The UCL Advanced Centre for Biochemical Engineering trains the bioprocess engineering leaders of the future who will underpin the translation of new scientific advances into safe, selective and manufacturable therapies for often currently intractable conditions, but at affordable costs.
Modes and duration
Tuition fees (2018/19)
- £5060 (FT) £2530 (PT)
- £23740 (FT) £12150 (PT)
Note on fees: The tuition fees shown are for the year indicated above. Fees for subsequent years may increase or otherwise vary. Further information on fee status, fee increases and the fee schedule can be viewed on the UCL Current Students website.
A UK Master’s degree, or a minimum of an upper second-class UK Bachelor’s degree, in a relevant discipline, or an overseas qualification of an equivalent standard.
English language requirements
If your education has not been conducted in the English language, you will be expected to demonstrate evidence of an adequate level of English proficiency.
The English language level for this programme is: Standard
Further information can be found on our English language requirements page.
Country-specific information, including details of when UCL representatives are visiting your part of the world, can be obtained from the International Students website.
International applicants can find out the equivalent qualification for their country by selecting from the list below.
Select your country:
Our graduate programmes are internationally recognised and draw on advances in life sciences and the core discipline of biochemical engineering. We maintain close teaching and research links with other highly rated UCL departments and with experts from other departments throughout the UK and overseas, and are also involved in close collaborations with industry. This vibrant department leads in the field and offers an exciting graduate training and research environment. Independent assessments confirm the excellence and breadth of the department’s taught programmes (IChemE accredited) and place our research programmes at the forefront of international endeavours.
Research in UCL Biochemical Engineering focuses on three major areas: biocatalysis, biopharmaceutical bioprocessing, and human cell therapy bioprocessing. These fields each explore similar research goals which include the following:
- Environment and sustainability: exploiting green biological catalysts for biorefining and high-value pharmaceutical syntheses
- Harnessing genomics: directed evolution, metabolic engineering and synthetic biology can deliver efficient cell systems for producing biopharmaceuticals and enzymes
- Making the outcome affordable: business approaches coupled with engineering paradigms offer new healthcare opportunities
- Processing of complex biological materials: epitomised by the use of human proteins and stem cells for therapy, the challenge is to process materials of increasing complexity to make them available to all who need them
- Speed from discovery to benefit: using small mimics, microfluidics and mathematical models provides process understanding for effective scale-translation enhancing the precision and rate of process development.
Scholarships relevant to this department are displayed below.
- Fees, maintenance and travel (Duration of programme)
- Based on academic merit
For a comprehensive list of the funding opportunities available at UCL, including funding relevant to your nationality, please visit the Scholarships and Funding website.
Recent graduates have taken up academic posts at UCL, and various international institutions. Others have found professional employment within organisations such as Merck Pharmaceuticals, BioPharm Services and Pall. Several have even founded or co-founded new biotechnology start-up companies (e.g. Synthace and Puridify).
Recent career destinations for this degree
- Bioprocess Development Engineer, Centre for Commercialization of Regenerative Medicine
- Managing Director, Medisieve
- Project Manager, Lonza
- Process Development Scientist, Cell Therapy Catapult
- Downstream Process Development Scientist, Actavis
The department places great emphasis on its ability to assist its research degree graduates in taking up exciting careers in the sector. Research centres in UCL Biochemical Engineering, such as the EPSRC Centre for Innovative Manufacturing, are partnered with over 80 UK and global companies in total, and provide an extensive access to all major companies in the sector.
All PhD and EngD students will be participants in research centres established at UCL Biochemical Engineering. All students participate in the Modular Training for the Bioprocess Industries Programme (MBI) which is also attended by company delegates, and also by industrial guest speakers. These events provide exposure to key industry contacts. Research students are also expected to attend at least one major international conference with the aim of promoting their work.
Careers data is taken from the ‘Destinations of Leavers from Higher Education’ survey undertaken by HESA looking at the destinations of UK and EU students in the 2013–2015 graduating cohorts six months after graduation.
Why study this degree at UCL?
Our EPSRC and BBSRC funded PhD programme delivers a unique national capability for training the next generation of highly skilled future leaders and researchers for the UK biopharmaceutical and healthcare biotechnology sectors. They will be capable of translating new scientific advances both in manufacturing technologies and new classes of macromolecular products, into safely produced, more selective therapies for currently intractable conditions at affordable costs.
PhD students at UCL gain access to internationally leading facilities including:
- EPSRC Future Targeted Healthcare Manufacturing Hub
- The Advanced Centre for Biochemical Engineering, including a £25m pilot plant
- Centre for Microbiochemical Engineering
- Synthetic Biology Laboratory
- Biophysical Analysis Facility
- Regenerative Medicines Bioprocessing Facility
- Vaccines Bioprocessing Facility
All PhD students are embedded within the vibrant research community at UCL and are regularly networked with internationally leading industry collaborators via centre events.
Department: Biochemical Engineering
Student / staff numbers
› 51 staff
Staff/student numbers information correct as of 1 August 2017.
Research Excellence Framework (REF)
The Research Excellence Framework, or REF, is the system for assessing the quality of research in UK higher education institutions. The 2014 REF was carried out by the UK's higher education funding bodies, and the results used to allocate research funding from 2015/16.
The following REF score was awarded to the department: Biochemical Engineering
90% rated 4* (world-leading) or 3* (internationally excellent)
Learn more about the scope of UCL's research, and browse case studies, on our Research Impact website.
What our students and staff say
"UCL is one of the few universities that offered my programme of interest and I have encountered previous colleagues with excellent careers who are UCL graduates with the same degree. There is always a vibrant lifestyle around UCL considering that it is at the heart of London, meaning that there is plenty to do on a social and academic level. Unique access to the British Library, of which is only a five minute walk away, has enabled me to gain a variety of resources that has assisted in acquiring detailed knowledge within my research area."
Michael MartinezBiochemical Engineering EngD
Application and next steps
Students are advised to apply as early as possible due to competition for places. Those applying for scholarship funding (particularly overseas applicants) should take note of application deadlines.
Deadlines and start dates are usually dictated by funding arrangements so check with the department or academic unit to see if you need to consider these in your application preparation. In most cases you should identify and contact potential supervisors before making your application. For more information see our How to apply page.
For more information see our Applications page.Apply now