Bioinformatics - Genetic Epidemiology and Bioinformatics (MSc-PgDip-PgCert)

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  • Objectives
    Bioinformatics applies principles of information sciences and technologies to make the vast, diverse, and complex life sciences data more understandable and useful. It involves, research, development or application of computational tools and approaches for expanding the use of biological, medical, behavioural or health data, including those to acquire, store, organise, archive, analyse, or visualise such data.

    This course intends to develop the appropriate complementary skills to provide students with the multidisciplinary genetic epidemiological and bioinformatic skill-set required to work effectively in the post genomic era. It offers knowledge and expertise in computational and statistical biosciences for careers in academic research, biotechnology, the pharmaceutical and health care industries.
  • Entry requirements
    Entry Requirements:
    Students should have a good first degree in Mathematics, Statistics, Computer Science, Medicine, Psychology or a Bioscience such as Biology, Molecular Biology, Microbiology, and have an interest and basic ability in computers or statistics.

    At the discretion of School, non-graduates whose lack of formal academic qualifications is compensated for by relevant work experience (normally a minimum of two years) may also be admitted.

    All candidates whose first language is not English will need evidence of their English language ability, e.g. an overall score of 6.5 in the IELTS test or a grade of 580 or above in the TOEFL test (237 computer-based test).
  • Academic title
    Bioinformatics / Genetic Epidemiology and Bioinformatics (MSc/PgDip/PgCert)
  • Course description
    Course Description:
    The course is based on a combination of lectures, practical sessions and workshops, guided reading and tutorial sessions, in addition to course assignments.

    The Core I Modules will enable students to obtain background understanding of biosciences, statistics, and computer science for bioinformatics. These core modules are designed to provide participants from different backgrounds with a working knowledge of subject areas not covered by their first degree. The Core II Modules cover epidemiology, biostatistics and bioinformatics. By having the option to choose amongst the Specialist Option Modules , the student is able to specialise in either genetic epidemiology or bioinformatics thus providing a tailored approach to future career development. Examination for each module is by written tests and course assignments.

    Postgraduate Diploma students take 8 taught modules plus the case studies module; Postgraduate Certificate students take 4 or 5 of the taught modules only.

    MSc students will undertake an additional research project which requires the student to examine in-depth issues related to the specialist area of their choice (3 months full time). The dissertation requires the student to demonstrate their ability to undertake a piece of research or a critical review of an aspect of either genetic epidemiology or bioinformatics. The size and scope of the study or review is limited by the time period and by the word limit of 20,000 words.

    The course can be taken full time over 1 year or part time over 2, 3 or 4 years.

    Core I Modules:

    An Introduction to Statistical Approaches in Life Sciences
    Postgenomic Biosciences
    Computing for Bioinformatics
    Core II Modules:

    Case Studies in Bioinformatics and Biostatistics
    Statistical applications in bioinformatics, genetics and epidemiology
    Informatics for "omic" Biosciences
    Optional Modules:

    Genetic Epidemiology (Association Analysis)
    Genetic Epidemiology (Model-based and Model-free Linkage Analysis)
    Protein Bioinformatics
    Machine Learning and Data Mining
    Information Systems in Bioinformatics
    Funding Opportunities:
    A Cancer Research UK (CRUK) Bursary is available for this course.

    Special Features:
    Students are taught by specialists within three different schools (Biosciences, Medicine and Computer Sciences) who are all involved in world class research.
    We offer the only UK course with a significant statistics component.
    Students are taught together rather than being streamed based on biomedical or analytical/computational background.
    Students are fully embedded in a local research group during their projects.
    Cancer Research UK Masters Bursary Award Scheme for students committed to a career in cancer research (available to UK and EU students, and overseas students in some cases - see above link).
    Our students go on to jobs in Pharmaceutical and Biotech Companies, Public Institutions, Bioinformatics and IT Companies or go onto study for a PhD.

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