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Biotechnology (MSc)

Course Description

This programme equips you for the biotechnology/life science profession or enables you to progress to PhD research studies. Designed and delivered with industry input, it is career-focused and vocationally-relevant.

About the programme

The programme will develop your knowledge and understanding of a range of theoretical and practical skills relevant to the biotechnology industry; advance your understanding of the industry; and grow your research skills.

Your understanding of the principles of commercialisation in the biotechnology industry will be developed through either a bioindustry
or work-related learning module. This combination of theory and practice will fully prepare you for employment in the biotechnology sector or for progression to further research.

The University’s Institute of Biomedical and Environmental Health Research (IBEHR) brings together life, physical and environmental scientists in a holistic approach to research. Your research skills are developed throughout the programme and applied in the individual research project.

Practical experience

You will develop practical laboratory skills through taught modules and apply these in your research project. It is possible to undertake a work related learning module.

Your learning

The programme offers current theory and practical skills in a range of relevant techniques including microbiology, immunology, and cell culture. The MSc is awarded on successful completion of 180 credits at Level 11. Full-time students study three 20 credit modules in trimesters 1 and 2 and a 60 credit research project in Trimester 3.

Modules include:
• Nucleic Acid and Protein Technology
• Microbial Technology
• Medical Biotechnology
• Bioanalysis
• Research Design
• Bioindustry or Placement Learning


Upon successful completion of the taught modules listed above you will undertake the MSc research project.

Our Careers Adviser says

Many of our students continue their studies to PhD level, either in the UK or abroad. It may also be possible to complete the MSc project abroad, bringing a global perspective to your studies. It’s not unusual for our graduates to travel further afield, for example we have a graduate studying for a PhD at Kyushu University, Japan, and another at Berlin-Brandenburg School for Regenerative Therapies. Alternatively you could go on to secure employment within the life science industry in the UK or abroad. One of our graduates is project co-ordinator at Quintiles.

Financial support

In session 2015/16 the Postgraduate Diploma element of this programme carried SAAS postgraduate loan funding for eligible students. Check http://www.saas.gov.uk for 2016/17 loan info.

Note: To obtain the MSc, students will usually take 9 months to gain the Postgraduate Diploma and then normally an additional 3 months of study to gain the MSc, from the date of commencement of the project.

First-class facilities

Get the hands on experience you need to succeed. We have excellent specialist facilities which support our research students and staff. These include an advanced chemical analysis lab: with state-of-theart chemical analysis for isotopic and elemental analysis at trace concentrations using ICPMS/OES and the identification of organic compounds using LCMS; and the Spatial and Pattern Analysis (SPAR) lab: providing high specification workstations, geographical information system (GIS) software, geochemical and image processing facilities to support data management in science research.

Visit the Biotechnology (MSc) page on the University of the West of Scotland website for more details!

Student Profiles

Entry Requirements

Applicants must have gained a second class BSc (Hons) or equivalent in Bioscience, Biotechnology or a related Science degree. Applicants may also be considered with other academic, vocational or professional qualifications deemed to be equivalent. Overseas students must meet UWS English language requirements

Course Fees

Scottish/EU Students £3,400, Rest of UK Students £3,400, International Students £11,000

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