How to Become a Genetic Engineer?

6 minute read
Genetic Engineer

The science of heredity aims to delve deeper into the concepts of genetics which we always have ponder over how the same characteristics are forwarded from one generation to another. Scientists and researchers in this field aim to explore how genes in living organisms are facilitated and their complex working of the same. Many studies have even found diverse ways to genetically improve and enhance the characteristics of plants and animals through genetic engineering. Soon, it may be possible that we might be able to alter the genetics mechanism of humans as well. Do you find yourself intrigued by this specialised field of study? If yes, then opting for a career in Genetic Engineering might be the right choice for you. Through this blog, we are bringing you an exclusive guide on the academic and professional qualifications you need to follow the career path of a genetic engineer.

Graduate, postgraduate, and doctoral students can take genetic engineering courses. Although genetic engineering is a relatively young subject of study, thanks to recent developments in biotechnology and scientists’ interest in this area, genetic engineering courses are now offered at almost all major science universities. The human genome and agricultural issues are just two of the many issues covered in the B.Sc. in Genetics or B.Tech. in Genetic Engineering degree. In B.Tech. Biotechnology degrees, a number of institutes also offer Genetic Engineering as an elective course of study.

Step 1: Grab a Bachelor’s degree

The foremost step you need to take is to get a bachelor’s degree in Genetics or related fields like BTech, BSc (Bachelor of Science) or some other variant in related fields. Bachelor’s level programs can equip you with the traditional knowledge of the domain. However, to study abroad in any of the leading courses in Genetic Engineering, you need to fulfil certain eligibility criteria such as

  • Usual formal schooling of 10+2 with BiPC subjects
  • A good score in language proficiency tests like IELTS, TOEFL etc
  • Lucrative LORs (Letter of Recommendation) and SOP (Statement of Purpose)

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List of Courses in Genetic Engineering

Once you align with the above-mentioned requirements, you can easily get admission in the prominent programs of abroad. There are a wide range of Genetic Engineering Courses and specialised programs in this through which you will easily gain essential insight into this field of study. Here is a list of prominent undergraduate programs you can choose from to take a step closer towards becoming a genetic engineer. 

Mathematics 1Mathematics 2
EnglishMaterial Science
PhysicsPrinciples of Environmental Science
Basic Engineering 1Basic Engineering 2
Cell Biology
Value Education
Enzyme TechnologyBasic Molecular Techniques
Genetics & CytogeneticsMolecular Biology
ImmunologyStoichiometry and Engineering Thermodynamics
MicrobiologyBio-press Principles
Mechanical Operations & heat TransferBiostatistics
German Language Phase 1/French Language Phase 1/Japanese Language Phase 1German Language Phase 2/Japanese Language Phase 2/French Language Phase 2
Computer Skills
Advanced Molecular TechniquesRecombinant DNA Technology
Functional Genomics and Microarray TechnologyBioinformatics
Momentum TransferChemical Reaction Engineering
Bioprocess EngineeringGene Therapy
BiophysicsBiosensors and Biochips
Plant Tissue Culture and Transgenic Technology
Personality Development
Bio-separation TechnologyProject Work
Animal Cell Culture and Transgenic TechnologyBio-Safety, Bio-ethics, IPR & Patients
Nano-biotechnology in Healthcare
Stem Cell Biology

Related Read: Career in Regenerative Medicine & Stem Cell Therapy

Top Universities

To capture the immense scope of genetic engineering, you must strive to attain international exposure by opting for a renowned university abroad that can equip with the necessary research opportunities. Here is a list of Genetic Engineering Colleges where you can study the above-mentioned courses: 

Step 2: Get Work Experience 

Once you secure a bachelor’s degree, it is time to get your knowledge furnished through some practical industry experience. You can easily find an internship in the research domain through which you can get an overview of the roles and responsibilities you can expect to have. Also, a majority of Entry-level jobs are also available wherein you can utilize your freshly acquired skills into full-time practice. Gaining practical experience is an important step to overcome in your journey of becoming a genetic engineer, as it helps you discover the latest trends in the technology and gain the exposure required for pursuing a masters degree. You can work as a research associate with a scholar or explore entry-level opportunities in research organisations or institutes and aim towards gaining at least a year of work experience as universities generally ask for prior experience to screen candidates for master’s degree programs in genetic engineering.

Step 3: Earn A Master’s Degree

To become a genetic engineer, having just a bachelor’s degree won’t be enough to explore career prospects. A multitude of postgraduate courses like MTech in Genetics or MSc Genetics are available, entering which you can earn a specialisation in this domain. Generally, the master’s program of 1-2 years of duration can equip you with the necessary knowledge and research exposure in your chosen specialisation of genetic engineering. As a part of the entry requirements for these courses, aspirants need to have an undergraduate degree with a minimum of 1-2 years of work experience in the relevant field. Following are some of the postgraduate courses:

MSc (Research)-
Molecular Genetics  
MSc (MedSci) Medical
Genetics and Genomics 
MS in Molecular and
Cellular Biology 
MSc Genetics MSc Clinical Genetics PG Diploma in
Genetics Genomics 
MS  in Human Genetics  Master of Genetic Counselling MS in Medical Genetics 

Step 4: Explore Career Opportunities & Opt for a Doctorate Degree 

At the completion of your master’s degree, you can opt for job opportunities in both the public and private sector. Some of the key employment areas for genetic engineers are Biotech and Pharma companies while the research organisations and institutes also offer lucrative prospects. If you are curious towards making your research contribution in this field, opting for a higher level degree like PhD is also a great option.

However, to work or practice as a full-time genetic engineer it is not mandatory to have a PhD degree but if you are interested in academia or want to delve deep into the core of research, a doctorate degree can solve your purpose in the best way. Through a PhD program, you can delve deeper into a particular concept pr topic of genetic engineering thus paving a career in research. As a part of your program, you would have to submit your own thesis which would be the final and concluding step in your academic quest to become a genetic engineer. 

Job Prospects

The following job profiles are open to applicants who want to work as genetic engineers in the engineering field:

Genetic EngineerThey design, create, and evaluate biological and health systems and products, such as artificial organs, prostheses, instruments, medical information systems, and health care and management, using their knowledge of engineering, biology, and biomechanical principles.
Lecturer/ProfessorThey instruct students at the undergraduate and graduate levels in subjects that have been assigned to them and periodically reviewed by the department head.
Research ScientistThey instruct students at the undergraduate and graduate levels in subjects that have been assigned to them and periodically reviewed by the department head.
Scientific/Medical WriterThe planning, preparation, and organisation of scientific publications. The clinical/statistical report writing, study protocol writing, editing, and data summary responsibilities fall under the purview of the medical writer.


The finest university for genetic engineering?

Some of the institutions that offer genetic engineering are A. SRM University in Chennai, Tamil Nadu; Bharath University in Chennai; Aryabhatta Knowledge University in Patna, Bihar; and Jawaharlal Nehru Centre for Advanced Scientific Research in Bangalore.

Is a profession in genetic engineering worthwhile?

Becoming a genetic engineer is a wonderful professional choice. Both the public and private sectors are open to employment for genetic engineers. Both public and private organisations need graduates in genetic engineering. Genetic engineering has a bright future because to India’s growing biotech industry.

Which country is best for genetic engineering?

Switzerland, the USA, England, and Scotland are the few countries best for genetic engineering.

Hope this blog familiarised you with the academic and professional endeavours you need to become a genetic engineer. If you have planning to pursue a degree in Genetic Engineer, our Leverage Edu experts are here to assist you in shortlisting the best and most suitable course and university combination as well as helping you sort out the admission process and ensuring that you get successfully shortlisted.

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