MS in Applied Biotechnology-Curriculum

Female Research Scientist Using Electronic MicroscopeThe curriculum for the online Master of Science in Applied Biotechnology is designed and taught by the same UW faculty who teach on campus.

You’ll acquire a foundation in biotechnology principles and techniques through the core curriculum, then, you will choose one or more specialization tracks: Quality Assurance and Compliance, Business Management, or Research and Development (each track has three required courses; students may complete more than one track).

Students are required to complete, at minimum, eleven courses (31 credits) to earn their degree:

  • six required core courses (3 credits each)
  • one specialization track consisting of three courses (3 credits each)
  • capstone prep (1 credit)
  • capstone project course (3 credits)

Courses are completed entirely online. You can watch lectures, participate in online forums with your classmates, and do homework whenever it’s convenient for you—all course content is accessible online from any device. Learn more about our online learning format.

Course Descriptions

Course availability for the Master of Science in Applied Biotechnology program varies each fall, spring, and summer.

If you are a current student, please consult with your campus adviser prior to registration.



Introduction to basic principles and techniques pertaining to biotechnology and its applications to our society. Survey of classical and emerging techniques.

ABT 700 course syllabus

Ethical and safety concerns in development, production, funding, and application of biotechnology. Analysis of socioeconomic impacts. Understanding the importance of data integrity. Overview of risk assessment and management in a regulatory environment designed to ensure safety of workers, study subjects, and patients, and protect intellectual property, data, and the environment.

ABT 705 course syllabus

2020 ADEIL Distinguished Course Award

Application and analysis of professional scientific communication, both written and oral. Focuses on designing documents that convey complex, data-rich technical and scientific content to audiences with diverse information needs using a variety of professional genres, including reports, proposals, presentation, and documentation.

ABT 710 course syllabus

Application of biological and chemical methods to modern biotechnological product development. Overview of analysis techniques used to characterize products and evaluate quality and safety. Exploration of technological pipeline from conception to market, including proof-of-concept assessment, pre-clinical trials, clinical trials, and post-production testing. Prerequisites: ABT 700

ABT 715 course syllabus

Principles of descriptive and inferential statistics with applications in biotechnology including experimental design, quantitative data analysis, and bioinformatic evaluation of complex molecular and biological data sets.

ABT 720 course syllabus

Focuses on strategies and tools that managers use to maximize employee contribution and create organizational excellence. Basic business and leadership principles. Best practices to overcome biases that inhibit organizations and teams from communicating effectively. Examples will come from diverse biotechnology fields, including pharmaceutics, agriculture, and biotechnology services.

ABT 725 course syllabus


Choose one or more tracks—Quality Assurance and Compliance, Business Management, or Research and Development. Each track has three courses and students may complete more than one track.


Learn how to ensure quality standards are met, from discovery to production. You will focus on quality control and validation in product design, development, and manufacturing. Examine key regulatory agencies and practices within the highly-regulated and diverse biotechnology industry. Learn how to read an SOP, deal with automation in QC, and navigate FDA and ICH regulations. You’ll go in-depth with case studies of various biotech industries, product design and clinical trials, and methods to ensure consumer and environmental protection.

Focuses on the importance of quality control and validation in biotechnology product design, development, and manufacturing. Explores quality systems and documentation, global quality standards, and methods for assessing validation including installation, operational, and performance qualifications. Overviews bio-manufacturing processes, automation, and cGLP/cGMP practices necessary to meet quality standards. Prerequisites: ABT 700, ABT 705, ABT 710

ABT 735 course syllabus

Identifies and examines the key regulatory agencies and practices that govern the highly regulated and diverse biotechnology industry, both domestically and internationally. Highlights current and emerging FDA and ICH regulations and guidance documents to successfully navigate meeting with agencies and to submit required documentation for successful product development. Prerequisites: ABT 700, ABT 705, ABT 710

ABT 740 course syllabus

Examines the global regulatory environments in risk-based assessment of biotechnological developments across diverse sectors, ensuring consumer and environmental protection. Addresses how validation is essential to the incorporation of emerging technologies into viable, accessible, and successful products. Highlights the stakeholders role in regulatory oversight and policy through relevant industry case studies. Prerequisites: ABT 735, ABT 740

ABT 745 course syllabus


Learn marketing fundamentals and commercialization strategies for diverse areas of biotechnology, including pharmaceutical marketing, B2B marketing, and examine the importance of supply chain relevant to a variety of processes specific to biotechnology. Explore topics such as supply and distribution, sustainability, and project management within an international context. Go in-depth with marketing case studies in diverse areas of biotechnology and learn how to apply Six Sigma methodologies.

Examines marketing case studies in diverse areas of biotechnology. Addresses marketing fundamentals and strategies, communicating value proposition strategy, ethical and regulatory concerns, startup strategies, pharmaceutical marketing, b2b marketing, salesforce development, branding, and promotion. Culminates with the creation of a marketing plan/analysis.

ABT 750 course syllabus

Focuses on the strategic importance of the supply chain to overall performance relevant to a variety of business processes specific to biotechnology. Topics include life cycle analysis, corporate social responsibility, production, transportation, distribution systems, sourcing, and purchasing.

ABT 755 course syllabus

Quality and project management issues and roles during different phases from R&D to market. Introduction to installation, operations, and process qualification (IQ/OQ/PQ). Project management phases: conceptualizing, planning, executing and closing. Project schedule and time management tools and techniques. Project requirements including quality assurance. Prerequisites: ABT 720, ABT 725

ABT 760 course syllabus


R&D—where innovation begins. Explore strategies in evaluating and implementing new products within diverse areas of biotechnology including agriculture, industrial, medical, and environmental. Learn how to evaluate scientific discovery and market value, navigate patent, intellectual property, and licensing requirements, and balance business growth with innovation. Apply computational methods, big data applications, and data analysis.

A survey of biotechnology assessments in areas such as regenerative medicine, agricultural biotechnology, and bioremediation. Course links disciplines with the critical evaluative role played by scientific discovery, market valuation, intellectual property, freedom-to-operate (FTO), and licensing strategy by assessing the role each played in the commercialization of a specific technology. Prerequisites: ABT 700

ABT 765 course syllabus

Explores strategies in evaluating and implementing new technologies or products in the context of different bioindustries. Identifies considerations in product valuation, feasibility of production, scalability, and supply chain management. Models the process of business growth and innovation through integration of emerging technologies. Prerequisites: ABT 700, ABT 715

ABT 770 course syllabus

Using a variety of existing and emerging bioinformatics tools and computational methods, emphasizes hands-on experiences analyzing and interpreting large data sets (e.g. genomic, proteomic, microbiomics, target discovery). Students will also evaluate and adapt existing computational approaches for specific use in solving a problem in biotechnology. Prerequisites: ABT 705, ABT 715

ABT 775 course syllabus


The capstone project course is an opportunity to apply what you’ve learned in the program to a project-based experience for an actual workplace or other professional setting. You’ll design your project to align with your interests and career goals. Learn more about the capstone experience.

Prepares the student for applied self-directed capstone experience. Addressing problem identification, research, and project formulation. Culminates in an oral and written proposal with project schedule. Prerequisites: Completion of all core courses and at least two track courses. The third track course can be taken along with 789 if necessary.

ABT 789 course syllabus

Student will complete a project (report, business plan, program, etc) in an area of quality assurance and compliance, business and management, and/or research and development. Culminating in a substantive body of work, executive summary, and reflection. Networking and communication in a professional capacity is expected. Prerequisites: ABT 789

ABT 790 course syllabus