Studying Biotechnology

Eligibility, Courses, Specialisations, Syllabus, Scope

What is Biotechnology?

Biotechnology is the interdisciplinary science of employing biological and molecular systems and substances for the creation of various useful products and commodities. Biotechnology is a promising field with applications in the industrial, medical, technological, and food & nutrition sectors. 

Biotechnology comprises several types and specialisations depending on its application in various fields and sectors, such as agricultural biotechnology, medical biotechnology, food biotechnology, plant and animal biotechnology, and biomanufacturing.


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Undergraduate Biotechnology Degrees Offered

Candidates aspiring towards a career in biotechnology can opt for the following undergraduate degrees-


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Specializations in Biotechnology 

Specializations offered in biotechnology include the following- 

  1. Bioinformatics
  2. Biotechnology and Bioinformatics
  3. Biotechnology and Microbiology
  4. Biotechnology, Biochemistry, and Genetics
  5. Biotechnology, Chemistry and Botany
  6. Biotechnology, Chemistry, and Microbiology
  7. Biotechnology, Chemistry and Zoology
  8. Biotechnology, Chemistry
  9. Biotechnology Engineering
  10. Biotechnology, Environmental Science, and Chemistry
  11. Cellular/Molecular Biotechnology
  12. Environmental Biotechnology
  13. Fermentation Biotechnology
  14. Food Biotechnology
  15. Genetic Biotechnology
  16. Industrial Biotechnology
  17. Medical/Clinical Biotechnology
  18. Nanobiotechnology
  19. Pharmaceutical Biotechnology
  20. Plant Biotechnology
  21. Process Technology


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Eligibility and Requirements for Biotechnology 

Students can enroll in biotechnology colleges and courses after appearing for entrance exams held across the country. The eligibility criteria are as follows-

  • Candidates enrolling on biotechnology programmes and entrances must have passed their 10+2 (or equivalent) examinations from a recognised Indian board with a minimum aggregate of 50% marks. 
  • Candidates must have chosen the science stream in their 10+2 with Biology, Physics, Chemistry, and Mathematics as compulsory subjects.


Admission Procedure for Biotechnology 

The admission procedure for biotechnology colleges and courses in India is as follows- 

  • Candidates applying for biotechnology courses must qualify for the minimum eligibility to appear for the respective entrance exams. Candidates can apply for the entrance examinations by registering in the online portal and submitting the required documents.
  • After appearing for the entrance exams, candidates will be shortlisted based on scores, ranks, and merit lists in the counseling session for the respective colleges/entrances. 
  • In the case of merit-based admissions, candidates will be shortlisted based on their 10+2 examination scores.
  • Shortlisted candidates may then finalize their admission at the concerned college by paying the fees and submitting the required documents for verification.


Entrance Tests for Biotechnology Courses

Some of the important entrance tests offering admission into undergraduate biotechnology courses include the following-


Aptitude for Biotechnology 

Students with an interest in biological and cellular processes and their applications in sustainable health and product development will find biotechnology the ideal study goal for them. Students may gauge their aptitude for biotechnology with the following criteria:

  • Problem-solving skills
  • Attention to detail
  • Analytical and investigative thinking
  • Innovation and creative-solutions
  • Technical and technological proficiency 
  • Data interpretation
  • Research propensity 
  • Organisational skills
  • Laboratory management 
  • Diagnostic skills
  • Application-based thinking


Biotechnology Subjects 

Biotechnology courses comprise subjects and topics such as:

  • Molecular Biology 
  • Macromolecular structures
  • Cell Biology
  • Bioinformatics
  • Molecular and Microbial Genetics
  • Biodiversity & Taxonomy
  • Biomedical Instrumentation 
  • Bio-analytical Techniques
  • Medical Imaging Technology
  • Structural Biology
  • Bioengineering Graphics
  • Data Structure and Interpretation
  • Organic Mechanisms
  • Biomathematics
  • DNA Technology
  • Medical Biotechnology
  • Organic and Inorganic Chemistry
  • Life Sciences


Top Biotechnology Specialisations for the Future

Biotechnology is a promising sector for research and development. Top biotech specializations for the future include- 

  • STEM Cell Technology
  • Nanobiotechnology
  • Vaccine Biotechnology
  • Pharmaceutical Biotechnology
  • Plant Biotechnology
  • Bioinformatics
  • Epidemiology


Post-graduate Study/Research Opportunities in Biotechnology 

After completing undergraduate degrees, candidates can further their biotechnology study goal through postgraduate and research degrees. 

The eligibility criteria for pursuing postgraduate courses is completing an undergraduate biotechnology degree in the specialization/course of choice from a recognized university with a minimum aggregate of 55% marks.

Popular postgraduate degrees in biotechnology include-

  • Master of Science (MSc)- 2 years
  • Master of Technology (M Tech)- 2 years 
  • Master of Engineering (ME)- 2 years
  • Post-graduate Diploma 
  • Master of Philosophy (M Phil)- 2 years
  • Doctorate of Philosophy (Ph.D.)

Important entrance exams for admission into postgraduate biotechnology programs include-

  • Graduate Aptitude Test in Engineering (GATE)- conducted by the Indian Institutes of Science (IISc) and Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs)
  • Indian Institutes of Technology Joint Admission test for Masters (IIT-JAM)- conducted by IIT Guwahati
  • Common Universities Entrance Test (CUET-PG)- conducted by National Testing Agency (NTA)
  • Jawaharlal Nehru University Entrance Examination (JNUEE) / Graduate Aptitude Test -Biotechnology (GAT-B)- conducted by JNU 
  • Banaras Hindu University Postgraduate Entrance Test (BHU PET)- conducted by the National Testing Agency (NTA)
  • Tata Institute of Social Sciences National Entrance Test (TISS-NET)- conducted by TISS


Career Prospects/Placements in Biotechnology 

Biotechnology is a promising study goal and offers several career avenues and job prospects in both, the public and private sectors. Biotechnology graduates receive placement offers from prominent and reputed companies visiting their college during campus placement programs organized by the training and placement cell. 

Popular and coveted career prospects in the biotechnology sector include the following- 

  • Biomedical Engineer
  • Microbiologist
  • Epidemiologist
  • Biomedical Equipment Technician
  • Biopharma Sales 
  • Biomanufacturing Technician
  • Bioproduction Specialist
  • Biochemist 
  • Clinical Researcher
  • Process Development Scientist
  • Biotechnical Product Strategist
  • Pharmaceutical Biotechnician 


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Starting Salaries in Biotechnology 

Starting salaries in biotechnology agriculture range between INR 3 to 8 LPA, and can go as high as 50 LPA for experienced senior officials. 


Subjects Similar to Biotechnology 

Candidates with an interest in biotechnology also might be interested in similar subjects like

  • Biochemistry
  • Biophysics
  • Botany
  • Dairy Science
  • Biology
  • Food and Nutrition
  • Microbiology
  • Bioinformatics
  • Biosciences
  • Biomedical Engineering


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