This one year full-time master's course (or two years part-time) consists of 120 credits of taught modules, with a research project and a dissertation contributing 60 credits. This course offers unique components related to specialist skills in three pathways; plant, microbial or animal biotechnology.
Plant Biotechnology pathway
This will provide theory and practical skills in plant genetic manipulation, plant breeding and genome research, which underpin all aspects of agriculture and horticulture worldwide. Specialist modules will provide an understanding of plant cell biology and the role of phytohormones in plant physiology. Plant sexual reproduction is also covered in the context of improved breeding. A series of off-site visits will inform you about the latest technologies and research allied to plant improvement and provide an insight into current plant research in the agricultural and agro-industry sectors.
Microbial Biotechnology pathway
This offers knowledge in using micro-organisms as production platforms for valuable compounds such as therapeutics, food additives and antibiotics. Specialist modules will provide you with an understanding of how antibody biotechnology can be applied to solve problems in an industrial and biomedical context. The Bioprocessing and Bioengineering module covers a range of topics from recent advances in the heterologous expression systems, metabolic engineering, challenges in scale-up of production processes and understanding production processes at molecular, genetic, physiological and cellular levels in an integrated manner. Theory is supported by practical based learning approaches and industry visits.
Animal Biotechnology pathway
This will prepare you for a wide range of options offered by the animal biotechnology industry. This stream covers a range of topics from molecular techniques used to study gene function in eukaryotic cells to whole organisms, to more specialized aspects of bioinformatics, glycoengineering, molecular immunology, developmental epigenetics, molecular nutrition, reproductive biotechnologies and stem cell technologies. Our areas of expertise includes multidisciplinary projects, e.g. transgenic technologies, in vitro embryo production systems, biomarker discovery, nutritional influences on physiological functions, genetic and epigenetic basis of disease, genetic evaluation and healthy ageing.
Key elements of the course include:
- training in advanced molecular methods
- industry placement and offsite visits to industries
- training in professional skills and core competencies
- training in research skills
- skills in bio-entrepreneurship
- career workshops
You will complete a three months research project in your chosen pathway (plant, microbial or animal biotechnology) supervised throughout by an experienced member of academic staff. Projects can be chosen either to be conducted at the University or in a few select industries. For projects in industry, dedicated placement officers will work on a one-to-one basis to help you source and prepare for your industrial placement.
The course is based on the Sutton Bonington Campus, a self-contained site only 20km south of Nottingham. Sutton Bonington is an easy bus or car journey to University Park Campus and on to Nottingham city, with a free bus service between campuses. Two other cities, Derby and Leicester are nearby. East Midlands International Airport is 7km away, plus there are fast rail links close by to London.