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University of Canterbury
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Master of Science in Microbiology

This course is available

On-Campus

Level of Study

Master's Degree

Duration

1 year

Next start date

Expected Feb 2023

Campus

University of Canterbury

Summary

The Master of Science usually consists of two parts: coursework and a thesis allowing for students to investigate areas of interest to them and conduct independent and original research. The MSc may be awarded with Distinction, Merit or Honours.

Part I of the MSc consists of coursework, while Part II consists of a thesis or dissertation. Coursework must be satisfactorily completed in Part I before the student can proceed to Part II. The requirements vary depending on your choice of subject, as some subjects require only Part II.

  • Part I and Part II must be completed in 2 years full-time
  • Part I must be completed full-time in 1 year.
  • Part II is completed full-time in 1–2 years.

Microbiology is the study of organisms such as algae, fungi, bacteria, and viruses that cannot be seen with the naked eye. These micro-organisms are abundant and diverse, and they affect humans in both negative and positive ways. Some micro-organisms cause diseases in humans, other animals, or agricultural crops, and are therefore of significance to our biosecurity. Others can be used to benefit humans, such as microbes that can be used to kill insect pests (bio-control) and those that destroy harmful chemicals such as pesticides (bio-remediation). Other microbes are simply essential to the maintenance of all life, such as those that generate oxygen and other critical elements.

This is a broad major, covering bacteria, archaea, eukaryotic microbes and viruses, and environmental, evolutionary, and molecular microbiology.

Career opportunities

The broad and transferable skills gained from following this pathway open up many career options, many of which may include some component of laboratory work such as culturing micro-organisms, sequencing DNA, identifying species.

Graduates who specialise in Microbiology may take up careers like: Manager at a brewery; Technical Compliance Officer for a food safety company; Laboratory technician or manager; Medical laboratory technician at Canterbury Health.

Start date: Monthly by arrangement with supervisor

Entry criteria

Candidates must have completed one of the following:

  • Bachelor of Science
  • Bachelor of Science with Honours
  • Bachelor of Speech and Language Pathology with Honours
  • Postgraduate Diploma in Science
  • Postgraduate Diploma in Engineering Geology
  • or any bachelor's degree and a qualifying programme.

Prerequisites: BIOL 313; and one course selected from BIOL 331, BCHM 301, BIOL 330, BIOL 333, BIOL 335.

Students who have qualified for a Bachelor of Science with Honours or Postgraduate Diploma in Science can complete the MSc by Part II only (thesis-only) in their subject.

Applicants must also satisfy our English language entry requirements:

  • IELTS (Academic): Minimum overall score of 6.5, with a minimum of 6.0 in reading, writing, listening and speaking.
  • TOEFL (IBT): Minimum overall score of 90, with a minimum score of 19 in Reading, Listening and Writing.
  • PTE (Pearson Test of English - Academic): Overall score of 58 and no communicative skills score below 50.

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