Austin Biotechnology Colleges and Universities
Just one school offers biotechnology programs in the Austin, TX, area. This article looks at that school and its two campuses that offer these programs, which are approximately 10 and 30 minutes from the city center. It also includes a table that breaks down vital facts about it, such as enrollment and costs. Near the end of the article is a paragraph with information about related programs at other schools.
- Austin Community College District (ACC) is the only option for biotechnology studies near the city. This two-year, public school offers biotechnology programs at two campuses, one about three miles and the other more than 25 miles from downtown. The school offers an associate's degree in biotechnology and three certificates in the field.
The following table makes it easy for students considering Austin Community College District to get a look at various aspects of the school, such as school type, costs and enrollment figures.
|Austin Community College District|
|School Type||2-year, public|
|Total Enrollment (2017)||40,803 (all undergraduates)*|
|Campus Setting||Large city|
|Tuition & Fees (2017-2018)||$2,550 in-district; $10,890 in-state; $13,080 out-of-state*|
|% of First-Year Students Receiving Some Form of Financial Aid (2016-2017)||60%*|
|Acceptance Rate||Open admissions|
|Retention Rate (2016-2017)||58% for full-time students; 50% for part-time students*|
|Undergraduate Graduation Rate (for students who began in Fall 2014)||11% (42% transfer-out rate)*|
Sources: *NCES College Navigator
Austin Community College District
The Biotechnology Department at ACC offers an associate's degree and two certificates in biotechnology. The programs are offered at the school's Eastview and Round Rock campuses. Some courses are available online. The biotechnology program received a boost in 2000 when the National Science Foundation (NSF) began funding a program that allowed Austin area students to begin their study of biotechnology while still in high school and receive college credit for the courses. As an open-enrollment institution, ACC accepts all qualified students who have a high school diploma or GED. Most programs at the school require one or more placement tests.
Certificate in Biotechnology - Level One
This certificate is designed to prepare students for entry-level positions as biotechnology technicians. In this 18-credit-hour program, students take two courses in introductory biotechnology and one in quality assurance. An internship is also required.
Certificate in Biotechnology - Level Two
This certificate is for students who wish to gain some practical training and immediately enter the workforce. It is a 44-credit-hour program that can be completed in four semesters. Students are introduced to the basic concepts of biotechnology, chemistry, cell culture techniques and cellular and molecular biology. Graduates of this program should be qualified to work in a number of entry-level positions in biotechnology labs and manufacturing facilities. The program includes an undergraduate research internship.
Associate of Applied Science in Biotechnology
This 2-year program is for students who either want to enter the workforce or who wish to transfer to a four-year school. Students are taught the fundamentals of biotechnology, bioinformatics, laboratory techniques, organic chemistry and laboratory instrumentation, among other topics. The program includes lab work and an internship. Graduates should be qualified to work in a number of biotechnology fields, such as molecular genetics, enzyme cloning, quality control, research and DNA processes, among others. Students who wish to pursue their studies beyond an associate's degree can benefit from ACC's articulation agreement with Texas A&M, by which most of the biotechnology course credits and all of the biology credits in the degree plan will transfer.
Advanced Technical Certificate in Biotechnology
The advanced certificate program is for students who have already earned an associate's or bachelor's degree and desire biotechnology training. The student's prior college-level coursework must include at least one and a half years of biology and a year of chemistry. Entry into the program requires the approval of the biotechnology department. The program is three semesters in duration. Topics covered include introductory concepts of biotechnology, bioinformatics, molecular biology and quality assurance. Courses in microbiology and cell culture techniques are also offered. Like the other biotechnology programs at ACC, the advanced certificate program includes an internship.
Other School Options
Students interested in a bachelor's degree in the biological sciences may be interested in the programs at the University of Texas at Austin, which is located about a mile from downtown. While the school does not have a stand-alone biotechnology program, several of the bachelor's degree programs in biology cover topics relevant to biotechnology.