Advanced Safety Sciences for Medicines – Master of Science


Postgraduate study programme which requires a first university degree.

The program was discontinued as of WS 23/24. An application to the study programme is no longer possible.

The safety of medicines starts early with active ingredient research, and it is a key criterion in the development of drugs. This further educational master’s programme is for participants who are already involved in the sphere of medicine development. It provides you with insights into aspects of drug safety involved in your professional day-to-day practice and relates to all phases of drug research and development. You will especially concentrate on the interdisciplinary relationships of safety assessments coming from the various sub-disciplines involved, ranging from the search for active ingredients through the preclinical and clinical testing phases to drug production. The integration of toxicological data from active pharmaceutical ingredient development and the preclinical and clinical phases up to the application on humans are other areas of focus. You will cover topics such as regulatory approval, the production of pharmaceuticals and the mandatory accompanying safety studies for a drug after its marketing authorisation and its market launch. This way you will develop a comprehensive understanding of risks and appropriate safety precautions.


Degree Master of Science
Programme start Winter semester & Summer semester
Period of study No standard period of study
Application period Application no longer possible | Application no longer possible
Admission restrictions no

Why study Advanced Safety Sciences for Medicines in the University of Konstanz?

The compact organisation of studies and teaching, known as blended learning (a combination of attendance and distance/e-learning), enables students to integrate both profession and studies into their lives. The international orientation provides the opportunity to develop worldwide contacts. The participation of industry, research institutions and authorities guarantees the practical relevance of the programme. This means that the programme contents can easily be transferred to your everyday professional work. Small groups, as well as personal and individual supervision by the academic staff provide a very good learning environment. You will benefit from the best conditions for a successful postgraduate study programme for working professionals. The Department of Biology at the University of Konstanz offers this further educational master’s programme in cooperation with the IMI Project SafeSciMET and the Akademie für Wissenschaftliche Weiterbildung (AWW).


Prospects and opportunities

Career prospects

There is an increasing demand in industry and research for interdisciplinary competence and knowledge in the development of drugs and especially in drug safety. Our master’s programme trains students explicitly for this area of responsibility through its interdisciplinary and international structure as well as the network of participating partners in industry, research institutions and authorities. A focus on the European perspective of drug safety regulations qualifies graduates for positions in the field of pharmaceutical research throughout Europe.

You will find further career perspectives in the interview series #dreamjob - Starting a career. Alumni of the University of Konstanz report on their personal career entry.

Programme structure

Programme start

Winter semester & Summer semester

Academic structure

The master’s programme consists of 5 modules with a coordinated thematic and chronological structure. Each module has between 3 and 6 individual courses. Each course is composed of a compact attendance week with lectures and seminars at the respective venue, and e-learning sessions at home. Following the attendance week you will continue in self-study to work through case studies.
In module 1 Drug Discovery and Development you will learn about the foundations of drug development and the importance of safety in medicines. In addition to this, current research and development trends will be discussed, for instance in the field of stem cell research.
In module 2 Pharmaceutical Aspects of Drug Safety you will address the importance of safety issues, especially in production processes, and regulatory aspects of supervisory authorities.
In module 3 Adverse Drug Reactions/Predictive Toxicology your main focus will be on toxicological contents at the biochemical, molecular and organic level.
In modules 4 and 5, Non-Clinical Assessment and Clinical Assessment, the main emphasis is on the clinical safety steps in drug development (through to clinical tests of active ingredients, monitoring of tolerance and efficacy after drug authorisation and the market launch).
In the final module you will write your master’s thesis.

In addition to this, you can also take individual (partial) modules. You will find more details on the website of the study programme.

Please check the Exam regulations (partly in German) for more information about the programme structure.

Internship and study abroad


You do not have to absolve an internship.

Study abroad

The study programme has an international orientation. Public and private research and specialist centres participate in the courses and also provide the venues for the attendance phases. They include Swedish, English, German and Swiss institutions (e.g. Karolinska, Roche, Charité) as well as the Universities of Uppsala, Liverpool, Surrey, Vienna, Paris, Copenhagen, Amsterdam, Leiden, Lisbon, Halle and Konstanz. The University of Konstanz is in charge of the master’s programme and monitors the quality of the courses. Students take their exams at the University of Konstanz.


What interests and skills should I have?

A study programme for working professionals requires determination and staying power. It is also helpful if your employer is in favour of your studies. Basically, you should be interested in pharmacy and toxicology, as well as the entire development process of a medicine. Good knowledge of physiology and anatomy as well as an understanding of chemical and biochemical processes will help you to quickly grasp the course contents. You should be able to statistically analyse data, so you need solid computer skills.

Language skills

You have to document your English language skills, for example through IELTS (minimum score: 7) or an equivalent language test.

Language(s) of instruction

The language mainly used in class is English.

Admission requirements

The program was discontinued as of WS 23/24. An application to the study programme is no longer possible.


Semester fee

All students enrolled at the University of Konstanz are charged a semester fee each semester, similar to all other German universities. Here you can find the current semester fee and its individual components.

Tuition fees for first degree studies for certain international students
Since winter semester 2017/18, the state of Baden-Württemberg has required some international students to pay tuition fees for their first degree studies. The following students are not required to pay tuition fees: citizens of a country within the European Union (EU) or the European Economic Area (EEA), doctoral students and certain “Bildungsinländer” (e.g. non-EU citizens with a German “Abitur”). More detailed information can be found here.

Each year, the University of Konstanz grants exemptions to a limited number of particularly gifted international degree-seeking students in accordance with the university’s “Begabtenbefreiungssatzung” (statutes governing the exemption of gifted students). More detailed information can be found here.

Tuition fees for second degree studies for all students
All students are required to pay tuition fees for their second degree studies. More detailed information can be found here.

Application and application documents