Functional Omics

Harnessing the power of big data to revolutionise biological and medical research.

Key information

Duration: 1 year full-time
Start dateOctober 2021
Campus: Hammersmith
ECTS: 90 credits
Register your interestApply now

Overview

This Master’s course will teach you how to generate and handle "big data (omics)" associated with biological processes and diseases. You will learn to extract the relevant information and perform functional analysis and validation of your selected targets You apply novel experimental techniques in the laboratory to leverage large amounts of data towards understanding the causes, and potentially find cures, for diseases.

This course will be especially appealing to students with a background in biology, genetics, biochemistry, medicine and related areas and for those who are interested in a career in modern biomedicine, whether going on to study a PhD in academia or straight to work in biomedical industry.

The course will prepare you to perform quantitative data analysis at scale, and design and perform experiments to enable you to interpret the results meaningfully. This will provide a key skill in modern biomedicine, in the pharmaceutical industry and beyond.

Study programme

During the first four months, you will acquire theoretical knowledge on how to mine biomedical data to find interesting genes associated with a particular disease as well as on the experimental tools (in vitro and in vivo) that you can use in the laboratory to test your hypotheses. In order to do so, you will attend lectures, workshops, journal clubs, demonstrations and practical laboratory sessions.

During the fifth month, you will select a biological or medical topic of your choice and prepare a report in the form of either a review or a PhD/grant proposal. This will equip you with a breadth of transferable skills essential to design a successful research programme, highly desirable in both academia and industry.

During the last six months of the MSc course, you will conduct a research project in one of our internationally recognized laboratories at Imperial. You will be able to choose from a wide range of projects, focused either on experimental research ("wet lab") or with a strong computational component.

Structure

Modules shown are for the current academic year and are subject to change depending on your year of entry.

Please note that the curriculum of this programme is currently being reviewed as part of a College-wide process to introduce a standardised modular structure. As a result, the content and assessment structures of this course may change for your year of entry. We therefore recommend that you check this course page before finalising your application and after submitting it as we will aim to update this page as soon as any changes are ratified by the College.

Find out more about the limited circumstances in which we may need to make changes to or in relation to our courses, the type of changes we may make and how we will tell you about changes we have made.

Core modules

You take all of the core modules below.

Omics

An introduction to -omics (genomics, epigenomics, transcriptomics, proteomics, etc.) and the approaches to handle, understand and find targets from big data in biology.

Non-coding RNA, gene editing and in vitro modelling

Role of non-coding RNAs (miRNAs, CRISPR, etc.) and application of gene editing and other widely used laboratory research techniques in biology and medicine.

In vivo modelling and use of human material and data

Use of animal models and human samples to investigate mechanisms of disease.

Systematic review and grant/PhD proposal

A literature review on a topic of your choice leading to a scientific poster and a written review paper, PhD project or grant proposal.

Core and profesional skills

Training in basic laboratory skills during the performance of a mini researchproject (3 weeks long) designed by the students in groups.

Functional omics research project

Six-month laboratory project in a host research group leading to the production of an MSc thesis. Students will choose between wet laboratory-based and/or computational research projects.

Teaching and assessment

Teaching methods

  • Laboratory project
  • Laboratory sessions
  • Online tests
  • Seminars
  • Small group teaching
  • Systematic review
  • Virtual Learning Environment (VLE)

Assessment methods

  • Literature project thesis
  • Laboratory project thesis
  • Oral presentation of laboratory project and journal club
  • Oral examination
  • Poster presentation
  • Team Based Learning

Entry requirements

We welcome students from all over the world and consider all applicants on an individual basis.

Admissions

Minimum academic requirement

Our minimum requirement is a 2.1 degree in chemistry, biochemistry, physiology, or related biomedical science discipline.

Applicants who do not meet the academic requirements listed but who have substantial relevant industry experience may exceptionally be admitted following completion of a ‘Special Qualifying Exam’ (SQE).

International qualifications

We also accept a wide variety of international qualifications.

The academic requirement above is for applicants who hold or who are working towards a UK qualification.

For guidance see our Country Index though please note that the standards listed here are the minimum for entry to the College, and not specifically this Department.

If you have any questions about admissions and the standard required for the qualification you hold or are currently studying then please contact the relevant admissions team.

English language requirement (all applicants)

All candidates must demonstrate a minimum level of English language proficiency for admission to the College.

For admission to this course, you must achieve the standard College requirement in the appropriate English language qualification. For details of the minimum grades required to achieve this requirement, please see the English language requirements for postgraduate applicants.

How to apply

How to apply

Making an application

Apply online

All applicants must apply online.

Visit our Admissions website for details on the application process.

You can submit one application form per year of entry. You can usually choose up to two courses.

Application fee

For 2021–22 entry, we are introducing a pilot application fee for our Master's courses. This helps cover some of the administrative and staffing costs associated with processing the large volume of applications we receive.

This fee will be £80 per application and not per course. 

We will waive the fee for any applicant – Home or Overseas – who demonstrates that they are experiencing financial hardship.

Find out more about the application fee and waiver

The fee for MBA applications to Imperial College Business School is £135. There is no application processing fee for other postgraduate courses such as PhDs.

ATAS certificate

An ATAS certificate is not required for overseas students applying for this course.

Tuition fees and funding

The level of tuition fees you pay is based on your fee status, which we assess based on UK government legislation.

For more information on the funding opportunities that are available, please visit our Fees and Funding website.

Tuition fees

Home rate of tuition

2021 entry

£12,600

Fees are charged by year of entry to the College and not year of study.

Except where otherwise indicated, the fees for students on courses lasting more than one year will increase annually by an amount linked to inflation, including for part-time students on modular programmes. The measure of inflation used will be the Retail Price Index (RPI) value in the April of the calendar year in which the academic session starts e.g. the RPI value in April 2020 will apply to fees for the academic year 2020–2021.

EU/EEA students

Students from the EU, other EEA country and/or Switzerland starting a course on or after 1 August 2021 will no longer be eligible for the Home rate of tuition, and so will be charged the Overseas fee. Please note, this does not apply to Irish students or students with Citizens Rights benefitting from Citizens’ Rights under the EU Withdrawal Agreement, EEA EFTA Separation Agreement or Swiss Citizens’ Rights Agreement respectively.

For regular updates for EU students, please see our Imperial and the EU webpages.

Overseas rate of tuition

2021 entry

£36,700

Fees are charged by year of entry to the College and not year of study.

Except where otherwise indicated, the fees for students on courses lasting more than one year will increase annually by an amount linked to inflation, including for part-time students on modular programmes. The measure of inflation used will be the Retail Price Index (RPI) value in the April of the calendar year in which the academic session starts e.g. the RPI value in April 2020 will apply to fees for the academic year 2020–2021.

EU/EEA students

Students from the EU, other EEA country and/or Switzerland starting a course on or after 1 August 2021 will no longer be eligible for the Home rate of tuition, and so will be charged the Overseas fee. Please note, this does not apply to Irish students or students with Citizens Rights benefitting from Citizens’ Rights under the EU Withdrawal Agreement, EEA EFTA Separation Agreement or Swiss Citizens’ Rights Agreement respectively.

For regular updates for EU students, please see our Imperial and the EU webpages.

Postgraduate Master's loan

If you're a UK national, or EU national with settled or pre-settled status under the EU Settlement Scheme, you may be able to apply for a Postgraduate Master’s Loan from the UK government, if you meet certain criteria.

For 2020-21 entry, the maximum amount was of £11,222. The loan is not means-tested and you can choose whether to put it towards your tuition fees or living costs.

Scholarships

We offer a range of scholarships for postgraduate students to support you through your studies. Find out more about our scholarships to see what you might be eligible for.

There are a number of external organisations also offer awards for Imperial students, find out more about non-Imperial scholarships.

Accommodation and living costs

Living costs, including accommodation, are not included in your tuition fees.

You can compare costs across our different accommodation options on our Accommodation website.

A rough guide to what you might expect to spend to live in reasonable comfort in London is available on our Fees and Funding website.

Further information

Medicine

Got a question?

Professor Guy Rutter
T: +44 (0)20 7594 3340
E: g.rutter@imperial.ac.uk

Read more about the Department and our research in the Department of Metabolism, Digestion and Reproduction.

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