Studying Biology and Biotechnology Abroad: Countries, Cost, Universities, and Colleges

Biology helps us understand the living world and how numerous species of organisms, including humans, function, develop and interact. Advances in Medicine, Agriculture, Biotechnology and many other fields have led to significant improvements in the quality of life. 

Biology includes areas such as genetics and evolution, which allow people to gain a comprehensive understanding of past events and form a vision of the future. Studying Biology is promising and prestigious, and a career as a Biologist opens up virtually unlimited opportunities for professional fulfillment.

What are the advantages of studying Biology?

Some advantages of studying Biology include the following:

  • The opportunity to work in a wide range of scientific or industrial sectors.
  • The ability to solve various social and economic problems.
  • Understanding the human body, as well as common and minor illnesses.
  • Bringing the world closer to answering fundamental questions about life, such as why and how humans were created and what their place is in this world.

Bachelor's Degree in Biology abroad

The main requirement for studying for a Bachelor's Degree in Biology at American and European universities, is proficiency in the English language and excellent academic performance in school. 

However, this list of requirements is not exhaustive and may vary depending on the university. Admission may also require an international certificate of completion of programs with an in-depth study of subjects in the natural sciences (e.g., GSCE). Many universities may also require students to submit a cover letter.

Master's Degree in Biology abroad

The requirements for admission to a Master's program in Biology and Biotechnology differ from those for a Bachelor's Degree. You will still need to have a good command of the English language. However, at this stage, greater importance is placed on your undergraduate studies, grades in your diploma and involvement in scientific research.


What are the specialties in the field of biology?

Faculties of Biology in foreign universities offer opportunities to study various specialties. In foreign universities, you can choose from the following specialities: 

  • Biotechnology
  • Biochemistry
  • Agriculture
  • Microbiology
  • Zoology
  • Molecular Biology and 
  • Virology.



Studying Biotechnology abroad

Biotechnology is the Science that explores the possibility of using living organisms or products of their life processes for the development of medical drugs, the breeding and modification of new plant and animal species, etc.
Studying biotechnology abroad provides an opportunity to receive a quality education that can lead to employment in well-known companies.

Studying Biochemistry abroad

Biochemistry is the Science of the chemical composition of living cells and organisms and the processes that occur within them.
Specializing in biochemistry means actively studying the structure of organic substances, their distribution, transformation and physiological role.

Studying Agriculture abroad

Agriculture and Biology are closely interconnected and new technologies that enhance productivity and crop yields, are constantly being introduced in this field.
By studying agriculture abroad, you can contribute to breeding experiments involving various plant species.

Studying Microbiology abroad

Microbiology deals with various groups of living organisms such as bacteria, protozoa, microscopic algae, lower fungi, etc.
Microbiologists specialize in studying microorganisms, testing various drugs and chemicals on them.

Studying Zoology abroad

Zoology is a complex of sciences that studies the diversity of the animal world, the structure and life processes of animals.
Zoologists primarily analyze the regularities of individual and historical development.

Studying Molecular Biology abroad

Molecular biology explores the fundamental aspects of the life processes of organisms at the level of macromolecules. Molecular biologists establish the roles and mechanisms of macromolecule functioning based on knowledge of their structures and properties.

Studying Virology abroad

Virology is a field of science that deals with the study of viruses, their nature and origin.
Specialists in this field analyze the interaction of these organisms with other cells and develop new treatment methods.


Top universities in the world for Biology

Below we present a list of the best universities in the world for Biology.

Harvard University

One of the most renowned universities in the world, located in the United States. It ranks first in the country in terms of the number of billionaires among its graduates.
It is part of the elite group of American universities known as the Ivy League

Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)

A university and research center located in the city of Cambridge, Massachusetts. It is one of the most prestigious educational institutions in both the United States and the world.
It has one of the largest research structures in the world.

University of Cambridge

One of the oldest universities in the United Kingdom.
This educational institution has provided education to many outstanding scientists, politicians, lawyers, and philosophers.

Stanford University

A private research university in the United States, which is also one of the most prestigious in the world.
It has its own research park where students can share their research with others.

University of Oxford

One of the oldest universities in the world and the first English-speaking university in the British Isles.
According to The World University Ranking, it took the first place in the world for the quality of education.

ETH Zurich

Undoubtedly one of the best universities in Switzerland. The teaching is conducted at the highest level.
More than two dozen Nobel laureates have studied and conducted research at this institution.

University of California, Berkeley (UCB)

One of the ten campuses of the University of California. It is considered one of the best public universities in the world.
The admission process is highly competitive, as the institution accepts only one out of every ten students.

University of California, San Diego (UCSD)

One of the ten campuses of the University of California. It is home to eight Nobel laureates and three recipients of the National Medal of Science in the United States.
The university offers students the highest level of education quality.

University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA)

One of the ten campuses of the University of California. It ranks 25th in the U.S. News & World Report ranking of educational institutions. Living on the campus is truly convenient as food delivery drones navigate the area.

Yale University

A private research university in the United States. It is a member of the Ivy League and, along with Harvard and Princeton Universities, forms the "Big Three".

Best Countries for Studying Biology and Biotechnology

Studying Biology in the United Kingdom

There are numerous undergraduate and postgraduate programs related to biology in universities in the United Kingdom.

London South Bank University

Bachelor’s Degree

At London South Bank University, you can consider the Applied Biomedical Science undergraduate program. Here, students study the human body, its structure, and functions. The undergraduate curriculum offers four specializations to choose from:

  • Blood Sciences;
  • Cellular Sciences;
  • Genomic Sciences;
  • Infection Sciences.

The Applied Biomedical Science program aims to train students as professionals in medical research.

Master’s Degree

In terms of postgraduate studies, London South Bank University offers the Applied Science master's program. Within the curriculum, students conduct research in the applied aspect related to Biology.

Oxford Brookes University

Bachelor’s Degree

Oxford Brookes University offers several undergraduate programs, including Animal Biology and Conservation, as well as Biological Science.

In the Animal Biology and Conservation program, students study ecology, evolution, and developmental biology. They address questions such as: How can rare and endangered animal species be best preserved? How can conservation activities respond to climate change? And many other relevant issues.

In the Biology program, you will acquire fundamental knowledge and gain practical experience in biology. You will learn how the human body functions and what knowledge is needed for understanding, identifying and treating diseases.

Master’s Degree

If you choose to pursue a postgraduate degree in Conservation Ecology at Oxford Brookes University, it is the right choice. The Master's Degree in conservation activities provides knowledge and skills to address the urgent global environmental crisis.


Studying Biology in the United States

Webster University

Bachelor’s Degree

One of the best undergraduate programs in biology in the United States is undoubtedly Biological Science at this university. Here, you can not only gain a broad understanding of the biological sciences but also pursue a second specialization, such as management. This combination is excellent for a successful career.

Master’s Degree

The university offers two biology-related master's programs.

The Master's Degree in Biomedical Sciences allows students to explore various career growth opportunities in fields such as medicine, dentistry, veterinary medicine, pharmacology, and others. The curriculum is designed based on the requirements of graduates and considers individual career goals in medical sciences and research programs.

The Master's Degree in Environmental Management teaches students to develop, implement, and monitor environmental strategies, policies, and programs in compliance with environmental legislation while promoting sustainable development. By the time you complete your studies, you will have experience in assessing environmental risks, identifying and promoting sustainable solutions to environmental problems.


Studying Biology in Germany

Constructor University (formerly Jacobs)

Bachelor’s Degree

When applying for a bachelor's degree in biology in Germany, consider this university. Among the bachelor's degrees worth considering are:

  • Medicinal Chemistry - designing and creating medicinal drugs.
  • Biotechnology - using living organisms and their products for solving everyday and global challenges.
  • Cell Biology - studying questions related to the organization and functioning of cells.


Studying Biology in Canada

In Canada, there are many excellent academic programs available for both undergraduate and graduate studies (including doctoral programs) in the field of biology. Here are some options:

University of Northern British Columbia

Bachelor's Degree

At the University of Northern British Columbia, you can pursue the following undergraduate programs:

  • Marine Biology - studying underwater organisms, their behavior, and their interaction with the surrounding environment at the chemical and physical levels.
  • Forest Sciences - studying, managing, and cultivating forests, as well as protecting them from hazards such as pests and fires.
  • Clinical Bioinformatics - applying mathematical methods to the analysis of biological data.
  • Molecular Biology - analyzing the mechanisms of storage, transmission, and implementation of genetic information.

Humber College

Bachelor's Degree

At Humber College, you can study Biotechnology. The college offers the following programs:

  • Biotechnology Diploma - this program equips students with the skills necessary for a successful career in various sectors of biotechnology and research. The program balances theoretical understanding with practical training in specific laboratory skills valued by employers. The program duration is 4 semesters.
  • Certificate in Clinical Bioinformatics - You will learn to conduct intelligent data analysis, analyze scientific data, develop treatment plans, and track trends presented in genetic data. You will also learn to develop methodologies and hypotheses in the field of medical informatics, computational biology, and medical technologies. The program duration is 2 semesters.

Durham College

Durham College also offers two biotechnology programs. The biology-related programs are:

  • Biotechnology Diploma - Within the curriculum, students with a background in natural sciences can expand their knowledge in biotechnology and obtain an advanced-level diploma in biotechnology within two semesters.
  • Biotechnology Advanced Diploma - If the previous program is designed for 2 semesters, the standard Biotechnology Advanced Diploma program is designed for 6 semesters.

Memorial University of Newfoundland

At Memorial University of Newfoundland, you can pursue education in the field of biochemistry, gaining experience and skills in laboratory work.

Bachelor's Degree

The Human Biosciences program answers questions such as: How does food, medicine, and the environment affect your health? This is the central question of the Human Biosciences program. Introductory courses provide the necessary interdisciplinary preparation, with each course integrating concepts of biochemistry, nutrition, pharmacology, and toxicology.

Master's Degree

  • The Master's in Biochemistry offers an extensive program that provides knowledge in the areas of nutrition, human metabolism, molecular structure and functions of proteins and membranes, as well as the science of food products. It also covers knowledge in the physiology and molecular etiology of normal and pathological conditions, ranging from obesity and cardiovascular diseases to neurology and cancer, as well as the gastrointestinal tract and the function of immune cells.
  • The Master's in Food Science is suitable for students interested in specializing in a specific industry.
  • The Master's in Biology is suitable for students ready for in-depth studies in biology. The program duration is 2 years, and it includes the writing of a dissertation as the culmination of the studies.
  • The Master's in Boreal Ecosystems and Agricultural Sciences focuses on studying resources and agriculture in the context of boreal ecosystems. The program emphasizes plant science and economics, soil, land, and water resources.
  • The Master's in Marine Biology explores marine organisms, their behavior, and their interactions with the environment. The specialty in marine biology provides students with numerous opportunities for practical learning, combining wet labs, field trips, and project-based courses.

Ph.D. Programs

The university offers Ph.D. programs in the following areas:

  • Ph.D. in Biochemistry
  • Ph.D. in Food Science
  • Ph.D. in Biology
  • Ph.D. in Boreal Ecosystems and Agriculture
  • Ph.D. in Marine

Seneca College

Seneca College provides students with the opportunity to study Biotechnology, offering the following diploma and certificate programs:

  • Biotechnology - In this three-year advanced diploma program, you will be prepared to work as a research technologist in the life sciences field. You will study molecular genetics, immunology, virology, biochemical techniques, histology, cell biology, biochemistry, computers, statistics, and a common first year of basic biology, chemistry, and mathematics.
  • Cannabis Regulation and Quality Assurance - This one-year graduate certificate program is the first of its kind in Ontario. You will develop the knowledge and skills to assess and maintain product quality in a highly regulated industry. Your training will include interpretation and understanding of regulatory standards governed by the Cannabis Act. Upon successful completion of this program, you will be ready to work in the cannabis regulation or quality assurance field within medical organizations or cannabis production facilities.

Niagara College

This institution offers students the opportunity to become experts in Commercial Cannabis Production. In the one-year Commercial Cannabis Production program, students study the biology and cultural practices of cannabis production, including plant nutrition, environmental considerations, lighting, climate control, pest and disease management, and strain selection.

Cape Breton University

Cape Breton University offers a Bachelor's Degree with a specialization in Biology, which opens further career opportunities to work in various industries.

Lakehead University

Bachelor's Degree in Biology:

By studying Biology as a student in the Bachelor's Degree program, you will learn about how organisms interact, how genes are inherited, how creatures develop, and much more. The biology Bachelor's Degree curriculum focuses on practical skills, with research opportunities on almost every course to enhance classroom learning.

Bachelor's Degree in Environmental Studies:

The Environmental Studies Bachelor's Degree program builds a foundation for understanding and evaluating environmental issues and solutions from various perspectives. Students acquire business skills, scientific knowledge, and practical experience needed to address contemporary environmental and ecological problems.

Master's Degree in Biology:

Within the Master's Degree program in biology, students study environmental biology, wildlife management, and human health.

In addition, the university offers a Ph.D. in Biotechnology


Career as a Biologist Abroad

Biology is a fundamental and highly relevant field of study in today's world. Professionals with a background in biology or biotechnology can work abroad in almost any country. The choice of career primarily depends on your interests and whether you have a Bachelor's or Master's Degree.

If you have a Bachelor's Degree, you can easily work as a technician in a biotechnology company or a hospital. You can also become a Biology teacher in a school or a lecturer at a university. You can even pursue a scientific career or earn a living by selling medical equipment.
With additional education, you can utilize your Biology degree to become a nurse, doctor, veterinarian, engineer or even a senior researcher. A higher education degree in biology can even lead to managerial or research positions in pharmaceutical companies. Perhaps you may even decide to start your own company.

Regarding salaries, they vary significantly. The good news is that with a Biology degree, you will generally earn a salary comparable to the average national salary. For example, in the United States, being a Biology specialist can earn you around $120,000 per year. If you work as a scientific consultant in Los Angeles, you can expect a salary of $150,000 per year.

As for the cost of living, it varies greatly from country to country and from city to city. If you plan to study biology, you are likely to consider countries from the list above. Among all the countries mentioned, the United States is the most expensive in terms of living costs. In St. Louis, where Webster University is located, the average monthly cost of living is $1,000, excluding rent.

In other countries, the cost of living may be cheaper, but it largely depends on the specific case. In Canada, for example, the average cost of living in Prince George is approximately $800 Canadian dollars per month. If you decide to study in Germany at Constructor University located in Bremen, be prepared to spend around 800 Euros per month.

Safety is also an important factor when choosing a country for education. Germany and Canada are considered the safest for foreigners, as they have a more welcoming attitude towards people from other nationalities. In reality, all the mentioned countries warmly welcome international students, but unfortunately, some countries have a higher incidence of other types of crimes.

Many universities are willing to award scholarships to international students based on their academic performance. Active involvement in student life also increases your chances of receiving a scholarship.


Frequently Asked Questions about studying biology abroad:

Is it beneficial to pursue a career as a Biologist abroad?

Yes, it is beneficial. Biology is a highly demanded field in the modern world, and professions related to it are in high demand in Western countries.

How expensive is it to study Biology abroad?

It depends on the country you choose to apply to. If you decide to pursue a career as a biologist in the United States, you could consider studying at Webster University. There is no fixed price, as it is determined by various factors such as educational programs, provided services (housing, meals), and more. On average, the cost of studying biology or biotechnology at an elite university in America would be around $40,000 - $50,000 USD.

What qualities and skills should a Biologist possess to build a successful career?

Biology is a responsible field, so any specialist working in it should possess a range of qualities. For example, they should be highly responsible and diligent since haste is not required when analyzing data. Additionally, any good biologist or biotechnologist should constantly study specialized literature to enhance their knowledge and prevent it from fading away.

Can you obtain citizenship by enrolling and graduating from a local university in the field of Biology?

Studying abroad positively affects the chances of obtaining citizenship in that country. The key is to find a job after completing your bachelor's or master's degree, as it leads to a residence permit and eventually a passport.

Why is it better to pursue a specialty in the field of Biology abroad?

The reason is that Biology is a highly complex field that includes many other applied sciences. Its importance in human life is difficult to underestimate, which is why brain centers in Western countries have begun to expand and promote everything related to this field. Germany, the United States, the United Kingdom, and Canada have numerous programs that educate students about life at various levels, from the tiniest cells and organisms to entire ecosystems.

Is it safe to study Biology abroad?

In general, yes, it is safe. Crime rates vary among different countries. For example, the risk of being attacked on the street is significantly higher in the United States compared to Canada. Before traveling, try to gather as much information as possible about the country you plan to go to. To stay safe, follow these simple rules:

  • Always be vigilant and trust your instincts
  • Keep valuable belongings close to you
  • Avoid excessive alcohol consumption
  • Do not behave provocatively

Is it necessary to obtain a Master's Degree in Biology if I already have a Bachelor's Degree?

It is not mandatory but it is desirable, especially if you plan to pursue a career in the Scientific field. Master's Degree holders in Biology usually work as teachers, researchers, managers and specialists in management and production.

Does the school I graduated from matter when applying to a Biology department?

No, it does not matter. All applications for admission are considered equally by top universities. They welcome applicants from various social backgrounds and with diverse experiences. If you meet specific criteria, you may even expect individual invitations. Detailed information can usually be found on the educational institution's website.

What should I include in my cover letter if I am applying for a Biology program abroad?

Admissions committees at many leading universities appreciate personal statements that demonstrate your enthusiasm and passion for science. You can mention books, journals, articles, or podcasts you have read or listened to. If you have any past work experience, be sure to include it. Interest in the subject is perhaps the most important thing that educational institutions expect from you. This is largely because local professors themselves are highly passionate about science and want to see that same passion in your eyes.

Do international universities support Biology students with disabilities?

Yes, of course. Supporting students in all their endeavors and challenges is a top priority for many reputable Western educational institutions. All students should have equal opportunities and not experience any inconvenience during the educational process.

Anna Pukshanskaia