The field of biotechnology is one of the most innovative and flourishing in modern science. Both in its research aspects and in its applications to many industries, especially medicine, it offers promising results and potential for further growth. If you’re a student thinking about entering this exciting field, here are some of the world’s best biotechnology schools.

Top Biotechnology Schools in the World

1. Harvard University

Harvard University is a private Ivy League university located in Cambridge, Massachusetts. It was founded in the 1600s and is thus the oldest University in the United States. It is widely renowned internationally as one of the best institutions of higher learning worldwide, offering many courses in a great variety of fields. Also considered as one of the best biotechnology schools in the world, Harvard’s biotechnology program offers students a wide range of specialization options in bioengineering and nanotechnologies, life sciences, bioinformatics, and much more, making it one of the leading graduate programs in the world on the cutting edge of scientific research.

2. Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Massachusetts Institute of Technology is located in Cambridge, Massachusetts, and was founded in the 1800s. It is a fairly large university with about 11,000 students currently enrolled and is made up of five different schools: engineering; humanities, arts, and social sciences; architecture and planning; science; management. The BTech in Biotechnology offers a blended curriculum featuring elements from many different fields in science, engineering, and technology.

The program offers students of this top biotechnology institution state-of-the-art laboratories in which to study and conduct experiments and provides a focus on preparing students to become competent researchers in the biotechnology field.

3. University of Cambridge

The University of Cambridge is a research university located in Cambridge, United Kingdom. It was founded in the 1200s and is thus one of the oldest universities in the world. The University is made up of different colleges situated in different sites within the city, with students making up about 20% of the city population.

As one of the best biotechnology schools, the University of Cambridge’s biotechnology degree program is designed to help students acquire both in-depth cutting-edge scientific knowledge of the field and practical research skills for work both in the lab and on the computer. The program is also designed to help students develop business competence so that they may gain a competitive edge in the fast-growing biotechnology sector.

4. Stanford University

Stanford University is a research university founded in the 1800s and located in Stanford, California. The university is composed of forty undergraduate departments and four schools which offer graduate programs in business, law, medicine, and education. The university is one of the most prestigious in the world, counting among its alumni many Nobel prize laureates, as well as winners of other very distinguished awards, such as the Turing Award and the Fields Medal.

The NIH Biotech Training program puts together 36 investigators from three schools (Engineering, Medicine and Humanities & Sciences) and eight departments to create a unique program focused on providing students with multifaceted training in biotechnology especially related to applications in medicine. Students are exposed to many different research approaches, applications, and techniques during biweekly meetings, symposia, and coursework. They are also given the opportunity to engage with industrial managers and researchers so they can get hands-on experience in the growing biotechnology field.

5. ETH Zurich

ETH Zurich is a public research university founded in the 1800s by the Swiss Government and located in Zurich, Switzerland. The school offers degrees mainly in science, mathematics, engineering, and technology. In 2021 it was ranked the second university in Europe, after the University of Oxford.

Its Master’s program offers a comprehensive education in biotechnology with a focus on synthetic biology and systems biology. The students at this excellent biotechnology school are allowed to create a flexible study plan and choose among a selection of courses. The program aims to form students familiar with current scientific working methods and the most up-to-date research in the field. The program includes an eight-month master’s thesis on a current research topic.

6. University of California, San Diego (USCD)

The University of California, San Diego (USCD) is a public research university founded in the 1960s and located in the city of San Diego, California. It is a large university offering over 200 undergraduate and graduate programs and enrolling nearly 43,000 students. The university is so large that a free shuttle system is provided for students, faculty, and staff to move between different areas of the campus, affiliated research centres, and even local shopping centres and the nearby train station.

With UCSD being one of the best biotechnology schools in the world, its Biotechnology bachelor’s program aims to offer students a preparation that will enable them to apply for a variety of careers in the biotechnology industry or prepare them for graduate study. The program has a strong engineering foundation and is oriented towards biochemical process applications. Some of the topics covered include biosystems, biotransport, tissue engineering, and bioreactors.

7. University of Toronto

The University of Toronto is a public research university originally founded in 1827 by the King of England through royal charter and controlled by the Church of England; it became a secular institution in 1850. It is located in the city of Toronto, Ontario, Canada. It is a collegiate university made up of eleven colleges and offers hundreds of undergraduate and graduate degrees. It is a high-ranking university worldwide, coming in first among Canadian universities.

The university is well-known for influential movements in literary criticism and communication theory but also many scientific discoveries and advancements, such as the production of insulin and the first artificial cardiac pacemaker. The Master’s offered in Biotechnology is an interdisciplinary program lasting 24 months and offering course material both in the biopharmaceutical and digital health technologies. It incorporates both science and business topics and offers 8 to 12 months of paid work experience in the biotechnology industry.

FAQs about Studying Biotechnology

Is it Hard to Get a Job in Biotechnology?

While getting a job in the biotechnology sector can be challenging, having the right qualifications in your field of specialization from the best institutions in the world should make the process easier. You can start by searching relevant courses of your specialization in our Europe Courses Page.


Hopefully, this article on the best biotechnology schools in the world was informative & insightful. Make sure to also check out the Available Programs for International Students for more information on studying abroad!

About the Author: Hyun Lee

Hi! I am Hyun, and I am the founder at Global Scholarships. I've received a full-tuition scholarship at Birmingham-Southern College and a $1,000 Burger King Scholarship for my undergraduate degree and was offered a fully funded scholarship consisting of tuition, living stipend, and health insurance for computer science Ph.D. program at North Carolina State University. You can read more about my scholarship journey here. If you are interested, you can follow me on Linkedin where I regularly write about scholarship opportunities.

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