Master of Science in Biomedical Sciences

Course content

A master in Biomedical Sciences has the expertise to contribute to translational research regarding current biomedical problems on a international academic level. You will have the know-how to develop, in a critical and creative manner, new insights regarding human health (you will bridge the gap between ‘pure’ sciences and the medical-clinical practice).

It is a master of 120 credits. It consists of general subjects, specialised biomedical subjects, a research internship and a master’s dissertation. In the second year of the master, you will have 18 credits to spend on elective courses. All these courses together form two learning routes aiming at: your growth as an independent researcher and enabling you to bridge the gap between scientifical knowledge and the medical-clinical practice.

There are eight majors to choose from: each deals with current, constantly evolving, biomedical fields. You choose one major in close accordance with your research internship and the subject of your master’s dissertation. Each major has five complementary subjects. They start from fundamental research and lead to clinical applications and insights, the so-called translational research.

  • The major Nutrition and metabolism deals with the methods of nutrition research and the relationship between nutrition, metabolism and pathology: diabetes, obesity, hypertension, atherosclerosis etc. The major has a direct link with the medical laboratory diagnostics and the underlying validation systems.
  • The major Neurosciences focusses on brain research and its diseases and dysfunctions, such as epilepsy. You will deal with medical imaging of the brain, the neurofysiological principles of brain activity, diseases of the nerve system (origins and treatment), experimental behavioral sciences and research of cognitive and mental functions.
  • The major Tissue engineering and regenerative medicine offers a profound knowledge in cellular biological processes regarding aging, cell death, inflammation, tissue regeneration and stem cell biology. It also deals with the multidisciplinary field of tissue engineering.
  • The major Radiation Sciences can be considered as the run-up for a course as expert in medical radiation physics for radiation protection of the patient in medical diagnostics and therapy. The most recent insights in radiation biology and radiation dosimetry will be studied as well as the technological innovations.
  • The major Medical Genetics focusses on in-depth insight in the newest developments in the field of human genetics; more specifically genetic diagnostics, the genetic basis of syndromes (e.g. neuroblastoma, connective tissue diseases, mental retardation, genetic cancers) and the fast evolving genetic research techniques will be studied extensively.
  • The major Immunity and infection studies the normal functioning of the human immunity on cellular and molecular level. A large number of current topics are dealt with: immuno pathologies, infection diseases, molecular pathogenesis of viruses and bacteria, the development of therapeutic vaccines and immuno modulators.
  • The major System Biology studies the functional system as a whole: the human being, the exemplary organism, the organism or the cell as a whole are objects of the study. Attention is paid tothe comparison of a ‘system’ in disease and health as to objectively mapping out the disruption and its effects in the molecular mechanisms. The major strongly relies on the explosive technological developments in the last decennium, more specifically in the highly advanced execution technologies and bio-informatics.
  • The major Cancer deals in five complementary subjects both with biological aspects (genetics, proliferation and survival, communication and metastasis) and clinical aspects of cancer. Special attention is paid to personalised medicine.

Course structure

As a biomedical master student you have the opportunity to perform your internship (1st master - 1st semester) or your master’s dissertation (2nd master - 2nd semester) at one of our partner universities abroad (Coimbra, Zurich, Dublin, Varese, Sassari, Paris ...).
All the courses of the master in Biomedical Sciences are offered in English which makes it very accessible for exchange students from other international universities.

If you want to combine your master’s degree with a teacher’s degree, then there is the option of following an ‘Educatieve master’ instead of the above described master. The ‘Educatieve master’ however is a Dutch taught programme. More information can be found on www.ugent.be/educatievemaster.

Career perspectives

Research in the field of biomedical sciences will remain very important due to the major social relevance for healthcare. A biomedical researcher will be able to contribute to the understanding of the mechanism of diseases and will be able to improve the molecular diagnostic techniques of clinical treatments. Personalised medicine will gradually gain importance and the professional future in biomedical research looks promising.

If you are looking for a job as a biomedical researcher, you have different options. You can choose for an academic research environment by starting a PhD at a university or you aim at working in research oriented companies or in a university hospital. There are also opportunities of working in pharmaceutical or biotechnology companies. There is also the option of working in research institutions run by the government. Finally jobs in the public health, environmental, food industry and bio-informatics sector are an option for masters in biomedical sciences.