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Full time & Part time September MSc 1 year Full-time / 2 years Part-time

About the course

As biological sciences have become more data driven, bioinformatics is now central to modern biological research, from genetics, nutrition and epidemiology to ecology, neuroscience and biomedicine. This programme will teach you how to manage and manipulate large datasets to reveal new insights in biological sciences. You will get intensive training in a computer-based approach to biological research, with the opportunity to develop specialist skills in computer programming, data analysis, statistics and computational biology.

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Entry Requirements

A minimum of an upper second-class BSc (Hons) degree (or equivalent international qualification) in biology or other relevant natural sciences subject.

Applicants with a good lower second class degree may be considered on an individual basis, taking into account relevant background and related achievements.



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Student Profile(s)

Raphaella Jackson

Why did you choose to study Bioinformatics?
During my Genetics degree I had a class on Bioinformatics and I found I was particularly well suited to it. I enjoyed all my classes, but I found that Bioinformatics was especially enthralling. I grew up with both of my parents being computer engineers and being determined to do something, anything else but at that moment I think I realised that some work with computers was inevitable. Unsurprisingly, I found that I really liked working with computers and I’m fairly competent at it, so it made a lot of sense to combine my love of genetics with my skills in computer science.

Why Queen Mary?
I started looking to see if there were any bioinformatics courses in Europe or the UK that I could apply for. I saw that Queen Mary had a course and one of the things that struck me as I was looking at job opportunities in my field, was that the skills employers were listing as required or desired were exactly the same as what Queen Mary was teaching on the course. So clearly this course would teach me the skills I needed to get a good job in the future. I think the marketable skills I’m learning are extremely useful.
The second reason was when I visited the campus and met the Head of Bioinformatics Conrad Bessant. I was really taken aback by how I was treated with noticeable respect and as someone who was taken seriously as a scientist. I was very impressed by that. It made me feel like Queen Mary was the ideal place to go because if I was treated like a serious scientist, then I reasoned I would be educated like one as well. My experience has more than demonstrated this to be the case.

Tell us about your research
Humans have bacteria in our stomachs, which help us digest our food, without them we would become very ill. This is an example of a mutualistic relationship, we need the bacteria and the bacteria needs us. A lot of organisms have these kinds of relationships, including ants. I’m currently working with a recently discovered bacteria that shares this relationship with certain kinds of ants. I have been working on assembling genomes for different strains of this bacteria in several ant species in order to compare them.

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