MSc Pharmaceutical Industry Advanced Training (PIAT) / Course details

Year of entry: 2022

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Course unit details:
Inhalation Dosage Forms (PIAT 15)

Unit code PHAR70150
Credit rating 15
Unit level FHEQ level 7 – master's degree or fourth year of an integrated master's degree
Teaching period(s) Variable teaching patterns
Offered by Pharmacy
Available as a free choice unit? No


This unit covers the following key areas:

  • history and development of the inhalation market;
  • pulmonary drug delivery, including an overview of the respiratory tract, respiratory diseases and treatment options;
  • the main inhalation delivery technologies including metered dose inhalers, dry powder inhalers, nebulisers and nasal sprays;
  • regulatory and quality control considerations for inhalation products;
  • particle size analysis and key physico-chemical properties.



The unit aims to provide a comprehensive understanding of the design, development, formulation, manufacture, analysis and use inhalation dosage forms.


Teaching and learning methods

Students are provided with the learning material in soft copy form. The learning material comprises 8 chapters covering the all the key areas of inhalation dosage forms. Each chapter contains a number of exercises together with suggested answers for students to check their learning as they progress through the unit. A reference list of further reading is provided for each chapter allowing the student to investigate the subject area more deeply, and the unit tutor is available to answer queries and provide guidance as required. The face-to-face workshop at the annual workshop event explores key areas of the unit through a range of hands-on exercises and practical demonstrations.


Knowledge and understanding

Students will be able to:

  • Understand the potential benefits of inhalation drug therapy over other dosage forms
  • Understand the main disease states and treatment options
  • Demonstrate awareness of the regulatory influences that have to be considered in the development and marketing of an inhalation dosage form

Intellectual skills

Students will be able to: 

  • Apply the knowledge of the physiology of the pulmonary system and its influence on drug delivery to the respiratory tract.
  • Discern the quality control procedures applied to inhaler devices to ensure product specifications are satisfactorily met.
  • Apply the significant relationship between particle size and successful drug delivery and compare the methods available to measure particle size.

Practical skills

Students will be able to: 

  • Analyse the principles involved in the function and development of various inhalation dosage forms, including pressurised metered dose inhalers, dry powder inhalers, nebulisers and nasal sprays.
  • Demonstrate the key functional attributes of inhalation drug delivery devices.

Transferable skills and personal qualities

Students will be able to: 

  • Use failure mode analysis to synthesise approaches for improving technical and patient performance.
  • Understand and apply physico-chemical principles in formulation technology.
  • Appreciate medicine development from the end-user (patient) perspective.

Assessment methods

Method Weight
Written assignment (inc essay) 100%

Feedback methods

Feedback returned by email within 15 working days.

Study hours

Independent study hours
Independent study 150

Teaching staff

Staff member Role
Stephen Douglas Unit coordinator

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