MSc Systems & Synthetic Biology

Aims and outcomes

We aim to provide you with the critical and practical skills necessary for further research as well as transferable skills suited to a wide range of professional contexts.

Systems biology aims to understand how genes and proteins interact to generate cellular behaviour.

Synthetic biology aims to use this understanding to engineer and control novel cellular behaviour.

Both subjects use ideas from the physical sciences to investigate and manipulate biological “design”.

Our programme provides both broad and specialized training in the concepts and techniques of analysis needed to develop and apply systems biology.


Our programme aims to:

  • Introduce you to cutting edge research in a new area of Biology
  • Impart a passion for research in this area which you will carry on into industry or PhD studies
  • Provide an invaluable first exposure to the research environment you will encounter in the next stage of your scientific career
  • Develop your research skills at the computer and in the library
  • Improve your career prospects by developing a range of transferable skills in addition to your specialised knowledge.

Learning outcomes

Graduates from our programme have:

  • A thorough understanding of the concepts underlying systems and synthetic biology.
  • A working knowledge of the modelling that underpins much of systems biology.
  • Knowledge of the experimental techniques used in systems and synthetic approaches.
  • Strong skills in critical analysis and synthesis of scientific information.
  • The ability to conduct independent research, place findings in context and suggest new research ideas.
  • Completed and written up an independent research project and will be capable of reporting research data in formats suitable for publication.