International College

Study molecular biology and biotechnology

Molecular biologists make a difference by helping to answer some of the biggest global questions. They investigate how to treat and prevent disease, develop green technologies and also play a role in the food we eat.

What is molecular biology and biotechnology?

Molecular biology is the study of microorganisms and the effects they have on people’s lives. Biotechnology uses this knowledge to develop technologies and processes that alleviate global issues like disease, energy and crop yields.

Molecular biology and biotechnology at the University of Sheffield

The Department of Molecular Biology and Biotechnology finds exciting new approaches in biosciences. It conducts research on key issues including antimicrobial resistance and the production of biofuels. It is training the next generation of scientists to make a difference in the world.

Students have access to state-of-the-art equipment and facilities. These include a Biological NMR Facility, a Biomolecular Interaction Suite, the Wolfson Light Microscopy Facility and the University of Sheffield’s Biological Mass Spectrometry Facility.

Molecular biology and biotechnology degree options at the University of Sheffield

Department of Molecular Biology and Biotechnology rankings

Top 5 for biological research in the UK
Research Excellence Framework, 2014.


No. 1 for biomedical research
in the UK
REF, 2014.

Degree preparation at the International Study Centre

The University of Sheffield International College offers specialist university preparation for international students. On our pathway programmes, you will study key subject modules to prepare you for your degree, while also building confidence in your English language and study skills. Whether you are aiming for undergraduate or postgraduate study, you will have the confidence to succeed once you progress to the University of Sheffield.

Your pathways to studying at the University of Sheffield:

Why study molecular biology and biotechnology?

Molecular biology and biotechnology are fascinating and rewarding subjects, and its graduates make a valuable contribution to society. Some of the benefits of studying molecular biology include:

You will be challenged by varied and interesting work, and will learn the research skills you need to make discoveries that can drive change. 

Molecular biologists work in industries from pharmacology to food manufacturing. You could be helping to develop new medicines, or inventing the latest meat-free burger. If you want a challenging and varied career, this is a great option.

As a student, you may have the chance to work on active research projects. When you graduate, you will be making new discoveries and helping to prevent, lessen or solve global problems. This includes testing new drugs to prevent diseases, or researching ways to solve the climate crisis.

Molecular biology and biotechnology career prospects

When you graduate from the University of Sheffield, you will be able to choose from a range of challenging and rewarding careers.

Molecular biology careers include:

  • biomedical scientist
  • food technologist
  • pharmacologist
  • microbiologist
  • research scientist
  • water quality scientist.

Related careers include:

  • ecologist
  • environmental engineer
  • forensic scientist.