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Molecular Life Sciences

The Molecular Life Sciences are central to understanding the molecular basis of life. Only by interdisciplinary approaches between several important fields – Biology, Chemistry, Physics and Bioinformatics - can we unravel the processes that occur at the molecular level and start to apply it to our benefits. This can be at the level of developing medicines and vaccines in the fight against e.g. COVID-19 or creating agricultural crops that are resistant to pathogenic fungi that threaten the harvest.

What does this minor entail?

Get an impression of the minor Molecular Life Sciences. Dr Jocelyne Vreede tells you more about it in the video on the right.

Goal of the minor

The goal of this minor is to provide students with theoretical knowledge, practical experience and tools within the Molecular Life Sciences. To cater to the interests and ambitions of as many students as possible, students can choose which fields of study within the Molecular Life Sciences best suit them. These include subjects with a medical angle such as Frontiers in Medical Biology, Molecular Genetics and Advanced Genomics. Or Ecogenomics, where you aim to uncover the genetic and molecular mechanisms that influence the reactions and adaptations of organisms to their natural environment.  You can also choose to immerse yourself in microbiology via The Power of Microbes. Furthermore, in addition to the various bioinformatics tools that you will (learn to) use during the courses, you can lay the foundation for programming with Python by following Python for Data Processing. Bioinformatics is becoming an increasingly important part of the Molecular Life Sciences and Python is a powerful programming language that plays a central role in this. In addition, with Introduction to Machine Learning you can lay the foundation for a field with enormous potential in the Molecular Life Sciences.

Upon successful completion of this Minor, you will have gained experience in designing, performing, analysing and presenting experiments in the Molecular Life Sciences. Depending on your chosen subjects, you will have acquired modern tools in the fields of developmental biology, molecular biology, genomics, genetics, microbiology, bioinformatics, programming and/or machine learning. These tools will be very useful for a bachelor project and or Master programmes in or related to Molecular Life Sciences.

Below you will find a schematic overview of the minor subjects. 

Application and admission

The minor Molecular Life Sciences is suitable for students who have successfully completed their first-year programme of a university Bachelor's programme in one of the following fields: Biology, Chemistry, Biomedical Sciences, Psychobiology and Bèta-Gamma (major Biology or Chemistry) and meet the entry requirements of the selected courses.

Other (inter)national students are welcome provided they have the appropriate prior knowledge. When in doubt, please contact the minor coordinator Rob Schuurink.

A maximum of 10 (inter)national students can be accepted for this minor. The selection will be as follows:

  • First, students from the Bachelor's in Biology or Bèta-Gamma major Biology of the University of Amsterdam (max. 5 in total) and students from the Bachelor's in Chemistry or Bèta-Gamma major Chemistry of the University of Amsterdam and Vrije Universiteit (max. 5 in total);
  • Second, students from the Bachelor's Biomedical Sciences, Psychobiology and other Bèta-Gamma science majors of the University of Amsterdam; 
  • Third, (international) students from other university BSc programmes.

If the maximum number of students has been reached within one category, students who qualify are placed on a first-come, first- served basis.

If you wish to apply, please send an email including your transcript of records from your prior and current academic programme(s) to before 1 July at the very latest. Please note that without these documents we cannot process your application.

If we receive more applications than there are places available, you may be placed on a waiting list. Places are granted on a first-come first-served basis.

Students who currently follow another Bachelor’s programme than Biology or Chemistry will be contacted by the minor coordinator after they have submitted their email application including a transcript of records.

Important to know in advance

  • This minor is new in 2022-2023. For questions concerning the content of this minor, please consult the coordinator, Rob Schuurink or Jocelyne Vreede via email. 
  • Please note that this is an intense programme with a filled timetable. It is not advised to follow other courses while taking these minor courses.
  • The Faculty of Science uses a different student information system than the other faculties of the University of Amsterdam. This system is called DataNose and is easy to use for your timetable, study programme and grades.
Facts & Figures
Mode Full-time
Credits 30 ECTS, 1 semester
Language of instruction English