Master of Biotechnology Degree Program

During Fall 2014, Cal State L.A.’s College of Natural and Social Sciences and the College of Professional and Global Education launched a Master of Biotechnology (MBt) degree program. The Program for Applied Biotechnology Studies' (PABS) Master of Biotechnology (PABS-MBt) is a Professional Science Master's Degree Program that prepares graduates for challenging and rewarding careers in biomedical device, biocomputing and biopharmaceutical industry.
 

The Program is an innovative collaborative effort between three California State University Campuses: Cal State Fullerton, Cal State Los Angeles, and Cal Poly Pomona. This multi-campus model allows students to benefit from faculty expertise and educational resources at each of the member campuses. Departments involved at these campuses include Chemistry, Biological Science, Mathematics, Engineering, Computer Science and Business. The PABS-MBt program integrates science with business curricula, allowing individuals to excel in science without a Ph.D. and without the need to obtain an MBA. 

Each campus will offer at least one core course and one set of advanced courses. The CSU's Professional Science Master's Degree Programs were featured as the most advanced in the nation at the National Governor's Association Professional Science Master's Academy held in June 2008 in Sacramento. The PABS-MBt has been recognized as a Professional Science Master's Program in all of its six discipline areas by the Council of Graduate Schools.

Program Description

Southern California's biotechnology and biomedical device industries are key drivers of the nation's high-tech economy, and a well-trained, innovative workforce is essential to their continued growth and success. In response to this need, the California State University's Program for Applied Biotechnology Studies offers a Master of Biotechnology through the consortium of three CSU campuses: Cal State Fullerton, Cal Poly Pomona, and Cal State Los Angeles - the first consortium-based Professional Science Masters (PSM) program in the nation. The program draws on the strengths, resources and faculty expertise at each of the three member campuses in the areas of science, mathematics, engineering, computer science and business. Each campus offers at least one required course as well as advanced elective courses. PABS has served as a model for other such programs and is part of a growing number of Professional Science Masters programs in the US.

The PSM is an innovative, new graduate degree designed to allow students to pursue advanced training in science or mathematics, while simultaneously developing workplace skills highly valued by employers. PSM programs consist of two years of academic training in an emerging or interdisciplinary area, along with a professional component that may include internships and "cross-training" in workplace skills, such as business, communications, and regulatory affairs. All PSM Programs have been developed in concert with employers and are designed to dovetail into present and future professional career opportunities.

The California State University (CSU) is recognized as a national leader in the PSM initiative, and has made the degree available through 24 programs in 16 discipline areas at 12 campuses. The PABS Program's focus on applied learning and active collaboration with industrial supporters provides one strong method to address the national concern with economic competitiveness and with the nation's ability to remain at the leading edge in high technology. For more information on PSM programs in the CSU, please visit the CalState.edu PSM website. For PSM programs in the United States, visit Sciencemasters.com.

In the PABS program, each student will be matriculated to a single "home-campus" at one of the PABS-MBt consortium schools (Fullerton, LA, or Pomona). This campus will be the degree-granting institution and will house the courses for the student's concentration studies. Factors to consider in choosing a particular home campus include, but are not limited to, convenience of access to the campus and whether the campus offers strong courses in the concentration area of interest to the student.

Concentrations

The Program for Applied Biotechnology Studies - Master of Biotechnology offers in-depth training in one of six technical disciplines (Concentration Areas below):

Molecular Biology/Biochemistry
Innovation and development in the fields of industrial biochemistry and molecular biology have yielded many important applications to benefit mankind. For example, industrial biochemists and molecular biologists are involved with many critical aspects of the drug discovery and development process, including the identification of therapeutic targets, isolation and screening of novel therapeutic agents, and assessing the molecular interactions of these in vitro and in vivo. They are key players in solving medical problems at the molecular level. Students enrolled in the Concentration in Molecular Biology/ Biochemistry will receive training in the fundamental principles and techniques associated with drug discovery and development in the pharmaceutical and biotechnology industries. This concentration area is suited for students that have a Biology, Biochemistry, Physics or Engineering educational background.

Analytical Chemistry
Analytical chemists are employed in all aspects of chemical research in the biotechnology sector, and their work comprises the foundation of the basic operations of the biotechnology industry, including drug discovery, manufacturing, and quality assurance and control practices. The analytical chemist is involved in basic laboratory research, process and product development, and analytic instrument design, and provides support in marketing and intellectual property evaluation. Students enrolled in the Concentration in Analytical Chemistry have an option to receive training in the fundamental principles and techniques employed by pharmaceutical, biotechnology and medical device industries, including drug discovery and development, process development and validation, or in total quality management in manufacturing. This concentration area is best suited for students that have a strong background in chemistry and analytical chemistry.

Medical Devices/Engineering
Biomedical engineering for medical devices utilizes traditional engineering expertise to analyze and solve problems in biology and medicine. From nano-devices to artificial organs, biomedical device engineering encompasses a wide variety of applications and holds a tremendous potential for therapeutics development in the future. Students enrolled in the Concentration in Medical Devices will receive training in the technical areas related to bioinstrumentation and biomaterials. They also receive training in technical aspects of the regulatory and business environments associated with the clinical development and approval of medical devices. This concentration is well suited for students that have an engineering background.

Biotechnology Business
The businesses of biotechnology, medical devices and molecular diagnostics are varied and complex. The bright promises of advances in micro- and nano-devices and discoveries from genomics and proteomics are balanced by a dwindling drug development pipeline and increased competition from generics. Individuals who have a solid foundation in both management and in technology are needed to address the business and management requirements of life science industries. Students enrolled in the Concentration in Biotechnology Business and Law receive training in analysis of biotechnology market trends, identification of strategic development opportunities, and business risk management. The PABS Professional Science Master's Program provides excellent preparation for the future managers of the biotechnology sector. This concentration area is best suited for students that have an educational or practical background in business.

Informatics/Biomathematics
Bioinformatics utilizes pattern recognition algorithms to identify biological or clinical patterns in large amounts of data. Professional work is generally grouped into algorithm development, software engineering and systems biology. Since data mining continues to produce vast amounts of data and many new opportunities for therapeutics development, professionals in the area of bioinformatics are in high demand. Students enrolled in the Concentration in Informatics/ Biomathematics will receive training in the theory and methods associated with their choice of one of the above three areas, with a focus on industrial applications. This concentration area is best suited to students that have an educational background in mathematics or computer science.

Regulatory Affairs/Quality Assurance / Clinical Trials
The pharmaceutical industry is the most regulated of all industries, and regulatory affairs, quality assurance and clinical trials personnel are critical in managing these requirements. In this science-based concentration, students receive training in the fundamentals of FDA regulations surrounding the new drug development process. Students enrolled in the Concentration in Regulatory Affairs/Quality Assurance/Clinical Trials also receive training in statistics, preclinical and clinical trial design, data management and current Good Clinical Practice (cGCP). Concepts and practices in quality assurance and quality control also will be discussed. This concentration is suited for students from a wide variety of educational backgrounds.

How to Apply

Students with bachelor's degrees in molecular or cellular biology, biochemistry, applied mathematics, engineering, computer science, physics or business and an interest in working in biotechnology, medical device or bioanalytics companies involved in these areas are encouraged to apply to the program.

There are TWO PARTS TO THE APPLICATION PROCESS:

Part 1:  CSU Mentor application

  • Go to CSU Mentor using the following link: www.csumentor.edu
  • Choose the Home Campus (either CSU Fullerton, CSU Los Angeles, or Cal Poly Pomona) that you would prefer.
  • Choose the Fall application term.
  • Follow the link at the bottom of the page to the application site for your proposed home campus.
  • Choose Biology for the program of interest, and add Master of Biotechnology Program under the Area of Emphasis
  • Complete the remainder of the application. If the application requests a program code (HEGIS code), then enter: 04991
  • In addition to the application, you will be required to send a set of transcripts and letters of recommendation, and, if applicable, TOEFL test scores to the home university.

Part 2:  PABS-MBt Program Application
You will need to complete the Program Application (currently unavailable due to the expired deadline) and return it, along with a set of transcripts (separate from the set sent to CSU MENTOR), 2 letters of recommendation, and either scores from your GRE test, MCAT exam, DAT exam, or an electronic receipt indicating the date that you will take the test. If you are not able to take the GRE before the application deadline, please send information about when you will be taking the test, and when scores will be sent to the PABS program. You may submit this information, and letters of recommendation, after the application deadline, however, your file will not be reviewed until all application components have been reviewed.

Transcripts
Applicants must submit transcripts to the Admissions Office of the University they are applying to, as well as the Program Director.

Send to:
Dr. David Dyer 
Director, PABS-MBT Program 
Department of Biological Science (MH 282)
California State University Fullerton, PO Box 6850
Fullerton, CA 92834-6850, USA
 
AND to one of the following:
 
Cal Poly Pomona University
Admissions Office
3801 West Temple Avenue
Pomona, California 91768
 

California State University, Fullerton
Admissions Office
800 N. State College Blvd.
Fullerton, CA 92831-3599

California State University, Los Angeles
Admissions Office
5151 State University Drive
Los Angeles, CA 90032

Letters of Recommendation
Two letters of recommendation are required. Letters should be provided by individuals able to evaluate the applicant's academic record, and able to evaluate the potential for success in a Profession Master's-based graduate program. 
  • Letters may be submitted electronically in pdf format as an attachment to email sent by the recommender to Dr. David Dyer.
  • Letters may be submitted by the recommender using standard United States mail:
    Dr. David Dyer
    Director, PABS-MBT Program 
    Department of Biological Science (MH 282)
    California State University Fullerton, PO Box 6850
    Fullerton, CA 92834-6850, USA

Standardized Exam Scores
Students must submit their scores from ONE of the following: Graduate Record Examination (GRE) General Test, Medical College Admission Test (MCAT), or Dental Admission Test (DAT). No absolute score on the entrance exams is required for admission, but the scores are used in the evaluation procedure, with special attention given to quantitative and writing/reading comprehension areas.
 

Graduate Record Examination (GRE)
Instructions on how to have GRE scores sent to your home university can be found on the "Sending your scores" GRE page of the exam. Although the The PABS Master of Biotechnology program is a joint program between all three campuses, you must have scores sent to the University you are applying to. Institution Codes are as follows-

  • Cal Poly Pomona: 4082
  • CSU Fullerton: 4589
  • Cal State LA: 4399

The Department Code (Biology) is 0203, regardless of which University you are applying to.

Also have scores send to the Program Director below:

Dr. David Dyer
Director, PABS-MBT Program 
Department of Biological Science (MH 282)
California State University Fullerton, PO Box 6850
Fullerton, CA 92834-6850, USA

MCAT Scores 
You may release your scores to Institutions electronically, via the MCAT Testing History (THx) System. If the institution to which you want to send your scores is not listed in the THx System, you may use the system to print and mail a copy of your score report. Use the address below:
 

Dr. David Dyer
Director, PABS-MBT Program 
Department of Biological Science (MH 282)
California State University Fullerton, PO Box 6850
Fullerton, CA 92834-6850, USA

DAT Scores
To send out DAT scores, designate where to send a score report on the electronic form below or download and complete the PDF document below. Processing of additional score report requests requires approximately four weeks.

Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL)
For International students, the CSU system requires a minimum TOEFL score of 550 for the paper version, 213 on the computer-based exam or 80 on the internet version in order to participate in graduate studies. Instructions on how to have TOEFL scores sent to your home university can be found on the "Sending your scores" TOEFL page of the exam. Although the The PABS Master of Biotechnologyprogram is a joint program between all three campuses, you must have scores sent to the University you are applying to.
 
Institution Codes are as follows:
  • Cal Poly Pomona: 4082
  • CSU Fullerton: 4589
  • Cal State LA: 4399

The Department Code (Biology) is 0203, regardless of which University you are applying to.

Also have scores send to the Program Director below:

Dr. David Dyer
Director, PABS-MBT Program 
Department of Biological Science (MH 282)
California State University Fullerton, PO Box 6850
Fullerton, CA 92834-6850, USA

Financial Aid

Financial Aid for your studies may be available. Administration of this type of aid is done by the university, not by the department. If you have questions, contact the Financial Aid Office at Cal State L.A.. The phone number is 323-343-6260. Information may also be obtained from the Financial Aid Office web site.

Current Students

Click here to access the PABA-MBt Student Handbook which covers curriculum requirements, student learning outcomes, master’s project and advisement. 

Corporate Partners 

The Program for Applied Biotechnology Studies - Master of Biotechnology (MBt) has been developed in collaboration with many of the leading biotechnology and medical device companies and life science industry trade organizations in Los Angeles and Orange County.

PABS Corporate partners include: Allergan, Ambry Genetics, Amgen, Applied Nanovolumes, Bausch and Lomb, Beckman-Coulter, BIOCOM, Carolina Liquid Chemistries, GenChem, Edwards LifeSciences, Eyeonics, Gilead Sciences, Grifols Biologicals, Irvine Scientific, Mannkind Corporation, Kite Pharma, Medtronic, Molecular Express, Ophidion, SoCalBio, TECO Diagnostics, Valeant Pharmaceuticals, Watson Pharmaceuticals, and WSP Environmental Strategies.

Corporate partners contribute to the program's success and insure its relevance to industry needs in a number of ways, including:

  • Program Advisement and Curriculum Development
  • Case Studies
  • Industrial-Based Fellowships
  • Continuing Education for Professionals
  • Expert Participation in Instruction
  • Master's Projects
  • Material Support
  • Scholarships

The PABS program spans a large geographic territory that mirrors the distribution of biomedical businesses in the Los Angeles and Northern Orange County regions (PABS Campuses are the vertices on the triangle). This map provides general picture of the relationship of PABS and the 500+ biomedical businesses in the area. The physical proximity of PABS and these businesses is very important in maintaining a dynamic program that meets the educational needs of students and the expertise needs of industry.

Contact

Program Enquiries
If you have questions about the Program for Applied Biotechnology Studies, you may contact the Program Director, Dr. David Dyer (below).

PABS Program Director
Dr. David Dyer
dldyer@cpp.edu
909-979-5508