Biotechnology PSM Degree at The University of Northern Iowa

What is Biotechnology?

From Wikipedia:

Biotechnology is technology based on biology, agriculture, food science, and medicine. Modern use of the term usually refers to genetic engineering as well as cell and tissue culture technologies. However, the concept encompasses a wider range and history of procedures for modifying living things according to human purposes, going back to domestication of animals, cultivation of plants and "improvements" to these through breeding programs that employ artificial selection and hybridization.

PSM in Biotechnology

The field of Biotechnology seeks to develop new applications and products and/or improve the quality of existing products that are of benefit to our society. The new Professional Science Masters (PSM) program in Biotechnology at the University of Northern Iowa emphasizes strengthening and enhancing molecular biology skills along with providing an understanding of the business and marketing aspects of biotechnology. The program is also focused on developing written and oral communication skills of students so that they can succeed in the various biotechnology sectors in the US and abroad.

Overview of the Program

  • 30 credit hour, 12 month intensive program (Fall, Spring, Summer)
  • Emphasizes applications of recombinant and advanced analytical techniques
  • Promotes effective report writing, team problem solving and communication skills
  • Provides training in the basics of management, finance and accounting for science professionals
  • Allows for 10-12 hours of electives to customize individual programs
  • Culminates in a 4-6 credit hour supervised internship for potential employer

Admission Requirements

Admission is restricted to students with a GPA of 3.00 or higher and a B.A. or B.S. in Biotechnology, Biology, Biochemistry or a related discipline. Students must have taken an Introductory General Biology sequence, Genetics and one or more courses in Molecular Biology or equivalents to be considered.

The following must be submitted in their entirety for full consideration for admission into the program.

  • Official transcripts sent directly from your current and/or all prior academic institutions that you have attended to the Office of Admissions
  • The TOEFL exam is required for international students. Minimum scores that will be accepted are 575/232/90 (paper/computer/iBT). An official report of TOEFL scores must be sent.
  • Personal Statement describing your background and why you would like to pursue a PSM degree in Biotechnology at the University of Northern Iowa
  • Department application
  • 3 evaluation letters
  • International Application for Admission (for international students only)

Note: New applications are accepted only for Fall semester, no Spring admission. Deadline for admission is April 1.

Forms for International Admission application, department application and evaluation forms are available here.

All international application materials and evaluation letters for international students should be sent to the International Admissions Office, 002 Gilchrist Hall, University of Northern Iowa, Cedar Falls, IA 50614-0018.

International students should contact the International Admissions Office for additional information.

Degree Requirements

This major is available on the non-thesis option only. A minimum of 30 semester hours is required. A minimum of 18 semester hours of 200-level course work is required.

Required Coursework 18-20 hours
840:240 Advanced Cellular and Molecular Biology (Spring) 3 hours
840:280 Advanced Analytical Techniques (Fall) 3 hours
820:209 Business Management for Science Professionals (Spring) 3 hours
820:215 Corporate/Industrial Problem Solving (Spring) 3 hours
820:289 Seminar (Fall and Spring) 2 hours
820:295 Internship 4-6 hours
Elective Courses 10-12 hours
First Tier Electives
840:121 Plant Biotechnology 4 hours
840:127 Bioinformatics Applications 3 hours
840:129 Genomics and Proteomics 3 hours
840:153Recombinant DNA Techniques 4 hours
860:154 Biochemistry I 4 hours
Second Tier*
840:122 Plant Physiology 4 hours
840:128 Cell Biology 4 hours
840:146 Developmental Biology of Animals 4 hours
840:150 Immunology 4 hours
860:157 Biostatistics 3 hours
860:155 Biochemistry II 2 hours
860:156 Biochemistry Laboratory 2 hours
Total: 30 hours

*Students who have completed two courses in the First Tier, or their equivalent, may select electives from the Second Tier.

Internship and Employment Opportunities

Recent industry placements include Pioneer Hi-Bred and Cambrex Corporation. UNI Biotechnology PSM graduates are also employed by federal, state, county and city agencies and in non-profit organizations.

For further information, please contact:

Dr. Kavita R. Dhanwada, Biotechnolgy PSM Program Coordinator
University of Northern Iowa Department of Biology
Phone: 319-273-5976
Fax: 319-273-7125

UNI's five PSM degree programs

In addition to Biotechnology, The University of Northern Iowa offers Professional Science Master's Degrees in:

Note: Before you enroll in a PSM program at The University of Northern Iowa, you must apply for admission to the Graduate College. Click here for application information.