Master of Science

Program code


Available at


Gold Coast

Mount Gravatt


South Bank





2 years full-time

Credit points


Indicative fee

$30,500.00* per year (more)
* 2018 indicative annual fee

Offered in

Trimester 1 and Trimester 2

Next start date

  • Trimester 1 2019 for candidature

Applications close

Monday, 31 December 2018

Why choose this program?

The Master of Science is a two-year full-time program providing graduates with the opportunity to undertake advanced study and research. This program is designed to provide students with a thorough training in applied scientific research and methodology and will also prepare students for higher degree studies and professional employment. The program consists of both theoretical and practical coursework, as well as a research dissertation. Students complete advanced coursework and specialist laboratory classes prior to completing their research project.

The coursework will provide a critical evaluation of research and presentation, develop the student's knowledge and understanding of statistical analyses techniques as applied to scientific research, and develop an awareness of research proposal design and background. Students will have the opportunity to develop a research proposal including aims, methodology and a literature review.

The dissertation involves applied research on a specific project, a seminar and thesis describing the research in detail.

The Biotechnology major is designed to address the needs of students wishing to fill the gap between research in biotechnology and its applications in the treatment or identification of human diseases or other applications in the biotechnology industry. Students will undertake coursework in advanced molecular biology techniques, including gene expression analysis and cell biology to augment their research in these areas, and in the development of intellectual property with a view to protecting discoveries and understanding pathways for translating the discovery into practical application and commercialisation.

The Clinical and Molecular Microbiology major will provide pathways in public health microbiology or applied and environmental microbiology and comprises of advanced microbiology and molecular microbiology coursework.

The Food Security major will equip students with the necessary training in analytical chemistry, microbiology and soil science to undertake research into enhanced and sustainable agriculture and food production.

The Medicinal Chemistry major is designed for students interested in natural product discovery and drug design. Students will undertake coursework in advanced chemistry and have access to broadening courses in biology.

The Materials Science major will appeal to students who are interested in working at the nexus of physics and the chemical sciences and who have research aspirations in materials design and engineering. Typical projects include energy generation and storage, carbon materials including graphene and related materials, coatings, sensors and fluidic devices. Coursework in the areas of either solid state physics and/or synthetic chemistry will be offered.

Attendance information

This program is offered full-time. Coursework is undertaken on-campus and the research project can be undertaken on or off-campus.

My career opportunities

This program will provide students with advanced cutting-edge theoretical knowledge in their chosen area of specialisation together with the practical and research skills necessary for employment in the industry and/or research laboratories.

Biotechnology: Biotechnology covers a broad category of technologies but relies on the common attribute that it utilises biological systems to facilitate the technology. This can describe the use of yeast to make cheese or to ferment alcohol to the use of genetics to cure human disease or develop plants that are more sustainable to biotic and abiotic stress. Biotechnology can also be applied to improving mechanical solutions, this could include the refinement of biofuels or the replacement of a surgical intervention with a systemic therapy. Biotechnology also depends on the ability to identify discoveries being able to take them to the market. In some cases, useful biotechnology cannot be commercialised because it is not profitable. This major includes a course that instructs the student to recognise intellectual property with a view that it can be protected and commercialised. A student completing this major will be able to carry out research using cell and molecular biology, recognise a discovery that can be protected and taken to the market place and understand the processes and requirements to bring intellectual property to the market. The major is designed to allow graduates to work in research institutes and/or industries that have a focus on discoveries and their commercialisation. The major is also designed to allow students the option to explore entrepreneurial skills.

Clinical and Molecular Microbiology: The presence of microbes was first discovered some 300 years ago but to date only a meagre 1% of the total planetary population has been studied. Microbes are often viewed negatively due to their association with many human illnesses; microbes are also responsible for many beneficial processes currently used in modern biotechnology and molecular microbiology. The recent rapid advent of technological advances has provided us with a myriad of avenues by which we can now improve our environment and health using a systems microbiology approach. The Clinical and Molecular Microbiology major has interwoven the fundamental concepts of microbiology with the new technological advances to provide students with a knowledge base that can be used as a springboard to launch into a research driven modern microbiology career path, in either the public health microbiology domain or the applied molecular microbiology domain.

Food Security: As the world's population increases, during a time of climatic volatility, there are increasing demands to produce food and fibre sustainably and with higher yields. Food security depends upon understanding the interplay between microbes, soil and plant health as well as understanding complex nutrient cycling and the impact pollutants have on the system. A multidisciplinary solution to these problems is required. Students will undertake advanced theoretical and laboratory training in microbiology, soil science and analytical chemistry, equipping them with the skills to complete their research project.

Medicinal Chemistry: Medicinal chemistry is principally involved in the design, chemical synthesis and development of pharmaceutical agents. It is the branch of the chemical sciences that operates at the interface with the biological sciences, especially structural biology and pharmacology. Medicinal chemistry encompasses most of the chemical sub-disciplines but is most often associated with synthetic organic chemistry and aspects of natural product chemistry, computational chemistry and inorganic/physical chemistry. With numerous infectious diseases evolving resistance to current therapies, and an aging population looking for solutions to neurological diseases and cancers, medical chemistry is a growing field in both basic and applied areas of research.

Materials Science: The term `materials science┬┐ describes a multidisciplinary field focussed predominantly around the disciplines of solid-state chemistry, physics and engineering. More recently, the biological sciences are playing an increasing role with innovations in, for example, tissue engineering, biological materials and numerous other related areas. Today the discipline has developed to encompass aspects of nanotechnology, the emerging scientific discipline that endeavours to assemble and manipulate matter at the atomic and molecular level (1-100nm). Accordingly, materials science now incorporates the principles of molecular recognition, self-assembly and self-organisation. Examples of systems already constructed include 'intelligent' polymers, organic solar cells, materials for energy conversion, sophisticated medical devices, wearable electronics, advanced sensors and diagnostics, Gorilla glass, novel protective coatings, stain and bacteria resistant clothing and surfaces, advanced materials for advanced engineering projects.

Typical career opportunities include: Aerospace; defence technologies, energy exploration, advanced pharmaceuticals and drug delivery systems, teaching and research institutions, as well as emerging technologies such as nanotechnology, sensors and materials for biomedicine and the environment, high-performance (intelligent) fabrics, advanced composites and the advancement of sustainable materials.

Pathways to further study

Students who successfully complete the Master of Science program at the required level will be eligible to apply for entry to Doctoral Research programs.

Fee-paying research (domestic) students

Indicative annual tuition fee

The indicative annual tuition fee is calculated based on a standard full-time study load which is usually 80 credit points (two full-time trimesters).

The indicative annual tuition fee is based on current conditions and available data and should only be used as a guide. These fees are reviewed annually and are subject to change.

Tuition fees
  • A fee-paying research student pays tuition fees.
  • Students are liable for tuition fees for the courses they are enrolled in as at the census date.

Program fees for the Master of Science (5667)

Year of study Fee category/Band Fee per CP Tuition fee 80cp
2019 Fee Band 31.5 $393.75 $31,500.00
2018 Fee Band 30.5 $381.25 $30,500.00
Further information