MSc/PGDip in Marine Biotechnology

General information

This skills-focussed MSc provides students with a thorough knowledge of the biodiversity in our oceans while receiving practical training in cutting-edge techniques and experimental approaches underpinning on-going developments in marine biotechnology. 

The MSc is achieved through the satisfactory completion of 180 SCQF credits. There are two 30-credit taught Foundation modules in Semester 1 and two 30-credit taught Advanced modules in Semester 2. The remaining 60 credits are achieved by undertaking a Research Project on an area of expertise within the School of Natural Sciences. Students completing just the taught modules qualify for a Postgraduate Diploma. The course is taught primarily by staff at the Institute of Aquaculture, with numerous seminars given by leading figures from industry.The main three parts of the course are:

1. Foundation modules: 
- Marine Biodiversity
- Methods for Marine Biotechnologists. 

2. Advanced modules: 
- Aquaculture Biotechnology
- Recent Advances in Marine Biotechnology

3. Research Project: each student undertakes a supervised four-month Research Project in a chosen field of interest and this helps to develop investigative and research skills. Projects Projects may be performed in collaboration with industrial and academic partners from outside Stirling. An assessed portfolio of manuscript, press release and oral presentation is prepared for assessment and to communicate the project findings.

Learning outcome:

Students learn about existing products developed by marine biotechnologists and gain insight into new and emerging global market opportunities. Seminars led by distinguished industrialists and commercial marine biotechnologists encourage the entrepreneurial spirit, provide inspiration and allow for appreciation of commercial realities. Through an active approach to learning, students develop confidence to work independently and are encouraged to pursue their main interests. In addition, students are equipped with key employability skills, including:

  • problem solving and critical thinking
  • information retrieval, evaluation and presentation
  • data interpretation and report writing
  • group working, organisation and leadership
Contact Person: Dr Andrew Desbois (Course Director) (


The highlighted icons, represent the fields of education (in compliance with ISCED Classification) engaged during this course/programme.

0831 - Fisheries", "0512 - Biotechnology", "0713 - Offshore and renewable energy", "0031 - Project management", "0522 - Conservation and environmental management", "0521 - Ecology", "0732 - Near- and offshore constructions


Venue: University of Stirling
Stirling, United Kingdom

School of Natural Sciences
FK9 4LA Scotland



Full-time programme

  • UK/EU students: £6.000
  • Overseas students: £16.600


Degree Requirements
Second class Honours degree, or equivalent, in a relevant subject. Applicants without these formal qualifications but with appropriate/relevant work experience are encouraged to apply.

Language Requirements
If English is not your first language, you must provide evidence of your proficiency such as a minimum IELTS score of 6.0 (5.5 in all bands). If you don't meet the required score you may be able to register for one of our pre-sessional English courses. To register you must hold a conditional offer for your course and have and IELTS score of 0.5 or 1.0 below the required standard.

Application Procedure:

You can apply for this master using either the online application form or via an international representative. Please see the full list of international representatives or you can email the international recruitment team: Please include the following documents, as well as your application form:

  • Copies of academic qualifications or certificates
  • An academic transcript from your undergraduate programme (translated if not in English)
  • One reference
  • Evidence of English language proficiency (if relevant)
  • A copy of the personal details page of your valid passport (for international students)
  • A copy of your current Tier 4 visa, if you are currently studying in the UK (for international students)

Application Deadline: applications can be made up to one years in advance of the programme start date. There are no application deadlines - the University considers applications throughout the year. International candidates requiring a Tier 4 visa to study in the UK are advised to apply at least 8 weeks in advance of the programme start date. 

Grant Opportunities:

More information about funding opportunities is available here.


Academic level: Master


Student performance is evaluated by continuous assessment via various coursework tasks, including written and oral presentations. 

Qualification: Master of Science

SCQF Credits
Occupations (not validated):
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