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We are one of the top 10 UK Universities for spin-out company formation.
Enhance your undergraduate degree with a year's placement in an industrial, commercial or research environment.
This programme is studied on campus.
Biotechnology is a technology based on the unique properties of biological molecules, cells and organisms, and provides new ways of diagnosing disease, producing antibiotics, pharmaceuticals and chemical feedstocks for industrial processes, reducing industrial contamination of the environment and improving food safety.
The study of biotechnology at Aberdeen involves study of microbiology, biochemistry and genetics. Knowledge of all three subjects is crucial in an area where microorganisms are frequently being genetically engineered to perform novel or enhanced biochemical reactions, and will become increasingly important as synthetic biology is used throughout biotechnological processes.
The potential of biotechnology to provide new health products, new fuels such as hydrogen, advances in agriculture and management of the environment (e.g. oil spill clean-up) is immense but at present only partly tapped. Biotechnology is well-placed to contribute significantly to future sustainable technology development.
In your fourth year you will undertake a year's industrial placement and graduate after five years with an MSci (an undergraduate Masters degree) instead of a BSc. Placements vary considerably but in general terms, you will be placed in an industrial, commercial or research environment where you will obtain a breadth of practical experience to complement your degree programme and enhance your employability.
A degree in Biotechnology is taught via a selection of compulsory and optional courses to enhance your learning and prepare you for a future career or further study. In each year you will take courses adding up to 120 credits. Depending on the number of compulsory and optional courses offered by your degree, you can also choose other eligible courses which fit your timetable.
In year 1 you will take courses in Medical Sciences and Chemistry for Life Sciences plus additional courses selected from the wide range available from science and other areas.
This course covers the foundations of chemistry that underpin the life sciences at a molecular level. The course aims to consolidate a general background in chemistry by putting chemical concepts into a life sciences context. The basic concepts of chemistry will be covered, along with organic molecules, acids and bases, and the basic principles behind the driving forces of reactions.
Laboratory classes introduce important practical techniques, with experiments that reinforce and complement the taught material.
The course will allow students to continue with other chemistry courses as part of their enhanced study by providing discipline breadth.
Chemistry plays an important role in the life sciences, explaining the shapes and properties of biomolecules, and helping to provide an understanding of how biological processes work at a molecular level.
The shapes and function of important biomolecules will be covered. Organic molecule reaction mechanisms will give insight into how different types of molecules can be synthesised. The energetics and importance of equilibrium in driving reactions will be covered.
Methods of chemical analysis and measurement introduce other important topics linking the chemical and life sciences.
Workshops and labs complement lectures by consolidating learning and developing problem-solving and hands-on practical skills.
This course, which is prescribed for level 1 students and optional for level 2 students, is studied entirely online and covers topics relating to careers and employability, equality and diversity and health, safety and wellbeing. During the course you will learn about the Aberdeen Graduate Attributes, how they are relevant to you and the opportunities available to develop your skills and attributes alongside your University studies. You will also gain an understanding of equality and diversity and health, safety and wellbeing issues. Successful completion of this course will be recorded on your Enhanced Transcript as ‘Achieved’ (non-completion will be recorded as ‘Not Achieved’). The course takes approximately 3 hours to complete and can be taken in one sitting, or spread across a number of weeks and it will be available to you throughout the academic year.
This course, which is prescribed for level 1 students and optional for level 2 students and above, is studied entirely online and covers topics relating to careers and employability, equality and diversity and health, safety and wellbeing. During the course you will learn about the Aberdeen Graduate Attributes, how they are relevant to you and the opportunities available to develop your skills and attributes alongside your University studies. You will also gain an understanding of equality and diversity and health, safety and wellbeing issues. Successful completion of this course will be recorded on your Enhanced Transcript as ‘Achieved’ (non-completion will be recorded as ‘Not Achieved’). The course takes approximately 3 hours to complete and can be taken in one sitting, or spread across a number of weeks and it will be available to you throughout the academic year.
In year 2 you will take core courses drawn from Biochemistry (Molecular Biology of the Gene, Energy for Life), Genetics (Genes & Evolution) and Microbiology and Immunology (Microbes, Infection and Immunity) programmes.
In year 3 the curriculum in Biotechnology is interdisciplinary. Courses consider both the fundamental science that has enabled the biotechnology industry to develop, and the applications of different biological systems.
You will spend year 4 on placement in an industrial, commercial or research environment.
The Honours year aims to explore in depth, specific aspects of biotechnology. An important feature is the ten-week research project, carried out in research laboratories at the University or in local research institutes.
We will endeavour to make all course options available; however, these may be subject to timetabling and other constraints. Please see our InfoHub pages for further information.
You will be taught using a variety of methods and styles and we continually seek to make the teaching engaging, exciting and responsive to the latest research in your subject area. The research we carry out in the School directly informs and guides our teaching, particularly in the final Honours year. Our commitment to teaching is recognised by the range of University of Aberdeen Student-led Teaching Awards given to staff from our School.
As a student, your learning is supported by MyAberdeen, our virtual learning environment from which you can access the lecture Powerpoint slides, online practice tests, links to related reading, and tutorial support material.
We make innovative use of 'educational voting' handsets in class, remote control 'clickers' that allow each and every student to electronically respond in class by anonymous vote to questions posed by the lecturer.
Your academic development is supported from year 1 through to year 5 by an assigned personal tutor, who acts as adviser and mentor throughout your University career.
Students are assessed by any combination of three assessment methods:
The exact mix of these methods differs between subject areas, year of study and individual courses.
Honours projects are typically assessed on the basis of a written dissertation.
The typical time spent in scheduled learning activities (lectures, tutorials, seminars, practicals), independent self-study or placement is shown for each year of the programme based on the most popular course choices selected by students.
The typical percentage of assessment methods broken down by written examination, coursework or practical exams is shown for each year of the programme based on the most popular course choices selected by students.
The information below is provided as a guide only and does not guarantee entry to the University of Aberdeen.
SQA Highers - AAAB*
A Levels - ABB*
IB - 34 points, 6 at HL*
ILC - 5H with 4 at H2 and 1 at H3, with H2 and H3 from Chemistry and Biology, OR AAABB including AB from Chemistry and Biology. The grading within band B must be at B2 or above.*
*Including good performance in Chemistry and Biology.
Advanced Entry - Advanced Highers AAB or A Levels AAB, or IB 36 points (6 at HL), including Biology and Chemistry, one of which must be an A-grade.
The information displayed in this section shows a shortened summary of our entry requirements. For more information, or for full entry requirements for Sciences degrees, see our detailed entry requirements section.
To study for an Undergraduate degree at the University of Aberdeen it is essential that you can speak, understand, read, and write English fluently. The minimum requirements for this degree are as follows:
OVERALL - 6.0 with: Listening - 5.5; Reading - 5.5; Speaking - 5.5; Writing - 6.0
OVERALL - 78 with: Listening - 17; Reading - 18; Speaking - 20; Writing - 21
OVERALL - 54 with: Listening - 51; Reading - 51; Speaking - 51; Writing - 54
Cambridge English Advanced & Proficiency:
OVERALL - 169 with: Listening - 162; Reading - 162; Speaking - 162; Writing - 169
You will be classified as one of the fee categories below.
For international students (all non-EU students) the tuition fee charged upon entry will apply to all years of study; however, most international students will be eligible for a fee waiver in their final year via the International Undergraduate Scholarship.
|Home / EU||£1,820|
|Students Admitted in 2019/20|
|Students Admitted in 2019/20|
View all funding options in our Funding Database.
A wide variety of career opportunities are available to Biotechnologists. Many of our graduates follow their undergraduate degree with PhD research in a wide range of research laboratories, in biotechnology and pharmaceutical companies in the UK and overseas. Others move directly in to positions in hospital research, diagnostic laboratories and research institutes. Other major employers of Biotechnology graduates include the scientific civil service, and the food and fermentation industries.
Our degree programmes are built to enhance your employability and three flagship options give our degrees a distinctively different flavour from many others. All our degrees offer:
We are one of the top 10 UK Universities for spin-out company formation.
You will be taught by a range of experts including professors, lecturers, teaching fellows and postgraduate tutors. Staff changes will occur from time to time; please see our InfoHub pages for further information.
With a focus on developing future effective therapies, the Institute of Medical Sciences (IMS) houses nearly 400 researchers and support staff working on cutting-edge biomedical subjects aimed at understanding the human body and its response to infection and disease.
We have a dedicated Medical Library located on the Foresterhill Health Campus as well as the fantastic facilities in the Sir Duncan Rice Library at King’s College.
Focused on developing future effective therapies, the Institute of Medical Sciences houses nearly 400 researchers and support staff working on cutting-edge biomedical subjects aimed at understanding the human body's response to infection and disease.
A dedicated Medical Library on the Foresterhill Health Campus and the fantastic facilities in the Sir Duncan Rice Library at King’s College, are complemented by online access to the key medical and health sciences journals and textbooks.
Our commitment to teaching is underscored by our recent re-build and modernisation of the teaching lab space dedicated to practical teaching at years 1, 2 and 3.
Unistats draws together comparable information in areas students have identified as important in making decisions about what and where to study. You can compare these and other data for different degree programmes in which you are interested.