Máster Universitario en Biofísica y Biotecnología Cuantitativa/Biophysics and Quantitative Biotechnology 2021–2022




Presentación

Presentation:

The Master in Biophysics and Quantitative Biotechnology (BQB) from the University of Zaragoza (Spain) is an official  master course approved by the Government of Aragon and certified by ANECA (Spanish Agency for Quality Evaluation and Accreditation). Originally designed and fostered by the Institute for Biocomputation and Physics of Complex Systems (BIFI) as an upgrade of the Master in Quantitative Biotechnology, within the academic offer of the Faculty of Science, it represents an excellent opportunity for acquiring experimental, computational and theoretical skills, training and expertise, at introductory and advanced levels, under an optimal multidisciplinary atmosphere intended for approaching and envisioning the problems the Biotechnological field will face in the next decades. The program, that has been awarded the denomination of "Reference Master" from the University of Zaragoza, has a duration of 1.5 years (90 ECTS), and is directed to students from a variety of bachelor degrees. It provides different introductory courses to fill the gaps  in the background knowledge, so that all students can profitably attend the rest of the courses. The official language of the Program is English, and a minimum level of B2 is required.



Por qué cursar esta titulación

Why should you choose this master:

Biotechnology is changing the structure of XXIst century science. Born as a part of the biological sciences, it has evolved to become a champion among the scientific disciplines because of its far reaching and truly life transforming outcomes, the fantastic theoretical challenges it offers  and the amalgam of other disciplines that it is attracting. Indeed, not only Biology, Biochemistry, Bioinformatics, but also Computer science, Chemistry, Mathematics and Physics converge and are finding in the biotechnological problems new domains of activity which enlarge their traditional paradigms. At the same time, they are providing  biotechnology with so many quantitative new tools that it is impossible to think in the future of biotechnology without them.

While it is impossible for anyone to master so many disciplines,  it is important for modern biotechnologists to have a general view on the different theoretical, experimental and technological tools that the different disciplines provide, since this will allow them to be more efficient, to interact with experts of other fields, to  produce new experimental designs.

The goal of this master is precisely that of forming qualified specialists, who are able to connect experiments to theory, to address the big challenges of modern biotechnology/biomedicine.


Recommended profile

The Master Program is directed to students with a Degree in Biotechnology, Biochemistry, Physics, Biology, Chemistry, Pharmacy, Medicine, Veterinary and Food Science and Technology, Mathematics, Statistics, Data Science.  Due to the intrinsic heterogeneity in title names in different countries, the coordinator of the MBQB  will evaluate in each case is the curricula of the applicants are appropriate to give access to the master's degree.


Access and admission requirements

Access

Access to official University Master's courses at the University of Zaragoza is achieved by meeting certain of the following requirements:

a) Having an official Spanish university degree or another Spanish Master's Degree.

b) Having an official Spanish university degree obtained under curricula previous to the current organization of university education: Bachelor, Architect, Engineer, Diploma, Technical Architect or Technical Engineer.

c) Having a foreign tertiary education qualification analogous to an official Spanish university degree or declared equivalent to a Bachelor's or Master's Degree by the Ministry of Education and Vocational Training.

d) Having a Bachelor's or Master's degree from universities or higher education institutions from a country in the European Higher Education Area (EHEA), which allows access to Master's studies in that country.

e) Having a foreign higher education qualification obtained from an education system outside the European Higher Education Area (EHEA) that is equivalent to the Bachelor's degree, without the need for approval or declaration of equivalence, and having obtained the corresponding resolution of "authorised access" to official University of Zaragoza Master's courses - following a check to ensure the level of training implied by this qualification - provided that the qualification allows access to postgraduate university studies in the country where it is issued.

f) Likewise, people who are studying an official university degree in the Spanish University System [SUE] in the 2021-2022 academic year may access the courses if they have all the registered credits necessary for completion of studies on their course and have a maximum of 9 ECTS and the Final Degree Project left to complete their studies.

Admission

In addition to meeting the general access requirements, applicants must meet the specific requirements detailed in the verification report for each Master's Degree.

This information can be found on the website for each Master's Degree: https://estudios.unizar.es/estudio/lista-ramas?tipo_id=6

Calidad => Documentos => Memoria de verificación 

 

Language requirements

If applying for admission to a Master's Degree taught in Spanish at the University of Zaragoza and your mother tongue is not Spanish, you must present documents attesting to sufficient knowledge of the Spanish language to follow the classes. An interview may be held to verify your Spanish language ability. When a check of specific Spanish language ability is required for the Master's degree requested, this level is assessed in accordance with the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR).

In those University Master's degrees that are taught totally or partially in languages other than Spanish, applicants must provide documents accrediting the level of knowledge of the languages required in the verification report for the Master's course.


Application for admission

Application for admission to University Master's studies will be made through the Internet, filling out the online form and following the instructions in:

http://www.unizar.esSecretaría virtual → Solicitud de admisión


Assessment of applications

At each admission stage, people who meet the general access and specific admission requirements may be admitted to a Master's Degree in accordance with the assessment criteria established in the verification report for that Master's degree.

The Master's advisory committee or, where applicable, the organisation mentioned in the verification report will review the applications received based on the relevant assessment criteria, considering the documents provided by the applicants, and shall submit an admission proposal to the head of the corresponding centre.

Preference of applications

In each of the admission stages, preference is given to applicants who are in possession of the official qualification that gives them access to the Master's degree, so that in the admissions lists qualified graduates will appear ahead of those with graduate studies in the Spanish University System who still have to complete 9 ECTS and the Final Degree Project.


Registration

Application for registration to University Master's studies will be made through the Internet, filling out the online form and following the instructions in:

http://www.unizar.esSecretaría virtual


More information about access and admission: https://academico.unizar.es/grado-y-master-master/acceso-y-admision/acceso-master-universitario

More information about registration:  https://academico.unizar.es/grado-y-master/matricula/matricula-home


Perfiles de salida

Career Opportunities

The MBQB has been designed for graduate students and many diverse professional profiles, and oriented towards people interested in research, either in academy or industry, as well as in business/entrepeneurial activities.

  • Research in Academia: Our Institute offers a great opportunity to start a  research career and obtain a PhD in one of our many different research lines. We produce top level research and several PhD thesis are defended every year by students who continue their careers in the best research centers. 
  • Research in Industry: We have agreements with the most prominent Biotech companies of our region to offer our students the possibility of start doing applied research  within the External Practice (optative) course or within their Master Project, as a perfect training for a future career in Industry.

Qué se aprende

What do you learn:

The master in Biophysics and Quantitative Biotechnology is designed to form students interested in the study of theoretical, computational and experimental methods in Biotechnology. Our graduates will be able to design the experiments required to solve a scientific or technological research problem, also taking into account the duration and the cost-efectiveness of the research. At the same time, they will be able to appreciate critically and discuss their results while comparing them with those available in the scientifc literature or used by biotechnological companies. Thus, they will be able to discuss with experts in Biotechnology and to present correctly their results, in oral or written form.

In more details, this Master addresses relevant topics in modern Biotechnology and Biomedicine: drug discovery and development,  formulation  of  biotechnological products, molecular and cellular experimental techniques, theoretical/computational modeling of biological systems, systems biology, biophysics,  bioinformatics and statistics,  big data in "omics", as well as an overview on howto create and manage a start-up/spin-off company.
The students will be able to use state-of-the-art lab technologies and computational resources, especially during the Master Project, to carry on their own research  (see for instance the BIFI-Institute labs at https://www.bifi.es/scientific-equipment/ )


Presentación general del plan de estudios

Syllabus:

First semester:

Introductory compulsory courses: 12 ECTS

"Introduction to Computational Methods in Biology".   Semester 1.  6 ECTS

"Introduction to Structural, Molecular  and Cell Biology"  or  "Introduction to Physical and Mathematical methods in Biology". Semester 1.  6 ECTS

Compulsory courses: 18 ECTS

  • Systems and Synthetic Biology.  6 ECTS
  • Biomolecular Simulations.  6 ECTS
  • Bioactive Molecules - Identification, design and development .  6 ECTS


Second semester:

Optional courses: Students must choose 5 (30 ECTS)

  • Molecular Biotechnology - Instrumental techniques. 6 ECTS
  • Cell and Organism Biotechnology - Experimental methodology. 6 ECTS
  • Medicinal Chemistry. 6 ECTS
  • Biostatistics and Bioinformatics. 6ECTS
  • Modelling of Biological Systems. 6 ECTS
  • Big Data in Biology. 6 ECTS
  • The SME-Biotech - Characteristics, creation and management. 6 ECTS
  • Practical Training in External Companies/Centers. 6 ECTS

Third semester:

Master Project: 30 ECTS

For the development of the Master Project, the student selects one of the proposed research lines and joins the corresponding research group or private company, being actively involved in the group activities and researches, with a hands-on approach on either experimental work or computational modeling, depending on the selected topic.

  • Academic research lines include, but are not limited to, those carried on at the BIFI institute, that give the student the opportunity to master some of the cutting-edge laboratory techniques and  computing tools available at the Institute;
  • On the other hand, carrying on the project in a private company (we are in touch with some companies of the AraBioTech cluster) allows the student  to get acquainted with  the daily activity and research of a biotechnological company, with a special focus in innovation and development of new products.

In all cases, the Master Project aims at providing the students with the necessary knowledge  to start his/her own career in academy or industry.



Academic orientation, information and support system for students

The course coordinator is the key figure for any query, clarification or problem that may arise during the academic year. The coordinator is in regular contact with the students and their representatives and provides support and set up the necessary actions to support the student’s learning process. In all degree courses, per the directives of the Academic Guidance Programmes at the University of Zaragoza, each student is assigned an individual lecturer-tutor, who will be responsible for offering the student academic advice on aspects related to the student’s integration and adaptation to the work expected to be completed in each degree. The academic tutor will also provide advice on the most suitable academic options as well as guidance on the student’s personal or professional academic interests, the resources and services available to them at the University and on the general workings of the University in its administrative and academic facets and for participation in its governing structures.


The University of Zaragoza has a University Centre for Modern Languages where international languages classes are offered. The language instruction offer includes German, Arabic, French, Modern Greek, English, Italian, Portuguese, Russian, Chinese and Japanese. The courses offered include: year-long General & Specific Courses, Intensive Summer Courses in July & September, and single-term Self-Study & Conversation Courses (English, French & German).


Summer courses. Students may also wish to participate in any of the summer course programmes on offer every year in July, August and September in various locations in Aragon, albeit most of them take place in the following locations: Teruel & Jaca.


The University of Zaragoza has its own Guidance and Employment Office: UNIVERSA. The main goal of this University Employment Observatory is to provide specific information, guidance and training to facilitate professional integration among university students, in addition to overseeing voluntary work placement for final year students. Courses are offered to both students and recent graduates to improve their training in professional skills, job seeking strategies, etc.

Furthermore, there is a Job Fair (EMPZAR) every year, which provides students with the possibility to contact directly with companies, as well as gain first-hand knowledge of the labour market demand, get advice on how to prepare a CV, and so on.


Libraries & study rooms. The University of Zaragoza has 4,803 reading seats across its libraries and study rooms. These are comprised of the main Library and a further 21 libraries in the various centres and faculties. They contain a total of over 1,000,000 books and approximately 33,500 different journals.

Library staff supports first-year students. Staff offers an online course on Information and ICT skills. This course is offered as a practical activity within one of the subjects imparted in year one.  The students are also offered other training courses on information skills, at various levels, chief among which are the Guide to Tools and Guidelines for preparing the undergraduate/master’s dissertation.


Counselling, accommodation and services

Halls of Residence. The University of Zaragoza has two main Halls of Residence located in the San Francisco Campus: The Pedro Cerbuna University Hall of Residence (CMU) (250 rooms) and the Santa Isabel CMU (192 rooms), plus another one located in the Río Ebro Campus (102 places) and two other halls in the cities of Huesca (Ramón Acin CMU – 125 rooms) and Teruel (Pablo Serrano CMU – 96 single rooms). There are also other university halls of residence in the city of Zaragoza run by private companies. Furthermore, there is a University web service that helps students to find a room or rent a flat. 

Accommodation can also be found using the Zaragoza Council programmes for young people and students.


Counselling. The University of Zaragoza has four free and anonymous counselling services for youngsters, which are run by a team of professionals who provide advice on academic, legal, sexual and psychological areas.

The University of Zaragoza international relations Office will provide international students with all the necessary support in the registration process. It also provides students with practical information about the city, transport, flats on offer, rooms, halls of residence, medical assistance, courses for international students, etc.


Student diversity. The main role of the University of Zaragoza Student Diversity Office (OUAD) (pertaining to the Vice-Chancellor for Students & Employment) is to ensure equal opportunities through inclusion of all university students in university academic life. In addition, it encourages awareness of student diversity within the university community. This office is particularly committed to providing attention to any university student with special educational needs or disabilities.


University information centre. The University Information & Appeals Centre offers general information about the University of Zaragoza: access, offer of undergraduate/master’s study programmes, doctoral programmes, as well as information on non-official degrees, registration process, grants, summer courses, administrative information, and so on. Equally, they manage appeals of any situations that are not subject to the established regulated procedures.


Information and Communications Service. All computers on campus are connected to the Internet. WiFi is available in all the buildings. Any student may use the University of Zaragoza IT services.


Vehicle management service. A permit is required so that a member of the university community can park their vehicles in the car parks available in the different campuses.


Sports and cultural activities

Cultural activities. The 'Cultural Agenda' provides a monthly programme of the events in the areas of Cinema & Animation, Music, Theatre, Exhibitions, Cycles, Conferences, Literary Activities and Courses. It also offers cultural association activities and those of the Cultural Committees in Zaragoza, Huesca and Teruel.


Sports activities. The University of Zaragoza sports complex is located in the San Francisco Campus and features a leisure centre, gym, outdoor basketball, handball and 5-a-side football facilities, a certified athletics track and a football pitch. Every academic year, over a hundred activities are organised.


Participation in university life

The University of Zaragoza Student House ('Casa del Estudiante') (inaugurated in 2005) is home to the University Student Council, the student groups represented on the Cloisters and Governing Board, and the multinational student associations. The Student House supervises activities pertaining to student representation and, additionally, work meetings, presentations, conferences and other events of interest to the students at our University. These activities are promoted and run by the student groups and coordinated by the Vice-Chancellor of Students: vrestu@unizar.es


Information Feelers. Voluntary student members of the University of Zaragoza faculties and centres act as 'information feelers' to counsel, inform and help their own peers. 


University Ombudsman. This person defends the rights and freedoms of the university community and attends to complaints and requests from students.