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Masters Degrees (Biomaterial)

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The Masters course in Biomaterials is multi-disciplinary. It provides students with a rich understanding of about current clinically used biomaterials and state of the art advances in research to improve these. Read more

The Masters course in Biomaterials is multi-disciplinary. It provides students with a rich understanding of about current clinically used biomaterials and state of the art advances in research to improve these. The clinical application of these biomaterials will be demonstrated along with indepth description of materials structure and processing (e.g. polymer, composite and ceramic). The project component will allow hands-on training for the student in further developing novel biomaterials.

Special features

Who is this programme for?

Students from an engineering or medically related background who wish to pursue a career in biomaterials.

Teaching and learning

Semester 1 (Sept - Dec):

Research Methods course unit (15 credits); Lectures and workshops detailing transferable skills such as project management, time management, essay writing, oral presentation.

Master Class Course Unit (15 credits); Lectures specific to biomaterials design, characterization, manufacture and characterization. Lectures on use of stem cells with biomaterials and tissue engineering applications also included.

Structure & Mechanical Properties of Polymers (15 credits); Module covers masters level detail of polymer technology.

Clinical Applications of Biomaterials (15 credits); lectures series detailing current clinical applications of biomaterials. The module also covers a case study exercise.

Semester 2 (Jan - March):

Composite Materials (15 credits); students will learn about composite material design and implementation for biomaterials.

Nanobiomaterials (15 credits); lecture series on nanobiomaterials manufacture, characterization and use as biomaterials

Summer ( March- Sept): 

Research project (90 credits); 5 month research project studying specific biomaterials design or characterisation. Student will have specifically allocated supervisor to provide training in biomaterials. Assessment: Oral presentation and write up: Research aims, hypothesis, Gantt chart, milestones, Write up project in form of journal publication for `Biomaterials' journal.

Course unit details

The MSc in Biomaterials will provide students the opportunity to increase knowledge and skills in the areas of specific materials design and testing for clinical application. Students will have the opportunity to take 90 taught credits with training in state of the art biomaterials design (ceramics, polymers, composites, hydrogels etc with information relating to biological assessment of these materials (e.g. stem cell response, ISO / FDA regulations). Students also have the opportunity to gain 90 credits through a specific research project where they will gain analytical skills and data processing skills relevant to biomaterials design / use.

The full MSc programme is made up of seven taught course units and a four month research project. The taught units are:

Semester 1 (Sept - Dec):

  • Research Methods course unit (15 credits); Lectures and workshops detailing transferable skills such as project management, time managent, essay writing, oral presentation.
  • Master Class Course Unit (15 credits); Lectures specific to biomaterials design, manufacture and characterisation. Lectures on use of stem cells with biomaterials and tissue engineering applications also included.
  • Structure & Mechanical Properties of Polymers (15 credits); Module covers masters level detail of polymer technology.
  • Clinical Applications of Biomaterials (15 credits); lectures series detailing current clinical applications of biomaterials. The module also covers a case study excercise.

Semester 2 (Jan - March):

  • Composite Materials (15 credits); students will learn about composite material design and implementation for biomaterials.
  • Nanobiomaterials (15 credits); lecture series on nanobiomaterials manufacture, characterisation and use as biomaterials.

Summer (March - Sept):

  • Research project (90 credits); 5 month research project studying specific biomaterials design or characterisation. Student will have specifically allocated supervisor to provide training in biomaterials. Assessment: Oral presentation and write up; research aims, hypothesis, Gantt chart, milestones, write up project in the form of a journal publication for 'Biomaterials' journal.

The programme aims to further your knowlege base in biomaterial structure, manufacture and use, and to develop your critical analysis of biomaterial development and methods of application.

Disability support

Practical support and advice for current students and applicants is available from the Disability Advisory and Support Service. Email: 

Career opportunities

The medical device industry is estimated to be increasing at a rate of ~15% per year (Grammenou, 2006). As such it is important to provide scientists that are equipped with the knowledge and skills for the workplace to advance this important clinical need.

The majority of graduates of this programme go on to fill key posts as biomaterials scientists, managers and consultants in academia, industry and research and development. Some advance to PhD programmes within The University of Manchester or external institutes.

Accrediting organisations

Accredited by the Institute of Minerals, Materials and Mining (IOM 3 ) as meeting the Further Learning requirements for registration as a Chartered Engineer.



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Our MRes Tissue Engineering for Regenerative Medicine course gives students from biological, engineering and/or medical-related backgrounds the specialist knowledge and research skills to pursue a career in this field. Read more

Our MRes Tissue Engineering for Regenerative Medicine course gives students from biological, engineering and/or medical-related backgrounds the specialist knowledge and research skills to pursue a career in this field.

You will focus on strategies to repair, replace and regenerate various tissues and organs to solve major clinical problems, gaining insights into topical issues including stem cells, polymer technology, biomaterial fabrication/characterisation and gene delivery. You will learn how to identify major clinical needs and formulate novel therapeutic solutions.

This course has both taught and research components and is suitable for those with little or no previous research experience. You will learn practical skills through two research placements.

Tissue engineering and regenerative medicine as a discipline shows enormous potential for future health and, economically, there is a national demand for specific interdisciplinary training in this area.

We have a vast research network in this field comprising international experts from multiple disciplines and, as such, this course is a collaborative degree from the Faculty of Biology, Medicine and Health and the Faculty of Science and Engineering.

Teaching and learning

This course is structured around taught elements and laboratory-based research projects, with an emphasis on the research-based element.

You will gain hands-on laboratory experience through both the practical skills unit and research placements in tissue engineering/regenerative medicine-focused laboratories at the University lasting 25 weeks.

The course comprises five compulsory components:

  • research methods course unit - 15 credits;
  • tutorial course unit - 15 credits;
  • masterclass course unit - 15 credits;
  • practical skills course unit - 15 credits;
  • research placements:
  • part 1 - literature review and project proposal - 30 credits;
  • part 2 - a 25-week project including practical work, oral presentation and final dissertation, and an assessment of research performance - 90 credits.

You will experience the interdisciplinary nature of the field during the course and gradually increase the depth and complexity of your research through the masterclass unit.

Each project is written up and assessed separately when submitted during the year.

You will be allocated a personal tutor and a personal logbook is introduced at the start of the programme to monitor progress through the course and assess learning and career objectives.

Research placements

The research placements are the largest component of the course and aim to give you the specialist knowledge and practical skills to pursue a research career in tissue engineering and regenerative medicine, as well as develop your practical research expertise in a chosen area and enhance your ability to analyse and interpret data and summarise your findings in the form of written reports and an oral presentation.

The first placement runs alongside the taught units in Semester 1 and involves writing a comprehensive literature review and formulating a research project proposal.

The second placement (25 weeks) runs concurrently with the tutorial course unit for the first part, but is full-time thereafter. It involves hands-on practical experience in a laboratory and integration within a research team. The project is assessed by oral presentation at an end of year symposium, research performance and by submission of a dissertation.

You will choose from a list of research projects (see sample research projects ) and supervisors. Close interaction with the project supervisor at the start of the project and regular monitoring allows you to take responsibility for your own research development. The development of an interactive supervisory/student arrangement is often a useful grounding for future PhD collaboration.

Coursework and assessment

You will be assessed continually during the year through:

  • oral presentations;
  • group participation;
  • multiple choice questionnaires;
  • written reports;
  • a final dissertation.

Facilities

You will have access to a range of facilities throughout the University.

Disability support

Practical support and advice for current students and applicants is available from the Disability Support Office .

Career opportunities

After the course, many students continue their studies and register for a PhD.

However, the course is also of value to students wishing to progress in the pharmaceutical or biotechnology industry, or go into specialist clinical training.

It is also ideal for MBChB intercalating students who wish to undertake directly channelled research training in the tissue engineering/regenerative medicine field.

Associated organisations

You will benefit from close interaction with members of the following groups.



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Our Master of Research (MRes) in Translational Medicine will give you the research skills you need to use state-of-the-art biotechnologies to rapidly translate disease research into improved clinical healthcare. Read more

Our Master of Research (MRes) in Translational Medicine will give you the research skills you need to use state-of-the-art biotechnologies to rapidly translate disease research into improved clinical healthcare.

Our understanding of the molecular basis of disease and drug mechanisms has improved dramatically in recent years, yet there is a distinct shortage of individuals able to apply this knowledge into effective clinical benefit. The core aim is to train the next generation of scientists able to 'fast-track' biological and scientific data into advanced therapies and diagnostics tools.

With advances in technology, graduates are faced with heightened expectations to conduct effective bioscience research. Employers demand skillsets with biological, medical, physical and computational characteristics, and our course is designed to provide this breadth of training.

You will learn omics skills and techniques such as genetics, genomics, transcriptomics, proteomics and metabolomics. Our training in metabolomic techniques is novel for a UK course, while our teaching on the integration of different omic platforms and data in a systems medicine strategy is also unique.

The MRes course consists of four taught units - which together make up the PGCert - plus an extended 35-week project that can be undertaken at the University, the Manchester Cancer Research Centre or a teaching hospital in Greater Manchester.

You can choose from a range of projects covering areas such as the use of gene expression profiling, proteomics, metabolomics, stem cell research, tissue culture or pharmacogenetics in the biology of cancer, cardiovascular disease, infectious diseases, stroke or diabetes.

Completing our course will open up a route into PhD research. You may also pursue a career in academia or the pharmaceutical or biotechnology industries, or as a clinical academic.

Special features

Extensive research experience

The 35-week research project for the MRes award offers the chance to conduct ambitious projects in areas such as cancer, cardiovascular disease, inflammation, mental health, infectious diseases, stroke or diabetes, using methods such as stem cell research, proteomics, metabolomics, tissue culture or pharmacogenetics.

Integrated focus on key topics

Our course has a strong and integrated focus on genetics, genomics, proteomics and metabolomics biotechnology and data interpretation, which are strengths within Manchester and are identified as core areas of bioscience growth.

Teaching and learning

Teaching comprises four taught units delivered using a variety of face-to-face, workshop and e-learning approaches and an extended 35-week research project for the MRes award.

Examples of research projects include the following.

  • Statins in translational cerebral ischemia: systematic review and meta-analysis of pre-clinical studies.
  • Parallel gene expression profiling and histological analysis of tumour tissue microarrays.
  • Development of a New Drug For Alzheimer's Disease by Drug Repositioning.
  • Identification of genetic variants predisposing to autoimmune idiopathic inflammatory myopathies.
  • Effects of differentiating agents on breast cancer stem cells and their sensitivity to DNA-damaging therapies.
  • Molecular characterisation of prostate cancer.
  • Inhibitors of IAPP Aggregation and Toxicity. 
  • New Therapies for Type II Diabetes.
  • Identifying novel monotherapy and combination therapies for the treatment of Glioma.
  • Translation of in vitro to in vivo: investigating the utility of in vitro drug transporter assays to predict inductive effects in the clinic.
  • In vivo mechanistic analysis of cancer drug combination therapies.
  • Using silk as a biomaterial for nerve regeneration.
  • The role of the local tissue environment in immune activation following myocardial damage.
  • Identifying genes that drive Breast Cancer to Bone Metastasis
  • High throughput genetic testing in rare disease: applications of personalised medicine.
  • Drug resistance and heterogeneity in CML following treatment with imatinib and following perturbation caused by nanoparticle delivery of miRNAs.
  • Investigation of a panel of drugs to inhibit the pro-tumourgenic actions of macrophages in breast cancer.
  • 3D anatomical reconstruction and molecular mapping of the atrioventricular ring tissues in human embryonic heart and adult rat heart.
  • Identification of the genetic basis of disorders associated with the presence of intracranial calcification.
  • Species variability in metabolism as a translational factor influencing susceptibility to adverse drug reactions in man.

Find out more by visiting the postgraduate teaching and learning page.

Career opportunities

More than 50% of our graduates progress into PhD research at Manchester or other universities such as Cambridge, Imperial College London, Newcastle, Glasgow, Liverpool and Bristol.

Around 15% pursue a career in the pharmaceutical or biotechnology industry in the UK or abroad.

Approximately 25% are intercalating medics who complete their medical education. An estimated 10% pursue an undergraduate medical degree.



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This programme aims to meet the needs of the fine chemicals, cosmetics, biomaterial, polymers, surface coatings, graphic arts and colorant industries by producing graduates with advanced knowledge and research skills in colour science and in the theory, application and analysis of polymers, fine chemicals and colorants. Read more

This programme aims to meet the needs of the fine chemicals, cosmetics, biomaterial, polymers, surface coatings, graphic arts and colorant industries by producing graduates with advanced knowledge and research skills in colour science and in the theory, application and analysis of polymers, fine chemicals and colorants.

You’ll be introduced to a breadth of practical research and high-level academic skills in planning, experimentation and processes, in synthesis and characterisation aspects. Optional modules will also give you the chance to gain specialist knowledge in an area that suits your own interests and potential career plans.

You’ll also develop a range of generic skills such as problem solving, information technology and communication. Our graduates enjoy excellent employment opportunities both in industry and academia.



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In the first semester of the programme, graduates from a range of backgrounds are brought up-to-speed on core knowledge in engineering, biology and research practice. Read more

In the first semester of the programme, graduates from a range of backgrounds are brought up-to-speed on core knowledge in engineering, biology and research practice.

This is followed by specialist modules in the second semester on human movement analysis, prostheses, implants, physiological measurements and rehabilitation, as well as numerous computer methods applied across the discipline.

The course makes use of different approaches to teaching, including traditional lectures and tutorials, off-site visits to museums and hospitals, and lab work (particularly in the Human Movement and Instrumentation modules).

The core lecturing team is supplemented by leading figures from hospitals and industry.

Programme structure

This programme is studied full-time over one academic year and part-time over two academic years. It consists of eight taught modules and a research project.

All modules are taught on the University main campus, with the exception of visits to the health care industry (e.g. commercial companies and NHS hospitals).

Example module listing

The following modules are indicative, reflecting the information available at the time of publication. Please note that not all modules described are compulsory and may be subject to teaching availability and/or student demand.

Educational aims of the programme

The course aims:

  • To educate engineering, physical science, life science, medical and paramedical graduates in the broad base of knowledge required for a Biomedical Engineering career in industry, healthcare or research in the United Kingdom, Europe and the rest of the world
  • To underpin the knowledge base with a wide range of practical sessions including laboratory/experimental work and applied visits to expert health care facilities and biomedical engineering industry
  • To develop skills in critical review and evaluation of the current approaches in biomedical engineering
  • To build on these through an MSc research project in which further experimental, analytical, computational, and/or design skills will be acquired

Programme learning outcomes

The programme provides opportunities for students to develop and demonstrate knowledge and understanding, skills, qualities and other attributes in the following areas:

Knowledge and understanding

  • Demonstrate breadth and depth of awareness and understanding of issues at the forefront of Biomedical Engineering
  • Demonstrate broad knowledge in Human Biology, Instrumentation, Biomechanics, and Professional and Research skills
  • Demonstrate specialist knowledge in Implants, Motion analysis and rehabilitation, and Medical signals
  • Understand how to apply engineering principles to conceptually challenging (bio)medical problems
  • Appreciate the limitations in the current understanding of clinical problems and inherent in adopted solutions
  • Understand routes/requirements for personal development in biomedical engineering including state registration
  • Understand key elements of the concept of ethics and patient-professional relationships, recognise, analyse and respond to the complex ethical issues

Intellectual / cognitive skills

  • Evaluate a wide range of applied engineering and clinical measurement and assessment tools
  • Design and implement a personal research project; this includes an ability to accurately assess/report on own/others work with justification and relate them to existing knowledge structures and methodologies, showing insight and understanding of alternative points of view
  • Carry out such research in a flexible, effective and productive manner, optimising use of available support, supervisory and equipment resources, demonstrating understanding of the complex underlying issues
  • Apply appropriate theory and quantitative methods to analyse problems

Professional practical skills

  • Make effective and accurate use of referencing across a range of different types of sources in line with standard conventions
  • Use/ apply basic and applied instrumentation hardware and software
  • Correctly use anthropometric measurement equipment and interpret results in the clinical context
  • Use/apply fundamental statistical analysis tools
  • Use advanced movement analysis hardware and software and interpret results in the clinical context
  • Use advanced finite element packages and other engineering software for computer simulation
  • Program in a high-level programming language and use built-in functions to tackle a range of problems
  • Use further specialist skills (laboratory-experimental, analytical, and computational) developed through the personal research project

Key / transferable skills

  • Identify, select, plan for, use and evaluate ICT applications and strategies to enhance the achievement of aims and desired outcomes
  • Undertake independent review, and research and development projects
  • Communicate effectively between engineering, scientific and clinical disciplines
  • Prepare relevant, clear project reports and presentations, selecting and adapting the appropriate format and style to convey information, attitudes and ideas to an appropriate standard and in such a way as to enhance understanding and engagement by academic/ professional audiences

Global opportunities

We often give our students the opportunity to acquire international experience during their degrees by taking advantage of our exchange agreements with overseas universities.

In addition to the hugely enjoyable and satisfying experience, time spent abroad adds a distinctive element to your CV.



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The course aims to provide science or engineering graduates from a diversity of backgrounds with a solid grounding in modern bioengineering technologies, together with options to develop an emphasis in biomechanics and biomaterials, bioimaging and biosensing and digital modelling of various human systems which will prepare students for a career in an industrial, clinical or research environment. Read more
The course aims to provide science or engineering graduates from a diversity of backgrounds with a solid grounding in modern bioengineering technologies, together with options to develop an emphasis in biomechanics and biomaterials, bioimaging and biosensing and digital modelling of various human systems which will prepare students for a career in an industrial, clinical or research environment.

This course is one of a suite of four closely related bioengineering masters courses that comprise of a common core with the ability to focus on specific aspects of bioengineering.
The course has a broader scope than the three related courses, allowing students to select modules related to biomaterials, biomechanics, imaging and sensing and digital modelling.

This course may be appropriate for students who have yet to decide which area of bioengineering they wish to focus on. The principles of the course are highly relevant to the established medical device sector, the biotechnology and the emerging regenerative medicine industry.

This multidisciplinary masters covers practical and theoretical aspects of bioengineering, including:
-cell-biomaterial surface interactions
-materials characterisation
-functionalisation of surface
-biomechanics and mathematical modelling

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This course aims to provide science or engineering graduates from a diversity of backgrounds with a solid grounding in modern bioengineering technologies, together with a strong emphasis in biomechanics and biomaterials. Read more
This course aims to provide science or engineering graduates from a diversity of backgrounds with a solid grounding in modern bioengineering technologies, together with a strong emphasis in biomechanics and biomaterials. This course will prepare students for a career in an industrial, clinical or research environment, independent learning, and postgraduate research or careers in industry or hospitals.

This course is one of a suite of four closely related bioengineering masters courses that comprise of a common core with the ability to focus on specific aspects of bioengineering.

The course covers material optimisation and engineering of biomedical devices while addressing biological considerations to optimise device performance. Such an approach has a wide application range, incorporating transitory invasive devices to permanent implants for repair, replacement and regenerative treatments. The principles of the course are highly relevant to both the established medical device sector and the emerging regenerative
medicine industry.

This multidisciplinary MSc covers practical and theoretical aspect of bioengineering, including:
-cell-biomaterial surface interactions
-materials characterisation
-functionalisation of surface
-biomechanics and mathematical modelling

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