In addition, we offer a combined BS/MS program which can be completed in a total of five years. Students in the BS program can request admission to the BS/MS program in their second year or later.
For those who wish more laboratory experience, we also offer a Molecular Genetics Option with less computer science and more molecular genetics experience.
In order to provide the best education possible for our students, we have created a number of courses specifically for our Bioinformatics programs. These courses are in unique to our program and are designed to integrate the biotechnology, computer and information sciences and mathematics skills necessary become successful in the field of bioinformatics.
Students in this course study the theory behind foundational and more modern bioinformatics algorithms such as phylogenetics, genomic sequence assembly, nucleic acid secondary structure, and basic gene finding. Additionally, students implement key algorithms in the laboratory portion of the course.
Ethics in Bioinformatics
The objectives of this course are to expose students to the ethical issues associated with bioinformatics research and the application of bioinformatics to product development and commercialization. This course will be presented in a seminar format in order to engender and facilitate discussion, among faculty and students, of the issues presented.
Molecular Modeling and Proteomics
The course will explore two facets of protein molecules: their structure and their expression. The structure component will build upon information from the Bioinformatics course and will add further sophistication with analysis of inter-molecular interactions and ligand/receptor pairing. Software that permits molecular docking experiments will be employed. Tissue-specific protein expression will be addressed in lectures with description of micro-array technology and, in the laboratory, with two-dimensional protein gel electrophoresis. Provide an advanced course in modeling of DNA and protein structures, and their interactions. Enable students to computationally construct small ligands for biologically important molecules. Also, introduce the students to the newly emerging field of proteomes: study of expressed gene products.
Statistical Models for Bioinformatics
An introduction to the probabilistic models and statistical techniques used in computational molecular biology. Probabilistic and/or statistical techniques will be presented which are needed for the understanding of pairwise and multiple sequence alignment methods, gene and protein classification methods, and phylogenetic tree construction.
Advice for applicants...
Individuals with baccalaureate degrees in Biology, Biotechnology, Biochemistry, Chemistry, Computer Science, Information Technology, Statistics or related disciplines are invited to apply. Admission decisions will be based on a composite of prerequisites including an undergraduate grade point average of 3.2 or better, with an average of 3.4 in the field of study and 3 letters of recommendation.
Prerequisite courses include the following. They may be taken at RIT as part of a bridge program or may be completed at any accredited college or university within the US.
Computer Science - One year of introductory computer science.
Biology - One year of introductory biology.
Data Analysis - One semester of an introductory statistics course.
Chemistry - Introductory general and organic chemistry, plus one semester of biochemistry.
Additionally, we recommend that students take the following course work before admission.
Databases - One semester of introductory database course work, including SQL.
Discrete Math - One semester of discrete math.