Renal Transplantation Science PGCert/PGDip/MSc Online

  • Programme duration: Full-time: MSc: 2-6 years (normally 5 years)   Part-time: PG Diploma: 1-4 years (normally 4 years) | PG Certificate: 30 weeks-3 years (normally 2 years)
  • Programme start: 26 November 2020
  • Entry requirements: Please see the 'Entry Requirements' tab for full information.


This part-time, online programme is part of the School of Medicine postgraduate portfolio. It has been developed specifically for surgeons/clinicians who are working in the specialist arena of renal transplantation. 

The programme provides the opportunity for candidates to work with international colleagues under the leadership of transplant surgeons, clinicians and scientists based in expert clinical centres from around the UK. This course focuses on renal (adult and paediatric) and pancreatic transplantation and is delivered by experienced transplant clinicians from various UK and reputable overseas transplant centres to enhance the exposure of the candidates to different clinical experience and practice. The course is designed to develop knowledge and understanding of the clinical sciences underpinning transplantation and the management of every stage in the recipient and donor journey, both pre and post-surgery. All our teaching is research-connected, mapped to the current and rapidly evolving evidence base in this exciting specialty. The philosophy is for us to equip you with the knowledge, skills and attributes, underpinned by the evidence base to develop and enhance the care of patients.

The course is aimed at transplant surgeons, nephrologists and urologists. Prior experience is essential in these clinical specialties prior to application. It is offered wholly online through the University Virtual Learning Environment, allowing access to candidates globally. The pathway has been developed to align with the recent British Transplant Society and the British Renal Society Guidelines.

This programme emphasises the practical implementation of clinical transplantation and fosters analysis, critical questioning and reasoning of the current practice, and compares it with the current best available scientific evidence. The candidates will be encouraged to formalise a treatment plan for routine, difficult and complex clinical cases. The most ambitiously equipped electronic library (e-library) of the University of Liverpool provides access to key scientific papers and textbooks covering a wide range of topics in transplantation.


Students are encouraged to register for the modules on an individual basis and once you have decided on which award you wish to study for, then you transfer onto the relevant part of the programme. The awards available are:

Postgraduate Certificate in Renal Transplantation Science

Awarded after successful completion of module 1 and module 2 (60 credits).

Postgraduate Diploma  in Renal Transplantation Science

Awarded after successful completion of the four ‘taught’ modules (120 credits).

Masters Degree (MSc in Renal Transplantation Science)

Candidates undertaking the masters degree (MSc in Renal Transplantation Science) have to successfully complete the four 'taught' modules and additionally submit and pass a dissertation (60 credits).

We welcome all our graduates to attend our graduation ceremonies which are normally held in July and December each year.

The modules can be taken as stand-alone CPD and we offer both entry and exit awards (PGC/PGD/MSc) to provide maximum flexibility for our students

Programme Director

Mr Ahmed Halawa

MSc MD PGCE MEd (Higher Education) FRCS FRCS (Gen)

Consultant Transplant Surgeon

Sheffield Teaching Hospitals

Senior Lecturer (Hon) University of Sheffield - University of Liverpool

Director of Diploma/Master Degree in Transplantation Course - University of Liverpool United Kingdom

Programme Aims

The aims of the programme are to provide specialist clinicians working in renal transplantation with:

  1. A systematic and in-depth knowledge and understanding of renal transplantation science.
  2. The skills to evaluate critically current research in renal transplantation science. 
  3. The skills to evaluate critically clinical services through developing new insights informed by current research.
  4. A deeper understanding of the mechanisms which underlie modern clinical practice and the skills for the systematic analysis of complex issues in this specialty.
  5. A flexible and structured approach to continuing professional development.

Learning and Teaching Strategy and Methods

The emphasis on the learning and teaching strategy is placed on the development and enhancement of effective clinical reasoning based on the use of ‘best evidence’ and clinical reflection. In addition, as ethical issues are complex in transplantation science, medical ethics will be a theme running through all the modules of the programme.

Each 30 credit module runs over a 26 week period. The online delivery involves the release of study material in packages published every 10 days, to provide students with a structure for their studies. The student activities are asynchronous to accommodate the students’ working patterns and the international make-up of the cohorts. Teaching activity involves a mixture of scheduled directed student hours, unscheduled directed student hours and self-directed learning.

The scheduled directed learning involves:

  1. Keynote e-lectures which are animated and interactive. These are delivered by international experts in the topic to ensure the most up-to-date knowledge is delivered.
  2. Discussion fora of allocated anonymised cases provided by an expert and themed to match the e-lecture topic. In addition, they provide opportunity to discuss anonymised cases from the students’ own centre. This creates a virtual multi-disciplinary team discussion, encouraging students to discuss case management with evidence in a supportive environment. 
  3. Student contribution to critical appraisal of articles (journal club) are provided on each 1- day cycle, which are related to the topic. There is an expectation that the student will bring additional relevant material to the discussion fora to support development of their critical approach to practice.
  4. Online MCQs are released with the teaching material each 10 day cycle. These are formative in nature and are anchored to the topic. Students are provided with ideal answers and accompanying rationale/evidence base supporting the answers.

The unscheduled directed learning activity is related to directed reading of key papers/guidelines to support the e-lecture and to expand students' knowledge.

For self-directed learning activity students are expected to read around the subjects covered in the online lecture, contribute to the discussion boards to enhance their skills in critical reading, critical thinking, online communication and the evidence bases for clinical reasoning/decision making.

Peer learning is a feature of the programme through use of the discussion boards. The publication of papers in peer reviewed journals linked to course work is encouraged and this is fed into the weekly journal club for constructive critical comment.

The final dissertation topic is focused on a key area of renal transplantation science of the students’ own choice. It provides opportunity for the student to demonstrate the in-depth skills of critical literature review and research study design. 


We encourage our students to publish and present their excellent work in peer review journal and international conferences. More than 60 publications and 25 international presentations have been achieved to date.
Please take a look at some of our key academic publications:


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Teaching Excellence

The School's well-known for its innovative curriculum and high quality teaching. This was recognised when we were made a Centre for Excellence in Teaching and Learning. Whether you want to develop a specialism or achieve your career goals we have the answer, with our wide choice of postgraduate programmes. Here you'll gain the very latest knowledge and skills, under the guidance of academic staff who are all active researchers.

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Every professional has their own unique needs, so we take a flexible approach by blurring the boundaries between our taught programmes and continuous professional development courses. As a result you can, if you want to, select CPD modules that are most relevant to your work and then compile these, with further study, into a Masters qualification.

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