiners are individuals from another institution or organisation who monitor the assessment processes of the University to ensure fairness and academic standards. They ensure that assessment and examination procedures have been fairly and properly implemented and that decisions have been made after appropriate deliberation. They also ensure that standards of awards and levels of student performance are at least comparable with those in equivalent higher education institutions.

External Examiners’ reports

External Examiners’ reports relating to this programme will be shared with student representatives and details of any actions carried out by the programme team/School in response to the External Examiners’ comments will be discussed. Students should contact their student representatives if they require any further information about External Examiners’ reports or the process for considering them.



Progress and Assessment


Deadlines for Assessed Work

All assessed work must be handed in at the prescribed time. Dates will be published in advance of the deadline. We recommend that you transfer these dates to your diaries as soon as they are published.

Assignment Word Count (Including Dissertation)

In accordance with the University Policy on Marking:

Each written assignment has a word limit which you must state at the top of your first page. It is acceptable, without penalty, for you to submit an assignment within a range that is plus 10% of this limit. If you present an assignment with a word count exceeding the specified limit+10%, the assignment will be marked but 1% will be deducted from this mark for every 100 words over the limit given.

For an original word limit that is 1000 words and an assignment that is marked out of 100.  If a submission is made that is 1101 words then it exceeded the 10% leeway, and is more than 100 words over the original limit and should receive a 1 mark deduction.

In accordance with accepted academic practice, when submitting any written assignment for summative assessment, the notion of a word count includes the following without exception:

  • All titles or headings that form part of the actual text. This does not include the fly page or reference list
  • All words that form the actual essay
  • All words forming the titles for figures, tables and boxes, are included but this does not include boxes or tables or figures themselves
  • All in-text (that is bracketed) references
  • All directly quoted material

Certain assessments may require different penalties for word limits to be applied. For example, if part of the requirement for the assessment is conciseness of presentation of facts and arguments. In such cases it may be that no 10% leeway is allowed and penalties applied may be stricter than described above. In such cases the rules for word count limits and the penalties to be applied will be clearly stated in the assessment brief and in the submission details for that assessment.

Submitting your work

All assignments must be submitted electronically. The published deadlines for assessments all relate to the electronic submission which is completed via Blackboard, using the Turnitin system in the majority of cases. You must submit by the deadline advertised in your timetable/assessment handbook.

  • Submitting an electronic copy of the work
  • Log onto Blackboard via My Manchester
  • Click on the relevant course unit
  • Go to assessment folder
  • Upload your assignment via the Turnitin process


The University uses electronic systems for the purposes of detecting plagiarism and other forms of academic malpractice and for marking. Such systems include Turnitin, the plagiarism detection service used by the University.

The School also reserves the right to submit work handed in by you for formative or summative assessment to Turnitin and/or other electronic systems used by the University.

Please note that when work is submitted to the relevant electronic systems, it may be copied and then stored in a database to allow appropriate checks to be made.

Please note that you can only upload one document so you cannot save your references/appendices as a separate document.


Guidance for Presentation of Taught Masters Dissertations

The University of Manchester guidance on presentation of taught Masters Dissertations is available at:
Guidance for the presentation of Taught Masters dissertations

The guidance explains the required presentation of the dissertation, and failure to follow the instructions in the guidance may result in the dissertation being rejected by the examiners.

There is more information on taught masters dissertation requirements on Blackboard: 


Extensions to Assignment Deadlines

On rare occasions students may need to request an extension to a coursework deadline due to circumstances beyond their control. If you need to request an extension to your assignment submission deadline then you must submit an extension request form which must be accompanied by supporting evidence (medical letters, certificates or other appropriate evidence). The supporting evidence must justify the length of the requested extension.

The extension request form is available via the Student Support Team (

The form should be submitted as soon as possible before the coursework deadline and should be submitted to the Student Support Team.

It is your responsibility to ensure that your request has been received.

You will be notified of the outcome of your request via email as soon as possible. Please note that an extension to a deadline is classed as mitigation. Mitigation can only be applied once to a piece of work. i.e. you cannot have an deadline extension and also apply for mitigation for poor performance due to the same circumstances.


Late Submission Penalty (Including Dissertation)

Work submitted after the deadline without prior approval will be subject to a late penalty in accordance with the University Policy on Submission of Work for Summative Assessment on Taught Programmes.  The penalty applied is 10% of available marks deducted per day/24 hours (from the time of the original or extended deadline), until the assignment is submitted or no marks remain.

Penalties for late submission relate to 24 hours/calendar days, so include weekends and weekdays, as well as bank holidays and University closure days.

The mark awarded for the piece of work will be reduced by:
10% of the available marks deducted if up to 24 hours (1 day) late
20% of the available marks deducted if up to 48 hours (2 days) late
30% of the available marks deducted if up to 72 hours (3 days) late
40% of the available marks deducted if up to 96 hours (4 days) late
50% of the available marks deducted if up to 120 hours (5 days) late
60% of the available marks deducted if up to 144 hours (6 days) late
70% of the available marks deducted if up to 168 hours (7 days) late
80% of the available marks deducted if up to 192 hours (8 days) late
90% of the available marks deducted if up to 216 hours (9 days) late
100% of the available marks deducted if up to 240 hours (10 days) late

If the assessment is submitted within 10 days of the deadline the assessment should be marked and feedback to the student provided. If this mark before the penalty is applied reaches the appropriate pass mark but the applied penalty results in a fail of the assessment, the student should not be required to resit the assessment as the original mark can be taken as the resit mark. Further information and examples can be found in the Policy and associated Guidance documents.

For work submitted more than 10 days late, it is regarded as a non-submission and need not be marked. In this case a mark of zero will be awarded and normal resit regulations will apply.

The sliding scale should only be applied to first-sit submissions. For all referred (resit) assessment, any late submission will automatically receive a mark of zero.

For further information:

Guidance on Late Submission

Policy on the Submission of Work for Summative Assessment on Taught Programmes


Academic Malpractice

Academic malpractice is any activity – intentional or otherwise – that is likely to undermine the integrity essential to scholarship and research. It includes plagiarism, collusion, fabrication or falsification of results, and anything else that could result in unearned or undeserved credit for those committing it. Academic malpractice can result from a deliberate act of cheating or may be committed unintentionally. Whether intended or not, all incidents of academic malpractice will be treated seriously by the University.

The procedures and penalties for dealing with academic malpractice are covered by the same regulation as apply to Conduct and Disciple of Students (Regulation XVII).

You are responsible for ensuring that you understand what academic malpractice is, and how to avoid committing it. If you are unsure, ask your lecturer or academic advisor.

As further support for students, the Faculty of Biology, Medicine and Health has developed an Introductory Course. This unit must be completed by all postgraduate taught students and will allow you to test your understanding of what constitutes plagiarism and academic malpractice. You can access the resource via Blackboard. Log in to My Manchester and click on the Blackboard tab. The online resource will be listed under the My Communities heading. The module should be completed as soon as possible after you begin your programmes, but must be completed before you submit your first piece of academic work for assessment.


Feedback for Assessments

The purpose of feedback is to provide constructive comments so that you can improve the standard of your work. Thus, in addition to marks you will receive written feedback on most of your assessed coursework.

Marks awarded for your assessments (i.e. everything which contributes to your final degree classification) are subject to ratification by the examination board and the external examiner at the awarding examination meeting. Consequently all marks given before the final examiners’ meeting has taken place must be regarded as provisional. Shortly after the examinations meetings we will publish results and a breakdown of your marks. These will remain provisional until after the final examination board has met.

The marking process involves several steps to ensure appropriate academic consideration and quality assurance processes have been adhered to. Students will be notified by email once the work has been marked and grades are available. We will endeavour to mark work and give feedback to students 15 working days after the hand-in date. However, occasionally there may be delays as a result of staff illness or other unforeseeable factors. In these circumstances, you will be kept informed of this.

Following graduation you may obtain a detailed official written account of all your examination results (called a transcript) from the Student Services Centre on payment of a small fee. This carries the University stamp and is recognised for such purposes as admission to a further course of study at another institution, membership of professional bodies, exemption from sections of professional examinations etc. If you need an official transcript, contact the SSC on 0161 275 5000.

Unofficial transcripts can be provided by the PGT Assessments Team.


How To Find Your Marks

Once work has been marked and moderated you will receive an email from the Assessment Team to tell you that the marks have been released. Work submitted via Blackboard will usually show a mark along with feedback on the Blackboard system.

You can also access marks by logging into your My Manchester account and going to My Services/Self Service and Student Centre. You can choose ‘Assignments’ from the drop down box and choose the relevant unit. Your Final mark for the unit does not appear until the unit is fully completed and marks have been through an exam board.



Examinations may be scheduled at any point during the academic year. The Assessments Team will provide you with details on when examinations will be scheduled. Please be aware that you may be tested on any topic from within a unit. Do not presume that because a piece of coursework has covered one area of a unit that it will not also appear in the exam. More details will be provided by the individual unit leads. Past papers for some units (where appropriate) are available online:

Do not assume that exams will take the same format as previous years. Academic staff should not indicate what will/ will not feature in an exam as this may not be accurate. Staff may have submitted questions that may not, necessarily, appear on the final exam paper. You should presume that anything can appear on the exam paper unless informed officially by the Assessments Team or Programme Directors.

Students are expected to attend all scheduled examinations. If for any unforeseen circumstances you experience any issues in attending, you must report this to the Programme Administration Team/Programme Director who may recommend that you submit a Mitigating Circumstances application.

Student Representation and Feedback


Election of Student Representative

At the beginning of the year you will be asked to elect a student representative. The student representative will be invited to attend the Programme Committees for parts of the meeting that do not involve discussion of individual students and the assessments. The student representative should make students’ views known to the programme management. In addition, they should report any relevant information back to the students.


Feedback from/to students

The University has a Policy on Feedback to Undergraduate and Postgraduate Taught Students in relation to the timely provision of feedback for academic progression.

Students will also have the opportunity to feedback their thoughts on the programme via a series of anonymous evaluation forms. Student feedback questionnaires will be made available via the Module Leads at the end of each module. The information will then be collated to assess the performance level of the programme. It is expected that every student will complete these forms. These feedback questionnaires are produced by the programme and allow students to comment on specific aspects of the organisation and delivery of the taught modules. The information obtained is collated and discussed during the next Programme Committee meeting. The quality of teaching on the programme is monitored in part by student feedback. Thus it is very important that you make your views, good and bad, known.

At the end of each semester, you will be asked to complete an anonymous University generated online evaluation form. This is known as a Unit Survey and will address more general issues with the information obtained being used to inform the teaching strategy of the Faculty/University. You will also receive a Postgraduate Taught Unit Survey form at the end of the semester. Again all students are expected to complete these surveys.

University Regulations

Postgraduate Degree Regulations and exemptions

Please be aware this programme has some higher requirements to the University degree regulations and details of these are outlined below:

  • The programme employs a 50% pass rate across all pathways
  • The programme will not apply compensation rules to any course unit
  • As per professional body requirements resit pass marks will be recorded on the transcripts as 50R. However the actual awarded mark as described in the ‘Reassessment’ section above (i.e. 40-49R) will be used to calculate the overall weighted average and degree classification.

The University Postgraduate degree regulations can be found online:

In order to progress to the dissertation/research project you must have satisfactorily achieved the relevant pass mark in taught course units, including by use of resit and/or compensation as outlined in the degree regulations, in order to continue to this element of the programme.

Ethics Procedures

The nature of your programme and/or project work may require ethical approval.

It is your responsibility to ensure that you have followed the correct ethical procedures, and that you have done this in good time.

Speak to your Supervisor or Programme Director at the earliest opportunity to ascertain whether ethical approval is required.


Student Support and Guidance

Academic Appeals, Complaints, Conduct and Discipline

Academic Appeals

Student Complaints

  • The University’s Student Complaints Procedure (Regulation XVIII) and associated documents, including a complaints form, can be found at
  • The University has separate procedures to address complaints of bullying, harassment, discrimination and/or victimisation - see
  • Students thinking of submitting a formal complaint should, in most instances, attempt informal resolution first (see the procedure). Formal complaints should be submitted on the relevant form to Faculty Appeals and Complaints Team, Room 3.21, Simon Building, University of Manchester, M13 9PL (e-mail:

Conduct and Discipline of Students

The University Library has produced online resources to help students in avoiding plagiarism and academic malpractice at:

Students thinking of submitting a formal complaint should, in most instances, attempt informal resolution first. Students can submit complaints to the Head of Teaching, Learning & Student Experience, Kerry Mycock (, for the School to respond to.

Mitigating Circumstances

Grounds for mitigation are unforeseeable or unpreventable circumstances that could have, or did have, a significant adverse effect on the academic performance of a student. Possible mitigating circumstances include:

  • significant illness or injury;
  • the death or critical/significant illness of a close family member/dependant;
  • significant family crises or major financial problems leading to acute stress; and
  • absence for public service e.g., jury service.

Circumstances that will not normally be regarded as grounds for mitigation include:

  • holidays, moving house and events that were planned or could reasonably have been expected;
  • assessments that are scheduled close together;
  • misreading the timetable or misunderstanding the requirements for assessments;
  • inadequate planning and time management;
  • failure, loss or theft of a computer or printer that prevents submission of work on time; students should back up work regularly and not leave completion so late that they cannot find another computer or printer;
  • consequences of paid employment (except in some special cases for part-time students);
  • exam stress or panic attacks not diagnosed as illness or supported by medical evidence; and
  • disruption in an examination room during the course of an assessment which has not been recorded by the invigilators.

If you feel there are circumstances in which you may be adversely affecting your performance on the course or in examinations, you should inform your Programme Director and/or Academic Advisor as soon as possible. You can then complete a Mitigating circumstances form which can be sent to you by the Programme Administration Team. Requests must be accompanied by appropriate, independent, third-party supporting or collaborative documentation, which will be subject to verification.

If the information, and details of the mitigating circumstances, are considered to be highly confidential, you should submit these in a sealed envelope attached to the Notification of Mitigating Circumstances Form, together with the supporting documentary evidence. Mitigating Circumstances Panels have full regard for the confidentiality of any application they receive. Mitigating Circumstances forms and evidence must be submitted before the release of any results deemed affected i.e. cannot be submitted once the mark and feedback for the piece of work deemed affected have been released to students. Retrospective mitigation cannot be considered without a credible and compelling reason for not being submitted earlier. A mitigating circumstances panel will meet to discuss any requests for mitigation. The Panel will determine whether there is substantiated evidence of circumstances eligible for mitigation. It will then decide whether the circumstances will have had or could have had an adverse effect on the student’s performance, and, if so, it will judge how significant the effect was likely to have been. If the Mitigating Circumstances Panel judges that the effect was or would have been significant, the mitigation request will be approved. Mitigation requests may be approved for a specific assessment or more general impairment over a number of assessments, or for both. If a mitigation request is approved, this will be noted at the Examination Board who will determine how to apply it, given the student’s assessment results. Following the Examination Board students will receive confirmation of the outcome of their mitigation request.



It is the expectation of the University that postgraduate taught students pursue their studies on a continuous basis for the stipulated duration of their programme. However, it is recognised that students may encounter personal difficulties or situations which may seriously disrupt or delay their studies. In some cases, an interruption or extension to your programme of study may be the most sensible option. Students who wish to interrupt the programme or extend to write up the dissertation should initially discuss their plans and reasons with the Programme Director. Students should also provide documentary evidence when appropriate, for example, doctor’s letter, sick note etc. An application must be submitted to the Programme Director who will either support or reject the request. The form will then be submitted for consideration to the School Interruptions Panel who will make the final decision. The forms required for formal application are available from the Programme Administration Team.


Students who are considering withdrawing from the programme should discuss this either with the Programme Director and, if in their dissertation year, with their research supervisor, and make the application by formal letter. Students may liaise directly with the Programme Administration Team who will communicate this information directly to the Fees and Records Departments of the University.

Occupational Health

Occupational Health is a specialised area of medicine concerned with the way in which an individual’s health can affect his or her ability to do a job and to study and conversely how the work environment can affect an individual’s health. Their aim is to promote the physical, mental and social well-being of students and to reduce the incidence of ill-health arising from exposure to work place hazards. The service provides confidential services to protect the health of staff and students at The University of Manchester.


Counselling Service

The counselling service is available for all students. It is free and consists of a team of professional counsellors. The service provides confidential counselling for anyone who wants help with personal problems affecting their work or well-being. The service is open 9.00am to 5.00pm Monday to Friday all year round except public holidays.


Fitness to Practise

Postgraduate students at The University of Manchester who are qualified health or social care professionals (e.g. doctor, dentist, nurse, social worker) registered by a healthcare or social care regulatory body (e.g. General Medical Council, General Dental Council, Nursing & Midwifery Council, Social Care Council) are expected to behave at all times in a way that is consistent with the recommendations or code of practice of the relevant professional regulatory body. Postgraduate students need to be aware that in the event of misconduct, dishonesty, unprofessional behaviour, or other behaviour or illness (e.g. mental health illness) that raises the possibility that the student’s fitness to practise may be impaired; the University has a duty to protect the public and to inform the relevant professional regulatory body. This means, for example, that where a student has been found to be dishonest (e.g. plagiarism, collusion, falsification of research data or other forms of cheating) the matter may be reported by the University to the relevant professional regulatory body. Students who are dishonest not only risk failing to be awarded the intended degree, but also place at risk their whole professional career. Further information on Fitness to Practise related matters can be found online:

Disability Advisory and Support Service

The University of Manchester welcomes students with a disability or specific learning difficulties. The University has a Disability Advisory and Support Service (DASS), who can supply further information, and staff will be pleased to meet you, by prior arrangement, to discuss your needs. Staff will liaise with your School to make the necessary arrangements for your support during your time in Manchester. The office can also provide a copy of the University’s Disability Statement, ‘Opportunities for Students with Additional Support Needs at the University of Manchester’ which sets out the policy and provision for students with a disability. DASS is located on the 2nd Floor of University Place (see Campus Map)

  • Email:
  • Phone 0161 275 7512; Text 07899 658 790 (only for d/Deaf students);
  • Website:
  • DASS are open from 10am to 4pm Monday to Friday


Students Union Advice Centre

The Students Union has advisors who can help with any matter ranging from finances to housing and beyond.


University Careers Service

As a postgraduate the demands on your time can seem overwhelming. The University careers service can make your life easier by offering a range of services designed to help you. Advice and support for Postgraduates include:

    • Help with CVs and applications, practice interviews and psychometric tests
    • Drop in quick query advice service
    • Personal Career consultations targeted to your needs
    • A range of postgraduate employability training opportunities
    • 24-hour access to up to date information, advice, vacancies and details of forthcoming events, including a specifically designed section for postgraduates available through our website:
    • Information on Job opportunities and vacancies through our fortnightly vacancy paper bulletins


Monitoring attendance and wellbeing of students

In order to monitor their progress, students will have regular, scheduled meetings with their academic advisor. Progress forms should be completed at these meetings. Students are required to attend ALL lectures. Attendance monitoring will take place during ALL sessions. It is your responsibility to make sure you have signed the register. Postgraduates are also expected to sit ALL examinations and coursework tests for their degree programme and to submit ALL coursework assignments by the deadline specified. Attendance is monitored in conjunction with Regulation XX – Work and Attendance of Students. Absences supported by medical or other appropriate information will not normally be counted towards the assessment of unsatisfactory attendance. Any absences must be supported by a Mitigating Circumstances Form and supporting evidence.

A-Z of Student Services

The A-Z of Services can be found on the My Manchester website or here. Here you can find more information on a wide range of topics such as library services, disability support and careers advice.  

IT Services and eLearning

IT Services Support Centre online

Details of what IT support is available and how to access it can be found on the FBMH eLearning Support page.
Login to the Support Centre online to log a request, book an appointment for an IT visit, or search the Knowledge Base.
Telephone: +44 (0)161 306 5544 (or extension 65544).  Telephone support is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
In person:  Walk-up help and support is available at the Joule Library, Main Library or Alan Gilbert Learning Commons:
Use Support Centre online for support with eLearning, from where you may make a request, or search the Knowledge Base.

For IT and eLearning support visit:

Blackboard, the University's 'virtual learning environment', will be used for online teaching.

What is Blackboard?
Blackboard is a web-based system that complements and builds upon traditional learning methods used at The University of Manchester. By using Blackboard you can

  • view course materials and learning resources,
  • communicate with lectures and other students,
  • collaborate in groups,
  • get feedback
  • submit assignments
  • monitoring your own progress at a time and place of your own convenience.

Training in the use of software
The Faculty eLearning team have produced a short introduction to Blackboard for new students.  The recording is hosted in two places: the Video Portal and on YouTube:

The recording is just over seven minutes long and covers most of the commonly used tools in Blackboard.

Religious Observance

The University supports a wide range of religions and will make every effort to support students in observing their religious beliefs. For centrally timetabled examinations, key dates are to be noted in terms of formally notifying the University on dates in which undertaking assessment will be affected by religious observance. Please contact you Programme Administrator with details of any assessments and teaching that may be affected.

Religious Observance and Looking after yourself and your patients during Ramadan 

Policy on Religious Observance:

Library Facilities

Library facilities are available across campus including the Stopford Building. Photocopying is available in The University of Manchester Library. It is important that you abide by the regulations concerning the copying of copyright material. The Alan Gilbert Learning Commons is a state of the art study and learning centre in the heart of the Oxford Road campus boasting an onsite café, an impressive atrium providing a social meeting space with wifi access and flexible study spaces and environments throughout the building. The Learning Commons is open to students and staff of the University and is open 24/7 during term time. Additional support for your studies is available through My Learning Essentials.  

Online Skills Training Resource

The Faculty has developed a skills training resource to support you through your postgraduate taught programme. This online material should supplement the assessed learning material and activities undertaken in your taught programme.

Accessing the online skills resource
You can access Blackboard through the My Manchester portal ( The skills training resource is available in an academic community space available to all registered PGT students in the Faculty through Blackboard.

If you cannot see these units in your Blackboard please contact your Programme Administrator.

Full details of all these resources can be found in the introduction to each unit. These resources have been designed to give you formative feedback on your progress through them. If you experience any problems and would like to talk to someone please contact your Programme Director. If you have questions about referencing and how it applies to your own work, please contact your Programme Director or dissertation supervisor/module lead.

Research Methods* This course is spilt into 2 units that cover introductions to study design, statistics and dissertation skills. It has a number of online quizzes where you can test your knowledge.
Introduction to Statistics* The course provides a valuable foundation for understanding and interpreting biostatistics. It aims to provide you with the fundamentals of quantitative analysis.
Presentation Skills This short interactive unit is designed to help you to enhance your presentation skills. Regardless of whether you are presenting in public, preparing for conferences, an oral examination or more informal settings this unit will give you the tops tips to improve your delivery. The course also includes a unit on influencing effectively, alongside the presentation and poster information.
Qualitative Research Methods* This unit has been designed to give you an introduction to Qualitative Research.
Intellectual Property Awareness Resource This Intellectual Property (IP) awareness resource has been created in order to improve your understanding of IP. Topics include: Types of intellectual property • Copyright and IP clearance • University policy on IP • IP commercialisation • IP in research or consultancy • IP issues to be aware when dealing with academic materials

 * NOTE: the material in this online resource is for reference and formative learning purposes only. In some of your taught programme you may be required to undertake assessed course units for Research Methods, Qualitative Research or Statistics. If your programme involves taught units then you should refer to the Blackboard material relating to that course unit. Please contact your Programme Administrator if you are unsure which material relates to your assessed work. You will still be able to refer to the online skills resource in later years.

University Proofreading Statement

If a student chooses to approach another person to proofread their written work or seeks to use the services of a proofreading service or agency, they must take account of the following principles:

  • it is the responsibility of students to ensure that all work submitted is their own, and that it represents their own abilities and understanding. Any proofreading of work that is undertaken by a third party must not compromise the student’s own authorship of the work;
  • proofreading undertaken by a third party must not take the form of editing of text, such as the adding or rewriting of phrases or passages within a piece of student’s work;
  • proofreading undertaken by a third party must not change the content or meaning of the work in any way