Biopharmaceutical Engineering

Biopharmaceutical products are highly important in today’s global healthcare systems in treating illnesses and disease. The industry in the British Isles has seen significant investment, particularly in the Republic of Ireland (RoI) where there has been capital investment of approximately £7.97 billion in new facilities, mostly in the last 10 years. The global market for biopharmaceuticals was valued at £149 billion in 2017, and is projected to reach £419 billion by 2025, growing at an annual rate of 13.8% from 2018 to 2025. As a result, over 30,000 highly skilled people are currently employed in Ireland north and south with new companies setting up facilities in RoI every year. The increased uptake of skilled biopharmaceutical employees has necessitated the need for a high quality education in this sector.

Queen’s University Belfast School of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering has a proven track record for delivering high quality teaching and research and has launched the MSc in Biopharmaceutical Engineering from this platform. This programme will provide students with the knowledge and skills required to work in the field of biopharmaceutical production, separation and purification by applying fundamental science and engineering principles. Through studying this postgraduate taught MSc, graduates will be able to gain a highly relevant qualification which will give them employability on an international level.

Through the use of theory and mathematical approaches to engineering problems, students will understand and become skilled in the development of systems which can facilitate biopharmaceuticals production and their subsequent purification.

This course is run in collaboration with our industrial partner Eli Lilly, a global company with excellent standing in the field of pharmaceutical and biopharmaceutical production and commercialisation. A collaborative course of this nature is the first of its kind in the British Isles and will provide students with real-world knowledge of how these systems are operated in an industrial setting through the case studies and first-hand knowledge imparted by the academics and industry staff delivering the course.

Course Structure
The MSc is awarded to students who successfully complete all six taught modules (120 CATS points) and a 15,000 - 20,000 word research dissertation (60 CATS points).

Exit qualifications are available - students may exit with a Postgraduate Diploma by successfully completing 120 CATS.

Subjects taught

The modules on this MSc will take you through the intellectual and practical journey involved in the production of biopharmaceutical products, from the identification of a potential therapeutic protein through to its purification.

On the full-time course there are three 20 CATS modules in each of the Autumn and Spring Semesters and a summer research project (60 CATS). Part-time students will take undertake these modules within a teaching delivery spread over two years.

Semester One modules:
CHE7401 Medicinal Chemistry
CHE7402 Biopharmaceuticals & Upstream Processing
CHE7403 Chemical Engineering Principles

Entry requirements

Normally a 2.2 Honours degree or equivalent qualification acceptable to the University in Chemical Engineering, Chemistry, Pharmacy, Biochemistry or closely allied subject.

Applicants with relevant work experience will be considered on a case-by-case basis.

The University's Recognition of Prior Learning Policy provides guidance on the assessment of experiential learning (RPEL). Please visit for more information.

The deadline for applications is normally 30th June 2024. However, we encourage applicants to apply as early as possible. In the event that any programme receives a high number of applications, the University reserves the right to close the application portal earlier than 30th June deadline. Notifications to this effect will appear on the Direct Application Portal against the programme application page.

Please note: a deposit will be required to secure a place.


1 year (Full-time), 2 years (Part-time)

Enrolment dates

Entry Year: 2024/25

Post Course Info

Career Prospects
This MSc will equip you with the knowledge and skills required for a successful career in a biopharmaceutical industrial setting as a process engineer, analytical scientist or related role. Alongside this, with the skills obtained through this MSc you will have increased your opportunity of job placements in multiple career positions.

More details
  • Qualification letters


  • Qualifications

    Degree - Masters at UK Level 7,Postgraduate Diploma at UK Level 7

  • Attendance type

    Full time,Daytime,Part time

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