Master of Science

Molecular Biosciences

What do organizations such as the Centers for Disease Control, National Institutes of Health, and Infectious Diseases Society of America have in common? They are each dedicated to the support and advancement of research in the Molecular Biosciences, a dynamic field seeking to unravel the complexities of human disease one molecule at a time.


The mission of the master's program in Molecular Biosciences is to develop outstanding research scientists capable of understanding the basic mechanisms of human health and disease. This knowledge is often the first step in developing therapies used to diagnose or reduce threats posed by cancer, diabetes, infectious diseases or other conditions.

Mirroring a Ph.D. program, the M.S. in Molecular Biosciences is built around a thesis project led by the student and supported by their faculty research mentor. Thesis research begins in the first year, continues through the summer, and culminates with a thesis presentation and defense at the end of the second year.

Alternatively, the M.S. Molecular Biosciences program features a capstone option. The core elements of this track include an experiential learning opportunity and a capstone course that prepares students to meet current and emerging workforce needs in the biopharmaceutical industry, and in federal or state health labs.

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Master's in Molecular Biosciences at Albany College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences
The MS in Molecular Biosciences is a 33 credit, 24-month degree program designed to educate students in the basic mechanisms of human health and disease. The program is interdisciplinary, bringing together basic, applied, and clinical scientists from a number of departments to provide students with foundational didactic coursework and the opportunity to explore basic and clinically relevant scientific questions in the laboratory (Thesis track) or an industrial setting through experiential learning (Capstone track). The program encompasses a broad range of disciplines, including molecular genetics, cell biology, microbiology, immunology, and infectious diseases. The program offers courses in the core biomedical disciplines, laboratory research techniques, ethical conduct in the research process, and a graduate seminar course.

The program has two tracks: Thesis track and Capstone track. The Thesis track emphasizes the importance of high quality research and is designed to assist students in fulfilling their potential as research scientists. It requires the completion of original research and publication of a thesis describing that research. The Capstone Track provides students with co-operative experiential learning opportunities (Co-op) in biopharmaceutical industry, federal or state public health labs, or clinical research laboratories to gain skills and knowledge required for seeking employment in these sectors. The Capstone course serves as a culminating part of this track and requires the production of a written document based on 1) literature review on an existing scientific topic or 2) a no-credit experiential learning experience such as a co-op, internship, or basic/clinical lab research.

The graduates from this program can have careers that involve research by government agencies, research centers, non-profit organizations, industry, colleges and universities. It also prepares students for advanced degrees in the microbiology, immunology, molecular and cell biology, and medicine.

Upon successful completion of the program, students will:
• Obtain broad knowledge through courses, laboratory, and the scientific literature in the field of molecular biosciences
• Demonstrate skills to conduct independent original research in a specialized area of molecular biosciences or work on real-world
problems in the biopharmaceutical industry
• Demonstrate the ability to organize and effectively communicate oral and written scientific information
• Develop the skills to be competitive for jobs in academia and industry
• Develop the skills to be competitive for graduate or professional programs
Master's in Molecular Biosciences at Albany College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences
Thesis Projects
A major requirement for students aligned with the M.S. Molecular Biosciences thesis track is the completion of original research and publication of a thesis describing that research. This is a collaborative research effort between the student and their faculty advisor.
microbiology students with professor
Published Research - A Distinguishing Factor
Touting published research before graduation demonstrates credibility in the field and gives you a competitive edge as you pursue the next steps along your career path. Molecular Biosciences students have a successful track record of being listed as co-authors in a range of scholarly publications and presentations.
Master's in Molecular Biosciences at Albany College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences
Facilities and Equipment
It is important to have access to the right facilities and equipment In order to conduct graduate-level research in the biomedical sciences. Among the resources you will find at the Albany College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences are:

- Bioreactors
- Confocal microscopes
- Fluorescent microscopes
- Flow Cytometer
- In vivo imaging system
- Mass spectrometer
- Nuclear Magnetic Resonance (NMR)
- Quantitative real-time PCR machines

In addition to these resources, ACPHS faculty and students benefit from shared facilities with nearby research laboratories and the College’s Center for Biopharmaceutical Education and Training (CBET) located in Albany, NY.
Master's in Molecular Biosciences at Albany College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences
Life After ACPHS
Students graduate with the ability to conduct independent original research and effectively communicate scientific information, skills that position them well for opportunities such as:

- Admission into top Ph.D. programs in biochemistry, cell biology, immunology, microbiology, and molecular biology
- Admission into dental and medical schools
- Work as research technicians in private or government biomedical science research laboratories
- Work as quality control analysts in the pharmaceutical industry