Throughout the first two, taught terms there are nine weeks of teaching, one week for revision and one week for examinations. All teaching activities are compulsory for all students on the course. Each week usually comprises of six to seven lectures along with a tutorial and/or problem-based learning session which involves small group work.

Lectures and tutorials

Lectures are delivered by experts from across the University and the NHS Trust, as well as invited external specialists. These are supported by tutorials, with one or two experts in the subject matter covered in the relevant week, which aim to consolidate learning and deepen understanding of the topics.

Problem-based learning

Problem-based learning sessions introduce clinical aspects or extend basic aspects of immunology, and the class is split into smaller groups to work together on problems before the session. The PBLs also encourage development of data-handling, analysis and presentation skills, complementing continuing professional development (CPD) sessions which take place throughout the year.

Additional learning activities 

CPD sessions cover topics such as presentation and IT skills, clinical trial methodologies and animal and human research ethics. In addition to the structured teaching sessions, students are expected to spend studying independently and around half of each week is set aside for this. Self-directed learning includes pre-reading for structured sessions and revision of lecture content.


In the third term, students are embedded within research groups across the University and receive one-to-one guidance from their supervisor and other members of the group. Students are expected to take ownership of their project and manage their time appropriately throughout the fourteen weeks.