Study mode:On campus Study type:Full-time Languages: English
Foreign:$ 22.9 k  
251–300 place StudyQA ranking:3226 Duration:2 years

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Distilling expertise in the biological sciences and medicine, the biotechnology postgraduate program at Flinders is designed to provide you with advanced theoretical scientific knowledge and strong research training plus an understanding of industry and business issues required for modern biotechnology.

Biotechnology is the use of living organisms, or their cells, to create products or processes. Those organisms may be as simple as bacteria or as complex as whole animals or plants.

Flinders University is a pioneer in biotechnology education in Australia and places a strong emphasis on research training with a 10-month research project.

The law, ethics, society and the environment have great relevance into biotechnology and you will have the opportunity to examine all of these areas as an integral part of the biotechnology program at Flinders.

In addition to teaching, staff run world-class research programs in a wide range of areas of biotechnology, including cancer and immunology research, biomaterials, bio-processing, plant disease resistance and biocontrol, enzyme applications, reproductive technology, therapeutic drug discovery, functional foods, bio-energy, water quality and marine biotechnology.

Course aims

The Master of Biotechnology course aims to develop graduates who are able to function as practitioners in the interdisciplinary, global research-intensive biotechnology industry. It is designed to enhance graduates’ abilities to contribute to the development of scientifically sound, ethical and culturally sensitive solutions to complex problems for the economic and social benefit of society. It aims to develop graduates who work effectively within team environments and improve their practice through critical reflection and learning.

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of the course, graduates should be able to:

  • transfer and apply core scientific concepts to develop solutions in the biotechnology industry
  • work in ways that are informed by knowledge of the legislative, regulatory, commercial, scientific and social environment
  • use critical analysis and problem solving skills to develop, plan and implement innovative solutions within a diverse range of biotechnology industry sectors
  • synthesise information and communicate effectively, succinctly and sensitively with the scientific community, co-workers, government agencies, investors, the broad public and particular cultural and Indigenous communities
  • apply judgement and initiative to propose and prioritise work strategies in consultation with co-workers to achieve timely completion of a project
  • work in a multidisciplinary team and incorporate the views of all stakeholders including Indigenous groups, and use self-awareness and consultation to understand their role within a group and how they can best contribute to the group
  • articulate a conscious understanding of their own values and demonstrate respect for the values of others and the ability to view an ethical dilemma from multiple view points
  • inform society of impending developments and engage in a constructive debate
  • incorporate understanding and awareness of Indigenous and other communities’ religious beliefs and culture into biotechnology practice
  • plan and conduct research projects and effectively communicate research findings
  • apply their understanding of the commercialisation processes to biotechnology products or services.

Theoretical scientific knowledge is complemented by relevant practical laboratory training and backed up by business training in financial, marketing and management skills. The law, ethics, society and the environment have great relevance in biotechnology and all are examined. Core topics cover areas such as DNA to genome; protein to proteome; molecular biotechnology; legal, ethical and social aspects of bioscience; and professional skills for biotechnology. Application topics cover industrial and pharmaceutical biotechnology; environmental biotechnology; and plant and food biotechnology.

You will receive practical laboratory training as well as business training in financial, marketing and business planning skills. The masters has a 10-month research project that provides in-depth research training with links to the biotechnology industry.

Program of study

To qualify for the Master of Biotechnology, a student must complete 72 units with a grade of P or NGP or better in each topic, according to the following program of study as below.

Except with the permission of the Biotechnology Examinations Board, no topic may be attempted more than twice.

Core - Year 1 & 2 topics

BTEC8001  BioBusiness  (9 units)
BTEC8003  Legal, Ethical and Social Aspects of Bioscience GE  (4.5 units)
BIOL8004  DNA to Genome GE  (4.5 units)
BIOL8005  Protein to Proteome GE  (4.5 units)
BTEC9006  Professional Skills for Biotechnology  (4.5 units) 

Core - Research project topics

BTEC9000A  Biotechnology Research Project (Medicine) (4.5/27 units) AND
BTEC9000B  Biotechnology Research Project (Medicine) (4.5/27 units) AND
BTEC9000C  Biotechnology Research Project (Medicine) (4.5/27 units) AND
BTEC9000D  Biotechnology Research Project (Medicine) (4.5/27 units) AND
BTEC9000E  Biotechnology Research Project (Medicine) (4.5/27 units) AND
BTEC9000F  Biotechnology Research Project (Medicine) (4.5/27 units) 


BTEC9700A  Biotechnology Research Project (Biology) (4.5/27 units) AND
BTEC9700B  Biotechnology Research Project (Biology) (4.5/27 units) AND
BTEC9700C  Biotechnology Research Project (Biology) (4.5/27 units) AND
BTEC9700D  Biotechnology Research Project (Biology) (4.5/27 units) AND
BTEC9700E  Biotechnology Research Project (Biology) (4.5/27 units) AND
BTEC9700F  Biotechnology Research Project (Biology) (4.5/27 units) 

Option - Year 1 & 2 topics

18 units selected from:

BTEC8002  Molecular Biotechnology  (4.5 units)
BTEC8007  Protein Biotechnology  (4.5 units)
BTEC9008  Industrial and Pharmaceutical Biotechnology GE  (4.5 units)
BTEC9010  Medical Biotechnology GE  (4.5 units)
BTEC9011  Plant Science to Food Biotechnology GE  (4.5 units)
BTEC9012  Environmental Biotechnology GE  (4.5 units)
BIOL9013  Integrating Molecular Biosciences GE^  (4.5 units)

Applicants must normally have completed, with a Credit average or better, an approved degree in a biological or medical science at an approved tertiary institution. However, the Biotechnology Examinations Board may, under certain circumstances and subject to specific conditions, admit others who can show evidence of fitness for candidature.

International students must satisfy our English language proficiency requirements for admission. If your first language is not English you will need to have:

  • Achieved the required level for the course you are applying for. The scores to meet the various levels are shown below; or
  • Successful completion of an approved secondary or tertiary qualification, taught in the English language in a country where English is the official language or the main language spoken (for up to an overall IELTS of 6.5) with evidence no more than five years old on the proposed date of commencement of the course; or
  • Successfully completed a pre-course English program from an approved ELICOS Provider.

Other evidence of English language proficiency may be accepted.

Evidence of English language proficiency must be no more than two years old on the proposed date of commencement of the course.


6.0 Overall
6.0 Speaking
6.0 Writing 


72 Overall
18 Speaking
18 Writing

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