Curriculum Overview

In the first year of the program, students will take compulsory subjects such as protein biochemistry, cell biology, immunology, bioethics, statistics, product development, and a series of elective subjects. This coursework is designed to enhance their theoretical and practical training in a selection of techniques and processes common to biotechnology research. The second year will vary depending on the track chosen. The MBT program curriculum is designed with flexibility to allow schedule tailoring the need of a wide range of students. Students will be guided to plan the route they wish to take to fit their needs throughout the program. Graduate Catalog:

Degree Requirements

  • Minimum Semester Hours Required – 34 credit hours.
  • Course Work
Code Title
Required Courses (20 credit hours)
MBT 501 Cell Biology
MBT 504 Principles & Tech in Protein Biochemistry
MBT 505 Principles & Tech in Molecular Biology
MBT 506 Principles & Tech in Immunology
MBT 510 Ethics in Medical Biotechnology
MBT 511 Statistics Biotech Research
MBT 513 Research Planning and Design
MBT 520 Biotech Product Development
MBT 595 Student Seminar Med Biotechnology
At least 6 credit hours.


  • Comprehensive Examination – Not required
  • Thesis, Project, or Course-Work-Only Options: Research Project or Course-Work-Only.
    • Research Project Option (lab research or library paper) with written and oral final reports.
      • In addition to required courses and electives, students must earn 8 credit hours in MBT 597.
      • Research project requirement requires design, justification, and execution of a research project and preparation of written and oral final reports. This requirement may be met by research conducted at University of Illinois College of Medicine Rockford or other University of Illinois sites or in the laboratories of one of our industrial/academic partners or a combination of both.
      • Formal defense of the research project is required.
    • Course-Work-Only Option:
      • In addition to required courses, students must complete at least 14 credit hours of electives yielding a minimum total of 34 credit hours.
      • The Course-Work-Only Option also allows for students to do an internship at an approved site. Students choosing to do an internship must complete up to 8 credit hours of MBT 592. Students must then select enough elective credit hours to complete the 14 credit hours of electives required for the Course-Work-Only option. For every one credit hour of MBT 592, students must complete 75 hours of internship. Upon completion of the internship, students must submit a written report and give an oral presentation.
    • Elective Subjects:

Students must select at least 6 credits from the following Elective Subjects:

MBT 521 Techniques and Processes in Biotechnology

MBT 522 Applied Medical Biotechnology

MBT 523 Biotechnology  Engineering

MBT 524 Applied Microbiology

MBT 525 Drug Design and Discovery

MBT 526 Safety Assessment of Drugs and Devices

MBT 527 Design and Execution of Clinical Trials

MBT 528 Basic Bioinformatics

MBT 529 Introduction to Flow Cytometry

MBT 530 Recombinant DNA Technology

MBT 531 Adv. Statistics for Clinical Trials

MBT 532 Laboratory Qualification, Validation and Documentation

MBT 533 Biotechnology Start-up Entrepreneurship

MBT 534 Principles of Anatomy and Physiology

MBT 535 Biomedical Implants: Materials, Design, Characterization and Clinical Safety

MBT 536 Introduction to Flow Cytometry and Confocal Microscopy

MBT 537 Stem Cells and Regenerative Engineering

MBT 538 Lab Animal: Use and Care

MBT 539 Immunoassay Development

MBT 540 Advance Protein Biochemistry

MBT 591 Departmental Seminar in Medical Biotechnology

MBT 592 Internship in Medical Biotechnology

MBT 594 Special Topics in Biotechnology

MBT 596 Independent Study

Course Structure







Research Track

Course-work only Track

Option 1 (coursework)


Option 2 (internship)


Core courses


20 Credits




6 Credits


14 Credits


6 Credits


Research Project


8 Credits






(600 hours, 15 weeks, FT)

n/a n/a 8 Credits

Total credits


34 Credits


34 Credits


34 Credits


Below is a typical 2-year structure that can be followed by all full time students beginning their program during the Fall semester.

Fall Spring Summer  















MBT 505 Molecular Biology


3 MBT 511



MBT 506 Immunotechnoloy


3 MBT 504

Protein Biochemistry



3 MBT 513 Research Plan, Design, and Execution


MBT 510




2 MBT 595

Student Seminar in Med. Biotech.


MBT 520

Biotech Product Development


2 MBT 501 Cell Biology




Elective 1 Elective 2 Elective 3



MBT 597                                     Master’s Project  







MBT 597                                     Master’s Project 6-8 MBT 597                                     Master’s Project 0



MBT 592

Internship in Med Biotech

MBT 592

Internship in Med Biotech

Credit 11 11 0-2 10-12 0