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Biotechnology

Course Outline
The MSc in Biotechnology is a one-year course designed to provide you with the theoretical and practical skills for employment in the industries of biomedical research, biopharmaceuticals, agrochemicals and biotechnology. The course curriculum consists of six months of lectures, laboratory practical sessions, career service workshops, industry-based seminars and a six-month research project. The curriculum has been developed with input from staff in local biotechnology and biopharmaceutical industries, to provide you with the necessary skills required by employers. Students have the choice to complete the six-month research project in a national or international industry or university environment.

The MSc in Biotechnology degree course consists of eight modules, set practical sessions, career service workshops, an industry lecture series and a six-month research project.

Research Project and Industry Placement:
You will be required to complete a six-month research project based on your individual research and development in a selected field of modern science. You carry out your research in UCC's laboratories or at an approved academic or industrial partner.

When you complete your research dissertation in an industrial setting, it provides the company with an opportunity to assess your skills and abilities and to screen potential future full-time employees.

A detailed information outline can be obtained by emailing biotechnology@ucc.ie. All applicants are strongly advised to study the detailed outline.

Course Practicalities
The curriculum consists of approximately 250 contact hours over two academic terms (October to December and January to March), consisting of eight course modules, set practical sessions, career service workshops and an industry lecture series.

The course will:
• introduce you to the theory and practice of bioanalytical chemistry?
• introduce you to molecular biotechnology, eukaryotic-, prokaryotic- and plant-biotechnologies, recombinant DNA technologies and their application in the biotechnology and biopharmaceutical industries
• introduce you to the principles of process and biochemical engineering?
• introduce you to the role of process validation and quality assurance in the pharmaceutical industry, and give you an awareness of the latest trends in good manufacturing, laboratory and validation practices
• introduce you to the principles of food and industrial microbiology
• provide you with the opportunity to conduct and complete a body of independent research in a biotechnology-related area and present your research findings in a minor dissertation.

During the third academic term (April to September), students complete a six-month research project on a topic related to biotechnology, biopharmaceutical or biomedical research. Industry-based projects in these areas are managed by a dedicated placement officer who facilitates career workshops during which you prepare for and are interviewed by staff from companies interested in hosting students. For students interested in a career in biomedical research or PhD, projects are offered in a broad range of research areas utilising modern research techniques. All research projects are undertaken in consultation with an academic supervisor and examiner.

The MSc in Biotechnology is awarded after passing written examinations across taught course units, the continuous assessment of practical work and completion of a six-month research project, which has to be written up in the form of a dissertation and approved by an external examiner. All students must complete written examinations (typically held over a two week period in March) and submit a research project.

Why Choose This Course
This is the most established MSc in Biotechnology course in Ireland and is the most popular MSc course in UCC. The international success of this course is attributed to the industry-led curriculum offered to students and the opportunity to complete a six-month placement in industry or an academic research lab. The global recognition of the course is also evident from our international alumni and receipt of several industry-sponsored scholarships available to students entering and on completion of the course.

Placement or Study Abroad Information
During the third academic term (April to September), students complete a six-month research project on a topic related to biotechnology, biopharmaceutical or biomedical research. Industry-based projects in these areas are managed by a dedicated placement officer who facilitates career workshops during which students prepare for and are interviewed by staff from companies interested in hosting students. For students interested in a career in biomedical research or PhD, projects are offered in a broad range of research areas utilising modern research techniques. All research projects are undertaken in consultation with an academic supervisor and examiner.

Entry requirements

Candidates must have obtained at least a Second Class Honours, Grade I degree or equivalent in a subject(s) related to that of the MSc programme. Graduates with a Second Class Honours Grade II will be considered on a case-by-case basis. Graduates with equivalent qualifications in related areas of science and technology, or with proven and relevant industrial experience can be considered for places following interview and assessment by the Director of the MSc (Biotechnology) Programme. Candidates must be approved by the MSc (Biotechnology) course team and/or the Director of the MSc (Biotechnology) Programme. The number of places is limited and selection will be made on the basis of the candidate's performance in his/her primary degree or interview.

English Language Requirements
Applicants that are non-native speakers of the English language must meet the university approved English language requirements available at https://www.ucc.ie/en/study/comparison/english/postgraduate/

International/non-EU applicants
For full details of the non-EU application procedure please visit our how to apply pages for international students. In UCC, we use the term programme and course interchangeably to describe what a person has registered to study in UCC and its constituent colleges, schools, and departments.

Not all courses are open to international/non-EU applicants, please check the fact file above.

For more information please contact the International Office.

Duration

1 year full-time.
The curriculum consists of approximately 250 contact hours over two academic terms (October to December and January to March).

Careers or further progression

Skills and Careers Information
The course is suitable for students wishing to extend their specific undergraduate degree knowledge in biotechnology, and for those wishing to bridge their undergraduate degree and gain more specialised knowledge and training in biotechnology. The course allows you to follow a number of career pathways. Each year, over 70 per cent of our students gain employment while approximately 20 per cent of graduates progress to international PhD opportunities.

Students who secure employment upon graduation fit into the organisation and contribute productively much sooner that other graduates. For students with an interest in biomedical research and future careers as PhD researchers, research projects are offered across a broad range of topics including but not limited to; cancer biology, neuroscience, immunology, microbiology and plant biotechnology.

Further enquiries

Contact details for this course
Prof. Tommie McCarthy
t.mccarthy@ucc.ie
+ 353 21 420 5436
www.ucc.ie/ucc/depts/biochemistry/courses.html#postgrad

Subjects taught

Students study the following eight modules and complete a research project:
• MB6004 Advanced Molecular Microbial Biotechnology
• PF6301 Biopharmaceuticals: formulation design, secondary processing and regulatory compliance
• PE6008 Bioprocess Engineering
• BC6001 Cell and Molecular Biology
• MB6003 Functional Foods for Health
• BT6001 Genetic Engineering
• CM6011 Modern Methods in Analytical Chemistry
• PS6001 Plant Genetic Engineering

Comment

This innovative, interdisciplinary course draws its faculty and course content from UCC's Biochemistry, Microbiology, Chemistry, Pharmacy, Plant Science and Process Engineering departments. Additional lectures are provided by staff from local biotechnology and biopharmaceutical companies.

Assessment method

The MSc in Biotechnology is awarded after passing written examinations across taught course units, the continuous assessment of practical work and completion of a six-month research project, which has to be written up in the form of a dissertation and approved by an external examiner. All students must complete written examinations (typically held over a two week period in March) and submit a research project.

Application date

Applications for academic year 2020/2021 are open.

Closing Date: 20 March 2020

Late applications may be accepted on a first-come, first-served basis for any courses that have remaining capacity.

Non-EU Closing Date: 15 June
Non-EU Applicants: Information for Non-EU applicants may be found on the International Office Website https://www.ucc.ie/en/international/

Enrolment and start dates

Start Date: 7 September 2020

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