Biotechnology | Master

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Short Facts
  • Time model & language: Full-time | German
  • Duration of study: 4 semesters | 120 ECTS
  • Prerequisites: Bachelor or equivalent degree in relevant studies or studies comprising a certain level of relevant ECTS points
  • Academic Degree: Master of Science in Engineering | MSc or M.Sc.
  • Applications for the start of studies in fall 2020 are accepted on a continual basis

Before studying

As a commencing student you may have many questions: What does the desired course of studies teach me? How do I apply? What are the requirements for admission to studying at MCI, and what is the application deadline? What are my career options after graduation? Below you will find all the answers and information you may need.


Lecturer explaining something to three students in a laboratory

With its focus on industrial and pharmaceutical biotechnology, the program enables graduates to convert bio scientific laboratory findings into full-scale industrial processes.

The Biotechnology Master’s degree program at MCI is designed for motivated bio-scientists who seek to apply their knowledge in the development of new products. Assuming basic training in a relevant discipline, such as biotechnology or biology, the program provides students with the knowledge and skills needed to understand, revise, and optimize biotechnological processes, from the genetic foundations to the final product. Graduates of this Master’s degree program operate at the interface of engineering and science.

Biotechnology applies the principles and structures of nature to create new technological processes and products. With its enormous potential for growth and professional development, biotechnology is considered a key discipline of the 21st century. On the one hand, this is due to the advancement of biomedical research and, on the other hand, this is owed to the chemical industry, which gives rise to an increased need for more sustainable and efficient processes.

Christoph Griesbeck
FH-Prof. Dr. Christoph Griesbeck Head of Department & Studies +43 512 2070 - 3800

If you have any questions concerning the study program, please contact us at: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., Tel:+43 512 2070-3800

Consultancy situation between MCI staff and future student


Applications for admission are accepted on a rolling basis. The required documents are to be submitted online. Applicants are welcome to apply for multiple programs of study, as long as a plausible rationale is given. The final decision may be taken by the end of the application procedures.



Entrance Exam &

Date 1* 17, Nov 2019 02, Dec 2019
Date 2 02, Feb 2020 17, Feb 2020
Date 3 29, Mar 2020 14, Apr 2020
Date 4 31, Jun 2020 15, Jun 2020



 *recommended for applications from non-EU countries

The requirements for admission to the Master’s degree program in Biotechnology include a relevant Bachelor’s degree or an equivalent post-secondary education.

The Master’s degree program is designed as a follow-up to the Bachelor’s degree program in Biotechnology & Food Engineering or related studies at the Bachelor’s level. Graduates of programs with a curriculum including a minimum number of relevant classes may also be admitted. This applies, in particular, to graduates of biology, pharmacy, and biochemistry courses. The relevance of courses is assessed by the respective head of department and studies, who also decides whether a degree can be recognized.

Information sheet - admission ( pdf | 145.72K )

Career background - 30%
The applicant’s professional background is considered on the basis of the submitted application materials. Particular attention is paid to education and certificates, general professional development and position (duties, responsibilities, etc.) as well as academic and professional goals.

Written entrance exam - 20%
The written entrance exam (chemical engineering, thermic process engineering, biotechnology-process engineering and biosciences) tests the compatibility of the applicants with the target group.

Interview - 50%
The interview is conducted by a commission and gives applicants the opportunity to present themselves personally, to expand on information provided in the application materials and to explain their academic and professional goals.

Two persons with glasses working in a labratory

While studying

MCI study programs stand out due to the quality of their content, relevance to the business world, and their international orientation. The close cooperation with partners from  industry and integrative internships enable students to gain practical experience as early as in their Bachelor’s studies. In addition to providing expert knowledge, MCI places great importance on encouraging personal development and the development of social and intercultural competencies.


The program includes methodological modules in molecular biotechnology, bioprocess engineering, biotechnological separation processes, bioanalysis, and bioinformatics. In addition, it offers a range of modules to illustrate various applications of biotechnology such as in pharmaceutical biotechnology, food biotechnology, or industrial biotechnology. The program thus presents a unique combination of molecular biotechnology and industrial as well as pharmaceutical biotechnology. Moreover, it provides students with the opportunity to spend their third or fourth semester at one of MCI’s international partner institutions, or to write their Master’s thesis abroad.


Time model & language
Full-time | German
Academic year
Winter semester: beginning of October – end of January
Summer semester: beginning of March – end of June
1st – 3rd semester: Core curriculum
3rd or 4th sSemester: Internationales Semester
4th semester: Master thesis and final exams
Tuition fees
For students from EU & EEA countries: EUR 363,36 / semester plus membership fee to the Austrian Student Union (ÖH). Details & information for students from third countries can be found at admission.

Module overview

Biotechnology 47%
Current Industrial Projects 12,5%
Scientific Methods & Master Thesis 33%
General Management 7,5%


Biotechnological process engineering 3 I 4      
Molecular biotechnology 4 I 6      
Bioanalytics   3 I 4    
Biotechnological separation processes   3 I 4    
Pharmaceutical technology   3 I 5    
Industrial technology   4 I 6    
Food biotechnology 4 I 5      
Plant biotechnology 2 I 3      
Bioinformatics & diagnostics     3 I 4  
Pharmaceutical biotechnology     3 I 4  
Cell culture engineering & physiology     5 I 7  
Regulations and legal framework     3 I 4  

Current industrial projects 3 I 5 3 I 5 3 I 5  

Scientific methods 3 I 4 2 I 3 2 I 3  
Master thesis       4 I 30

General management 1 (Management - oriented Business Administration) 2 I 3      
General management 2 (Micro and macroeconomics, Human resource development)   2 I 3    
General management 3 (Rights in the biotechnology , Regulatory framework)     2 I 3  

The Master’s degree program in Biotechnology provides the option of completing a range of elective courses at the Faculty of Biology of the University of Innsbruck. Classes are available in microbiology, zoology, as well as molecular, cellular and developmental biology. Thus, students may gain a specialization according to personal interest and improve their portfolio. All classes are subject to availability.

With “Connected Programs Molecular Medicine / Biotechnology” the Management Center Innsbruck and Medical University of Innsbruck for the first time offer the possibility to gain a combined degree on Master level. The program allows students to deepen and complete their theoretical as well as practical knowledge of molecular life sciences. It is particularly designed to enable them to furthermore develop the professional expertise which is required to apply their skills to the development of respective products and services.

The combination of the Master degree programs in Biotechnology (MCI) and Molecular Medicine (MUI) adds to the already existing curricula by

  • providing students of Biotechnology with profound insights into the molecular foundation of biotechnological processes and their medical aspects in particular,
  • and enabling students of Molecular Medicine to increasingly apply scientific theory to the development of biotechnological products.

Roche is a leader in pharmaceuticals and diagnostics with a strong focus on scientific research. As the world’s largest biotech company, Roche provides clinically differentiated medicines, sets new standards in diabetes management, and offers the industry’s widest range of in vitro diagnostics and tissue-based cancer tests.

Roche maintains an exemplary partnership with Management Center Innsbruck as one of the most dynamic institutions in the field of biotechnology in the German-speaking world. The extensive cooperation especially benefits students of the MCI Department of Biotechnology. Roche’s biotechnology center in Penzberg, Upper Bavaria not only offers the opportunity to participate in in-house training programs, but also arranges for qualified lecturers to teach at MCI and supervise Master’s theses.

Individual students in the Master’s degree program in Biotechnology may be employed by Roche while still studying, enabling them to gain valuable work experience during semester breaks. In addition to practical support, our students also receive a remuneration for the period of the contract in line with the current Roche pay scale.

In biotechnology, principles and structures to be found in the natural world are applied to technical processes and products. Graduates of the Master’s program in Biotechnology work at the interface of natural science and engineering. They make use of the methods of biochemistry, molecular biology and genetic engineering on the one hand and engineering science on the other. They have the competence to employ cell culture techniques,
operate bioreactors and develop biotechnology processes, to transfer procedures tested in the laboratory to fullscale engineering operations and to take general responsibility for the smooth running of production processes. In addition, they may be called upon to design and supervise bioprocess engineering facilities.

The Biotechnology Master’s program produces engineers with an ability to use their broad knowledge of bioscience and process engineering in an integrative way to design biotechnological processes from the genetic basis to the final product. They are qualified to work in biotechnological plant manufacturing and respective process development companies. They are familiar with the basics of bioscience, allowing them to specialize in biomedical topics.

Thanks to the breadth of their interdisciplinary training, graduates have a large variety of career options, with a focus on the following fields:

  • Biomedical research and development
  • Pharmaceuticals and diagnostics
  • Chemicals
  • Agriculture, fertilizer & fodder industries
  • Apparatus & plant engineering for biotechnological applications
  • Measuring, testing and analysis
  • Environmental engineering
  • Public infrastructure, associations and interest groups
  • International co-operation and organizations
  • Consulting, free-lancing

Studying abroad

One of the most essential components of MCI study programs is their international orientation. This is reflected not only in the curriculum and assigned projects, but also in the backgrounds of our faculty and students. Each program also includes the opportunity for students to spend a semester abroad at one of MCI’s many partner institutions.

JULIA MAYER; graduate of Engineering, Environmental & Biotechnology

“The interdisciplinary orientation and quality of content taught in the Biotechnology program proved to be the ideal preparation for my career entry.”

JULIA MAYER; graduate of Engineering, Environmental & Biotechnology

STEFANIE DELUEG; graduate of Engineering, Environmental & Biotechnology

“By covering a diverse range of topics, this course connects with the industry in a way which specialized courses of study cannot.”

STEFANIE DELUEG; graduate of Engineering, Environmental & Biotechnology

Dr. KLAUS REICHERT; director of downstream processing at Roche Diagnostics Ltd.

“It has been a pleasure to work with such amiable and competent students in this special environment.”

Dr. KLAUS REICHERT; director of downstream processing at Roche Diagnostics Ltd.

Dr. Marco Jenzsch; head of cell fermentation and protein chemistry at Roche Diagnostics Ltd.

“MCI trains highly motivated and qualified students.”

Dr. Marco Jenzsch; head of cell fermentation and protein chemistry at Roche Diagnostics Ltd.

Research & Development

At the Entrepreneurial School®, providing a consistent link between science and practice has top priority. Therefore, we provide our students plenty of opportunity to put their newly acquired knowledge to practice, even during their studies. The collaboration with companies and organizations of different sizes and sectors forms one of the cornerstones of the MCI concept. Such cooperative work does not only benefit our students, but also, ­to a large extent our partners.

Food Science & Biotechnology

Innovations from the fields of food technology, biotechnology, functional & convenience foods and bioengineering will have a decisive impact on future viability. The growing demand in this area offers the opportunity to expand research activities in a targeted manner. The central topic here is the solution of current questions that arise along the value chain, from the production of plant raw materials and algae to technological utilization and product characterization. Novel approaches from engineering and natural sciences are used.

Study cooperation with Roche

Individual students in the Master’s degree program in Biotechnology may be employed by Roche while still studying, enabling them to gain valuable work experience during semester breaks. In addition to practical support, our students also receive a remuneration for the period of the contract in line with the current Roche pay scale.

Partner (Selection)

Roche • Dechema • VBU Vereinigung Deutscher Biotechnologie-Unternehmen • Biotechnet

After studying

Graduates of the program are conferred the academic title of Master of Sciences in Engineering, in short MSc or M.Sc. This is attested by a leaving certificate, the Master diploma, the international diploma supplement, and further documents where relevant. MCI Alumni are entitled to combine their academic degree with the brand “MCI” to provide trust and orientation in an increasingly intransparent international education market. Example: BSc (MCI).
Source: GZ BMWF-52.330/0195-I/6/2013

Success Stories

MCI Alumni & Friends provides a dynamic service platform promoting contacts, image, professional careers, and personal development of MCI and its graduates. We are delighted with all the graduates who choose to stay in touch even long after completion of their studies, and allowing us to be a part of their various careers:

Questions and answers

Yes, it is possible and it is even recommended that you apply before obtaining your Bachelor’s Degree certificate in order to secure one of the limited places in your desired course of study. Please include the most recent transcript of records in your application. Should your application be successful, the Bachelor’s certificate is to be submitted by the start of your studies.

Multiple applications are welcome as long as a plausible reason is provided in your cover letter. If you are admitted to two or more study programs, you are required to inform us of your final decision by the conclusion of the application procedures.

Visit the homepage of our department where, in the Admissions section, you can find relevant preparation materials for the written entrance examination. Once we have received your application, you will receive relevant information including tips and advice on how to prepare for the exam.

For citizens of the following countries, the tuition fee is 363 euros per semester plus a fee for compulsory membership to the Austrian National Union of Students:

  • EU citizens,
  • EEA and Swiss citizens, and
  • non-EU citizens who, according to § 2 of the University of Applied Sciences Studies Act, are subject to § 1 of the Regulation on Eligible Groups of Persons (see Federal Law Gazette II No. 340/2013, in its current version).

For students of non-EU countries not considered eligible according to above regulations, the tuition fee is as follows:

  • Bachelor’s courses: 6,250 euros / semester plus compulsory Austrian National Union of Students membership fee
  • Master’s courses: 7,500 euros / semester plus compulsory Austrian National Union of Students membership fee

Your application documents regarding nationality will be assessed in detail as part of your admission procedure. Scholarships are available for applicants from non-EU countries and can be applied for as part of your online application.

Lectures and seminars in full-time courses are held on weekdays. To facilitate a more intense discussion of individual topics, some lessons may also be organized in blocks.

Attendance is mandatory in all classes. If you miss 25% of a course or more, this will have an effect on your final grade.

Exemption from mandatory attendance may be granted if a valid reason is given (e.g. sickness, visit to authorities or other personal reasons). Please submit your written request including relevant proof to the department for approval.

The Connected Programs provide you with an opportunity to obtain a double degree by completing lectures both in the Master’s Degree program in Biotechnology at MCI and the Master’s in Molecular Medicine at the Medical University of Innsbruck.

The program is designed to deepen and complement your theoretical and practical knowledge of molecular life sciences. It equips you with the professional expertise required to apply your skills to the development of respective products and services. The first and fourth semester are held at the Medical University of Innsbruck, while the second and third are taught at MCI. The fifth semester requires you to write two Master’s theses, one at each institution. This semester also includes the Master’s examination.

In order to be admitted to the Connected Programs, you have to apply to both MCI as well as the Medical University of Innsbruck and complete respective admission procedures. Should you successfully complete the procedures at both institutions, you can be admitted to the double degree.

Yes. You will be required to write two Master’s theses in English.

In order to receive a place in the double degree program, applicants are required to successfully complete admission procedures at both institutions.

Selected students of the Master’s Degree course in Biotechnology at MCI may be offered employment at Roche during their studies and thus receive the chance to use semester breaks to gain practical experience in the industry. In addition to practical support, Roche also provides MCI students with financial compensation for the duration of the contract in accordance with current regulations of the company. Students interested in taking part in the cooperation have to go through respective admission procedures at Roche. An information session held by Roche representatives in the first semester provides you with all relevant information.

Yes. The third or fourth semester can be spent at one of our partner institutions. You may also choose to complete either one of these semesters as a research semester to write your Master’s thesis at a foreign institution. For those of you who do not wish to leave Innsbruck, we also provide the option of completing the third semester together with incoming students from our partner institutions at MCI. During this semester, all lectures will be held in English.

Yes. The third semester is considered your international semester. All lectures during this semester are held in English. MCI also regularly invites international experts to give talks and presentations in English as guest lecturers.

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