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University Masters Degree in Genetics: Program Overviews

In a master's-level genetics program, students learn about the multiple variations of the science on an in-depth level through traditional classes and laboratory work.

Essential Information

Master's degrees in genetics are often a part of dual degree doctoral programs and may not be accessible independently. They are normally conferred as a Master of Science in Genetics and offered by well-endowed institutions. Taking to 2-3 years to complete, curriculum covers the many sub-areas in the field that analyze variations in hereditary information among living things, such as molecular and biomedical genetics. As a result, students can choose a concentration in those areas, or others like human or cellular genetics. They also can choose between a thesis and non-thesis path. Non-thesis enrollees usually take more courses and have to complete comprehensive examinations. Laboratory facilities in these programs are state-of-the art, and faculty members are expected to be specialized and highly trained. The admissions process is competitive; applicants must have at least a bachelor's degree and submit college transcripts, standardized test scores, letters of recommendation and a personal essay. Those who have volunteer or work experience in a related field, such as medicine, biology or chemistry will have improved chances of entrance.

  • Program Fields: Master of Science in Genetics, Doctorate in Genetics
  • Prerequisites: A bachelor's degree, academic transcripts, standardized exam scores, reference letters and an admissions essay. Students with work experience will have favor.
  • Program Specializations: Options include biomedical and cellular genetics
  • Program Length: Usually 2-3 years
  • Other Requirements: For some students, completion of a thesis

Master of Science in Genetics

Students in these programs can expect to log extensive hours in laboratories. However, many courses are structured in a traditional lecture format. Some classes that might appear in the curriculum are:

  • Biomedical statistics
  • Genetic model systems
  • Population genetics
  • Biology of the gene
  • Molecular evolution

Popular Career Options

A master's degree in genetics can open the door to a number of career paths. They may also precede doctoral programs in a similar field, including a medicine. Career options for graduates include:

  • Molecular biologist
  • Biomedical scientist
  • Pharmaceutical scientist
  • Genetic engineer
  • Governmental research positions

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