Birkbeck, University of London

Course Introduction

This specialist postgraduate degree provides high-quality training in bioinformatics, including a major research component.

The programme is ideal if you are from a scientific background and want to pursue research training in bioinformatics, or if you are seeking a future career in both academia and industry. Bioinformatics has grown dramatically in the last two decades and this programme has been designed to meet the needs of the pharmaceutical, chemical and biotechnology industries for research and development.

It covers the core concepts and statistical fundamentals underpinning bioinformatics, most notably in the area of sequence analysis. You will learn how to program in Python and design and query databases using SQL, and gain experience in more advanced programming practices such as software testing and application development. You will also explore core biological concepts such as genes and genomes, protein structure and function, and growth areas such as next generation sequencing and systems modelling.

Our research areas include:

* computational structural bioinformatics, with a focus on the characterisation of macromolecular assemblies relevant to disease

* analysis of next-generation sequencing data, both genomic and transcriptomic

* immunoinformatics, in particular virus-host interactions and immune responses to protein therapeutics

* developing bioinformatics and chemoinformatics methods to analyse metabolic pathways

* structure-thermodynamic relationships, molecular simulation and inhibitor design

* developing new computational methods that exploit data produced using various experimental techniques (e.g. cryo-EM, mass spectrometry, NMR and tomography).

TEACHING

Teaching may include formal lectures, seminars, and practical classes and tutorials. Formal lectures are used in most degree programmes to give an overview of a particular field of study. They aim to provide the stimulus and the starting point for deeper exploration of the subject during your own personal reading. Seminars give you the chance to explore a specific aspect of your subject in depth and to discuss and exchange ideas with fellow students. They typically require preparatory study.

CAREERS AND EMPLOYABILITY

Graduates go on to careers in the biotechnology, chemical, and pharmaceutical sectors, as well as academia. Possible professions include healthcare scientist (genetics), research scientist, or higher education lecturer. This degree can also be useful in becoming a science writer or software developer.

Start Date:

two afternoons/evenings a week.

Duration & Attendance Qualification Tuition fees Fee type
1 year
Full Time
Masters in Research (MRes) Home Fees
1 year
Full Time
Masters in Research (MRes) European Fees
1 year
Full Time
Masters in Research (MRes) Overseas Fees
2 years
Part Time
Masters in Research (MRes) Home Fees
2 years
Part Time
Masters in Research (MRes) European Fees
2 years
Part Time
Masters in Research (MRes) Overseas Fees

Qualifications required:

  • Domestic entry requirements: The MRes course is a challenging, interdisciplinary course. We recommend initial entry to the MSc Bioinformatics course until November (full-time) or February (part-time) so that your skills and knowledge can be thoroughly assessed. Occasionally, direct entry to the MRes is possible, when there is very strong prior evidence that the student will perform well on the course. You must have an upper second-class honours degree (2:1 or above). Some practical knowledge of one programming language would be a distinct advantage. Mathematics to A-level or equivalent desirable, but GCSE/O-level considered.
  • International entry requirements: The MRes course is a challenging, interdisciplinary course. We recommend initial entry to the MSc Bioinformatics course until November (full-time) or February (part-time) so that your skills and knowledge can be thoroughly assessed. Occasionally, direct entry to the MRes is possible, when there is very strong prior evidence that the student will perform well on the course. You must have an upper second-class honours degree (2:1 or above). Some practical knowledge of one programming language would be a distinct advantage. Mathematics to A-level or equivalent desirable, but GCSE/O-level considered. If English is not your first language or you have not previously studied in English, our usual requirement is the equivalent of an International English Language Testing System (IELTS Academic Test) score of 6.5, with not less than 6.0 in each of the sub-tests.