Career Options in Biotechnology

The financial experts have predicted that during the period 2010-2011, the biotechnology sector would generate revenue of USD$4 billion. Interestingly, by the year 2015, the revenues generated by the biotechnology industry would be a whopping USD$10 billion.

This industry has attained the predicted figure of USD$4 billion during FY2011. So, an estimated growth of USD$6 billion is anticipated by 2015.

However, as compared to the world market (USD$180 billion), India has a very meager share accounting for only few percentile points in this sector.

With growth projected at such high a figure, students are increasingly trying to explore this new avenue in education that promises to open up wide range of vistas for aspiring students in this field.

Read on to know about the types of biotechnology courses, eligibility criteria for enrolling into different institutes offering Biotechnology, tuition fee of the courses, scholarships available, career prospects, and salary package that a Biotech professional can expect.

Types of Biotechnology Courses 

Biotechnology courses are of varying duration and courses are offered at the undergraduate as well as post graduate level. The different types of degrees a student can earn in this field include the following-

  • Bachelor degree in Biotechnology. This is of 3 years duration
  • B.E/B.Tech in Biotechnology. This is of 4 years duration
  • Masters in Biotechnology. Duration is of 2 years
  • M.Tech in Biotechnology. Duration is of 2 years
  • M.Phil in Biotechnology- 1 year
  • MBA Biotechnology- It is a 2-year course
  • PhD in Biotechnology

Institutes Offering Biotechnology Courses in India
Biotechnology academic programs are offered by a number of institutes in India. Names of few of the institutes that offer these courses include the following-

All India Institute of Medical Sciences in New Delhi 
Type of course offered – B.Tech in Biotechnology
Duration- 4 years
Eligibility – Pass in class XII with Biology, Physics, and Chemistry. Marks in entrance test

Guru Gobind Singh Indraprastha University in Delhi 
Type of course – B.Tech/M.Tech Dual Degree
Duration – 5 and half years
Eligibility- Entrance test scores, pass in class XII with 55% and compulsory subjects -Mathematics, Biology, Chemistry, and Physics.

Vellore Institute of Technology in Tamil Nadu 
Type of course – B.Tech and B.Sc
Duration- 4 years
Eligibility- Scores in entrance test, pass in class XII with Physics, Chemistry, Mathematics, and Biology

Jamia Millia Islamia University 
Type of course – B.Sc (vocational program)
Duration- 3 years
Eligibility- 10+2 with Physics, Chemistry, Biology, Mathematics with 50%

Punjab University in Chandigarh 
Type of course- BE
Duration- 4 years
Eligibility- Scores obtained in AIEEE, 10+2 with 60% in Mathematics, Physics, Biology, and Chemistry

Osmania University in Hyderabad 
Type of course – B.Tech
Duration- 4 years
Eligibility – 50% in Class XII examination with Mathematics, Physics, and Chemistry

Other educational institutes offering Biotechnology courses include-

  • Jadavpur University in West Bengal
  • University of Calcutta in West Bengal
  • Banaras Hindu University in Uttar Pradesh
  • University of Roorkee in Uttarakhand
  • Indian Institute of Technology Mumbai
  • Indian Institute of Technology Delhi
  • Indian Institute of Technology Madras
  • University of Hyderabad in Andhra Pradesh
  • Birla Institute of Technology and Science in Pilani

The All India Biotechnology Entrance Examination is one of the popular admission tests for admission into Biotechnology study programs into different institutes. This test is conducted by Jawaharlal Nehru University.

Cost of the Study Programs in Biotechnology 

The cost involved in enrolling for a Biotechnology course in India can range between 20,000 rupees and 2,000,00 rupees. It also depends on the institute in which you are taking admission and also on the type of study program you are enrolling for (B.Tech, B.Sc, B.E, or M.Tech, Dual Degree programs)

Scholarships and Financial Aid 

Many Biotechnology institutes in India offer financial aid to deserving candidates in form of scholarships. Alternatively, National as well as Private Banks offer education loans to students. Names of few banks include State Bank of India, Bank of Baroda, Andhra Bank, and HDFC Bank.

Career Prospects in Biotechnology 

Students can apply for a job in the following fields-

  • Lab Technician
  • Research Scientist
  • Research Associate
  • Marketing personnel
  • Business Development Officer
  • Sales Representative
  • Biotech Engineer
  • Biotechnologists

Areas in which Biotechnology can be Applied 

Given below are few areas where the knowledge of Biotechnology can be applied. They are -

  • Marine Biotechnology
  • Medical Nanotechnology
  • Neurosciences
  • Agriculture Biotechnology
  • Industrial Biotechnology
  • Food Processing
  • Bio Processing Industries
  • Chemicals
  • Pharmaceutical and Drug Industry
  • Environment Control
  • Energy
  • Waste Management
  • Public Funded Laboratories

Remuneration Package 

Depending on the qualification and years of experience, a biotechnologist can earn a salary package between 70,000 rupees and 85,000 rupees. A beginner can earn anything between 50,000 rupees and 70,000 rupees per year. Research professionals can earn 60,000 rupees in the early years.