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Biological Sciences×

Masters Degrees in Plant Cell Science, United Kingdom

We have 4 Masters Degrees in Plant Cell Science, United Kingdom

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In recent years the study of plant sciences has been revolutionised by the development of new tools and technologies which have allowed unprecedented progress in the study of plant biology – knowledge which is being applied to develop sustainable solutions to some of the major challenges of the 21st century. Read more

In recent years the study of plant sciences has been revolutionised by the development of new tools and technologies which have allowed unprecedented progress in the study of plant biology – knowledge which is being applied to develop sustainable solutions to some of the major challenges of the 21st century.

This course will give you specialist training in the modern molecular aspects of plant science. A large part of your teaching will be delivered by academics from the University’s Centre for Plant Sciences (CPS) linked to the latest research in their areas of expertise.

You’ll explore the wide ranges of approaches used in biomolecular sciences as applied to plant science. This will cover theory and practice of recombinant DNA and protein production, bioimaging using our confocal microscope suite, practical bioinformatics and theories behind ‘omic technologies.

You’ll also learn how to design a programme of research and write a research proposal, read and critically analyse scientific papers in plant science and biotechnology and present the findings. A highlight of the course is your individual 80 credit practical research project.

The course is 100% coursework assessed (although some modules have small in course tests). Our teaching and assessment methods are designed to develop your independent thinking, problem solving, communication skills and practical ability, making you attractive to employers or providing an excellent foundation for further study (eg PhD).

You’ll study in a faculty ranked 6th in the UK for its research impact in the recent Research Excellence Framework (REF 2014).

Our Facilities

You’ll study in a stimulating environment which houses extensive facilities developed to support and enhance our faculty’s pioneering research. As well as Faculty operated facilities, the CPS laboratories are well equipped for general plant research. There is also a plant growth unit, including tissue culture suites with culture rooms, growth rooms and flow cabinets alongside transgenic glass-houses to meet a range of growth requirements.

Course content

On this course you’ll gain an overview of a range of modern techniques and methodologies that underpin contemporary biomolecular plant sciences.

You’ll also apply your knowledge to an extended practical investigation in the form of a laboratory-based mini project, involving practical training in a range of modern molecular biology and protein engineering techniques such as gene cloning, PCR, mutagenesis, protein expression, protein purification and analysis.

A module on plant biotechnology will address current topics such as the engineering of plants, development of stress-tolerant crop varieties and techniques for gene expression and gene silencing through reading discussion and critical analysis of recent research papers.

You’ll learn from the research of international experts in DNA recombination and repair mechanisms and their importance for transgene integration and biotechnological applications; plant nutrition and intracellular communication; and the biosynthesis, structure and function of plant cell walls.

You’ll also explore the wide range of approaches used in bio-imaging and their relative advantages and disadvantages for analysing protein and cellular function. Bioinformatics and high throughput omic technologies are crucial to plant science research and you will take modules introducing you to these disciplines.

In the final part of the course you'll work on an independent laboratory-based research project related to your course options. You’ll receive extensive training in experimental design, the practical use of advanced techniques and technologies, data analysis and interpretation, and will be assigned a research project supervisor who will support and guide you through your project.

Course structure

Compulsory modules

  • Bioimaging 10 credits
  • Topics in Plant Science 10 credits
  • Practical Bioinformatics 10 credits
  • Plant Biotechnology 10 credits
  • High-throughput Technologies 10 credits
  • MSc Bioscience Research Project Proposal 5 credits
  • Research Planning and Scientific Communication 10 credits
  • Advanced Biomolecular Technologies 20 credits
  • Protein Engineering Laboratory Project 15 credits
  • Bioscience MSc Research Project 80 credits

For more information on typical modules, read Plant Science and Biotechnology MSc in the course catalogue

Learning and teaching

You’ll have access to the very best learning resources and academic support during your studies. We’ve been awarded a Gold rating in the Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF, 2017), demonstrating our commitment to delivering consistently outstanding teaching, learning and outcomes for our students.

Your learning will be heavily influenced by the University’s world-class research as well as our strong links with highly qualified professionals from industry, non-governmental organisations and charities.

You’ll experience a wide range of teaching methods including formal lectures, interactive workshops, problem-solving, practical classes and demonstrations.

Through your research project and specialist plant science modules, you’ll receive substantial subject-specific training. Our teaching and assessment methods are designed to develop you into a scientist who is able to think independently, solve problems, communicate effectively and demonstrate a high level of practical ability.

Assessment

We use a variety of assessment methods: multiple-choice testing, practical work, data handling and problem solving exercises, group work, discussion groups (face-to-face and online), computer-based simulation, essays, posters and oral presentations.

Career opportunities

The strong research element of the Plant Science and Biotechmology MSc, along with the specialist and generic skills you develop, mean you’ll graduate equipped for a wide range of careers.

Our graduates work in a diverse range of areas, ranging from bioscience-related research through to scientific publication, teacher training, health and safety and pharmaceutical market research.

Links with industry

We have a proactive Industrial Advisory Board who advise us on what they look for in graduates and on employability-related skills within our courses.

We collaborate with a wide range of organisations in the public and commercial sectors. Many of these are represented on our Industrial Advisory Board. They include:

  • GlaxoSmithKline
  • Ernst and Young
  • The Food and Environment Research Agency
  • The Health Protection Agency
  • MedImmune
  • Thermofisher Scientific
  • Hays Life Sciences
  • European Bioinformatics Institute
  • Smaller University spin-out companies, such as Lumora.

Industrial research placements

Some of our partners offer MSc research projects in their organisations, allowing students to develop their commercial awareness and build their network of contacts.



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Our MPhil/PhD research degree programme offers you. Wide variety of research interests. Research interests of the group include plant-microbe interactions, cell cycle and cell signalling. Read more
Our MPhil/PhD research degree programme offers you:

Wide variety of research interests
Research interests of the group include plant-microbe interactions, cell cycle and cell signalling. In general, the group use molecular biology, plant pathology, proteomics, genetics, microscopy and bioinformatics to investigate the functional role of genes in various conditions. These include biotic stress, flowering, cell cycling, circadian rhythm, receptor-ligand interactions, identification of pathogen secreted molecules and their function, targeted genome editing using CRISPR technology, comparisons of bacterial genomes using next generation sequencing and bioinformatics.

Excellent supervision
Benefit from a professional and challenging relationship with your supervisory team, drawn from experienced academics working at the forefront of their disciplines. The team members have collaborations within and outside the UK, thus possibilities for travelling and longer term visits exist at national and international partner universities.

Resources
Access to the University of Worcester’s virtual resources and its state of the art library facilities. The Institute of Science and the Environment has an excellent range of resources available to support your learning and your research project.

Recent research
Regulation of effectors by circadian rhythm; Identification of PAMPs and apoplastic effectors from downy mildew pathogen; Role of heterozygosity in effector-triggered immunity, investigating immune system of plants using genome editing technology and biopesticides.

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Our MRes in Plant and Microbial Biology provides a unique opportunity to learn from research leaders investigating topics such as global food security, the impact on plants of climate change and plant-microbe interactions. Read more

About the course

Our MRes in Plant and Microbial Biology provides a unique opportunity to learn from research leaders investigating topics such as global food security, the impact on plants of climate change and plant-microbe interactions. Research ranges from molecules to whole organisms, ecosystems and global systems.

Our MRes degrees are excellent preparation for a career in research or industry. These courses enable you to develop your own research skills and contribute new knowledge to your chosen field.

Where your masters can take you

Our MRes programme will provide you with an excellent foundation for a career in research or industry. It is ideal preparation for a PhD degree, whilst also providing advanced level skills in research methods, data analysis, and clear communication of research findings, all of which are in high demand from employers.

Tailor your masters to your own research interests

Our MRes programme is uniquely research-focused. You will be assigned to a research supervisor on the basis of your particular research interests. You’ll be embedded within a research group, working alongside PhD students, postdoctoral researchers, and academic staff who are at the forefront of their research field.

You will conduct an extended research project over several months, with the aim of producing original work of publishable quality.

Course structure

Each programme has a common element where you will learn about the most recent developments in your research area and discuss them with research leaders from the UK and around the world.

You will gain advanced skills in experimental design, data analysis and presentation, as you learn how to become a research leader yourself.

Core modules

Advanced Trends in Biology; Advanced Biological Analysis; Research and Study Skills in Biology; Tutorials; Literature Review; and Research Project. The latter accounts for half of your final grade.

Teaching and assessment

Teaching is via working in a research laboratory or on a field-based research project, tutorials, discussion groups, attendance at seminars, and statistics and other workshops.

Assessment includes, but is not limited to, project report, literature review, critiques, short reports and essays, oral presentations including a viva.

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The flexible Master of Research (MRes) in Advanced Biological Sciences degree from Southampton offers graduates the opportunity to develop their knowledge and practical skills in an area of Biological Sciences of their choice. Read more

The flexible Master of Research (MRes) in Advanced Biological Sciences degree from Southampton offers graduates the opportunity to develop their knowledge and practical skills in an area of Biological Sciences of their choice. The one-year course, tailored to your particular interests, is a stepping stone to further study at PhD level or a gateway to many careers in industry (e.g agriculture, pharmaceutical and the healthcare sector), scientific services, science communication, the teaching profession or in scientific policymaking.

Introducing your course

This is the course page for MRes in Advanced Biological Sciences degree at the University of Southampton. Find out everything about in Advanced Biological Sciences degree and what studying here involves.

In this course page we explain a range of key information about the course. This includes typical entry requirements, modules you can take and how assessment works. We also suggest career opportunities open to you as a University of Southampton graduate of MRes in Advanced Biological Sciences degree.

If you still have questions, please get in touch and we’ll be happy to answer any enquiries. See our contact us page for our telephone, email and address information.

Overview

This new course has at its core four taught modules at postgraduate level to enable you to broaden your scientific knowledge in your chosen area and enhance your hands-on skills in research, presentations and scientific communication. In addition, there is a novel independent research project in the University of Southampton’s modern Life Sciences research laboratories, supervised by a leading academic in the specialism. The transferable skills you gain will be invaluable later in your career whether you are aiming for academia, industry or non-traditional science careers.

We offer MRes courses in Biological Sciences with a focus in one of the following research areas:

  • Biodiversity, Ecology and Ecosystem services
  • Biotechnology
  • Developmental Biology
  • Microbiology
  • Neuroscience
  • Molecular and Cellular Biosciences
  • Plant Biology
  • Zoology

View the programme specification document for this full time course

View the programme specification for this part time course



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