UCAS codes

Course contact

Gail McGarvie
+44 (0)1698 283100 or 0800 027 1000 (+44 141 849 4101 out with UK)

Qualifications and durations

  • MSc (full-time/part-time)
    1 year*/2 years
  • Postgraduate Diploma (full-time/part-time)
    9 months/18 months

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


Start date(s)

  • January and September

Tuition Fees

Additional costs
Please note that for some programmes of study there may be additional costs involved which are not included in the tuition fee advertised. These could be, for example, for study materials, fields trips or equipment. Programme leaders will be able to provide detail of any additional costs.

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.

Please note that this course is recognised as by Scottish Awards Agency Scotland (SAAS) for access to postgraduate tuition fee and cost-of-living loans for UK and EU applicants. See the Useful Information section for more details.

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.

The programme is available to EU and overseas students (full-time only). Overseas students must meet UWS English language requirements.
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.

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.



  • 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

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

This course is recognised by SAAS (Student Awards Agency for Scotland) for access to postgraduate loan funding towards postgraduate tuition fees and living costs. Check the SAAS website for details of loan eligibility criteria for UK and EU students.

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.

I have learned a lot about medicinal chemistry and the drug development process. We had a guest speaker from a major pharmaceutical company who was a real inspiration to us and I have been able to go on a work placement gaining valuable industrial experience

At UWS, the lecturers are all very friendly and approachable, and the facilities are modern.

Saskia Otto, Postgraduate Diploma Biotechnology graduate

Useful Information