UCL Department of Biochemical Engineering


MBI Qualifications

Designed to provide flexible modular learning, the MBI Training Courses can be combined for a UCL MSc Bioprocessing

MSc (via MBI) Bioprocessing - Part Time

The MSc (via MBI) Bioprocessing programme offered by UCL Biochemical Engineering supports working professionals to master bioprocessing fundamentals, advance their bioprocessing skills and accelerate their career. The programme is comprised of a series of core and optional courses delivered in a modular format designed to fit around full-time work commitments. The programme is designed for students to have the flexibility to customise their curriculum.

The taught modular degree provides you with the opportunity to study in an academic department recognised for its quality of research, innovative teaching techniques and strong connection with industry. Studying in a multidisciplinary environment with embedded industrial collaboration provides you with the opportunity to learn from sector leaders and acquire new skills to advance and refocus your career.


    The qualification is suitable for individuals with traditional life science, engineering or technical backgrounds looking to acquire a thorough fundamentals knowledge and understanding of theories, principles and specialist skills in bioprocessing to complement their professional responsibilities.

    Programme Structure

    Students completing the MSc (via MBI) programme must complete all core modules plus 4 optional modules.

    Core Modules
    Optional Modules

    The Bioprocess Research Study (BENG0050) is a compulsory research project which the student undertakes in either the development of industrial processes or the improvement of manufacturing processes at their current company. Research can be at any scale and will include the preparation of state of the art appraisals of the selected research area and its applications, and the execution of the research including analysis and reporting on findings. Each student is assigned a UCL Academic Supervisor, however the research will be carried out at the students company premises.


    Assessment format includes a mixture of exams, assessed reports and the Research Study project. Students must submit all assessed reports within 4 - 6 weeks of completing a module. A select number of modules are assessed as a pair; this includes the Principles of Fermentation and Rapid Fermentation Process Design (BENG0051) and the Bioprocess Design and Economic Evaluation and Bioprocess Facility Design (BENG0093). It is a requirement that each pair be taken in the same academic year in order for students to complete the assessment successfully.

    Tuition Fees

    Fees are charged per year of study and are issued every September. Fees do increase for continuing students every year. This increase reflects the increase in cost to UCL in delivering the programme, such as operational costs, market forces and inflation. Any annual increases in the fees will not be more than 5% per year.

    Application and Next Steps

    Programme applications are open annually from October - July and students are required to discuss their suitability, learning outcomes and next steps with the Programme Director, Dr Naveraj Gill prior to submitting an application. Please be aware that your application will be subject to UCL admission requirements.

    Students who have previously completed MBI courses and assessment are able to transfer accumulated credits towards the MSc following their formal registration for the programme. Through the Accredited Prior Learning scheme, students can transfer up to 90 credits towards their programme.

    Student Stories

    Alejandra Davidovics Easton, Biotech Site Director at Merck

    "My motivation for undertaking the MSc was that I wanted to understand (with an academic background) different topics in biotech manufacturing and development. I have a mechanical engineering background and I believe having a technical background on the key topics of my role is essential. This MSc programme was recommended to me by a highly respected colleague and once I got in touch with UCL, they provided all the support and information needed to make it happen. 

    One of the best things about the MBI MSc is the mix of individuals from industry and academia. The courses have great diversity and provide a more rich learning experience. The time and content deliverables for each of the courses are challenging but looking back, I really enjoyed it and it pushed me to grow. Even for the topic areas that were new to me, everything was prepared for you to learn fast. 

    Completing the MSc has impacted my ability to support the site and my team in that we are all now speaking the same scientific language. For the future, this MSc has made me more robust as a professional and I have recently received the feedback that ‘A great example of leader is one who is still keen to learn’.   

    Through the MSc I was able to meet so many people - one of whom is now working in my team onsite! It was an excellent way of meeting professionals and building relationships for the future."

    Tatiana Caroprese, Design Team Manager at Pall Corporation

    "This MSc programme was the best option for my personally. I was aware of the great reputation UCL has and was looking for further study which would complement my current role as a Biopharmaceutical Design Engineer and my bachelor’s degree. The modular nature of the MBI courses made it possible to balance my full-time job and my studies.

    My favourite aspects of the MBI programme were the lectures and the interaction with other delegates and students. The academic and industry experts giving the lectures are very knowledgeable and approachable. It was incredibly useful to gain knowledge of certain technical challenges in the industry and how to overcome them.  

    Interacting with other students and industrial delegates, especially during the problem-solving exercises, was also educational and fun. I enjoy the very diverse environment at UCL, many people from different cultures and professional backgrounds make it a very interesting place to be.

    Having worked full time for a few years, I found the whole experience of studying in a structured way again both challenging and exciting. Even though I continuously develop in my job and enjoy learning very much, it takes effort to habituate oneself to a study routine whilst continuing working.

    Through this experience I have gained much more than a qualification. I have learnt more about a wide range of bioprocessing topics and reinforced many learning skills. I have gained more confidence to come up with better ideas at work and share them. Also, I have met many interesting people and made friends.

    The MBI programme has been a very positive experience for me. The diversity of the modules makes the MBI programme a great platform to learn about biologics, in a flexible and well thought out way."

    Johnathan Kilby, Senior Scientist at Lonza

    "I chose the UCL MSc via MBI programme because its flexibility and structure allowed me to manage my time effectively around my current role. I could also maintain a manageable work/life balance without sacrificing the quality or content of my degree.

    I wanted to combine my industrial knowledge with an academic background to improve my understanding of the overall process that goes into producing and manufacturing the life-changing treatments at Lonza.

    Being out of university for a number of years, it was difficult to gauge what work would be required prior to taking a course. The MBI modules are fast paced, intense and they demand significant work on the days you attend. That being said, I found the modules the most rewarding in terms of the workshops and learnings.

    The workshops were my favourite aspect of the courses. I found that I learnt much more being able to interact and debate with other scientists from different backgrounds. I learnt from their industrial experience which was incredibly valuable to me.

    The amount of international industry representatives attending the courses was a surprise. I was exposed to a host of new companies and had the opportunity to made useful contacts during the breaks."

    Mairead Looby, Director MS&T DS at Bristol Myers-Squibb

    "The diversity of the modules initially attracted me to the MBI programme as there are a broad range of topics covered from Stem Cell bioprocessing, to Design of Experiments, and Validation. At that time in my career I wanted to expand my scientific and technical knowledge especially in areas that I was less familiar with. MBI provided a platform to enable this. I was working full time in Ireland and the flexible structure of the modules meant that I could balance the time studying for the Masters with work and family life. I particularly enjoyed hearing from other industry colleagues, to gain their perspectives on different technologies, and challenges they have encountered.

    As well as supporting my career, more personally the MBI Masters really gave me an appetite for constantly learning and increasing my knowledge on a continuous basis. After completing the Masters I studied for an Engineering Doctorate (EngD) in Bioprocessing at UCL sponsored by my employer focusing on Quality by Design. The knowledge I gained through these programmes has certainly been instrumental in some of my career choices to date. Studying at UCL has also given me insight into the value of promoting the career development of my own staff and I think the MBI® Masters at UCL is great forum for folks to learn about a diverse range of topics relating to biologics.

    I now really enjoy coming back and teaching on the Quality by Design for Effective Bioprocess Characterisation and Validation MBI module. It is an opportunity to meet the UCL staff and other industry colleagues but also to share some of the experiences that I have encountered with the student delegates."

    Geraldine Hughes, Senior Process Scientist at Pfizer

    "I began researching the MBI programme at UCL when I was assigned to a new project within Pfizer and wanted to gain a greater insight into downstream processing related to the biopharma industry. A number of my colleagues have completed various MBI courses and those who completed the MBI MSc have gone on to senior management positions within the tech transfer, process development and project management spaces, so it was an obvious starting point and one which was recommended to me. My main motivation for MBI was that the foundation of the programme focused on current industrial operations, challenges and innovative technologies in combination with the relative theoretical knowledge. I hoped to be able to bridge the gap between on the job training and formal learning. Additionally, I was very attracted to the structure of the modules being intense over 3-4 days, as I’m travelling from Ireland it suited me to have the modules in blocks.

    My favourite aspect of the MBI programme has been the experience of being in university again and learning new things. I think once someone works in industry and then returns to university, there is a different mind-set and a different way of applying the information you are learning because you know what is directly relevant in industry. The biggest surprise was the diversity of people who attend MBI; I wasn’t expecting some of the delegates to be so experienced. I was also impressed by the facilities at UCL and how much the university collaborates with industry in a wide range of research areas. It has also been a huge bonus to meet new people from academia and other biopharma companies and related industries. Sharing experiences and debating topics has been a very rewarding experience."