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Pursue Masters in Biotechnology in the UK – Your Guide

Updated on 07 November, 2023

upGrad Abroad Team

upGrad Abroad Team

upGrad abroad Editorial Team

A masters in biotechnology in the UK is a full-time course spanning 1-3 years on average. Students can also choose from part-time options spread over 2-4 years. There is a great scope for research and further studies in the subject and plentiful job opportunities. 


Masters in biotechnology in UK will cost roughly £ 23,700-43,864, which is approximately INR 23-44 lakh per annum for Indian students. However, after completing the course, students can expect handsome starting salaries of £25,000-50,000 (roughly INR 25-50 lakh) per year. 

Counselling">Interested to Study In UK? Apply for Free Counselling

Why study masters in biotechnology in the UK? 

Studying masters in biotechnology in the UK can benefit a student for many reasons. These include the following: 

  • The UK is a global hub for biotechnology, being home to more than 400 biotech companies and research firms. 
  • These entities contribute towards more than one-third of total drug production in the country. 
  • The UK offers cutting-edge educational facilities and infrastructure to aspirants. At the same time, London is a major biotechnology hub, being home to companies like AstraZeneca, Novartis, Heptare, Nightstar, and GlaxoSmithKline, leading recruiters of graduates in biotechnology. 

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Best universities for pursuing masters in biotechnology in the UK

Here are some of the leading universities for pursuing your masters in biotechnology in UK:

Name of the Institution

Name of the CourseCost of Program Per Year 
University of OxfordM. Sc. – Chemical Biology (Two to three years)£26,405 (INR 26 lakh)
Imperial College LondonM. Sc – Applied Biosciences & Biotechnology (One year)£30,000 (INR 30 lakh)
Newcastle UniversityM. Sc. – Industrial & Commercial Biotechnology (One year)£23,400 (INR 23 lakh)
University of GlasgowM. Sc – Biotechnology£23,500 (INR 23 lakh)
University of EdinburghM. Sc – Biotechnology£32,500 (INR 32 lakh)
University of ManchesterM. Sc – Biotechnology & Enterprise (One year)£27,000 (INR 27 lakh)
University of CambridgeM. Phil – Biotechnology (Eleven months)£43,864 (INR 43 lakh)
University of NottinghamMSc – Biotechnology (One year)£25,695 (INR 25 lakh)
University of LeedsMSc – Plant Science & biotechnology£24,000 (INR 24 lakh)
University of BirminghamM. Sc – Molecular Biotechnology (One year)£23,310 (INR 23 lakh)
University of SheffieldM. Sc – Molecular Biology & Biotechnology£23,750 (INR 23 lakh)
University of WarwickMSc – Biotechnology, Bioprocessing & Business Management£27,160 (INR 27 lakh)

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Cost of Studying M. Sc Biotechnology in the UK

The costs of studying biotechnology programs in the UK are roughly between £23,700-43,864, or INR 23-44 lakh per annum based on tuition fees. Some other costs include the following: 

  • UCAS Application Cost- £20 (INR 2,000)
  • Health Insurance-  £260 (INR 26,000)
  • UK Student Visa Charges- £348 (INR 34,800)
  • Accommodation Charges- £505-848 (INR 50,000-85,000) per month

Requirements for Admission

The admission requirements include the following: 

  • First/Upper Second Class Honours degree with ATAS (Academic Technology Approval Scheme) and minimum marks of 60%-70% in BSc. 
  • Background in biochemistry or any related subject. 
  • IELTS 6.5-7.0 or TOEFL 80-110. 
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Course Highlights

  • Basic Degree Types- M. Sc, M. Eng, M. Phil, MRes
  • English Language Proficiency Scores- TOEFL/IELTS
  • GMAT/GRE not required 
  • Annual tuition fees are between £23,700-£43,864 (roughly INR 23-44 lakh)
  • Main Eligibility Criteria: Undergraduate degree (2:1 equivalent marks) 
  • Starting salaries- £25,000-50,000 (approximately INR 25-50 lakh)
  • Biggest recruiters- GlaxoSmithKline, Heptare, Novartis, Nightstar, Cell Medica, Autolus, Mina Therapeutics, and others. 

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Job prospects after completing MS in biotechnology in the UK

There are various biotechnology jobs in the UK that graduates can take up after completing their courses. Some of the top biotechnology jobs in the UK for freshers and experienced candidates include positions like biotechnologists, biostatisticians, biotechnology data managers, cellular and molecular biologists, and more. 

Average salaries with experience can hover between £108,000-138,000 (approximately INR 1.08-1.38 crore) per annum. The median biotechnology salary in the UK has also been increasing rapidly with growing demand for skilled professionals in this field. 

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Interested to Study In UK? Apply for Free Counselling

Visa Procedure

You will require a Tier-4 student visa or Student Route visa (as it is called now) for studying MS in biotechnology in the UK. Here are the key requirements: 

  • Should be above 16 years of age. 
  • Should read, speak and understand English. 
  • Should offer proof of funds for covering tuition and living costs. 
  • Should have health insurance and the unconditional study offer from a licensed institution in the country. 
  • Should pass the SELT (Secure English language test) or meet CEFR B2 level for language proficiency. 

The documents required include: 

  • Visa application form and passport
  • Photograph (passport-size)
  • Parental consent for those under the age of 18
  • Proof of funds (minimum £1,015 or approx INR 1.01 lakh per month for the UK and £1,265 or approx INR 1.26 lakh for London)
  • Test results for tuberculosis
  • Proof of visa application fee payment
  • Self-assessment form (Appendix 8) with documents attached
  • Immigration Health Surcharge- £150 (INR 15,000) per year

Available Scholarships

Here are some of the scholarships available for MS biotechnology students in the UK:


NameScholarship Amount
University of GlasgowScotland’s Saltire Scholarships£8000 (INR 8 lakh)
University of Glasgow International Leadership Scholarship£10,000 (INR 10 lakh)
University of LeedsBiological Sciences International
£2,000 (INR 2 lakh)
Dean’s International Achievement Scholarship£5,000 (INR 5 lakh)
The University of EdinburghSchool of Biological Sciences Taught Postgraduate Bursaries£10,000 (INR 10 lakh)
The University of ManchesterAlumni Bursary£1,000 (INR 1 lakh)
The University of WarwickSchool of Life Sciences Excellence Scholarships50% course fee reduction
Newcastle UniversityGREAT scholarship£10,000 (INR 10 lakh)
Vice Chancellor’s Excellence Scholarships: 50% or 100%50% or 100% of costs 
University of SheffieldInternational Postgraduate Taught ScholarshipMay vary 
University of NottinghamSouth Asia Postgraduate Excellence Award£4,000 (INR 4 lakh)

Note: Disclaimer! All course fees and salaries are approximate amounts subject to change depending on various conditions.

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Is the UK good for masters in biotechnology?

The United Kingdom (UK) is certainly a good option for studying MS in biotechnology. Those completing their master’s courses in the field will hone their technical skills while being equipped for rewarding global careers. The UK is a global biotechnology hub and is home to the world’s best universities and biggest recruiters in the field. As per the Times Higher Education ranking for 2019-20, at least 186 out of 821 life sciences universities are based in the UK and USA.

Which university is best for M.Sc in Biotechnology in the UK?

Many universities are great options for pursuing M.Sc in Biotechnology in the UK. They include University of Oxford, University of Cambridge, University of St Andrews, University of Glasgow, Lancaster University, University College London, Durham University, Imperial College London, University of Manchester, and Cardiff Metropolitan University.

Is biotechnology in demand in the UK?

Biotechnology is highly in demand throughout the UK, with the industry growing rapidly and many globally acclaimed biotech companies expanding their hiring and operations in the country. The Government in the UK is also emphasizing research and science-driven industries over the next decade with a view towards driving the country’s economy forward. Biotechnology as a job sector and educational option has grown tremendously in the UK over the last few years. As per reports, a whopping £920 million is spent every year on biotech research in the country. Making it the 4th biggest investor in biotechnology research in the world. Hence, biotechnologists are always in demand across the country.

Does biotechnology have scope in the UK?

Biotechnology has massive scope in the UK, especially in fields like research and teaching. The UK is one of the world’s biggest biotech hubs, with leading companies hiring skilled graduates every year. The UK Government encourages and spends a hefty amount of money on biotechnology research, driving more research and analytical opportunities for skilled professionals in the sector. They also earn lucrative salaries, which can go up considerably with experience.

Does biotechnology pay well in the UK?

Biotechnology is a sector that pays handsome salaries in the United Kingdom (UK). Starting salaries for biotechnologists may touch around £25,000-50,000 (approx INR 25-50 lakh) per annum, and they may increase with more experience and industry knowledge. Salaries may skyrocket to more than £60,000 (approx INR 60 lakh) for those with experience. Overall median salaries are handsome for biotechnology graduates.

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upGrad Abroad Team

upGrad abroad Editorial Team

We are a dedicated team of study-abroad experts, ensuring intensive research and comprehensive information in each of our blogs. With every piece written, we aim at simplifying the overseas education process for all. Our diverse experience as journalists, content writers, editors, content strategists, and marketers helps create the most relevant and authentic blogs for our readers.

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