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Biotechnology MSc 2018/19 entry

Course code:

MSc Biotechnology (HLST083)
MSc Biotechnology with Professional Experience (HLST136)

Study options:

1 year full-time
2 years part-time

How to Apply
Location:

Coventry University

Starting:

September 2018
January 2019

Fees:

£15,050
£15,900 (with prof. experience)

Find out more

Faculty:

Get in touch

International Office

For questions regarding study and admissions please contact us:


+44 (0) 24 7765 2152


Overview

Analysts have predicted that biotechnology will be one of the most important applied sciences of the 21st century and a key driver in the world economy. From agricultural and environmental to pharmaceutical and healthcare products and services, it already represents one of the largest and most rapidly growing sectors within the life sciences.

This Master’s course is designed to provide the training and development necessary to meet demand for highly skilled scientists within the expanding and global bioscience sector. It can lead to a wide range of careers including academic, commercial, industrial and healthcare applications of biotechnology.

Biology degrees have been provided at Coventry University for over 40 years and are taught in our multi-million pound, state-of-the-art Science and Health Building. This features a suite of analytical and biological laboratories where you can gain hands-on experience in cutting-edge industry techniques.

This Master’s course is designed to expand your knowledge of the molecular, biochemical, cell biological and genetic techniques underpinning modern biotechnology and how they can be used to solve real world problems and benefit society.

 

The programme is composed of a combination of modules which progressively build to the award of Postgraduate Diploma (PgDip) or Master’s. Core subject areas include cellular molecular biology, genetics, protein biology, pharmacology, bioinformatics, numeracy, statistics and computing and a range of practical laboratory techniques.

 

We aim to provide hands-on practical experience of both laboratory and bioinformatics techniques. We will train you in biotechnology research strategies and gain an understanding of the nature of business based on bioscience knowledge and research, opportunities for innovation, and regulatory requirement constraints, intellectual property and ethical issues.

 

We will also consider some of the contemporary issues facing biotechnology, such as biofuels, bioremediation, genetically modified foods, and food biotechnology.

 

To qualify at Master’s level, you will be expected to undertake a research project/dissertation. As a guide, past students have researched the following sample areas: the cytotoxic, antimicrobial and antibiofilm activity of phytochemicals; novel antimalarial drugs; the use of bacteriophage to remove biofilms; and the use of novel enzymes in biofuel production. Successful graduates of this course should have gained exceptional scientific understanding and a host of cognitive, practical and professional skills.

Why Coventry University?

An award-winning university, we are committed to providing our students with the best possible experience. We continue to invest in both our facilities and our innovative approach to education. Our students benefit from industry-relevant teaching, and resources and support designed to help them succeed. These range from our modern library and computing facilities to dedicated careers advice and our impressive Students’ Union activities.

Global ready

An international outlook, with global opportunities

Employability

Career-ready graduates, with the skills to succeed

Student experience

All the support you need, in a top student city

Course information

This Master’s course is designed to expand your knowledge of the molecular, biochemical, cell biological and genetic techniques underpinning modern biotechnology and how they can be used to solve real world problems and benefit society.

The programme is composed of a combination of modules which progressively build to the award of Postgraduate Diploma (PgDip) or Master’s. Core subject areas include cellular molecular biology, genetics, protein biology, pharmacology, bioinformatics, numeracy, statistics and computing and a range of practical laboratory techniques.


We aim to provide hands-on practical experience of both laboratory and bioinformatics techniques. We will train you in biotechnology research strategies and gain an understanding of the nature of business based on bioscience knowledge and research, opportunities for innovation, and regulatory requirement constraints, intellectual property and ethical issues.


We will also consider some of the contemporary issues facing biotechnology, such as biofuels, bioremediation, genetically modified foods, and food biotechnology.


To qualify at Master’s level, you will be expected to undertake a research project/dissertation. As a guide, past students have researched the following sample areas: the cytotoxic, antimicrobial and antibiofilm activity of phytochemicals; novel antimalarial drugs; the use of bacteriophage to remove biofilms; and the use of novel enzymes in biofuel production.

Successful graduates of this course should have gained exceptional scientific understanding and a host of cognitive, practical and professional skills.

Internships may be paid or unpaid, and this will depend on what is being offered and agreed with the host organisation. Students who do not wish to undertake an internship or are not successful in securing an internship will undertake campus-based professional experience, which will deliver similar learning outcomes through supervised projects and activities designed to offer students the opportunity to integrate theory with an understanding of professional practice.

We have a range of taught postgraduate awards to suit your needs, from Postgraduate Certificate or Postgraduate Diploma to a full Master's Degree (MA, MBA, MSc, LLM). In most cases you can decide to exit at Postgraduate Certificate or Diploma level, without carrying onto the full Master's qualification.

Modules

Overview

Additionally, the understanding gained from these modules will be demonstrated and applied in either the University-based project (12 months full-time or 24 months part-time, on course HLST083), or the professional experience modules giving students the option of undertaking an internship with a host organisation or, alternatively, campus-based professional experience.

Modules

  • Genomes and DNA technology

  • Current topics in biotechnology and drug discovery

  • Cell culture and antibody technology

  • Biotechnology in disease diagnosis

  • Pharmaceutical discoveries

  • Research methods and project

In more detail...

  • Access to a well-equipped suite of analytical and biological laboratories where you will have the opportunity to get hands on experience using industry standard techniques, such as flow cytometry, mass spectrometry, high performance liquid chromatography, and confocal microscopy.
  • Guest lectures from current practitioners in the biotechnology industry, laboratory research and other jobs in science in areas including bioremediation, rapid diagnostics, biofuels and plant biotechnology.
  • Extensive industry links with, for example, Green Biologics and Cambridge Scientific Solutions.
  • Research-inspired teaching with input from experts in our Applied Biological and Exercise Sciences research centre, which focuses on the themes of: cellular and molecular biosciences; biological systems, health and disease; and physical activity, exercise and obesity.
  • High levels of student satisfaction for ‘Biology and related Sciences’ – 95% overall and 89% for the quality of teaching compared to a sector average of 83% in the Postgraduate Taught Experience Survey (PTSE) 2016.
  • Strong track record of graduate employability, with 100% of students achieving positive destinations from the 2014 cohort.

Your main study themes are:

  • Current Topics in Biotechnology and Drug Discovery: Explores contemporary topics in modern biotechnology, drug discovery and issues surrounding the regulatory framework and the integration of legal and commercial issues for human research that uses drugs, biologics, devices and stem cells.
  • Biotechnology in Disease Diagnosis: The application of biotechnology to, particularly molecular, diagnostic techniques has initiated a revolution in the diagnosis and monitoring of infectious and non-infectious diseases. You will have the opportunity to learn how molecular diagnostic testing can provide key epidemiologic and surveillance data and rapidly identify outbreaks of disease.
  • Cell Culture and Antibody Technology: Aims to provide an understanding of the use of cultured mammalian, plant and bacterial cells for biotechnological applications. The production and uses of both polyclonal and monoclonal antibodies are also covered.
  • Genomes and DNA Technology: Aims to provide an understanding of modern genome science, looking at the techniques used and information gained in the analysis of genomes, transcriptomes and proteomes. The applications of molecular biotechnology in medicine and agriculture are considered with an emphasis on the production of recombinant protein products and the generation of genetically modified organisms.
  • Research Skills: Aims to provide a detailed understanding of the complex processes necessary to formulate, develop and test a scientific hypothesis. The ethos, requirements and legislation surrounding laboratory research will also be discussed.
  • Pharmaceutical Discoveries: Aims to give an overview of translational medicine from a global, academic, commercial and public sector perspective. Examples of real life translational medicine projects will be used in the form of case studies. An emphasis will be provided in this module that new medicinal products include not only small molecule drugs, but also a growing number of biologics, cell therapies (eg. stem cells), devices and combination devices with drugs/biologics/stem cells. You will have the opportunity to gain a detailed appreciation of novel approaches that use data/methodologies obtained in the lab, to design preclinical and clinical studies with the aim of enhancing the discovery of new therapies or targeting therapies to patient groups.

The course can be studied over three semesters and one year as a traditional full-time Master’s programme and two years part-time, starting in September and January. It can also be studied over 20 months as an extended full-time programme ‘With Professional Experience’. This incorporates the additional professional experience modules, in which you will have the opportunity to gain experience throughout either an internship with an external organisation or with the University and then write up a report detailing what you have learned.

Internships, subject to competitive application and selection, will normally be undertaken for three to five days per week for 18-22 weeks over two semesters. Those unsuccessful in gaining an external internship will undertake an internal internship that is based at the University, but which may have some input from external organisations, depending upon the nature of the internship.

Teaching and learning incorporates lectures, workshops, tutorials, presentations and practical laboratory sessions, all supported by an extensive suite of analytical and biological laboratories staffed by experienced technicians. In addition, each module is supported by extensive online material to help prepare you for your taught sessions and to assist with your personal study.

Where possible, coursework uses applied tasks that mimic the skills needed in jobs to help ensure you are attractive to future employers, such as oral and poster presentations, and the collection and interpretation of laboratory data culminating in a detailed report. We try to organise industry visits and also offer the opportunity to participate in internships with previous students spending time with companies such as Severn Trent Water and Lytegro.

You will receive a series of lectures and seminars on selected contemporary topics in modern biotechnology and drug discovery, delivered by University teaching, research staff and invited speakers from other universities, research institutes, biotechnology and pharmaceutical industries. For example, we have recently hosted sessions on biofuels, bioremediation and transgenic plants.

The learning outcomes of modules, assignments and projects will be clearly stated. Your work will be marked according to how well you achieve these learning outcomes and your final feedback will refer to each outcome, as well as providing an overall percentage grade.

Each module contains two summative assignments which you must pass with an average mark of 40% or greater. In order for you to show your potential you will be assessed in a variety of formats, including scientific report writing, verbal and written presentations – including oral and poster presentations, and critical reviews – and a statistical analysis of data.

An estimated percentage breakdown of your final grade assessment is as follows:

  • Practical or project work: 55%
  • Critical reviews of the literature: 25%
  • Oral, poster and leaflet presentations: 14%
  • Data analytical exercise: 6%

 


 

On the successful completion of 180 level Masters credits, awards may be made with a ‘Distinction’ or ‘Merit’, based on the achievement of an average mark of at least 70% or 60%, respectively. Students may be awarded the Postgraduate Diploma (PgDip) if they achieve 120 credits and a Postgraduate Certificate (PgCert) if they achieve 60 credits. Students may only progress to the final stage of Masters programmes after meeting the requirements for the award of a Postgraduate Diploma.

On successful completion, you should have knowledge of:

  • Current hot topics in biotechnology, such as biofuels, biosensors, GM foods, and bioremediation.
  • Genomes and DNA technology, including molecular biology and genomics, and biotechnological applications.
  • Cell culture and antibody technology, including production, maintenance and applications of animal cell cultures and antibodies, and the use of immunochemical techniques for analysis and therapy.
  • Diagnosis of disease, including the use of biotechnology in disease diagnosis.
  • Pharmaceutical discoveries, including translational medicine and drug discovery.
  • Research methodology, including design and management of scientific research.

 

On successful completion, you should be able to:

  • Critically analyse, evaluate and interpret knowledge and practice in biotechnology.
  • Collect, analyse and present data using appropriate methods.
  • Apply scientific methods to the critical analysis of literature, reflection, information searching, and research methodology in areas of biotechnology.
  • Apply scientific/clinical methods to conducting and management of research.
  • Formulate and present a critical argument using a variety of methods (eg. presentation, essay) that would stand up to critical review and scrutiny in academic and professional settings.
  • Work safely in the laboratory, establishing fundamental techniques, and carry out progressively more advanced laboratory-based investigations based on competence in biotechnology, including microbiology, cell culture and differentiation, biochemical, molecular and analytical techniques that are particularly relevant to contemporary biotechnology.
  • To lead and to collaborate with others in order to solve problems of a practical nature and to provide appropriate solutions.
  • Design a research study, including demonstrating awareness of safety and ethical issues.

Conduct an independent research project, including collection, analysis and presentation of data.

In a typical teaching week, you will have up to 15 ‘contact’ hours of teaching. This generally breaks down as 3 hours of laboratory sessions and 12 hours of lectures, workshops and tutorials each week.

In addition, you will be expected to undertake a further 25 hours of self-directed study each week eg. working on coursework assignments.

It is predicted that biotechnology will be a key driver in the world economy and this course has been designed to provide the training and development necessary for global careers within the biotechnology sector. This course attracts like-minded students from all over the world, who are seeking to improve their scientific and laboratory skills in biotechnology, using British standard equipment and gaining extensive practical laboratory time. As such, you are likely to find yourself part of a multicultural learning environment, working alongside students who will share their own professional and personal experiences.

Global ready

Did you know we help more students travel internationally than any other UK university according to data from the experts in higher education data and analysis, HESA?

In 2014/15, we were able to provide a total of 2,264 student experiences abroad that lasted at least five days, 73% of which were our own organised trips for undergraduates and 27% from postgraduate travel. Plus, we've been able to help more than 5,000 students spend time in other countries, from America to China, India and beyond.

Much of this travel is made possible through our Global Leaders Programme, which enables students to prepare for the challenges of the global employment market, as well as strengthening and developing their broader personal and professional skills.

Explore our international experiences

1st for

international experiences

Sending more students overseas than any other UK uni (HESA)


2,264

Student experiences

The number of student trips abroad for at least 5 days in 2014/15



12,000

and counting

The number of students we’ve helped travel internationally so far

21

global programmes

As well as trips, we offer other opportunities like language courses


What our students say...

I have always been fascinated with laboratory research and laboratory sessions at Coventry University, which were perfectly delivered, have definitely broadened my horizons. The lectures, workshops, tutorials, feedback, good teacher-student relationship and support have given me in-depth knowledge of the subject. The skills I learned, particularly research skills and techniques, data collection and analysis, have already benefited me tremendously in my current research studies. With these, I can confidently achieve my dreams of becoming a research scientist.

Pantong Henry Nden, MSc Biotechnology, graduated in 2014, now studying a PhD at Coventry University

Entry Requirements

Applicants should hold the equivalent of a 2:2 undergraduate degree in Bioscience or Biological Chemistry. We would expect to see the study of the following subjects in the final year of the undergraduate degree: molecular biology (e.g. recombinant DNA), microbiology, biochemistry, cell biology.

Applicants should hold the equivalent of a 2:2 undergraduate degree in Bioscience or Biological Chemistry. We would expect to see the study of the following subjects in the final year of the undergraduate degree: molecular biology (e.g. recombinant DNA), microbiology, biochemistry, cell biology.

English as a Foreign Language: This course requires IELTS of 6.5 overall, with no component lower than 5.5. Pre-sessional English is available if required.

Our International Student Hub offers information on entry requirements for your country, as well as contact details for agents and representatives should you need more advice.

More detail

Applicants should hold the equivalent of a 2:2 undergraduate degree in Bioscience or Biological Chemistry. We would expect to see the study of the following subjects in the final year of the undergraduate degree: molecular biology (e.g. recombinant DNA), microbiology, biochemistry, cell biology.

English as a Foreign Language: This course requires IELTS of 6.5 overall, with no component lower than 5.5. Pre-sessional English is available if required.

Our International Student Hub offers information on entry requirements for your country, as well as contact details for agents and representatives should you need more advice.

More detail

Tuition Fees

We pride ourselves on offering competitive tuition fees which we review on an annual basis and offer a wide range of scholarships to support students with their studies. Course fees are calculated on the basis of what it costs to teach each course and we aim for total financial transparency.

Starts

Fee


September 2018

£10,650
£11,600 (with prof. experience) (per year)


January 2019

£10,650
£11,600 (with prof. experience) (per year)


Scholarships

If you're a truly outstanding undergraduate candidate we may be able to offer you a Coventry University Scholarship. Coventry University Scholarships are awarded to recognise truly exceptional sports achievement and academic excellence.

Starts

Fee


September 2018

£10,650
£11,600 (with prof. experience) (per year)


January 2019

£10,650
£11,600 (with prof. experience) (per year)


Scholarships

For the September 2017 and January 2018 intakes, we're investing £1 million into scholarships for high achieving and enterprising students.

Our scholarships are worth up to £10,000 and every student that applies will be considered. Fulfil your potential this academic year with Coventry University!

Starts

Fee


September 2018

£15,050
£15,900 (with prof. experience) (per year)


January 2019

£15,050
£15,900 (with prof. experience) (per year)


Scholarships

For the September 2017 and January 2018 intakes, we're investing £1 million into scholarships for high achieving and enterprising students.

Our scholarships are worth up to £10,000 and every student that applies will be considered. Fulfil your potential this academic year with Coventry University!

Career prospects

Within the life sciences, biotechnology is a rapidly growing sector and it is predicted that the global expansion in biotechnology will be a key driver in the world economy.

This course is specifically designed to equip you with the skills and knowledge required for a career within biotechnology both in the UK and internationally.

Many biotechnologists are employed by companies in the biotechnology industry, where they may be involved in medical, industrial or agricultural biotechnology research. They can also work for contract research organisations (CROs) or academic departments within universities on research projects.

The scientific knowledge and skills you should acquire during the course can be a useful basis for a career in: teaching; technical and scientific writing (such as medical writing or writing for the media); clinical trials; drug registration, patenting or monitoring; medical publishing or other information services; regulatory affairs or sales and marketing.

Our graduates have gone on to careers in drug discovery and development, clinical trials development and governance within the pharmaceutical industry and university and hospital departments. Opportunities also exist for further study upon completion of the course at PhD level, which some of our past students have chosen to do here in Coventry or in universities as far afield as New Zealand and Africa.

Disclaimer

By accepting your offer of a place and enrolling with us, a Student Contract will be formed between you and the University. The Contract will detail your rights and the obligations you will be bound by during your time as a student and will contain the obligations that the University will owe to you. The 18/19 PG Contract will be published shortly.