Sidebar    Minor in Pharmaceutical Science

Host Department: Pharmacy

The pharmaceutical industry in Singapore has expanded tremendously in the past two decades, as more pharmaceutical and biopharmaceutical companies set up new manufacturing and research facilities here. Physical expansion draws in manpower with relevant knowledge and skills to the industry. In addition to the requisite domain knowledge which may be science, engineering, law or business; these organizations are also seeking to hire graduates with supplementary knowledge relevant to the pharmaceutical industry. This adjunct knowledge is based on a foundation in pharmaceutical sciences. Having an understanding of pharmaceutical sciences will enable these graduates to quickly immerse themselves in the environment of the industry, and may ease the initial learning curve and towards greater proficiency in practice.

The Minor in Pharmaceutical Sciences therefore serves to enrich the education of undergraduates in the following ways:

  1. To build a fundamental technical language, knowledge and skill set relevant to the pharmaceutical industry.
  2. To help raise awareness among undergraduates from different majors of the potential applications of their domain knowledge in the pharmaceutical industry.

There are many career opportunities in the pharmaceutical and allied industries for graduates who have a background in pharmaceutical sciences. Graduates who major in biology, chemistry, mathematics, statistics, food science, materials science, computing and engineering are needed to fill positions in research laboratories, manufacturing plants, quality assurance laboratory of pharmaceutical companies. In addition, those with degrees in law, economics, marketing or business may also develop rewarding careers as finance, human resource, intellectual property and legal, as well as business and market development professionals in the industry. It definitely takes multi-disciplinary teams with a variety of skills to develop and produce effective and safe health products.


  • H2 pass or equivalent in Biology or Chemistry
  • Diploma from local polytechnics (Biology-related or Chemistry-related modules) or
  • NUS High School Diploma (Biology or Chemistry) or
  • IB Diploma (Biology or Chemistry) or
  • A bridging module in either Biology or Chemistry taken at the NUS.

Curriculum Structure and Requirements

Candidates accepted into the minor programme are required to pass four (4) essential modules and two (2) elective modules as shown below. Some modules have practical component that will allow students to acquire relevant basic laboratory skills.

Essential modules:
PR1110    Foundations for Medicinal Chemistry
PR2114    Formulation and Technology I
PR2115    Medicinal Chemistry for Drug Design
Either (i) PR3301 Pharmaceutical Dosage Forms or PR3117 Formulation and Technology II

Choose TWO from the following elective modules:
PR1301   Complementary Medicine and Health
PR2143   Pharmaceutical Analysis for Quality Assurance
PR3204   Medicinal Natural Products
PR4205   Bioorganic Principles of Medicinal Chemistry
PR4206   Industrial Pharmacy
CN4241R   Engineering Principles for Drug Delivery

The target applicants for this minor programme are students who are pursuing science or engineering-based majors. In addition, students who major in law, economics, computing, marketing or business may also apply, provided the pre-requisites are met.

This minor is not awarded to those with a primary major in Pharmacy or Pharmaceutical Science.