Skip to ContentSkip to Navigation
EducationMaster's and PhD degree programmesBiology
Header image Biology

Biology

Would you like a tailor-made programme in Biology? Specialize in mathematical modelling to be applied in various biology research domains?

Or do you like to design your programme at the crossroad of different biology domains? If so, Biology in Groningen is your master's degree programme.

Students with a broad interest in biology are able to design a tailor-made programme under the guidance of a staff member who will coach the student throughout his or her master's programme.

Students may specialize either in one discipline or combine disciplines such as Ecology & Evolution, Biomedical Sciences or Biomolecular Sciences. Those who are interested to develop, apply and interpret mathematical modelling in life sciences can follow a newly developed specialization.

Track: Modelling in the Life Sciences
Mathematical modelling and computational approaches are indispensable for modern research in the life sciences and call for students with an interdisciplinary background. In this programme you will learn how mathematical concepts and methods can be used to develop and interpret dynamic models in a broad spectrum of life sciences. The knowledge can be applied to address research questions in biological disciplines like Ecology and Evolution, Molecular and cellular Biology and Biomedical Sciences. The track offers a coherent program of courses that covers all aspects of modelling, ranging from model development, analysis, interpretation, and comparison with empirical data, to the implementation of simulation software and the presentation of theoretical work. At least one of the research projects will be used to implement the knowledge obtained in this track.

Facts & Figures
Degree
MSc in Biology
Course type
Master
Duration
24 months (120 ECTS)
Croho code
66860
Language of instruction
English
Start
September
Faculty
Science and Engineering
Why study this programme in Groningen?
  • Combination of in-depth training and the opportunity for designing a tailor-made programme
  • Specialize in Modelling in Life Sciences
  • Focus on the study of causes and consequences of Animal Behaviour
  • Coaching by a personal mentor
  • Enroll into the Master's degree programme four times a year (every halfsemester)
  • Our faculty is the home of the 2016 Nobel laureate in Chemistry, Ben Feringa, and GELIFES is the home of the 2014 Spinoza Prize winner, Theunis Piersma.
Programme

Curriculum

2-year programme; credits per year: 60 ECTS; most courses are 5 ECTS.

For the complete curriculum, please see: http://www.rug.nl/ocasys/fse/vak/showpos?opleiding=4861

Programme options
Modelling in the Life Sciences (track)

In this programme you will learn how mathematical concepts and methods can be used to develop and interpret dynamic models in a broad spectrum of life sciences.

The knowledge can be applied to address research questions in biological disciplines like Ecology and Evolution, Molecular and cellular Biology and Biomedical Sciences. The specialization offers a coherent program of courses that run from September till January:

  • Mathematics in the Life Sciences (Sept-Oct) (5 EC)
  • Biological modelling and model analysis (Oct-Nov) (5 EC)
  • C++ for biologists (Nov) (5 EC)
  • (elective) Mathematical models in Ecology and Evolution (Dec-Jan) (5 EC)

These courses cover all aspects of modelling, ranging from model development, analysis, interpretation, and comparison with empirical data, to the implementation of simulation software and the presentation of theoretical work. The successful completion of the first course “Mathematics in the Life Sciences” which is offered in September is necessary to allow entry into the specialization. If students fail to pass this entrée course they have still all options open to construct their own individual programme. At least one of the research projects needs to be dedicated to implement the knowledge obtained in the courses mentioned above.

Research profile (profile)

The Research profile mainly consists of independent research, which focuses on learning about conducting research by actually doing it.

Students will not only independently conduct experiments, but also gain experience with related issues, such as formulating hypotheses, searching for and studying scientific literature and presenting results.

For the complete curriculum, please see: https://www.rug.nl/ocasys/rug/vak/showpos?opleiding=6400

Science, Business & Policy (profile)

Interested in the business side of science? You can combine this Master's programme with the Science Business & Policy profile. The SBP profile includes a six-month internship as a scientific advisor.

For the complete curriculum, please see: https://www.rug.nl/ocasys/rug/vak/showpos?opleiding=6401

More information about this option

Study abroad

  • Study abroad is recommended
  • For an average of 20 weeks
  • Maximum of 60 EC

Exchange: All our science and engineering programmes offer study abroad possibilities at a number of partner institutions. Our partners include top-100 universities in Europe (for example in Germany, UK, and Sweden) and in the USA, China, South-East Asia, and South America. Our exchange programmes have a typical duration of one semester and count toward your final degree.

Entry requirements

Admission requirements

Specific requirementsMore information
previous education

Bachelor's degree in Biology or a related field. For the specialization Modelling in the Life Sciences you will need a degree which contains enough courses relevant to this field.

Information about admission possibilities and requirements for students from a Dutch HBO institute is published on: https://www.rug.nl/fse/msc-admission

other admission requirements

Dutch students can start in September, November, February and April.

BEFORE YOU APPLY Make sure to visit 'MSc Application Procedure' at https://www.rug.nl/fse/msc-admission for all the necessary information about the procedure and admission requirements.

For the specialization Modelling in the Life Sciences students have to show that their Bachelor's degree contains enough courses relevant to this field. The Admissions Board will decide whether a student can be admitted to the Master's program

Transfer options

Study programmeOrganizationTransition
BiologyUniversity of GroningenNo additional requirements
Life Science and TechnologyUniversity of Groningen

Additional requirements

More information:

With the majors Biomedical Sciences, Behaviour and Neurosciences, or Molecular life sciences.

Study programmeOrganizationTransition
BiologyAll Research universitiesNo additional requirements

Admission requirements

Specific requirementsMore information
additional subject

The Admissions Office will advise the Admissions Board on your application, after which the board will decide if you meet the admission requirements in terms of general level of previous education and specific background knowledge.

language test

MAKE SURE TO VISIT http://www.rug.nl/fwn/fmns-programme/admissions/msc/language-requirements for all the necessary information about required language tests.

previous education

Bachelor's degree in Biology or a related field. For the specialization Modelling in the Life Sciences you will need a degree which contains enough courses relevant to this field.

This is merely an indication of required background knowledge. The admissions board determines whether the specific contents of this/these course(s) meet the admission requirements of the master programme for which you applied.

other admission requirements

For the specialization Modelling in the Life Sciences students have to show that their Bachelor's degree contains enough courses relevant to this field. The Admissions Board will decide whether a student can be admitted to the Master's programme.

BEFORE YOU APPLY Make sure to visit 'MSc Application Procedure' at https://www.rug.nl/fse/msc-admission for all the necessary information about the procedure and admission requirements.

Language requirements

ExamMinimum score
IELTS overall band6.5
TOEFL internet based90

Registration procedure

The Admissions Board will decide whether you can be admitted to the Master's degree programme. Applications are evaluated on a continuous basis. You do not have to wait until the application deadline to apply.

Application deadlines

Type of studentDeadlineStart course
Dutch students01 May 202001 September 2020
EU/EEA students01 May 202001 September 2020
non-EU/EEA students01 May 202001 September 2020
Tuition fees
NationalityYearFeeProgramme form
EU/EEA2019-2020€ 2083full-time
non-EU/EEA2019-2020€ 15500full-time
EU/EEA2020-2021€ 2143full-time
non-EU/EEA2020-2021€ 17500full-time

Practical information for:

After your studies

Job prospects

Graduates of the Master's degree programme in Biology who have chosen the Research track often enter a PhD programme or join a research and development team in a company or research institute. Students who have chosen the Science, Business & Policy track find jobs (e.g. as science advisor) in a variety of fields, e.g. in governmental organizations, research institutions, museums, publishers or companies.

Job examples

  • PhD research position
  • R&D in a company or research institute
  • Science advisor
Research

CHE Excellence Ranking in Biology since 2007

The MSc programme in Biology includes one (SBP track) or two (Research track) individually supervised research projects, where students work on their own research question while being fully embedded in a research group. Topics can span the full range of the MSc educational programmes, and/or combine two or more of these fields:

  • Biology
  • Ecology and Evolution
  • Marine Biology
  • Biomedical Sciences
  • Molecular Biology & Biotechnology
  • Medical Pharmaceutical Sciences

The Master's degree programme is coordinated by the following three Research institutes:

GELIFES

The Groningen Institute for Evolutionary Life Sciences (GELIFES; http://www.rug.nl/research/gelifes/) focuses its research on the level of the individual organism (behaviour, physiology, morphology, genetics, development) and on higher levels of organisation (population, communities, ecosystems). The research is being done on a broad range of organisms (terrestrial-marine; microorganisms-plants-animals) with a broad range of methods and approaches (field, lab, theoretical).A hallmark of GELIFES is that we strive to integrate mechanistic approaches (how does an organism function?) with evolutionary approaches (why does the organisms function as it does?). We specifically aim to integrate these fields that are traditionally studied in isolation.

GELIFES embraces six expertise groups:


Energy and Sustainability Research Institute Groningen (ESRIG)

ESRIG focuses on two themes, of which the first is called Energy supply and energy conversion. This includes the sustainable role of bio-fuels, also in connection to food and land use, energy transition, second (and later) generation bio fuel research; Organic Solar Cells, determination and monitoring of bio-fuel admixtures, natural gas and new gas mixture combustion research, innovative production methods for fossil fuels, underground coal gasification, geothermal energy, gas transition, hydrogen as energy carrier and (de-central) electricity production control design.
The second theme, 'Transition towards Sustainability' consists of carbon cycle and greenhouse gases research, CO2 emission monitoring, CO2 storage surveillance, CO2 storage in relation to underground characteristics, combustion efficiency and harmful emission reduction, development and evaluation of (inter)national climate policies, societal and ethical context of scientific/technical transitions towards sustainability.


GBB

The Groningen Biomolecular Sciences and Biotechnology Institute (GBB) is a research institute at the Faculty of Science and Engineering, University of Groningen. GBB also acts as accredited Dutch research school and since 2010 is embedded within the Graduate School of Science.

Research groups GBB:

Apply nowBrochureEventsContact
Campus TourNijenborgh 9More information

Contact

If you want to know more about the programme Biology, please contact:

  • Academic Advisor (For questions regarding the programme)
  • sciencemasters@rug.nl (For international students who are interested in a Campus Tour or have other practical questions)
    Email: sciencemasters rug.nl