UCL Graduate degrees


Biochemical Engineering and Bioprocess Leadership EngD

The EngD programme provides unique opportunities to explore novel science and engineering in a manufacturing and business context relevant to future careers in the international bioindustry. It will equip graduates with the necessary research skills and commercial and regulatory insights to progress rapidly to leadership positions across the global bioindustry.

Key information

Programme starts

September 2021

Modes and duration

Full time: 4 years
Part time: 7 years

Application dates

All applicants
Open: 9 November 2020
Close: 30 July 2021

Tuition fees (2021/22)

£5,525 (FT)
£2,765 (PT)
£25,200 (FT)
£12,890 (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 Students website: ucl.ac.uk/students/fees.

Location: London, Bloomsbury

Entry requirements

A minimum of an upper second-class UK Bachelor’s degree, or a UK Master's degree, in life or physical sciences or engineering, or an overseas qualification of an equivalent standard. Relevant industrial experience can also be considered.

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

Pre-Master's and Pre-sessional English

UCL Pre-Master's and Pre-sessional English courses are for international students who are aiming to study for a postgraduate degree at UCL. The courses will develop your academic English and academic skills required to succeed at postgraduate level. International Preparation Courses

Further information can be found on our English language requirements page.

International students

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 areas

EngD Centre research ranges from fundamental studies through to their translation and impact on clinical and commercial practice. Research is structured across five main areas:

  • High throughput bioprocess design: the creation of single-use, automation and microfluidic technologies to give fundamental insights into bioprocess design and scale-up
  • Industrial biotechnology: biocatalysis for the sustainable synthesis of chemicals and pharmaceuticals from renewable resources
  • Macromolecular medicines: the manufacture of advanced biopharmaceutical therapies including antibodies, genes and recombinant vaccines
  • Regenerative medicine: the translation of stem cell science into novel cell and tissue-based therapies
  • Synthetic biology: the rational engineering of biological systems to deliver new safe, efficient and sustainable bioprocess options.
More information can be found on the department website: Biochemical Engineering and Bioprocess Leadership EngD

About this degree

The EngD is a research degree, equivalent to a PhD, with an additional training element designed to develop sector-specific skills and prepare graduates for leadership positions within the bioindustry sector. All projects are industry collaborative with up to 75% of the researcher’s time being spent with the sponsoring company.

The programme consists of seven core modules that address research and professional skills specific to the sector:

  • Design of Experiments and Bioprocess Data Mining
  • Biomolecular and Cellular Analysis
  • Pilot Plant Project
  • Pilot Plant Unit Operations
  • Responsible Innovation (RI) in Healthcare
  • Transferable Skills in Bioprocess Research and Development
  • Research Skills
  • There is also a major research project element that provides the basis for year one assessment and progression. The research project is closely related to the cutting-edge research carried out in the department and is performed in collaboration with the industrial sponsor.

In years two to four researchers take a wide variety of optional modules to suit their interests and support their doctoral research project. These address advanced knowledge of the discipline as well as transferable skills and many are taken together with industrial delegates as part of the department’s MBI® Training Programme.

A thesis of a maximum of 100,000 words forms the final part of the EngD training.

Please note that the list of modules given here is indicative. This information is published a long time in advance of enrolment and module content and availability is subject to change.

Additional costs

For more information on additional costs for prospective students please go to our estimated cost of essential expenditure at Accommodation and living costs.


Details of the accessibility of UCL buildings can be obtained from AccessAble accessable.co.uk. Further information can also be obtained from the UCL Student Support & Wellbeing team.


EPSRC studentships are available to EU and UK applicants. Full maintenance (stipend & fees) is available only to UK or EU students resident in the UK for the three years prior to starting the programme.

Scholarships relevant to this department are displayed below.

CSC-UCL Joint Research Scholarship

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.


Excellent and diverse career paths are available for you. Well over one hundred EngD researchers have graduated to date with 97% progressing to relevant bioindustry careers. Many now hold distinguished and senior positions in the bio/pharmaceutical, chemical, cell therapy and personal care product sectors. The majority are engaged in bioprocess research and development, equipment and software design and manufacturing. Others have followed management and investment careers in the biotechnology field or have established independent academic careers in universities around the world.


An EngD in Bioprocess Engineering Leadership is ideal for science and engineering graduates who intend to work in the bioindustry sector, or who have yet to decide between an academic or industrial career. Research projects are created in collaboration with individual industry partners meaning that the results of each project have an immediate impact on real-world problems. Close connections with all of our industrial collaborators ensure that you are equipped with leading-edge skill sets that will enable you to tackle the next generation of bioprocess challenges, beyond the scope of your individual project.


The EngD Centre has extensive collaborative links, both in the UK and internationally, providing unparalleled opportunities for you to network with future academic and industrial. Over one hundred EngD projects have been completed to date with over sixty-five different companies. There is an established network of former UCL EngD graduates many of whom now sponsor current EngD researchers.

Over 70 industrial experts contribute each year to the department's MBI Training Programme. EngD researchers take these modules as full industrial delegates and the programme is attended by over 150 industrialists annually.

Why study this degree at UCL?

UCL was one of the founding biochemical engineering laboratories and established the first UK university department in the discipline. UCL Biochemical Engineering is a world leader and co-ordinates bioprocess-related activities across the university. In the latest 2014 Research Excellence Framework (REF) assessment, 90% of our research activity was rated either 'world-leading' or 'internationally excellent'.

The department has outstanding facilities following capital investments worth over £30 million in recent years. These include a full-scale bioprocess pilot plant and new laboratory suites for synthetic biology, stem cell and virus bioprocessing research. Researchers have access to further resources across UCL, which was the top-rated university in the UK for research strength in the latest REF.

The EngD Centre has received continuous support since 1999 and is a national focus for bioprocess research and training. Researchers at the centre are embedded within a vibrant research community of over 100 doctoral and postdoctoral researchers.

Department: Biochemical Engineering

What our students and staff say

Student review

"I like how industry-relevant my project is and the support that I receive from my industrial company. It provides me people who are experts and always helpful in providing advise. As well facilities and equipment such that I can ensure my research aligns with industrial capabilities."

Sheun Oshinbolu

Biochemical Engineering and Bioprocess Leadership 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.

This programme requires two references. Further information regarding references can be found in our How to apply section.

Application deadlines

All applicants
30 July 2021

Applications are considered throughout the year but interviews are generally held in March each year and the start date is usually in September/ October.

For more information see our Applications page.

Apply now

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Page last modified on 28 August 2021