Chemical and Pharmaceutical Sciences

Chemical and Pharmaceutical Sciences

Course Details

CAO Code:
Course Type:
NFQ Level:
8 - Please see for further information
Delivery Modes
Minimum Points
4 yr
+353 (0) 1
700 7308

Are you a highly motivated independent student who is eager to challenge yourself in the different branches of chemistry?


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Are you curious about how chemistry affects our world, both in nature and when it comes to preparing and using everyday materials such as polymers, pharmaceuticals, fine chemicals, flavours and fragrances. If that’s the case and you’re a highly motivated independent student who is eager to challenge yourself in the different branches of chemistry, this course is for you. 

This course offers a compelling mix of technical knowledge and more hands-on practical experience than other similar courses, meaning you’ll be better prepared for the workforce or postgraduate study. During it, you’ll gain fundamental knowledge in organic, inorganic, physical, medicinal and analytical chemistry, along with practical lab skills and the ability to apply the theory you’ve learned. You’ll also build your creative, innovation and presentation skills. 

Preparing for exciting future opportunities

In third year, you’ll do a four- to six-month INTRA work placement in industry or in academic labs, in Ireland or overseas. This will give you vital experience, and enable you to learn new skills and develop contacts that can often lead to employment opportunities after finishing your degree.

As a graduate you’ll be sought after in sectors such as the pharmaceutical/biopharmaceutical, chemical/materials, specialty chemical, food and government laboratories. Typical roles could include process development, synthetic chemistry, formulation, regulatory affairs, quality control/assurance, analytical method development and medicinal chemistry. Others may go into teaching or patent law, while some decide to go on to further study for a masters or a doctorate. 

DCU People

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Dammy William Sanusi

Finding solutions to the most pressing health care challenges inspired me to study Chemical and Pharmaceutical Sciences.

Read more about Dammy William Sanusi
Shows Angelina Foley
Angelina Foley

 "Along with the theory, much of the learning is practical and interactive, making it suitable for students with different ways of learning."

Read more about Angelina Foley

Careers & Further Options

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Your opportunities are extensive both at home and abroad. Obviously, much will depend on your specialisations, but you can expect to fill such positions as process chemist, development chemist, analytical chemist and research chemist/scientist in diverse sectors such as the pharmaceutical, food and drink, brewing and fine chemical industries.

This course is also suitable for those who ultimately wish to pursue a career in teaching, as it is recognised by the Teaching Council to teach chemistry (see for further details).

Postgraduate opportunities are also available.



  • Education
  • Fine Chemical Industries
  • Food and Beverage
  • Materials Industries
  • Pharmaceuticals
  • Plastics
  • Veterinary Industries


DCU graduates are highly sought after by employers. Our Graduates work in environments ranging from large multinationals to SMEs, family businesses and start-ups across every sector.

DCU Careers Service has a number of learning and development initiatives in place for our students, giving them the skills they need for a successful career path.

Go to our Careers site to find out more about career planning, our mentorship programme, skills development and online resources for students when working on CVs and making applications.


Entry Requirements

Entry Requirements Icon

In addition to the general entry requirements for admission to the university the following entry requirements apply

Minimum of O3 or H6 in Mathematics and minimum of O3 or H5 in one of Physics, Chemistry, Biology, Physics with Chemistry, Agricultural Science or Computer Science.

In addition to the general entry requirements for admission to the university the following entry requirements apply

GCE A Level D or GCE AS Level C or GCSE B Mathematics and GCE A Level D or GCE AS Level C or GCSE B in one of Physics, Chemistry, Physics with Chemistry, Biology or Agricultural Science

For details of QQI requirements and relevant codes please click here. Simply enter the DC code for the programme you are interested in or if you are not sure of the code enter DC in the Select by Institution option, then click on Go. 

Holders of Higher Certificate/National Certificates or Bachelor (Ordinary) Degree/National Diplomas with Merit or Distinction may be admitted into second year if the relevant Programme Boards are satisfied that the candidate has achieved an appropriate standard in the major subjects covered in Year One. Direct entry into third year is possible for well-motivated students holding a distinction at Diploma level in a related discipline.

International candidates are expected to have educational qualifications of a standard equivalent to those outlined above. In addition, where such candidates are non-native speakers of the English language they must satisfy the university of their competency in the English language. For further information on international applications click here.

Course Structure

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  • Chemistry, Physics and Biology Laboratories 
  • Mathematics 
  • Chemistry 
  • Biology 
  • Interdisciplinary Science 
  • Physics
  • Biomolecules and Metabolism 
  • Kinetics and Thermodynamics 
  • Spectroscopy and Physical Chemistry 
  • Organic Chemistry 
  • Inorganic Chemistry 
  • Bio-organic and Pharmaceutical Chemistry 
  • Visualisation and Validation or Laboratory Data 
  • Organic / Physical / Inorganic Chemistry Laboratories 
  • Spectroscopic Workshop 
  • Mathematics
  • Separation Techniques 
  • Organic Chemistry 
  • Computational and Inorganic Chemistry 
  • Synthesis and Analysis of Pharmaceuticals (Laboratory) 
  • Medicinal Chemistry 
  • Formulation 
  • Data Analysis and Regulation
  • Organometallics and Polymer Chemistry 
  • Advanced Spectroscopy 
  • Advanced Topics in Organic Chemistry 
  • Advanced Inorganic Chemistry 
  • Bioinspired Synthesis 
  • Drug Design Workshop 
  • Literature Survey 
  • Research Project

Year 4 Options

  • Advanced Medicinal Chemistry 
  • Interfacial and Supramolecular Chemistry

For more information on the course structure click here

Fees and Funding

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Student Contribution
€3,043 per annum
EU Status Fee
€6,679 per annum
Non EU Fee
€15,500 per annum

How To Apply

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Applicants presenting EU School Leaving/FETAC Level 5 examinations: Apply through the Central Applications Office (CAO) by 1st February or 1st May

Candidates should apply directly to DCU. Applications are accepted on an ongoing basis up to 1st July. All Non-EU candidates are advised to apply early, as places are limited.

All mature applicants apply through the CAO by 1st February. For further information and for special application procedures for mature students, please click here

Applications are made via the CAO Advanced Entry route which will open on the 1st December to the 1st July.

Candidates required to apply through the CAO can apply online at

Life On Campus

Life on Campus

At DCU, our students can expect a unique campus experience. We are known for our excellent teaching and learning facilities, our active clubs and societies, and our great social and sporting facilities. All this makes DCU an exciting place to be. 

DCU has three academic campuses; Glasnevin, St. Patrick’s and All Hallows (both in Drumcondra), all close to Dublin City centre. 

They can be reached by public transport, Dublin Bus and Bus Éireann, with our Drumcondra campuses a ten minute walk from Drumcondra Train Station. Glasnevin is a 20 minute walk from St Patrick’s and All Hallows. They are also linked by Dublin Bus.

Each campus has a library (O’Reilly, Cregan and Woodlock Hall), study spaces, restaurants, and on-campus residencies. There are sports facilities on Glasnevin and St. Patrick’s, and there is a dedicated sports campus, St Claire’s, located near Glasnevin on the Ballymun Road.

DCU’s 19,000 students have access to exceptional teaching and learning facilities across our three academic campuses. 

These include modern learning theatres, research centres, a new media and TV studio, radio/podcast studios, computer suites and advanced labs in the areas of Languages, Engineering, Physics, Chemistry and Biotechnology, as well as a Sports Performance centre and a training hospital ward. In 2021, we opened our first virtual reality ‘Leadership Lab’, which is located in our Business School.

We continue to improve and update our facilities. For example, construction of a new world-class STEM facility is underway on the Glasnevin campus. With capacity for an extra 3,000 STEM students, this facility will advance DCU’s international reputation for excellence in science and health, computing and engineering disciplines.

Studying in DCU isn’t just about course work. The university is rich in student life and activities.

There are more than 140 clubs and societies for students in DCU, with ‘Clubs & Socs’ days taking place on both the Glasnevin and Drumcondra campuses at the start of the academic year. They span everything from rugby to rock climbing, anime to jazz.

For many students, sport is an important part of the DCU experience. DCU’s Sports Complex boasts a 25 metre swimming pool, fitness centre gym, all-weather pitches and squash courts, as well as soccer, GAA and rugby pitches. DCU Dóchas Éireann, the university’s GAA club, is the largest third level Gaelic Games club in the country. Meanwhile, DCU Athletics has been Ireland’s highest achieving university club for many years. And DCU has dozens of other clubs to get involved in, from Archery to Weightlifting. 

The Glasnevin campus is home to our purpose built, state-of-the-art student centre, The U, which serves the needs of a rapidly growing student body. Here, you will find the Student Leadership and Lifeskills Centre, performing arts and cultural spaces for students and the wider community, and the Entrepreneurship and Innovation Hub. Also located on our Glasnevin campus is The Helix, our renowned performing arts centre.

On our St Patrick’s campus, we have the Java Student Hub, a vibrant, warm and welcoming space where students can meet for coffee, play music, use the projector to watch events, or just relax. The walls of the Java Hub were designed based on the cultural history of St Patrick’s Campus, including the special references to the notable sporting history and history of the arts.

We have a number of academic, professional and social supports for students.

Student Advice Centre - Offers a wide range of supports and services to students and advice 

The Writing Centre - drop-in writing workshops for students through the academic year 

Maths Learning Centre - provides maths support for students of all ability levels with maths modules 

Student Learning - facilitate the transition from passive to active learning for students at DCU, by teaching study skills, nurturing critical thinking and building student confidence. 

Careers work with students to help them on their professional journey into graduate employment.

Our student support team offers a comprehensive support programme, helping students make that all important transition into university life and focusing on building confidence and skills which are key to success at third level.

DCU Campus Glasnevin


FAQ Icon

Is DCU all one campus?

 DCU is a multi campus university - the Glasnevin, St Patrick's and All Hallows campuses. The St Patrick's campus is where the Education courses are taught and some of the subjects from the BA Joint Honours degree. There is a 20-25 minute walk between the campuses but there are buses and bikes available to go between them also.

Click here to see maps of all of our campuses


If I'm studying on the St Patrick's campus, can I use the library and sports centre on the Glasnevin campus?

Yes, all facilities such as sports and accommodation are open for all DCU students to avail of. 


Are there libraries in DCU and if they have wifi and work stations?

We have a brand new state of the art four floor library on our St. Patrick's Campus which complements the existing library on the Glasnevin campus. There is free wifi, work stations as well as desktop computers. 


Does DCU provide accommodation?

DCU does have on-campus accommodation for undergraduate and postgraduate students, and you can find out more and apply via the Accommodation Office webpage.