This 29-credit curriculum is designed for college graduates who would like graduate school preparation in biotechnology. The course plan, which is offered on a part-time basis, is designed in collaboration with the Department of Biological Sciences, is also useful for those interested in a career change, choosing to specialize in biotechnology, or planning to work in fields that interact with the biotechnology industry, such as business or law.

The part-time curriculum provides students with the academic and laboratory experience required of applicants to the most competitive master’s programs in the field.

NOTE: International students who need a full-time program should not enroll in this Certificate as it will not qualify them for an F-1 student visa.

Students with little or no background in Biology should take the General Chemistry classes before taking Contemporary Biology I and II. All other biology classes consider that Contemporary Biology I and II classes are the prerequisites for the upper level Biology courses. Students with a strong background in biology may alter or substitute two courses with the approval of the Faculty Advisor.


The Biotechnology Certificate program includes courses in the following:

  • BIOL UN2401. Contemporary Biology I (3 credits)
  • BIOL UN2402. Contemporary Biology II (3 credits)
  • BIOT G4310. Intensive Laboratory in Biotechnology (6 credits)
  • BIOL TBD. Genetics (3.5 credits)
  • BIOL W4512. Molecular Biology (3 credits)

Depending on the applicant's background, the required curriculum may also include:

  • CHEM UN1403. General Chemistry I (lecture: 4 credits)
  • CHEM UN1404. General Chemistry II (lecture: 4 credits)
  • CHEM UN2443. Organic Chemistry I (lecture: 4 credits)

These courses require taking an accompanying recitation/lecture.

Students are required to maintain an overall minimum GPA of 3.0 (B). Every course creditable toward the certificate must be taken for a letter grade. Courses with a grade below a C will not count toward the completion of the certificate.

Apply here for Fall or Spring. To apply for Summer, visit the Columbia Summer website.