First year

Research Proposal & Poster Presentation

Research course
(3 ECTS)

Journal Club 1

Theory course
(3 ECTS)

Second year

Skills courses

The program will begin with an intensive taught course on the skills required for researchers, including scientific writing and presentation, critical reading of the literature, experimental design, ethical considerations and data analysis. This will be followed by a short introduction to laboratory work and safety, immediately after which students will be able to start on their research courses.

Later in the first year, students will receive additional training in other important skills for the modern researcher, including the management of projects, and of intellectual property.

At the end of these course, students should therefore have a strong general proficiency in the various skills required for a career in research.


Research courses

During their first year of study, students will perform two eight-week long laboratory apprenticeships under different supervisors. During each of these, students will work as part of a research team, and gain first-hand experience of experimental techniques, relevant to their supervisor’s area of research. At the end of the year, they will then select one of these laboratories to return to for their second year research project. With the help of their supervisor, they will then select a research topic and present their proposal as a poster in a research environment.

The majority of the student’s second year will then be taken up with their research project. This will represent an intensive, genuine study of an original research problem, of high enough quality to be published. Students will then present their findings as part of a research symposium, before writing up and defending their final thesis.

By the time of their graduation, students will therefore have extensive experience at performing research work in two separate fields, and be ideally positioned to begin doctoral studies in the life sciences.


Theory courses

In addition to practical experience in laboratories, students will also gain learn about modern topics in biotechnology by taking four elective courses in their first year. Many of which will tie in directly with research topics available for students’ final projects. Additionally, during their laboratory courses, students and supervisors will meet regularly for journal club sessions, in which students will practise their critical analysis and presentation skills, as well as broadening their understanding of these topics.

Call for Applications - Biotechnology for the Life Sciences International graduate/masters research program, academic year 2024/2025

The Faculty of Biotechnology & Drug Development is happy to announce that applications are now open for students wishing to begin the graduate/research program “Biotechnology for the Life Sciences” in October 2024. Biotechnology for the Life Sciences is a research focussed program, taught entirely in English, aimed at students aiming to pursue a career in life sciences research, either in academia or industry. Notably, the first year includes two 8-week long research apprenticeships in research laboratories, while the entire second year is dedicated to an in depth original research project.

Interested students should download and complete the application form and submit it to us, along with the other documents requested in it, to us by email ( by 31st March 2024. This first call is open for applicants of all nationalities. More information can be found in the Call for Applications. Please feel free to email us ( if you have any questions. The tuition fees for the course are €4500 per year, and apply to applicants of all nationalities.