In this century, food security and the need to develop sustainable agriculture will become dominant issues affecting the whole world. The global population is projected to increase dramatically from 7 to 9 billion in the next 30 years, causing an unprecedented demand for food and increased pressure on land. The aim of this Food Security Degree is to provide you with knowledge and skills relating to the broad topic of food security, incorporating socio-economic, animal and crop aspects.
We welcome students from diverse educational backgrounds and we anticipate that many will be unfamiliar with all the topics in this programme. We have therefore designed the programme so that it provides you with both a broad understanding of the major issues in food security and the opportunity to selectively focus on aspects of particular interest.
The programme is made up of courses totalling 180 credits. The programme starts with three compulsory courses (totalling 60 credits) that introduce fundamental issues in food security. You then choose from a range of optional courses (usually 10-credit) that expand on key topics, including production of food from animal sources and crop improvement. Some courses provide practical skills and there is an opportunity to learn about commercial issues relating to food production. Finally, you will undertake a 60-credit investigative project, which will allow you to focus on a selected topic.
The programme comprises the following courses:
*Most of the optional courses are 10 credit courses
Most courses are taught through lectures and tutorials, in which there will be discussion of key concepts, and training in the critical appraisal of published information. In addition, some courses include guest lectures and site visits. The course on Technology Transfer and Commercialisation of Bioscience Research will include workshop sessions. Two courses provide training in laboratory skills: Molecular Lab Skills and Plant Genetic Engineering. The project will involve an independent investigation of a selected topic in food security under supervision from an expert in the field.
Food security is a major challenge of this century and hence there will be opportunities to develop careers in several areas. Career prospects include working in Agri-industry, research institutes, government advisory, international advisory, media and research positions.
The breadth of knowledge, understanding and skills you will acquire in this Masters programme will help you obtain employment or undertake research in the food security sector.
The biotechnological applications of molecular biology underpin major industries in the medical and agricultural sectors. Insights from the study of genetic material are already benefitting the development of new diagnostic tests, therapeutic agents, bioenergy production systems, improved crops and more. The range and value of these developments is rapidly increasing.
This exciting MSc Molecular Biology and Biotechnology program provides training for bioscience graduates to develop confidence and independence in their practical skills and knowledge relevant to careers in this area. Successful graduates will be ready to undertake further study at PhD level or to enter employment in the biotechnology sector.
You’ll learn essential practical skills; study the relevant theory in the Departments of Molecular Biology and Biotechnology (MBB) and Chemical and Biological Engineering (CBE); and carry out an individual research project, in which you’ll learn how to design and conduct research, keep records and present the research in different styles.
Our graduates work in health care, pharmaceuticals, food safety and production, brewing and agrochemicals. Many of our masters students go on to do a PhD then pursue a career in research; others have gained entry to the prestigious NHS Scientist Training Programme (STP).
The 2014 Research Excellence Framework (REF) ranks Sheffield No 1 for biomedical research and in the UK top five for biological sciences generally. We have regular seminars from distinguished experts, and our motivated staff undertake collaborative research ranging from biotechnology to medicine.
Our masters courses give you a solid grounding in experimental science, with personal supervision and tutorials by experienced scientists, based in modern and well-equipped labs, leading on to a research project in which you design and conduct your own research.
You will learn cutting edge science from research leaders, and gain practice in reading the scientific literature and writing reports.
Assessment is based on a combination of coursework, project work, formal examinations and a dissertation.
Choose any three from:
This programme offers an expansion of our already successful MSc Biotechnology into industrial biotechnology and business management. It is jointly run with Adam Smith Business School.
There are two semesters of taught material and a summer session working on a project or dissertation. September entry students start with management courses and January entry students with biotechnology courses.
You will be based in the Adam Smith Business School, developing knowledge and skills in management principles and techniques. We offer an applied approach, with an emphasis on an informed critical evaluation of information, and the subsequent application of concepts and tools to the core areas of business and management.
You will study biotechnology courses, which aim to enhance your understanding of using biological processes, organisms, or systems to manufacture products intended to improve the quality of human life. These courses will provide training in state-of-the-art biotechnology applications what have resulted in ground-breaking developments in the areas of medicine, pharmaceuticals, agriculture and food production, environmental clean-up and protection and industrial processes.
Project or dissertation
If you are studying for an MSc you will undertake individual project in the summer period (May–August). This will give you an opportunity to apply and consolidate the course material and enhance your ability to do independent work, as well as present results in the most appropriate format. Project options are closely linked to staff research interests.
The aims of the courses are to
This programme will prepare you for a career in the pharmaceutical or biotechnology industrial sectors or for entry into PhD programmes.
Would you like to be involved in finding solutions to future challenges of food and energy production, such as climate change, population growth and limited energy resources? Are you interested in animal welfare, clean soil, environmental issues or the newest methods in biological and genetic engineering? Would you like to learn about automation and robotics in agriculture?
Join the Master’s Programme in Agricultural Sciences on the Viikki Campus to find solutions for the challenges of today and tomorrow. The University of Helsinki is the only university in Finland to offer academic education in this field.
In the Master’s Programme in Agricultural Sciences, you can pursue studies in plant production sciences, animal science, agrotechnology, or environmental soil science, depending on your interests and previous studies. For further information about the study tracks, see Programme contents.
Upon completing a Master’s degree, you will:
Further information about the studies on the Master's programme website.
The Master’s Programme in Agricultural Sciences comprises four study tracks:
Plant production sciences – plants as sources of food, feed, energy, beauty and wellbeing
During your studies, you will have the opportunity to apply biology to the breeding, cultivation, protection and production ecology of crop or horticultural plants. Producing sufficient food is one of the great challenges facing humanity. Plant production sciences have an important mission in finding solutions to this challenge. Plants are cultivated not only for food and feed, but also for bioenergy, green landscapes and ornamental purposes; plant production sciences seek new, improved solutions for all these purposes.
Animal science – animal health and wellbeing
During your studies, you will become familiar with issues pertaining to the wellbeing, nutrition and breeding of production and hobby animals as well as with the relevant biotechnology. In this study track you will apply biochemistry, animal physiology, genetics and molecular biology for the benefit of sustainable animal production. The Viikki Research Farm, in urban Helsinki, provides plenty of opportunities for hands-on learning!
Agrotechnology – technology with consideration for the environment
This study track provides you with the opportunity to study technologies that are key to agricultural production and the environment, from the basics to the latest innovations. Advances in technology and automation offer new horizons to fearless inventors interested in developing machinery and engineering for the reorganisation, implementation and adjustment of production in accordance with the needs of plants and animals.
Environmental soil science – dig below the surface
These studies allow you to literally dig beneath the surface. The soil is a central factor for the production of renewable natural resources, the diversity of nature, and the quality of water systems. As an expert in environmental soil science you will know how the soil serves as a substrate for plants and affects the quality of food, and how it can be improved.
For further information about study contents, visit the programme home page.
This is a multidisciplinary degree that brings together aspects of chemistry, biology and cell biology. The modules are carefully tailored to cover the knowledge in key fields such as:
This degree produces graduates with a critical, analytical and flexible approach to problem solving, enhancing laboratory and professional competence and enabling students to work independently and use their initiative in solving the diverse problems they encounter.
The programme helps you to obtain a creative attitude to the development and manufacture of biotechnology products. The intention is that skills and knowledge can be more readily transferred to professional activities.
The aims of the programme are:
Students are required to study the following compulsory courses.
Students are required to choose 1 course from this list of options.
Students are assessed through:
This programme involves a series of lectures, seminars and workshops. Case studies will provide you with exposure to up-to-date problems and enhance your problem solving and team-work in a way that simulates an industrial setting. A research project in a well equipped department led by staff with a diversity of research experience will give you the opportunity to carry out novel research and enhance your practical skills, analytical thinking and independence.
Biotechnology and pharmaceutical industries, intellectual property industry (IP), academics, bio-informatics/IT, health services, research and higher degrees (PhD).