Biotechnology involves the use of living organisms (mostly microbes) to produce useful products. It includes traditional processes like brewing, cheesemaking and modern developments such as genetic engineering which can lead to new drugs against cancer and other diseases.
The study of biotechnology involves disciplines including genetics, molecular biology, biochemistry, and cell biology. Practical laboratory sessions, visits to industrial firms and ideally a placement in a biotech company all part of the course.
This course prepares you for working in the Career Sectors below. Follow the links to get a fuller understanding of the sectors you are preparing for.
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PLC courses leading to the following QQI Major Awards may be used for entry into this course.
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The Student - Career Interests
This course is typically suited for people with the following Career Interests. If these interests do not describe you, this course may prepare you for work you may not find satisfying.
The Investigative person will usually find a particular area of science to be of interest. They are inclined toward intellectual and analytical activities and enjoy observation and theory. They may prefer thought to action, and enjoy the challenge of solving problems with sophiscticated technology. These types prefer mentally stimulating environments and often pay close attention to developments in their chosen field.
Not surprisingly, some aspect of the natural sciences will run through the Naturalist's interests - from ecological awareness to nutrition and health. People with an interest in horticulture, land usage and farming (including fish) are Naturalists.
Some Naturalists focus on animals rather than plants, and may enjoy working with, training, caring for, or simply herding them. Other Naturalists will prefer working with the end result of nature's produce - the food produced from plants and animals. Naturalists like solving problems with solutions that show some sensitivity to the environmental impact of what they do. They like to see practical results and prefer action to talking and discussing.
Subject to availability there is a placement option for students and an option of spending a year abroad on an Erasmus programme.
Careers include research and development in biotechnology, production, quality control, process control, food processing, pharmaceuticals, brewing and distilling, waste treatment, and enzyme manufacture.