Taught course

Marine Biotechnology

University of Stirling · Faculty of Natural Sciences

Entry requirements

AA good second class honour degree or equivalent in a relevant subject. Consideration will be given to candidates with substantial professional experience providing that there is a willingness to work with scientific information.

Months of entry


Course content

This new MSc has been developed to satisfy the growing needs of individuals interested in the fast developing area of marine biotechnology. Marine biotechnology is the application of the science and technology of marine organisms and life processes to generate new knowledge, products and services that benefit us and our environment, and it also includes the use of technology that enhances the biological resources in our oceans. Marine biotechnologists are helping to address the key issues facing modern society: ensuring secure and sustainable supplies of food and energy; protecting and improving our natural environments; and maintaining and enhancing the wellbeing and health of an ageing population.

A central ethos of marine biotechnology is recognition that the biodiversity in our oceans exceeds that of terrestrial habitats; however, this diversity has been relatively underexplored to date. This variety in micro and macro marine organisms exhibit a broad range of adaptations to the varied environments in which they prosper, and it is the role of marine biotechnologists to improve our understanding of these adaptations and in turn to exploit this new knowledge for the development of commercial products and services. Such innovations are aided by access to increasingly powerful approaches in molecular biology and next generation – omics technologies. To date, interest has focused on novel therapeutics (e.g. antibiotics, anti-cancer agents), biofuels, novel industrial chemistry (e.g. adhesives, surfactants, enzymes), genetic selection and bioengineering tools, as well as technical innovations for aquaculture. This skills-focussed MSc incorporates the key elements of marine biotechnology including biodiversity, cutting edge techniques and experimental approaches, and is presented within an interdisciplinary life science background.

Course Objectives

This course provides students with:

  • An awareness of the diversity of marine organisms and the adaptations that enable them to prosper in their natural habitats.
  • A thorough knowledge of the fundamental science and methodologies underpinning on-going developments in marine biotechnology.
  • An understanding of the latest advances and global opportunities that exist in the burgeoning field of marine biotechnology.
  • Training in practical, investigative and research skills, as well as commercialisation and intellectual property protection.

Information for international students

•IELTS: 6.0 with 5.5 minimum in each skill •Cambridge Certificate of Proficiency in English (CPE): Grade C •Cambridge Certificate of Advanced English (CAE): Grade C •Pearson Test of English (Academic): 54 with 51 in each component •IBT TOEFL: 80 with no subtest less than 17

Fees and funding


Qualification and course duration


part time
24 months
full time
12 months


full time
9 months

Course contact details

Dr Andrew Desbois
+ 44 (0) 1786 467894