Course Summary

What is Medical Biotechnology: Medical Biotechnology is the application of biological systems for medical and industrial uses.  Did you ever wonder how diseases are diagnosed in hospital labs or where insulin comes from that diabetics use? Did you know that many modern day drugs for the likes of cancer and rheumatoid arthritis are produced using biological systems?

Medical biotechnology is a revolutionary industry that has had a major impact on the production of drugs, hormones and diagnostics over the last 20 years. This programme gives graduates access to the latest industry innovations and advancements, teaching them skills needed to gain employment in the biotechnology, biopharmaceutical, diagnostics and medical device industries in Ireland and abroad.

Innovative teaching methods are used on the programme, including the use of social networking, game-based learning, industrial workshops and visits to target industries and employers. We also recognize the importance of transferable skills such as data presentation, information sourcing and scientific technical writing which allows students to broaden their employment possibilities.


Programme Overview

Year One: The first year focuses on developing student’s core scientific skills and building a foundation of knowledge in Biology, Chemistry, Physics and Mathematics. Students are also introduced to the basics of Medical Biotechnology and its uses.

Year Two: Students’ knowledge and technical skills in the biological field are developed as the programme progresses and they are introduced to areas such as Molecular Biology, Microbiology and Medical Devices.

Year Three: Students study cell culture and the medical device industry. There is also a work placement in either an industrial or a research setting at the end of year three.

Year Four: In the final year, focus moves to the biopharmaceutical industry and its role today. Students also complete a research project on a specific area of interest.

Work Placement

There is a work placement available in the summer of year 3 in an industrial or research setting.

Special Features

In year 4, students also gain training experience at the National Institute for Bioprocessing Research & Training (NIBRT) in Dublin, which gives them key skills and competencies for working in the Biopharmaceutical industry.

Graduate Destinations

Graduates from this programme work across many bio-based industries including biopharmaceutical, diagnostics, and medical devices. They gain roles as technologists, instrumentation scientists, process technician, cell culture scientist and protein and drug analysts. Many graduates also pursue M.Sc.’s or doctoral research in IT Sligo or in other higher education institutions.

While many enter industry as basic grade scientists, it is noted that many gain promotion within a short time (e.g. 2yr.).

Entry Requirements

Entry requirements for CAO 2020 courses at ITSligo are available for download below:

A science subject at Leaving Certificate is not a requirement for this course.

Career Opportunities

Graduates can expect exciting and diverse careers within multi-national and indigenous Irish companies in sectors that are predicted to undergo rapid expansion over the next 10 years; working at the forefront of Medical Science technologies. Students who undertake this course will have the opportunity to complete an industrial placement in a Industrial or Research setting.

Further Study

Students who successfully complete this degree may go on and study and MSc or PhD by research or a full-time MSc in Bioprocessing (IT Sligo).


Graduate Story

"This course helped me develop a broad knowledge and understanding of the Medical Biotechnology field. The content was very relevant and with lots of real-life applications. I really enjoyed the small class size and interactions with my lecturers."

Kevin Colonna

BSc (Hons) Medical Biotechnology