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Online Master of Science in Biotechnology: Biosecurity/Biodefense

Biotechnology: Biosecurity & Biodefense
Master's Concentration
  • 36 credits
  • Transfer up to 12 credits
  • All courses available online
  • Select hybrid courses available
  • Program restrictions apply
  • $534 per credit (in-state)
  • $659 per credit (out-of-state)
  • $336 per credit (military)
  • Other fees may apply
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Advance your career with an online master’s degree in biotechnology with a concentration in biosecurity and biodefense from University of Maryland Global Campus. Network with classmates and learn from leading faculty as you prepare for fundamental roles in a wide range of organizations. With online courses built for the working professional, UMGC also offers scholarships for eligible students, an interest-free monthly payment plan, and no-cost digital materials in place of most textbooks to help make your education as affordable as possible.

Earn a Respected Biotechnology Degree with a Focus in Biosecurity & Biodefense

Designed with input from employers, industry leaders, and faculty, this 36-credit program focuses on the study of the microbiology and epidemiology of biological agents, an examination of global countermeasures, a deep dive into response and recovery strategies, and an emphasis on the essential policies related to biosecurity and biodefense. This advanced degree is built for individuals looking to further their careers in these critical fields, and ultimately may help provide you with cutting-edge skills in threat detection, risk analysis, disaster preparedness, and emergency management.

By enrolling in this online program, you can take advantage of the following benefits:

  • Study in a program has received a special designation as a Professional Science Master’s degree program through the Council of Graduate Schools.
  • Work your way through a curriculum that features 15 credits of core coursework and 18 credits of concentration coursework delving deeper into biosecurity and biodefense
  • Apply what you learn in a collaborative capstone course that provides an in-depth exploration of the biosecurity and biodefense fields via a real-world case study.

See Courses & Program Info

View a complete list of courses, general and program-specific requirements, and admission requirements for this concentration.

Strengthen Your Skills in Biosecurity & Biodefense

The rapidly evolving biotech landscape needs professionals with diverse, adaptable skills capable of addressing today’s complex global challenges. This program is tailored to help you cultivate critical competencies in areas such as resilience planning and preparedness, disaster response and recovery, interagency cooperation, and more. UMGC program directors continually refine the curriculum, with a focus on helping students achieve these learning goals:

Pursue Highly Valued STEM Skills

Professional Science Master's Program

Professional Science Master's Program logo

Professional Science Master's Program

This program has received a special designation as a  Professional Science Master’s Degree program through the Council of Graduate Schools.

"Professional Science Master’s (PSMs) are designed for students seeking a STEM graduate degree who understand the need for developing workplace skills valued by top employers. The PSM is a perfect fit for professionals because it allows you to pursue advanced training and excel in science or math without a PhD, while simultaneously developing highly-valued business skills."

Source: Professional Science Masters Website

Pursue a Career Protecting the Nation's Biosafety

The potential dangers of biowarfare and bioterrorism have created a  demand for professionals who can use state-of-the-art technology to detect, analyze, and respond to biological threats, both man-made and environmental in origin. Specialists in these fields span diverse professional environments in fields such as homeland security, agricultural biosecurity, biology, infectious disease, environmental science, and more. Possible job titles include biosecurity analyst, biodefense strategist, biological laboratory technician, and public health emergency coordinator. 

Economic Impact
The U.S. bioscience industry generated $2.9 trillion in economic impact in 2021.
Source: BIO | “The U.S. Bioscience Industry: Fostering Innovation and Driving America's Economy Forward” | 2022
Investment in Biotech
As of March 2022, President Biden has requested $88.2 billion over the next five years for investment in biosecurity efforts.
Source: Center for Global Security Research | “Current and Future Challenges to U.S. Biosecurity Strategy” | 2022
Critical Reform Initiatives
The U.S. Department of Defense outlined 12 critical biosecurity- and biodefense-related reform initiatives in its 2023 Biodefense Posture Review.
Source: U.S. Department of Defense | “2023 Biodefense Posture Review” | August 17, 2023

Practice Real-World Skills in Your Biotechnology Courses 

Throughout the curriculum, your instructors will assign coursework designed to help you build a critical knowledge base that you can apply immediately. In past courses, students have chosen to complete the following assignments: 

  • Develop a comprehensive response to a biological incident.  
  • Outline the ethical use of force in response to a biothreat.  
  • Evaluate available countermeasures for weapons of terrorism. 

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Current Program
Biotechnology: Biosecurity & Biodefense
Master's Concentration


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