The 3 best Biotechnology Master’s Programs in the USA
Biotechnology has been one of the fastest-growing fields in the US over the past few decades, and that trend looks to continue into the future. So it is no surprise that biotechnology graduate programs are popping up all over the country.
There are now more than 120 biotechnology graduate universities in the United States alone. And many of them offer master’s degree programs that teach future professionals about the uses and applications of biological technology.
Here are 3 of the best biotechnology master’s degree programs in the U.S., based on factors like accreditation, alumni success, and financial aid availability, among other factors.
What is Biotechnology and how it is growing?
Biotechnology is a branch of science that deals with the use of living organisms and bioprocesses to develop or make products, such as medicines, food, and other products.
Biotechnology can be used for anything from creating a new medicine to recycling old tires. It is one of the fastest-growing fields of study, expected to grow over 13% annually through 2020.
Courses in Biotechnology? Biotechnology is a wide and varied field of study. Some courses you may find in a biotechnology master’s program might include:
- Molecular biology: Molecular biology is the study of biological processes at a molecular level. This field overlaps with other disciplines, including biochemistry and genetics.
Cell biology: Cell biology is a branch of biology that studies cells, their structures, functions, and interactions with each other and their environments.
- Bioinformatics: Bioinformatics is a discipline that combines biology, computer science, and mathematics to study and solve biological problems. Bioinformaticians use computational techniques such as statistics, machine learning, and data mining to address a wide range of problems such as gene identification and protein function prediction.
Biochemistry: Biochemistry is the study of chemical processes by which organisms convert their food into usable energy and raw materials for growth. In other words, it is the chemistry of living systems.
- Genetics: Genetics course is a study of heredity and genetic variation in humans, other organisms, and populations.
Ecology: Ecology is a field of science devoted to studying and understanding interactions between organisms and their environment. Ecology seeks to understand how life on Earth has changed and will change with respect to interaction with its physical environment.
You may also be required to have taken calculus and physics classes before being accepted into the program.
Best Biotechnology Master’s Programs in the USA
Are you interested in attending an American university to earn your master’s degree in biotechnology? If so, you might be wondering which universities are best suited to your interests and future career path. Here are the 3 Best biotechnology master’s programs in the USA.
1. Cornell University
Cornell University is a renowned institution located in Ithaca, NY. The school has been ranked as a top 50 university by U.S. News & World Report and is one of twelve universities to be affiliated with the Association of American Universities.
The biotechnology program at Cornell University is located within its College of Agriculture and Life Sciences and offers students an advanced education in:
- Molecular biology
- Biomedical sciences
- Environmental Sciences
A graduate degree option includes a master of science in agricultural and natural resource economics or a master of engineering with concentrations available in either biological engineering or biochemical engineering.
As well, those looking for graduate-level degrees can choose from MS degrees such as molecular plant genetics and genomics or integrative biological research.
Qualification for admissions:
To qualify for admissions, students must have earned a four-year undergraduate degree from an accredited college or university with upper-level coursework in biology, chemistry, mathematics, physics, and English. Students also need to submit scores from either the GRE General Test or the GMAT exam.
With a competitive applicant pool, average GPAs for admitted students are high. On average, GPAs range between 3.5 and 4.0.
Financial aid is readily available for those who meet financial qualifications. Among the types of scholarships offered are some that provide full tuition reimbursement and others that offer partial coverage on tuition costs as well as stipends to cover living expenses during student training programs.
2. Stanford University
Stanford University is a private research university located in Palo Alto, California. It is one of the most prestigious and selective universities in the world.
Stanford University offers a biochemistry and molecular biology graduate program for students with an undergraduate degree in chemistry or biology.
Students who complete this program are awarded a master of science degree, with no thesis required.
The curriculum includes lectures, seminars, and laboratory work, which allow students to explore research topics related to their area of interest.
Research lab experience is available on campus. Graduates will have access to careers in academia, government, and industry.
How to get an Admission:
To be eligible for admission, prospective students need to have a bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution with at least one year of full-time graduate work or its equivalent.
The application process consists of submitting a Graduate School application and other supporting documents (letters of recommendation, transcripts, etc.), plus taking the GRE General Test.
Candidates are then evaluated on the basis of their performance in academics (GPA) as well as their letters of recommendation.
Other factors that come into play include extracurricular activities and volunteerism. Those who make it through the initial screening will get invited for interviews conducted by members of the admissions committee, where they can present themselves and discuss their educational goals.
3. Johns Hopkins
Johns Hopkins University offers a cutting-edge biochemistry and molecular biology program. The school is located in Baltimore, Maryland, a city with a thriving biotech community.
Graduates of this program have gone on to work at places like Pfizer and Merck. They are eligible for generous scholarships as well as internships throughout their studies.
For biotechnology master’s degree students, Johns Hopkins offers a master of science degree in biomedical engineering with concentrations that include:
How to get admissions:
The application process for admission to Johns Hopkins University is competitive and highly selective. It is important to note that there are no separate application requirements or deadlines for international students.
Applicants must submit:
An online application including a personal essay
SAT scores (or ACT)
High school transcripts
Two letters of recommendation
An optional resume/CV and an official copy of the results from any standardized tests taken.
Applicants must also complete a math placement exam online if they plan on taking mathematics courses at Johns Hopkins University. All applicants are required to take either the GRE or MAT with a required minimum score set by Johns Hopkins University
For all prospective students, it is advised to apply as early as possible during the academic year. The earlier you submit your application, the better chance you will have of being accepted.
Picking a biotechnology master’s program is an important decision. So it pays to do your research. Keep in mind what you want to do and what you are good at when making this decision. And don’t forget about the location. The best university for you might be closer than you think.