Pharmaceutical and Industrial Biotechnology Master's study programme

General Information

Degree Master of Science (M.Sc.)
Credit points 120 CP
Standard period of study 4 semesters
Start of studies Winter semester only
Form of study Classroom teaching, Full-time studies, International study programme
Medium of instruction English
Admission restricted (Uni-NC)
Specific admission requirements yes (Details)
Faculty Naturwissenschaftliche Fakultät I - Biowissenschaften
Institute Institut für Pharmazie
Accreditation accredited
Alle Studienangebote

Programme objectives

Biotechnology and biotechnology-based methods become increasingly important in a global bioeconomy. The master’s programme offers specialization in the fields “Pharmaceutical Biotechnology” or “Industrial Biotechnology”.

“Pharmaceutical Biotechnology” covers all relevant aspects for the development of new biotechnology based drugs, starting from drug target identification to up- and downstream processing till final formulation. It also provides a basis for understanding the mechanisms and processes of diseases.

“Industrial Biotechnology” covers all relevant aspects on the development of new industrial biotechnological processes, starting from access to and pretreatment of renewable resources to up- and downstream processing till the application and process optimization. Biocatalysis, synthetic and systems biology and metabolic engineering will be covered during the classes.

For detailed information, e.g. curriculum, course contents etc. please see our website.

The master’s programme MSc Pharmaceutical and Industrial Biotechnology is specifically designed for degree holders in (bio-)chemistry, biology, biotechnology, biochemical engineering and pharmacy to carry out scientific work and critical evaluation of scientific results in a responsible and independent manner. Students will also have the opportunity to learn a range of methodologies and modern laboratory techniques. The graduate master’s degree is internationally recognized.

Study in Halle!

About Halle and the University

With a population of almost 240,000, Halle is one of the largest cities in Central Germany. The small metropolis on the Saale river offers a versatile mixture of art, culture, gastronomy and recreation. Numerous national institutions are also headquartered in Halle. The Leipzig-Halle international airport is only 15 minutes away by train or car. It takes just over an hour to get to Berlin.

Martin-Luther-Universität Halle-Wittenberg, founded in 1502, is one of the oldest universities in Germany and, with around 20,000 students, the largest in the federal state of Saxony- Anhalt. We rely on modern laboratory equipment as well as extensive support of our students by many professors and employees. With more than 260 programmes on offer in different areas of study, there is a suitable subject for everyone.

Career opportunities

The programme qualifies for positions in industrial and pharmaceutical biotechnology and related fields:

  • Research and development
  • Production
  • Teaching
  • Management, administration and quality assessment
  • Counseling, sales and marketing

The programme also qualifies for PhD positions.


This study programme is accredited.

Programme structure

  • Modules of the programme (90 CP)
  • Master thesis (30 CP)


Module CP rec. sem.
Compulsory modules (85 CP)
Construction of production organisms - Hosts and vectors 10 1
Introduction to Bioprocess technology (Upstream Processing) 5 1
Introduction to Industrial and Pharmaceutical Biotechnology 5 1
Analytical Methods 10 2
Optimization of Bioprocesses 5 2
Purification of Products from Biotechnological Processes (Downstream Processing) 10 2
Project Work 10 3
Master Thesis 30 4
Elective modules (35 CP) (one field of specialization must be selected)
Field of specialization: Pharmaceutical Biotechnology
Drug target identification and validation 10 1
Legal and economical aspects of biotechnology 5 2
Animal cell biology and technology 5 3
Biopharmaceuticals 5 3
Technological and Clinical Aspects of Biopharmaceutics 10 3
Field of specialization: Industrial Biotechnology
Introduction to Chemical Biotechnology 10 1
Agro- and Economical Aspects of biotechnology 5 2
Applied Biocatalysis 5 3
Sustainable and Green Bioorganic Chemistry 10 3
Systems and Synthetic Biology 5 3

The content, learning objectives, workload, requirements and prerequisites of specific modules are detailed in the module catalogue and in the study and examination regulations (in German only), respectively. 

Admission requirements

The programme is primarily aimed at graduates of a bachelor's degree programme in (bio)chemistry, biology, biotechnology or (bio)engineering.  Furthermore, graduates of a comparable study programme, e.g. pharmacy, can be admitted.

Applicants for the MSc Pharmaceutical and Industrial Biotechnology must

  • hold a bachelor's degree (minimum 180 ECTS (= credit points (CP)) or equivalent  in (Bio-)Chemistry, Biology, Biotechnology, (Biochemical) Engineering, Pharmacy, or related fields with a minimum grade «good», i.e.better than 2.5 according to the German academic grading scale.

  • prove sufficient knowledge of English language (i.e., non-native speakers) at upper B2 level by means of an internationally recognised test result such as

    • TOEFL iBT (at least 90/120),TOEFL CBT (235/300), or TOEFL PBT (580 / 677)
    • IELTS (at least band 6.5),
    • Cambridge Certificate (at least 173/230),
    • UNIcert II,
    • or an equivalent (inter)nationally recognised language certificate (at least 75% of the maximum score achievable in the respective certificate).

Proof of language proficiency is considered to have been provided if native English language proficiency, as defined by the study and examination regulations, is proven by school and/or university degrees from Australia, Ireland, Canada (excluding Quebec), New Zealand, Singapore, the United Kingdom and the United States of America.

Previous knowledge in biochemistry (chemical, physical and molecular biological basics of life processes in organisms, experimental skills), biotechnology (up- and downstream processing, protein and enzyme technology, experimental skills), or biology (basics of cell and molecular biology, experimental skills) is essential. Basic knowledge in the other disciplines as well as in-depth knowledge in mathematics (differential and integral calculus), physics (experimental physics, optics, atomic and molecular physics) and chemistry (general/inorganic, organic and physical chemistry, preparative skills, chemical arithmetic) are additionally required.

Decisions on compliance with the admission requirements are taken by the study and examination board of the programme or the committee appointed for this purpose, respectively.

This chapter consists of excerpts roughly translated into English. Only the study and examination regulations are legally binding.


The admission to the MSc Pharmaceutical and Industrial Biotechnology is currently restricted (Uni-NC).

Required documents

The following documents must be submitted with the application for admission:

  1. A hard copy of your bachelor's degree or equivalent (i.e., graduation certificate and transcripts). Important note: Applicants via uni-assist upload their certificates and transcripts (both in original language and official translations, unless the originals are in English or in German) with their online application. For those applicants it is not necessary to hand in any additional hard documents.

  2. Halle University does accept provisional graduation certificates, if your degree is scheduled after the application deadline. Please submit your transcripts indicating minimum 2/3 of your total credits to be passed / your senior student stage, accordingly. The final graduation certificate shall be submitted with enrolment, respectively by no later than 31 January in the year following admission.

  3. Recognised proof of the proficiency in English language (see admission requirements)

Decisions on compliance with the admission requirements are taken by the selection committee.

Fulfilment of the admission requirements does not constitute a claim to a study place for this programme.

This chapter consists of excerpts roughly translated into English. Only the study and examination regulations are legally binding.

Information for international applicants

For any questions regarding application and admission - except eligibility - please see website or contact the International Students Section (Student Registration Office) via

Programme advisor

For detailed information concerning the contents, objectives and structure of the programme, please contact the programme advisor.

Prof. Dr. habil. Andreas Hilgeroth

Institut für Pharmazie

Wolfgang-Langenbeck-Straße 4
Room: 393
06120 Halle (Saale)

Phone: 0345 55-25168

Prof. Dr. Markus Pietzsch

Institut für Pharmazie

Weinbergweg 22
06120 Halle (Saale)

Phone: 0345 55-25949

Version: 12.09.2023