Career in Computational Biology

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Computational Biology

Biology as a field of study deals with varied medical issues such as understanding the treatment for diseases and cellular functions as well as the anatomy of the human body. Similarly, to bioinformatics and clinical data management, Computational Biology is concerned with solving complex biological and biomedical problems through mathematical and computational methods. If you have always been interested in Biology, Mathematics and Computer Science subjects, then you must consider this specialised domain which amalgamates these three together. Through this blog, we will take a look at what computational biology is, the courses offered, top universities as well as career scope you can avail. 

What is Computational Biology

Computational Biology is a process of application and development of theoretical approaches as well as mathematical methods, computational modelling techniques and data analytics to study biological, behavioural, social and ecological systems. These days, under biological research projects, technological advancements have led to an emphasis on the role of computation. Pursuing a course in this field, you will be equipped with the basic fundamentals of Biology along with its multitude of specialisations including Biotechnology, programming languages, modelling approaches amongst others.

Major Subjects of Computational Biology

Given below is a list of some of the subjects which you can expect to study in a Computational Biology course:

  • Cell and Molecular Biology
  • Biochemistry
  • Communication Skills in Science and Technology
  • Analytical Methods in Biotechnology
  • General Biology
  • Programming Language
  • Algorithms
  • Sequence Analysis
  • Database Management System
  • Molecular Evolution
  • Bioinformatics
  • Biodiversity and IPR
  • Immunology and Pharmacology
  • Data Mining and Machine Learning
  • Genomics and Proteonomics
  • Molecular Modelling and Molecular Dynamics

Eligibility Criteria for Computational Biology

An undergraduate, postgraduate or doctorate in biomedicine, mathematics, computer science or related disciplines is a prerequisite for a career as a computational biologist. Most employers also require you to have three to five years of industry experience. To become eligible for this time-intensive course, aspirants must meet the following educational qualifications and documentation requirements: 

Educational Qualifications

  • For the undergraduate level, students must have passed their 10+2 examination or equivalent with biomedical sciences as one of the core subjects from a recognized board of examination. Other subjects include mathematics, statistics, computer science. 
  • For the postgraduate level, students must have a bachelor’s degree in biomedical sciences or equivalent. They must have mathematics and computer science subjects compulsory in bachelor course. 
  • For a doctorate level, candidates must have masters or 4-year bachelors degree in a branch of science, mathematics and engineering. 

Documents Required

Apart from being eligible for computational biology, here is the list of documents you will need for application of architecture courses:

How to Apply

Step 1: Find a suitable university

Select the computational biology program and pick up a suitable university that offers the same. Check placement records, tuition fee break up, course curriculum and work permit norms before applying. If you are facing issues in gathering this data, get in touch with Leverage Edu experts at 1800 57 2000 and get your doubts resolved. 

Step 2: Collect scores of proficiency exams

Exams like IELTS or TOEFL are mandatory to apply for a computational biology program. Register for Leverage Live and start your preparation today! Check that you meet the entry requirements.

Step 3: Gather other documents

LOR, SOP, essays, updated resumes and official transcripts of previous academic degrees are necessary documents required. Go through these requirements and start working on them. 

Step 4: Submit your application 

Once you have gathered all the required documents and scores of proficiency exams, you are ready to fill the application form. Make sure you enter all the personal and professional information correctly. Also, check the deadlines and plan your time to submit the application. 

Step 5: Wait for the offer letter 

Universities take a few weeks to evaluate the application. As soon as you get the offer letter, apply for Visa and start pacing for your study abroad journey!

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Required Skills in Computational Biology

An academic program in Computational Biology trains students to use techniques of mathematical modelling in order to put biological problems in a quantitative form. In order to pursue a career in this field, here is a list of pivotal skills you will need: 

  • Familiarisation with programming languages and software like Python, R, Galaxy Bash, Java, C, C++, etc.
  • Ability to handle Bioinformatics Tools like Bio-edit, Blast, Clustalw, T-coffee sequence analysis algorithms, BLAT.
  • Understanding of Data Mining techniques in order to solve biological problems.
  • Knowledge of different sub-fields in Life Sciences, that includes Molecular biology and Genetic biology.

Courses in Computational Biology

Courses in this field are gaining colossal popularity as the domain of medical science is rapidly adapting to technological advancements in every field. Tabulated below is the list of top courses that you might consider in this field:

Undergraduate Courses

  • BA/ Bachelor of Science in Computational Biology
  • BS Major in Computational Science and Biomedical Science
  • BSc in Bioinformatics and Computational Biology- Biological Sciences Concentration
  • BSc in Computational Science and Zoology
  • BSc in Engineering- Biomedical Computation

Postgraduate Courses

  • MSc in Computational Biology and Quantitative Genetics
  • Master of Science in Computational Biology
  • MSc in Bioinformatics and Computational Biology
  • Graduate Pathway in Bioinformatic and Computational Biology
  • PhD in Computational Biology/Computational Infection Biology

Top Universities for Computational Biology

There are numerous educational institutions across the world that provide a plethora of programs in Computational Biology and its allied fields. Here is a list of some of the leading universities that you must consider:

Top Books For Computational Biology 

Computational Biology books can be used for both academic and competitive exams. We will take a look at the list of books you must consider while studying computational biology courses or while preparing for competitive exams:

Handbook of Hidden Markov Models in Bioinformatics by Martin Gollery Buy Here
Computational Biology: A Hypertext Book by Scott T. Kelley Buy Here
Bioinformatics: A Practical Approach by Shui Qing Ye  Buy Here
An Introduction to System Biology by Uri Alon Buy Here

Top 10 Colleges for Computational Biology in India

The course is gaining immense popularity due to the technological advancements in every field. Due to which the need for trained professionals in the field has shot up in India. To cater to the high demand, we have listed down the colleges of computational biology in India: 

  • Indraprastha Institute of Information Technology, Delhi
  • IBAB, Bangalore
  • Pondicherry University, Puducherry 
  • Stella Maris College, Chennai
  • Amity Institute of Biotechnology, Noida
  • University School of Biotechnology, Dwarka, New Delhi
  • University of Hyderabad
  • Sree Balaji Medical College and Hospital
  • Garden City University, Banglore 
  • Indian Institute of Science, Banglore
  • Central University of Punjab

Job Profiles & Salary

Computational Biologists can discover job opportunities in numerous sectors such as Pharmaceuticals, Research and Development, Agriculture, etc. Those aspiring for higher studies, can opt for a PhD and Master’s in Computational Biology and explore the research domain. After completion of an undergraduate or postgraduate program in Computational Biology, given below are the major jobs you can choose from: 

Job Profile Average Salary Range(In USD)
Computer and Information Research Scientist 87,000 – 155,000 (INR 64 lakhs – 1.14 cr)
Computational Biochemist 48,000 – 60,000 (INR 35 lakhs – 44 lakhs)
Senior Research Assistant/Associate (Biology) 71,000 – 91,000 (INR 52 lakhs – 67 lakhs)
Biology Content Developer 57,000 – 69,000 (INR 42 lakhs – 50 lakhs)
Biomedical Technician 63,000 – 1,30,000 (INR 46 lakhs – 95 lakhs)
Molecular Biologist 41,000 – 84,000 (INR 30 lakhs – 61 lakhs)

Project on Computational Biology 

Credits: Slideshare

Hence, we hope that this blog has familiarised you with the key essentials of building a career in Computational Biology. If you are planning to pursue a degree in this specialised field but don’t know where to begin, take the help of Leverage Edu’s AI-based tool to browse through an array of programs and institutions and find a suitable combination that aligns with your interests and preferences.

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