Biotechnology

2020/21 entry

BSc (Hons) Biotechnology

Course fees

Tuition fee type Cost (per annum)
Full time home/EU tuition fee: To be confirmed
Full time international tuition fee: To be confirmed
Full-time industrial placement year fee: To be confirmed
Full-time international placement year fee To be confirmed

Course type

BSc (Hons)

Bachelor of Science

UCAS info

Points required: 104

UCAS code: S005

Institute code: L51

Study mode

Three years full time, four years with sandwich year

About your course

BSc (Hons) Biotechnology explores the manipulation of biomolecular processes to develop technologies and products that address global challenges in health, food and the environment. The course provides excellent facilities to develop practical skills and exciting opportunities to engage with industry.

  • ​A practical, hands-on course, taught using state-of-the-art teaching laboratories
  • Gain an understanding of the principles and applications of biotechnology and practise the latest molecular, bioprocessing and analytical techniques
  • Offers fascinating research projects in areas such as synthetic biology, genetic engineering of crop plants, fermentation technology, bioremediation and antimicrobial resistance 
  • Benefit from strong links with industry for industrial placements
  • Excellent spring board into careers as diverse as biopharmaceutical manufacturing, drug discovery and development, food technology and biofuel production
  • Opportunities to undertake a year’s industrial placement or Erasmus placement 
  • International Foundation Year course available offering direct progression onto this degree programme - visit LJMU's International Study Centre​ to find out more
  • Stepping stone to postgraduate study in MSc Industrial Biotechnology 
  • Start month: September 
  • Campus location: City Campus 

Gain the knowledge and skills required to succeed in the dynamic field of Biotechnology

Katie Evans, Programme Leader

Liverpool is home to a rapidly expanding biotechnology community, including one of the leading biopharma clusters in Europe, making it an ideal location to study biotechnology

Katie Evans, Programme Leader

Work-related learning

As part of your work-related learning, we highly recommend that you opt to undertake a year’s work placement after your second year. This will not only give you a chance to put into practice what you have learnt in the first two years, but it will also help you develop your personal skills, earn a salary while taking a year’s break from formal study and give you a competitive edge when you enter the graduate job market.

If you opt to take a year out on work placement, our Placement Learning and Support Unit will guide you in finding, applying for and securing a placement. During the year, you will have ongoing support from a member of staff, which will include visits to your workplace. 

Support and guidance

Dedicated personal tutor plus study skills support

​Throughout your course you will have the support of a personal tutor who will be available to discuss course-related matters in both tutorial sessions and on a one-to-one basis. In your final year, you will also have a dedicated supervisor who will provide support during your research project.​

Go abroad

LJMU aims to make an international opportunity available to every student. You may be able to study abroad as part of your degree, either in Europe or the US. You could take part in a work placement in Europe under the ERASMUS+ scheme or apply for one of our prestigious worldwide internship programmes. There are also opportunities to attend a two-week summer school with one of our worldwide partners.

Our Go Global Fund can help with costs towards volunteering, individual projects or unpaid placements anywhere in the world. With all these opportunities at your feet, why wouldn’t you take up the chance to go abroad?

Find out more about studying or working abroad or email us at: goabroad@ljmu.ac.uk.

Course details

Biotechnology is a fascinating field of study, which has had a positive impact on many aspects of our lives, with applications across medicine, food and the environment.

This multidisciplinary science builds on a foundational knowledge of molecular and cell biology, microbiology and biochemistry, using transgenic plants, animals and microbes to develop valuable technologies and products. Early known examples of biotechnology include the use of microorganisms to make cheese, bread and wine, but advances in genetic engineering and recombinant DNA technology have revolutionised the biotechnology industry. Modern biotechnology has enabled production of drugs, vaccines, energy, industrial chemicals and progressed developments in gene therapy, cancer therapy and sustainable agriculture.  ​

This is a practical, hands-on course in which you will spend a large proportion of your time in our excellent teaching labs for cell culture, molecular biology and imaging studies​, practising the latest molecular, bioprocessing and analytical techniques. You will gain an understanding of the principles and applications of biotechnology across this broad-based sector. Optional modules and a research project in the final year provide opportunities to specialise in your own particular area of interest. You will have plenty of opportunities to put your skills and knowledge into practice and explore your own interests by completing a research project. The option to do a year’s industrial placement between the second and third year will also help develop transferable skills, valued by employers.

The programme enables you to develop intellectual independence, critical awareness and transferable skills – attributes that are vital for employment. There is an emphasis on career development, with additional input from external speakers from industry, increasing your understanding of the business of biotechnology. As well as exploring a wide range of career options, you will develop commercial awareness and learn how new start-up biotechnology companies are created.  ​

Opportunities for study abroad and placements

The School of Pharmacy and Biomolecular Sciences has an excellent track record of providing relevant vocational training for students. Students are supported by Erasmus and Professional Training Tutors who are responsible for advertising placements and promoting vocational training to students.

What you will study on this degree

Please see guidance on core and option modules for further information on what you will study.

Level 4 

  • Introduction to Biotechnology 
  • Introduction to Structural and Functional Biochemistry
  • Introduction to Molecular Biology 
  • Practical Skills in Biotechnology 
  • Physiological Biochemistry 
  • Microbial Biotechnology 1 
Level 5 
  • Research Methods in Biotechnology 
  • Microbial Biotechnology 2 
  • Sterile Pharmaceutical Products 
  • Synthetic Biology and Bioengineering 1 
  • Structural and Functional Biochemistry 
  • Molecular Biology and Functional Genomics​

Sandwich degree 

  • Year-long industrial placement 
L evel 6 
  • Research Project
  • Current Topics in Biotechnology 
  • Biotechnology Entrepreneurship 
  • Synthetic Biology and Bioengineering 2 
The following options are offered: 
  • ​Microbial Technology 
  • Biomaterials
  • Work-Based Learning

The information listed in the section entitled ‘What you will study’ is an overview of the academic content of the programme that will take the form of either core or option modules. Modules are designated as core or option in accordance with professional body requirements and internal Academic Framework review, so may be subject to change. Students will be required to undertake modules that the University designates as core and will have a choice of designated option modules. Additionally, option modules may be offered subject to meeting minimum student numbers.

Please see the programme specification document for further details on this course.

Teaching and learning

Translating your academic studies into essential professional experience

​The amount of time you spend in each varies according to the module and the level of study. Laboratory sessions give you a chance to develop your practical skills, while workshops and tutorials provide opportunities to discuss course material more informally. All lecture material will be available on our virtual learning environment, Canvas. You will also be expected to do additional research around lecture subjects in your own time using the University Libraries. As the course progresses, the amount of practical and independent work increases, allowing you to develop research techniques and complete a research project. 

Your lecturers

The course is taught by a team of highly motivated and dedicated academics who are committed to helping you fulfil your potential.

Academic staff are experts in their field and current research interests include regenerative medicine, protein engineering for industrial applications, point-of-care diagnostic testing, biosurfactant production and applications, genetic engineering of oilseed crops and antimicrobial resistance.  The course also provides opportunities to make contact with professionals working in the biotechnology industry via guest lectures and workshops. 

Assessment and feedback

We use a variety of assessment methods to give you opportunities to demonstrate your knowledge and skills across a range of contexts.

Most modules are assessed through a combination of exam and coursework and some via coursework only. Exams are normally held at the end of each semester. 

  • ​Exams may include a range of question types e.g. multiple choice, short answer, interpretative, problem-based learning and essay questions 
  • Coursework assessment could be in the form of phase tests, practical reports, data handling, oral presentations, poster presentations, group discussions, essays or demonstrating competence in core practical skills. Most coursework assessments are based on individual assignments but some require group work 

​Feedback on coursework assessments is normally provided within three weeks of submission and may be via Canvas (our virtual learning environment), face-to-face or in writing. We believe that constructive feedback is vital in helping you identify your strengths as well as the areas where you can improve your work. ​

Entry requirements

Please choose your qualifications below to view requirements

Minimum points required from qualifications

104

GCSE and equivalents

  • • Prior to starting the programme applicants must have obtained grade 4 or grade C or above in English Language and Mathematics GCSE or an approved alternative qualification below: • Key Skills Level 2 in English/ Maths • NVQ Level 2 Functional skills in Maths and English Writing and or Reading • Skills for Life Level 2 in Numeracy/English • Higher Diploma in Maths/ English • Functional skills level 2 in Maths/ English • Northern Ireland Essential Skills Level 2 in Communication or Application of Number • Wales Essential Skills Level 2 in Communication or Application of Number

A Levels

  • Minimum number of A Levels required: 2
  • Subject specific requirements: Grade C or above in either Biology and/or Chemistry
  • Is general studies acceptable? No
  • Are AS level awards acceptable? Acceptable only when combined with other qualifications
  • Average A Level offer: BCC
  • Maximum AS Level points accepted: 20

BTEC qualifications

  • BTEC certificate: Acceptable only when combined with other qualifications
  • 90 credit diploma: Acceptable only when combined with other qualifications
  • Diploma (QCF): Acceptable on its own and combined with other qualifications
  • Diploma subjects / grades required: D*D if studied on its own or 104 UCAS points if combined, must be in an appropriate science.
  • Extended diploma (QCF): Acceptable on its own and combined with other qualifications
  • Extended diploma subjects / grades required: DMM if studied on its own or to the total of 104 UCAS points if combined with other qualifications, an appopriate science must form part of qualifications.
  • Level 3 in childrens play, learning and development: N/A

International Baccalaureate

  • International Baccalaureate: Acceptable on its own and combined with other qualifications
  • Additional information: Pass with overall merit in appropriate science area.

Welsh awards

  • Welsh Baccalaureate: Acceptable only when combined with other qualifications
  • Grades / subjects required: Pass

Irish awards

  • Irish Leaving Certificate: Acceptable on its own and combined with other qualifications
  • Grades / subjects required: 104 UCAS points from a minimum of 5 subjects including relevant science.

Scottish awards

  • Scottish Higher: Acceptable on its own and combined with other qualifications
  • Scottish Advanced Higher: Acceptable on its own and combined with other qualifications

Key skills

  • Will Key Skills tariff points be counted towards an offer? No
  • What minimum Key Skill level is appropriate?

NVQ

  • Are Level 3 NVQs acceptable? Not Acceptable
Will I be interviewed?

No interview required

IELTS

6.0 IELTS (minimum of 5.5 in each component)

Can this course be deferred?

Yes

Is a DBS check required?

No

Is RPL accepted on this programme?

Yes

International requirements

Please Note: All international qualifications are subject to a qualification equivalency check via NARIC.

Finance and fees

Find out more about the student funding that you may be eligible for from either LJMU or the government. This section will give you information about grants and loans as well as targeted support for students with children, adult dependants or those with a disability.

Please note that the amount of money you will receive as a student is dependent on where in the UK you normally live (i.e. England, Wales, Northern Ireland or Scotland).

The information below relates to the 2019/20 academic year as the Government has not yet released information for 2020/21. As soon as this is available, we will update these web pages and associate information.

LJMU scholarships

LJMU's scholarships are open to all new full-time Home and EU undergraduates that are liable to pay tuition fees. These awards are not income assessed, they are based on excellence. If successful, you will be awarded a scholarship for each year of your course subject to satisfactory progress. In 2019/20 scholarships are worth between £1,000 and £10,000 per year. The money you receive doesn’t have to be paid back.

LJMU bursary

The LJMU bursary is automatically paid to eligible students – you do not need to apply for it. In 2019/20 the annual bursary is £500, which works out at £1,500 over a three year degree.

LJMU bursaries are means-tested and you don’t have to pay them back; they are intended to help you meet some of the costs associated with being a student.

Tuition fees

In 2019/20 the annual tuition fee for full time, undergraduate, home and EU students is £9,250. You will be charged a fee for each year of your course. The University reserves the right to increase fees up to the maximum permitted by law or government policy in the second and subsequent years of your course. Generally, these fee increases are linked to RPIX inflation (Retail Price Index excluding mortgage interest payments).

The important thing to remember is that you don't have to pay your tuition fees upfront - subject to meeting eligibility criteria, you can take out a tuition fee loan for each year of your course.

You can also take out a maintenance or living cost loan for each year of your course to cover your living expenses, such as rent and food.

You don’t start repaying your student loans until after you’ve left university and start earning at least £25,725**.

For more information on eligibility and tuition fee loans, go to: 

www.gov.uk/studentfinance

LJMU is committed to ensuring that students understand the full cost of studying at the University. Your tuition fee will cover or contribute to, as appropriate, expenses associated with your core modules, including:

  • safety equipment, such as lab coats and goggles
  • uniforms for nurses, paramedics and other professional placements
  • UK field trips and other educational visits
  • student exchanges
  • DBS checks (Disclosure and Barring Service – formerly CRB)
  • Professional sector regulatory body membership

** Repayment threshold for students normally resident in England and Wales.

Living expenses (maintenance) loan

In addition to your tuition fees, eligible full-time undergraduate students can also apply for a maintenance loan to cover living costs. If you’re eligible, you can take out a loan for each year of your course.

The amount you’ll receive will depend on where in the UK you normally live and your household income. This money will be paid into your bank or building society account in three instalments and it’s up to you to budget for your living costs.

Part time students starting in 2018 or later can also apply for a maintenance loan.

For more information on student loans, go to: www.gov.uk/studentfinance

Image of lab

Paying back your student loans

You only start repaying your student loans the April after you have graduated or left university and start earning £25,716* or above. Repayments are based on a percentage of your salary not how much you have borrowed from the Student Loans Company. Repayments are currently set at 9% of any income over the threshold (which is currently set at £25,716).*

* Repayment threshold for students normally resident in England and Wales.

Career prospects

Graduates will be equipped with the knowledge and skills to pursue employment opportunities world-wide.

Biotechnology graduates are employable in a wide range of industries and organisations, such as pharmaceutical, healthcare, environmental, food industries or regulatory authorities.  Some graduates may prefer to continue their studies with postgraduate study (PGCE/PGDE, MSc, MPhil, MRes or PhD) in topics as wide ranging as industrial biotechnology, biomedical sciences, drug discovery and design, cosmetic science, and medical microbiology. The programme is the ideal stepping stone to the MSc Industrial Biotechnology​ offered by LJMU.

CareerSmart programme 

All students in their first year of study will have an opportunity to engage with the CareerSmart programme as an integral part of a core module of study. Once you have completed this, a wide range of other career-related provision and services will be available to support your development throughout your studies. 

The new CareerSmart e-learning tool will introduce you to the steps involved in making informed choices about your career. It will enable you to consider your strengths and development areas, your career motivators, the options available to you and the necessary steps to take to achieve your career goals. 

The University reserves the right to withdraw or make alterations to a course and facilities if necessary; this may be because such changes are deemed to be beneficial to students, are minor in nature and unlikely to impact negatively upon students or become necessary due to circumstances beyond the control of the University. Where this does happen, the University operates a policy of consultation, advice and support to all enrolled students affected by the proposed change to their course or module.
Further information on the terms and conditions of any offer made, our admissions policy and the complaints and appeals process.

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