Master of Science in Biology

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 entire spectrum of life, its diversity and its formation at all the different organization levels, ranging from a cell and ecosystem to the level of the biosphere.

Master's Programme
2 year 120 credits
Faculty of Sciences
English
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About the programme
Programme summary
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After graduation

What

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 entire spectrum of life, its diversity and its formation at all the different organization levels, ranging from a cell and ecosystem to the level of the biosphere. Actual topics and challenges such as protection of endangered species, global change, sustainability, cloning of organisms, dangerous diseases and medical progress all have their roots in biology. Biology also contributes to numerous conceptual innovations that lead towards new disciplines such as molecular biology and biotechnology. Biology is an exciting and ever-evolving field of study thanks to its close interaction with a broad range of other disciplines such as chemistry, geology, geography and physics.

For whom

The admission requirements depend on previous degrees (type of degree, country of issue etc.) or additional experience.

Structure

The two-year Master's programme (120 credits) contains the following components:

  • 18 credits worth of general course units;

  • 42 credits worth of major course units;

  • 30 credits worth of minor (elective) course units;

  • 30 credits worth of Master's dissertation.

The general course units prepare students for making an informed choice of major course units and their Master's dissertation.

In the first year of the Master's programme students choose one of four possible majors:

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

Their choice of major allows students to deepen their knowledge of one of the research areas in which Ghent University has expertise.

Students can also choose one of two minors, both consisting of broadening elective course units.
Possible combinations between minors and majors are:

  • Bio-inspired Innovation and Sustainability Minor - General Biology Major

  • Research Minor -  Biodiversity and Evolutionary Biology Major

  • Research Minor -  Global Change Ecology Major

  • Research Minor -  Functional Biology Major.

Students write their Master’s dissertation on a topic related to their choice of major.  Most Master’s dissertations dovetail with  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.

In addition to the (domain) Master’s programme described above, you can also choose a Master’s Programme in Teaching (in Dutch: Educatieve Master). The Educatieve Master, however, is a Dutch-taught programme. For more information, go to (www.ugent.be/educatievemaster 120 ECTS-credits).

Labour Market

Graduates of the Master in Biology can be professionally active in quite a broad spectrum of jobs. One important sector is scientific research at universities or other scientific research institutes, but they can also apply their research skills within an industrial context, in companies where research and development is the core business. Their profession can also be more education oriented, both at secondary or higher education level, but also indirectly in counseling or managerial functions within the government 

Over the last couple of decades, the biologist's job profile has become quite versatile, with new perspectives being offered by more applied research in an industrial context. The term industry must be interpreted broadly here, ranging from biotech and food technology, to the pharmaceutical and biomedical industry. Overall, the job market is looking for more scientifically trained people, with a multitude of possible specifications. Many biologists are also professionally active in production, quality control and sales (f.i. biology or research related products), but also their statistical skills are highly valued. Our graduates can thus also apply their computing and statistical data analysis skills in several fields of the job market.