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Bioinformatics

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What you'll need

As part of the application process, you'll need to submit:

  • School or college transcripts/certificates
  • University transcripts and certified translations if applicable
  • Degree certificates
  • Personal statement outlining your learning ambitions

Our application process

  • Sign into our online portal, Apply Yourself, and start your application
  • Submit your application
  • We'll email you to let you know we're processing your application
  • Track the progress of your application using the Postgraduate Application Tracker (we'll send you a link to the tracker)
  • We'll email you when a decision has been made
  • If you've been made an offer, you can then accept or decline it using the Postgraduate Application Tracker.

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There are thirteen courses related to Bioinformatics that you might be interested in.

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Master of Science

A Master of Science (MSc) is a master’s degree awarded for a postgraduate programme in the sciences.

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Course overview

Life sciences and technology are an integral part of the global economy. Our Bioinformatics MSc has been designed with input from major industry players to meet the current and emerging skill gaps for professional bioinformaticians.

Introduction

This course will equip you with the background in biology, statistical analysis, and computing skills necessary to work with modern biological data from genomic, proteomic and metabolomic studies.

You’ll be trained with an emphasis on hands-on practical experience, so that you can tackle your research project with confidence.

You will be taught by internationally renowned scientists at a University with internationally excellent Research Centres, including the University of Liverpool Computational Biology Facility, the newly established Centre for Metabolomics, the Centre for Proteomics, and the Centre for Genomic Research.

If Bioinformatics is your passion, you may wish to continue your education by studying a PhD following successful completion of this MSc.

Please note that this programme is suitable for intercalating medical students.

Who is this course for?

This master’s course is for graduates from a Biological Sciences background who want to combine the skills and technologies from computer science and biology to help better understand and interpret biological data.

What you'll learn

  • The knowledge and skills necessary to perform bioinformatics analyses
  • Statistical techniques in the design of experiments in biological research
  • Theoretical and technical knowledge in sequence analysis, phylogenetics, and the modelling of proteins, and others
  • Coding skills to perform tasks in the biological sciences
  • How to analyse and interpret complex genomic data sets
  • The understanding of proteomic and metabolomic techniques and related data analysis

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Course content

Discover what you'll learn, what you'll study, and how you'll be taught and assessed.

Studying this course part-time

International students may be able to study this course on a part-time basis but this is dependent on visa regulations. Please visit the Government website for more information about student visas.

If you're able to study part-time, you'll study the same modules as the full-time master's degree over a longer period, usually 24 months. You can make studying work for you by arranging your personal schedule around lectures and seminars which take place during the day. After you complete all the taught modules, you will complete your final dissertation or project and will celebrate your achievements at graduation the following term.

Studying part-time means you can study alongside work or any other life commitments. You will study the same modules as the full-time master's degree over a longer period, usually 24 months. You can make studying work for you by arranging your personal schedule around lectures and seminars which take place during the day. After you complete all the taught modules, you will complete your final dissertation or project and will celebrate your achievements at graduation the following term.

Semester one

Compulsory modules

Practical Bioinformatics (LIFE748)

Credits: 30 / Semester: whole session

The aim of this module is to develop knowledge and skills necessary to perform bioinformatics analyses, in order to prepare students for future bioinformatics work, either inside or outside an educational setting.  The student will: (i) get hands on experience with genomic and protein data (genome sequence, annotation and analysis), and thus a solid grounding in practical bioinformatics work, and (ii) meet with their project supervisor, to prepare for their MSc project work.

The module will be taught through a combination of lectures, tutorials, and workshops. The topics covered will be introduced with a lecture, and then we will apply the lecture material to real-world practical data sets in workshops. The module will be assessed via three coursework assessments, including a presentation, a scientific report and a research project plan.

BIOLOGICAL DATA SKILLS (LIFE707)

Credits: 15 / Semester: semester 1

Data skills are essential for a career in modern biology. Biological studies increasingly involve the generation of large or complex sets of data, and the ability to analyse data is a core component of a successful biologist’s skill set. Digital fluency is also required more widely outside biological research and a grounding in data analysis is in demand by a broad range of employers. Here you will learn the ability to visualise data, critically test hypotheses, and to interpret and present results.

The learning and teaching materials are delivered as an online set of resources (available through Canvas) coupled with computer-based practical workshops. The module will also introduce students to the powerful open access statistical software package, R.

The module will be assessed by a written data analysis report and an open-book exam

For any students studying off-campus – due to a placement in industry or studying at an overseas University – on-line drop-in sessions will be provided instead of the practical workshops.

INFORMATICS FOR LIFE SCIENCES (LIFE721)

Credits: 15 / Semester: semester 1

Bioinformatics is a key skill needed in many research settings. This module gives students a theoretical and technical grounding in a range of application areas including bioinformatics-related topics such as sequence analysis, phylogenetics, and the modelling of proteins, and others. While lectures are provided on core topics, there is a strong emphasis on practical exercises to demonstrate the application of common tools and data sources in these contexts. Teaching is delivered in the form of a weekly lecture and workshops. Students will be given guided reading and online activities to support their learning. The module will be assessed by three data analysis continuous assessments.

CODING FOR LIFE SCIENCES (LIFE733)

Credits: 15 / Semester: semester 1

This module is aimed at postgraduate students in the Life Sciences, wishing to learn about methods for use in data-intensive research. The module provides a broad introduction to the use of Python coding for performing basic tasks in the biological sciences. The student will get practical experience in writing their own Python scripts for basic bioinformatics tasks, such as manipulating DNA, RNA and protein sequences, file input/output and working with other programs, such as BLAST. There is also an introduction to data visualisation using Python, and simple techniques used in data science, including a basic introduction to machine learning.

Around 10 hours of lectures will be provided on core topics, with a strong emphasis on practical activity in workshops (totalling around 40 hours), allowing students to gain confidence in writing scripts for their own tasks. The module will be assessed by two short coding assignments, one team working coding assignment building a bioinformatics pipeline, and a data science mini-project.

Programme details and modules listed are illustrative only and subject to change.

Our curriculum

The Liverpool Curriculum framework sets out our distinctive approach to education. Our teaching staff support our students to develop academic knowledge, skills, and understanding alongside our graduate attributes:

  • Digital fluency
  • Confidence
  • Global citizenship

Our curriculum is characterised by the three Liverpool Hallmarks:

  • Research-connected teaching
  • Active learning
  • Authentic assessment

All this is underpinned by our core value of inclusivity and commitment to providing a curriculum that is accessible to all students.

Course options

Studying with us means you can tailor your degree to suit you. Here's what is available on this course.

Study as an intercalated degree

Intercalation allows you take a break from your medical degree, usually after year 3 or 4, and study an additional qualification. Most intercalating students choose to study a master's degree. This gives you the opportunity to explore a subject of interest at an advanced level and acquire new skills and knowledge that will enhance and/or complement your medical degree.

Your experience

As a Bioinformatics student, you will benefit from the School of Life Sciences experience in delivering dynamic, world-class, inspirational research-led teaching.  We are a melting-pot for the study of the biological sciences, and have been for over 140 years.

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Supporting your learning

From arrival to alumni, we’re with you all the way:

An exciting place for postrgradute study

  • Programmes taught by internationally-renowned scientists and clinicians
  • Research-connected education covering the full life science spectrum from biochemistry to zoology
  • Access to world-class facilities
  • Provide specialist training with taught and research components
  • Options for intercalating students
  • Vibrant postgraduate community.

Careers and employability

Graduates with a Bioinformatics MSc are highly sought after. In the public sector, bioinformaticians are in demand in research institutes, government departments, the Health Service, forensic science and the Environment Agency.

Commercial sectors such as the pharmaceutical, biotechnology and agriculture industries are also employers of our graduates, especially with the increase of next-generation sequencing and the corresponding data analysis that is required.

There is also a current demand for science teachers and following the completion of a PGCE, this master’s is suitable for those interested in a career in teaching.  In fact, many of our graduates pursue careers in a wide range of fields, including management, where the skills obtained through this degree are of considerable benefit.

Career planning

Three career coaches standing outside the Careers Studio

Our campus Career Studio is a space for students and graduates to drop into and talk to a career coach. Career coaches are highly trained to help no matter what stage you are at in your career planning. You can access support to find and apply for full-time and part-time roles, placements, internships and graduate schemes. You will also find the help you need if you have a start-up idea or want to create a business plan. You can explore the world of work, prepare for job interviews, and access careers events and workshops. The Career Studio is open Monday to Friday from 10am-5pm, simply drop in at a time that works for you.

From education to employment

Two graduates in postgraduate robes.

We develop our programmes with employers in mind. You will be supported to enhance your long-term employment prospects as you learn. We do this by exposing you to professionals, a variety of sectors and supporting you to work collaboratively with others to develop transferable skills. You are equipped with a clearer view of what to focus on in your area of interest, and to reflect on your studies. Our digital employability tools give you a tech-enhanced curriculum experience and make it easy for you to prepare for the world of work. You can use tools like the Handshake platform to connect with employers and message the Career Studio 24/7.

Networking events

Postgraduate students hold a discussion while sat round a table in in the Liverpool Guild of Students.

You can start building good professional networks by attending events and employability activities. Our events are designed to develop your skills and expose you to many different employers, as well as to help you make contacts in your field. We help you improve your confidence when speaking to employers and give you access to unique opportunities. Our networking events also boost your understanding of the competencies and skills that employers are looking for in their recruitment process, giving you a competitive edge.

Your future

The MSc Bioinformatics prepares you for a diversity of job opportunities in the public and private sector.  Potential career pathways include, but are not limited to, the roles of:

  • Bioinformatics Scientist
  • Research Scientist
  • Biostatistician
  • Bioinformatician
  • Molecular Biologist
  • Microbiologist.

Fees and funding

Your tuition fees, funding your studies, and other costs to consider.

Tuition fees

UK fees (applies to Channel Islands, Isle of Man and Republic of Ireland)
Full-time place, per year £12,400
Part-time place, per year £6,200
International fees
Full-time place, per year £26,400
Part-time place, per year £13,200
Fees stated are for the 2024-25 academic year.

Tuition fees cover the cost of your teaching and assessment, operating facilities such as libraries, IT equipment, and access to academic and personal support.

If you're a UK national, or have settled status in the UK, you may be eligible to apply for a Postgraduate Loan worth up to £12,167 to help with course fees and living costs. Learn more about paying for your studies..

Additional costs

We understand that budgeting for your time at university is important, and we want to make sure you understand any course-related costs that are not covered by your tuition fee. This could include buying a laptop, books, or stationery.

Find out more about the additional study costs that may apply to this course.

Additional study costs

We understand that budgeting for your time at university is important, and we want to make sure you understand any course-related costs that are not covered by your tuition fee. This could include buying a laptop, books, or stationery.

Find out more about additional study costs.

Scholarships and bursaries

We offer a range of scholarships and bursaries that could help pay your tuition and living expenses.


Postgraduate Global Advancement Scholarship

  • International students

If you’re a new international student starting this course with us from September 2024, you could be eligible to receive a discount of £5,000 off your tuition fees.

Graduate Loyalty Advancement Scholarship

  • Home and international students
  • University of Liverpool current students and alumni only

Completed your undergraduate degree, or studied as an undergraduate exchange student, at the University of Liverpool?

You could get a loyalty discount of up to £2,500 off the tuition fees for this course from September 2024 entry.

  • £1,500 tuition fee discount for eligible UK University of Liverpool graduates
  • £2,500 tuition fee discount for eligible international University of Liverpool graduates.

ANID Chile Scholarship

  • International students
  • Chile

Postgraduate taught and research students from Chile are eligible for this scholarship.

Chevening Scholarships

  • International students

The University, in partnership with Chevening, is delighted to offer this generous scholarship to students who are studying a master’s programme and who have future leadership potential. Please note that there is a fee cap applied to MBA programmes that requires applicants to cover any additional tuition costs over £18,000. You will still receive all additional allowances.

CONACYT Award

  • International students
  • Mexico

The University of Liverpool has an agreement with CONACYT to support postgraduate taught and research students from Mexico.

FIDERH Award

  • International students
  • Mexico

20% reduction in tuition fees for postgraduate taught and research programmes. Must be Mexico national.

Fulbright Scholarship

  • International students
  • University of Liverpool alumni only
  • United States

One scholarship is available for a master’s student from the US and another is available for a postgraduate research student to undertake a three to six month research stay from the US

FUNED Awards

  • International students
  • Mexico

Up to ten awards are available for Masters or Research students from Mexico in receipt of FUNED loans. The award gives students a 20% reduction in fees for all applications received.

Graduate Association Hong Kong & Tung Postgraduate Scholarships

  • International students
  • China
  • Hong Kong

The University is able to offer competitive scholarships for both postgraduate taught master’s and research programmes.

HRM Princess Sirindhorn University of Liverpool Scholarship (Thailand)

  • International students
  • Thailand

The University is able to offer one award to a new postgraduate taught master’s student from Thailand.

The scholarship is open to all subjects offered as a one-year taught master’s programme.  However, priority will be given to those students who wish to study in a subject area associated with HRH Princess Sirindhorn such as science, IT, medicine, the arts, geography, history and languages.

JuventudEsGto Scholarship

  • International students
  • Mexico

Residents of State of Guanajuato, Mexico, wishing to study at postgraduate taught and research levels are eligible for this scholarship.

Marshall Scholarship

  • International students
  • University of Liverpool alumni only
  • United States

One scholarship is available for a master’s student from the US to cover the cost of tuition fees. Another, to the value of £20,000, is available for Doctoral study visit: https://www.marshallscholarship.org/

Turkish Ministry of Education Scholarship

  • International students
  • Turkey

Postgraduate taught and research students from Turkey are eligible for this scholarship, see the Turkish Ministry of Education website https://meb.gov.tr/ for more information.

University of Liverpool Humanitarian Scholarships for Master’s Programmes

  • International students

The three awards available cover full tuition fees, visas and support for accommodation and living expenses.

This scholarship is open to support people who have recognised status as either refugees or are under humanitarian protection under the 1951 Refugee Convention. This status must be held outside of the UK.

The scholarship is open for all postgraduate-taught programmes, excluding medicine, dentistry, veterinary and nursing.

University of Liverpool International College Excellence Scholarship

  • International students

The University of Liverpool will award five University of Liverpool International College students, who achieve the highest academic excellence (minimum 75%) in their UoLIC Pre-Master’s programme, the prestigious UoLIC Excellence scholarship.

University of Liverpool International College Impact Progression Scholarships

  • International students

University of Liverpool International College recipients of the Kaplan awards will receive the £3,000 Progression Impact Scholarship, deducted from first-year tuition fees, on successful progression to their UoL degree programme.

To be eligible for our Impact Progression Scholarships, students must apply for one of the Kaplan Impact Scholarships demonstrating their commitment to making an impact across issues of importance to the University and Kaplan. Themes include:

Sustainability
Women in STEM
Community
Career Focus (Employability)

Vice-Chancellor’s International Attainment Scholarship for China

  • International students
  • China

Details are:
1 (one) Full scholarship
2 (two) £10,000 scholarships
5 (five) £5,000 scholarships
10 (ten) £1,000 scholarships
All scholarships will be awarded after the formal registration at the University and will take the form of a fee waiver.

Please note: This scholarship cannot be combined with any other scholarships or bursaries provided by the University.

Entry requirements

The qualifications and exam results you'll need to apply for this course.

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Your qualification Requirements

About our typical entry requirements

Postgraduate entry requirements

Normally, at least a 2.1 Honours degree in a Biological Sciences subject or equivalent, including at least one module providing training in statistics. Candidates must have a scientific background acceptable to the Director of the programme.

International qualifications

If you hold a bachelor’s degree or equivalent, but don’t meet our entry requirements, a Pre-Master’s can help you gain a place. This specialist preparation course for postgraduate study is offered on campus at the University of Liverpool International College, in partnership with Kaplan International Pathways. Although there’s no direct Pre-Master’s route to this MSc, completing a Pre-Master’s pathway can guarantee you a place on many other postgraduate courses at The University of Liverpool.

English language requirements

You'll need to demonstrate competence in the use of English language. International applicants who do not meet the minimum required standard of English language can complete one of our Pre-Sessional English courses to achieve the required level.

English language qualification Requirements
IELTS C
View our IELTS academic requirements key.
International Baccalaureate

Standard Level 5

TOEFL iBT 88 or above with minimum scores in components as follows: Listening and Writing 19, Reading – 19, Speaking 20.
INDIA Standard XII National Curriculum (CBSE/ISC) - 75% and above in English. Accepted State Boards - 80% and above in English.
WAEC C4-6
Hong Kong use of English AS level C

About our entry requirements

Our entry requirements may change from time to time both according to national application trends and the availability of places at Liverpool for particular courses. We review our requirements before the start of the new application cycle each year and publish any changes on our website so that applicants are aware of our typical entry requirements before they submit their application.

We believe in treating applicants as individuals, and in making offers that are appropriate to their personal circumstances and background. Therefore the offer any individual applicant receives may differ slightly from the typical offer quoted on the website.

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Fees and Finance

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Changes to Bioinformatics MSc

See what updates we've made to this course since it was published. We document changes to information such as course content, entry requirements and how you'll be taught.

23 March 2023: New postgraduate taught course pages

New course pages launched.