Master's Thesis in Molecular Biology

Postgraduate course

Course description

Objectives and Content

The master's degree in molecular biology will give the student training in independent experimental work within a specialized area. It is also possible to be assigned a task where bioinformatics or chemical methods are central. Through academic deepening, the student's ability to think critically and scientifically will be developed.

The assignment project must be chosen from a collection of assignments that are made available to all students. The program board and supervisors must ensure that a collection of defined assignment projects exists at all times.

The assignment projects in this collection must be pre-approved by the course responsible for MOL399 (Master's project in molecular biology). This means that the assignment must i) be well-grounded in molecular biology as a field (both theoretically and with regard to the experimental work), ii) be able to be completed in the stipulated time, iii) provide the opportunity for independent and personal development under supervision, iv) not be characterized by routine experimental work, and v) preferably consisting of a selection of different techniques that are in common use in molecular biology.

The assignment project can also be designed in a dialogue between supervisor and student. However, this project must also be approved by the course responsible for MOL399, and made available in the assignment collection in the same way as all other projects.

Learning Outcomes


The student

  •  demonstrates a solid understanding of molecular biology and specialized knowledge with respect to his/her master project



The student

  • is able to plan and conduct experimental work under supervision and in accordance with general safety routines for laboratory work and ethical guidelines for research
  • is able to communicate both orally and in writing results obtained from both own research and other research groups
  • is able to critically evaluate experimental results (from own research and from other research groups)


General competance:

The student

  • demonstrates critcal assessment of scientific literature and scientific thinking
  • can reflect on ethical issues raised by molecular research

Level of Study


Semester of Instruction

Autumn and spring.

Place of Instruction

Required Previous Knowledge
Admitted to the master's program in molecular biology.
Access to the Course
In order to be admitted to the course, you must be admitted to the Master's Programme in Molecular Biology at the Faculty of Mathematics and Natural Sciences.
Forms of Assessment

After the master's thesis has been submitted and approved, the degree work ends with an oral master's degree exam. This exam consists of a public presentation of around 30 minutes in which the student gives an overview of the thesis subject. This is followed by an oral examination/conversation. Before the presentation, a grade must be assigned to the thesis. The presentation, together with the subsequent oral examination/conversation, can be used to adjust the final grade of the thesis. It is the final grade that is made known to the student and which appears on the transcript.

Deadline: Assignments of 60 credits must be submitted no later than one month before the end of the 4th semester.

Grading Scale
The grading scale used is A to F. Grade A is the highest passing grade in the grading scale, grade F is a fail.
Assessment Semester
There is an exam every semester
Course Evaluation
The students must evaluate the teaching in line with UiB and the department's quality assurance system.
Examination Support Material
The degree being assessed, personal notes (including lab notes), and the presentation that is part of the assessment of the degree, are permitted aids.
Programme Committee
The Programme Board is responsible for the content, structure and quality of the course.
Course Coordinator
Øyvind Halskau,, Department of Biological Sciences, University of Bergen, Norway
Course Administrator
The Faculty of Mathematics and Natural Sciences by the Department of Biological Sciences has the administrative responsibility for the course.