MS In Biotechnology In USA: Universities & Course Details

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Biotechnology, as a subject of research, is an exciting and interdisciplinary program with a wide range of career opportunities. Biotechnology is an upcoming field that offers students with higher academic and career goals a platform to pursue their interests. Students with a bachelor’s degree in biotechnology, microbiology, genomics, medical technology, chemistry, and biology are preferred for a master’s degree program in the biotechnology field. Some countries offer good quality biotech courses like Germany, France, Singapore, the UK, etc. But when it comes to choosing a country to study biotechnology, the USA is considered one of the best. In the USA, the biotechnology program is recognised by different names, such as Professional Science Masters (PSM) in Biotechnology, Master of Science (MS) in Biotechnology and Master of Arts (MA) in Biotechnology. This blog will provide you with all the information you will need (top universities, eligibility and cost, and admission process) if you plan to study MS In Biotechnology In USA.

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Scope of Studying MS In Biotechnology in the USA

An MS in Biotechnology in the USA is a two-year program with four semesters. You can pursue it in three different modes: full-time, part-time or online at different universities in the USA. The estimated cost of pursuing a master’s degree in biotech is about 26,000 USD per annum. Graduates of biotechnology can explore a broad spectrum of career opportunities. These include biomedical engineers, biophysicists, crime lab technicians, quality control analysts and many more.

Eligibility Criteria

The eligibility criteria for MS in Biotechnology in the USA differs according to the universities. The general criteria to study master’s in biotechnology in the USA is as follows:

  • Completed undergraduate degree in biotechnology or related fields (preferably 4 years)
  • 3.0 is the minimum GPA in the undergraduate course
  • International students have to take either of the English language proficiency tests, IELTS or TOEFL, scores of which are mandatory for admission.
  • For pursuing science-based courses in the USA, students have to take the GRE tests. The GRE scores are a must to get admitted to the university.
  • A minimum score of 6.5 in IELTS and 80 in TOEFL, along with a minimum score of 300 in GRE, is required to be eligible to apply to the universities.

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MS In Biotechnology In USA: Universities & Course Details
Check Your Eligibility for 80+ Universities across the USA
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Cost & Accommodation

International students need to check several factors when planning to study abroad. One of them is the total costs of living in the country. This includes the tuition fee and other expenses. Typically, the tuition costs for MS in Biotechnology in the USA are between $15000 and $30000 (INR 11.15 lakhs to 23 lakhs). The tuition fee generally depends on the total credit hours, institution type and location. The other expenses include exam fees, application processing fees, and costs of living in the United States. There are many options of financial aid available to international students in the USA. The amount disbursed differs on the universities and your overall student profile. Based on your shortlisted university, you can check the funding options available and apply to the ones you are eligible for. Accommodation for international students is usually available on-campus. However, they can also choose to live off-campus in shared apartments. The approximate cost of living in the US per month is between 500 USD and 1000 USD (INR 37,000 to INR 75,000) But staying in dormitories is a better option as they provide students with basic amenities like food, water and electricity and are cheaper.

Application Requirements

The application process may vary as per the universities, but here are some standard documents required for the application:

  • Academic and education transcripts of 10th, 12th and the UG degree
  • Statement of Purpose (SOP) or Letter of Intent
  • A scanned copy of the passport, along with 2-3 Letters of Recommendation (LORs)
  • A minimum overall band score of 6.5 in IELTS and 80 in TOEFL for international students
  • Proof of involvement of the student in extra-curricular activities
  • An updated resume or CV mentioning the GRE score

Top Universities for MS In Biotechnology In USA

The USA is a one-stop and popular destination for pursuing a degree in biotechnology. Read on to know the top-ranking universities in the USA for MS degree programs in biotechnology.

Johns Hopkins University

The Johns Hopkins University is a private research university in Baltimore, Marland, with an acceptance rate of 11%. The university has a graduation rate of 93%.

Ranking: As of 2022, the university has ranked 25th in the QS World University Rankings. It provides both full-time and part-time courses to students.

Courses Offered: The university has many programs available for a master’s degree in biotechnology. Some of them are MS in Applied Biomedical Engineering, MHS in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, and MS in Bioinformatics.

Tuition Fee: The average program fee per year for this university is around 43,500 USD.

Financial Aid: Full-time graduates may receive tuition and fellowship awards from their departments. Part-time graduates may receive tuition benefits through their employers. Student loans and work-study options are also available.

California State University

The California State University is a public university in California. It has 23 campuses and eight off-campus centres. The university has 13 major courses available in both online and offline modes.

Ranking: As per the US Rankings of 2022, it has secured a spot in the top 500 universities to study biotechnology.

Courses Offered: Some of the master’s degree programs the university offers are:

  • MS in Biomedical Science (biomedicine) in the San Francisco campus,
  • MS in Biotechnology and Bioinformatics (stem cell technology and laboratory management).

Tuition Fee: The average annual fee in this university ranges from 28,000 USD to 50,000 USD.

Financial Aid: The university provides financial aid to the majority of its students. Most CSU students qualify for some financial aid like scholarships, grants, loans, work-study programs or a combination of these.

Northwestern University

It is a private research university in Evanston, Illinois, with an acceptance rate of 9%. The university has a graduation rate of 94%.

Ranking: The university has been ranked 30 by the 2022 QS World Ranking University.

Courses Offered: It is known for its Master of Biotechnology Program. The university also offers other master’s degree programs in biotech and sciences like MS in Biomedical Engineering, MS in Biomedical and Life Sciences and more. The university has different schools that you can apply to as per your desired programs.

Tuition Fee: This university’s average annual program fee is around 64,500 USD.

Financial Aid: There is a financial aid programme named Evanston Office of Graduate Financial Aid that offers to fund students’ education in the above-mentioned programs. You can check for your eligibility and apply for it.

Florida Institute of Technology 

It is a private research university in Melbourne, Florida, with an acceptance rate of 70%.

  • You can study in three formats: campus study, off-campus and online.
  • The university accepts transfer and graduate admissions, or you can study at the education centres of the university in Virginia, Alabama, Florida and Maryland. You can also opt for the online study mode.

Ranking: The university comes in the top 350 universities in the USA by the US Rankings, 2021. It has been ranked among the nation’s best universities for the 12th consecutive year.

Courses offered: MS in Biotechnology and MS in Biomedical Engineering

Tuition Fee: The average fee per annum of the university is around 30,000 USD.

Financial Aid: The institution also has various types of financial aid available like university scholarships and grants, state scholarships and grants, federal financial aid and graduate aid. Aspirants can check which of these they are eligible for and apply to them. These are some of the top universities to pursue your MS in Biotechnology in the USA. When choosing a university, ensure that the shortlisted ones align with your requirements and help you move towards your academic and career goals.

Career Opportunities

After successfully completing an MS in Biotechnology in the USA, international students can start a career in positions like research scientists, molecular biology research associates, associate research scientists, and senior research scientists. A skilled graduate can earn an average annual salary of 73000 USD (INR 54.27 lakhs). Individuals can also choose to pursue their doctorate while working in research fields.


The USA is one of the best countries to pursue a master’s degree in biotechnology, with some of the best universities for the program. It is a growing field with a broad spectrum of career opportunities in the USA. With funding and financial aid available, one can pursue their desired course for an MS in Biotechnology in the USA at their university choice. We are here to help you find a suitable university for yourself. Contact LeapScholar for the right guidance and make the journey to your dream university a memorable one.

Frequently Asked Questions 

1. Which is better to study in the US, Master of Science (MSc) or Professional Science Master’s (PSM)?

Both courses have their advantages, but PSM is better if you want to move away from the research areas of the subject. MS is related to the research side of the subject, whereas PSM is related to the business side/entrepreneurship in the subject.

2. Is it worth going to the US for a master’s degree in biotechnology?

If you plan to return to complete your degree or after gaining work experience of 2-3 years, it might be difficult for you to adjust to India’s working environment. The pay and the scope of the subject in India differ substantially from the US. Several other factors might make it hard for you to adjust to working in Indian labs. But if you plan on staying in the US itself, it is worth it.

3. What are the in-demand jobs in biotechnology in the US?

Some of the well-paying jobs available in the biotechnology industry after pursuing an MS in Biotechnology in the USA are mentioned below, along with their median pay:
a. Business Development Manager – $113,770
b. Director of Product Strategy/Commercialisation – $124,730
c. Process Development Scientist – $94,740
d. Biomedical Engineer – $88,040
e. Medical Scientist – $82,090
f. Microbiologist – $69,960

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Saket Kohli

An International Higher Ed professional with 7+ years of experience studying, working, and living across three geographies, currently on a mission to share his journey as an International Student.

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