Master of Science in Biology

Course content

The Master in Biology has a far-reaching influence on numerous areas within science and society. The research domain of biology itself is very broad, and covers the complete spectrum of the diversity of the formation of life and the different organisation levels of life, ranging from a cell to the ecosystem and biosphere level. Actual topics and challenges such as protection of endangered species, global change, sustainability, cloning of organisms, dangerous diseases and medical progress have their roots in biology. Biology also contributes to numerous conceptual innovations that lead towards new disciplines such as the molecular biology and biotechnology. Biology forms an exciting study domain that is constantly in evolution thanks to close interaction with a broad range of scientific disciplines such as chemistry, geology, geography and physics.

Course structure

The two-year master's programme (120 credits) consists of the following parts:

  • 18 credits for general courses;
  • 42 credits for major courses:
  • 30 credits for minor (elective) courses;
  • 30 credits for the master dissertation.

The general courses prepare students for the right choice of their major courses and their master's dissertation.

In the first year of the master's programme students select one major from a total of four:

  • General Biology
  • Biodiversity and Evolutionary Biology
  • Global Change Ecology
  • Functional biology

This major allows them to improve their profound knowledge of the areas of research expertise of Ghent University.

Students can also choose from two minor course packages. It consists of broadening elective courses.
Possible combinations between minors and majors are:

  • minor Bio-inspired Innovation and Sustainability - major General Biology
  • minor Research - major Biodiversity and Evolutionary Biology
  • minor Research - major Global Change Ecology
  • minor Research - major Functional Biology.

The master’s dissertation is situated within the research area of the major course package you have chosen. Most master’s dissertations fit the current national or international (research) projects. However, the master’s dissertation can also exploit the results of specific projects or it can even have a prospective character regarding future projects.

Career perspectives

Graduates of the Master in Biology can work on scientific research in universities or scientific research institutions, at secondary or higher education level, in counseling or managerial functions within the government and in companies where research and development is the core business.