MSc Human and Molecular Genetics

MSc Human and Molecular Genetics

Following the sequencing of the Human Genome and emerging ideas of personalised medicine becoming a tangible goal, this MSc is a great starting point for students considering a career in genetic diagnostic laboratories, or any branch of molecular biology research. This MSc will provide an excellent training in practical molecular biology techniques for biology graduates who have had limited laboratory experience during their first degree.

Please note that due to the demand for places on this course, we have now closed applications for the year 2014/2015. We are therefore now taking applications for the couse starting in Autumn 2015.


Telephone: +44 (0)114 222 2319

About the course

If you are fascinated by molecular genetics and you are keen to get hands on experience, but your undergraduate BSc degree provided limited practical experience, then this course is for you.

The course is particularly suited to candidates who are especially interested in human molecular genetics and how human genetic diseases are diagnosed at the chromosome and DNA level.

The course will provide you with an understanding of what causes genome instability and genetic change and an opportunity to put your expertise into practice. The Human Genetics Laboratory Project is designed to integrate and apply this knowledge to the diagnosis and prognosis of human genetic diseases and cancer.

Further information

Entry requirements

For entry into this MSc course, candidates must hold a first class or second class BSc honours degree, or equivalent university qualification in a molecular biology related subject (e.g. Biochemistry, Genetics, Biotechnology, Microbiology). Candidates with professional experience may also be considered following interview.


Up-to-date fees can be found on the University's postgraduate webpages:

Postgraduate taught course fees and funding

There are various sources of funding that could help you with your postgraduate studies, and for international students there are a number of scholarships available:

Scholarships for international students | Postgraduate Student Funding Table


The MSc course lasts for one academic year from September to August and includes at least six months of laboratory experience.

Laboratory modules and literature review

Laboratory Techniques in Molecular Bioscience
You will learn and practice essential genetic and molecular techniques such as Protein and DNA isolation, SDS PAGE, Western analysis, ion exchange chromatography, protein overexpression, PCR, plasmid construction, restriction mapping and BLAST DNA sequence analysis. 

Human Genetics Laboratory Project – find out more
Following successful training in research methods, each student will undertake a laboratory project. Students will gain detailed knowledge of how human genetic diseases or malignancies can manifest and learn the specific laboratory and analysis techniques used to detect, diagnose and classify these diseases. Students will learn how to optimise clinical diagnostic techniques to overcome variations in sample quality and present the laboratory project in different styles including portfolio, poster presentations, and seminars.

Literature Review
This module involves an in-depth survey of the current literature relevant to the student's Laboratory Project. Students will build upon the skills in literature searching and interpretation they have developed in their undergraduate studies, making use of a variety of databases and literature-searching tools.

Lecture and seminar modules

As part of each lecture based module students are required to submit a formal literature review of the subject area. This provides each student with an excellent opportunity to display and apply their knowledge of the topics covered in each module.

Genome Stability and Genetic Change
Human Genetics I
Human Genetics II
Advanced Research Topics

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