Graduate Certificate in Biotechnology - Portland

Program Overview

The Graduate Certificate in Biotechnology is designed for individuals to obtain a strong foundation in basic biotechnology concepts and skills. Students, particularly those who are working in fields other than biotechnology, will acquire competency and learn new practical skills that will enable them to increase productivity and allow for transitions into more biotechnology-related fields.

All Roux Institute programs provide content relevant to the urgent and emerging needs of industry in Maine and the rapidly evolving regional, national, and global economy. Opportunities for experiential learning will be concentrated in Portland, the state of Maine, and the Northeast region. Students are encouraged to pursue co-ops and special virtual Experiential Network projects with the institute’s founding corporate partners, a group of leading employers in Maine.

  • Portland


  • Full-Time


  • 1 year

    Duration of Program

Unique Features

  • Stackable certificates consist of four or five courses totaling 12 semester hour credits.
  • The certificate may serve as a gateway to the Master of Science in Biotechnology program. Individuals who successfully complete a certificate can apply to the Master of Science in Biotechnology program and, if accepted, apply all credits toward the degree program.
  • Lab courses are delivered on ground in Portland.
  • Industry-aligned faculty have real-world experience.
  • The program is delivered through a hybrid model of online and on-site learning.

Career Outlook

The multibillion-dollar biotechnology industry is diverse, growing, and filled with opportunity. Individuals with advanced scientific knowledge, intellectual flexibility, drive, and professional skills can pursue paths of innovation with the potential to meet critical healthcare and environmental challenges—and to change lives. The industry’s unparalleled growth is projected to continue in the coming years. The result is an ongoing expansion of career opportunities on every level and in every industry sector, from large pharmaceutical operations to entrepreneurial biotechnology startups.

Scholarships and aid



Estimated Total Tuition

This is an estimate based on the tuition rates for Academic Year 2020-2021 and does not include any fees or other expenses. Some courses and labs have tuition rates that may increase or decrease total tuition. Tuition and fees are subject to revision by the president and Board of Trustees at any time. For more detailed information, please visit Student Financial Services.

Generous scholarships

The Roux Institute is currently offering generous scholarships to meet the financial needs of all students through its Alfond Scholars Initiative. Each award is determined by an individual assessment. And Northeastern alumni receive a Double Husky Scholarship —a tuition discount of 25 percent.

Learn more about the Alfond Scholars Initiative

Corporate tuition benefits

Many employers subsidize education for their employees. Speak with yours about any tuition benefits your company may offer.

Special military scholarships

For military veterans and servicemembers, a limited number of donor-funded scholarships are available even after all other aid has been awarded to help with commuting costs, childcare, and other costs of living.

Learn more about military scholarships

Federal aid

You can apply for federal aid grants and loans through the Free Application for Federal Student Aid, or FAFSA.

Learn about the FAFSA

Admission Requirements

  • Online application
  • Application fee
  • Unofficial transcripts for all institutions attended; official transcripts required upon acceptance of admission offer
  • Personal statement
  • Two letters of recommendation
  • Resumé
  • English language proficiency:
    • Degree earned or in progress at a U.S. institution
    • Degree earned or in progress at an institution where English is the only medium of instruction
    • Official exam scores from either the TOEFL iBT (institution code is 3682), IELTS, PTE exam, or Duolingo English Test. Scores are valid for 2 years from the test date.

Learn more about applying to the College of Science.

Admission Dates

Program Curriculum

Graduate Certificate in Biotechnology General Requirements

Core Requirements

Courses and their associated credit hours are listed below.

BIOL 6299 - Molecular Cell Biology for Biotechnology3.00
Integrates biochemistry and molecular biology in the cellular context. Includes the organization and replication of genomes, principles and methods for genetic manipulation, the regulation of gene expression, and the structure and function of organelles. Emphasizes protein synthesis, including translation, post-translational modifications, and translocations of proteins within the cells and secretion.
BIOT 5120 - Foundations in Biotechnology3.00
Provides an interdisciplinary, state-of-the-art introduction to biotechnology. Covers the molecular foundations of biotechnology, molecular microbiology, receptor pharmacology, drug development processes, biotech process development and scale-up, drug approval and regulatory affairs, genomics, microarray analysis, proteomics, computational biology, molecular modeling, analytical biotechnology, and bioterrorism and biotechnology.
BIOT 5631 - Cell Culture Processes for Biopharmaceutical Production3.00
Covers the principles and concepts involved in the development of mammalian and other types of cell culture processes for the manufacturing of biopharmaceutical products such as monoclonal antibodies and recombinant proteins. Topics include protein expression and clone generation, batch and perfusion processes and media development, bioreactor operations and scale-up, and innovations in cell culture processes. Regulatory concepts include quality assurance in a cGMP environment.
CHEM 5620 - Protein Chemistry3.00
Describes proteins (what they are, where they come from, and how they work) in the context of analytical analysis and molecular medicine. Discusses the chemical properties of proteins, protein synthesis, and the genetic origins of globular proteins in solution, membrane proteins, and fibrous proteins. Covers the physical intra- and intermolecular interactions that proteins undergo along with descriptions of protein conformation and methods of structural determination. Explores protein folding as well as protein degradation and enzymatic activity. Highlights protein purification and biophysical characterization in relation to protein analysis, drug design, and optimization.

Experiential Learning

Learning integrated with professional experience is a hallmark of Northeastern and the Roux Institute. Students gain a clear understanding of real-world industry needs in Portland, the state of Maine, and the Northeast—and valued workplace skills like communication and teamwork—through assignments at companies and nonprofit organizations. Students can complete a six-week virtual project relevant to their studies through the university’s Experiential Network (XN) of employers, or even for their own company. Or they can apply for four- and six-month, full-time co-op positions. All opportunities enable students to build their resumés, expand their professional networks, and chart a path to in-demand careers.

Contact us to explore your options.

Sometimes it helps to talk things through. Complete the form and our team will connect with you to discuss your questions and options.