BCH CHG

Biotechnology

Learn how living organisms grow and develop, and how we can use this knowledge to create manufacturing processes, chemical products and life-saving drugs. Did you know that proteins, yogurt and biodiesel are all biotechnology products? So are insulin and the chickenpox vaccine, both of which have saved or improved the lives of millions.

The Biotechnology program covers the fields of biology, chemistry, mathematics, engineering science and engineering design. Students in this program receive two degrees upon graduation: a BSc in Biochemistry and a BASc in Chemical Engineering.

To be admitted into this program, applicants must submit their application to the Faculty of Science.

Career opportunities

  • Process engineer
  • Biomedical engineer
  • Chemical engineer
  • Environmental engineer
  • Biochemist
  • Biotechnology engineer
  • Cell biologist
  • Patent-law specialist

Salary estimates (entry level)

  • $53,070 - $76,097 [1]

Job placement rates

  • Employment rate 2 years after graduation: 91.7% [2]
Graduate programs
  • Master of Engineering (MEng) in Chemical Engineering
  • Master of Engineering (MEng) in Environmental Engineering

  • Master of Applied Science (MASc) in:
    • Chemical Engineering
    • Chemical Engineering with Specialization in Science, Society and Policy
    • Environmental Engineering

  • Master of Science (MSc) in Biochemistry
    • with Specialization in Bioinformatics
    • with Specialization in Human Molecular Genetics
    • with Specialization in Pathology and Experimental Medicine

  • Doctorate (PhD) in:
    • Chemical Engineering
    • Environmental Engineering
    • Biochemistry
    • Biochemistry with Specialization in Human Molecular Genetics
    • Biochemistry with Specialization in Pathology and Experimental Medicine

Options

Options available with this program

  • Honours BSc in Biochemistry (biotechnology) and BASc in Chemical Engineering (biotechnology)
  • Honours BSc in Biochemistry (biotechnology) and BASc in Chemical Engineering (biotechnology), Biomedical Engineering Option. (This program is currently under revision. At this time, we are not accepting applications.)

Languages

  • This program is offered in English and in French.
    • All courses are offered in English.
    • French courses are available in first, second and third year.

A preview of your studies

Course examples

  • Molecular Biology
  • Topics in Biotechnology
  • Chemical Reaction Engineering
  • Human Genome Structure and Function
  • Biochemical Engineering
  • Plant Design Project

Consult and compare the course list of programs and options.

CO-OP (optional)

Examples of tasks at work

  • Design and implementation of design and monitoring software
  • Designing simple equipment
  • Energy and heat exchange problems
  • Fluid flow
  • General laboratory work
  • Heat and energy exchange reports
  • Pilot-project laboratory operations
  • Research projects

Salary (weekly)

  • Average: $660 [3]

Work term placement rates

  • 87.7% [4]

    More information

    Admissions at a glance

    Admission requirements

    Ontario

    General requirements

    A minimum combined average of 70% is required for all prerequisite courses in science and mathematics, except in Software Engineering, where a minimum of 70% is required for each prerequisite course.

    Students who do not have Calculus and Vectors 4U can take the replacement course at the University either the summer before or during their first term.

    Prerequisite courses

    Discipline Prerequisites and other requirements Admission average
    Biomedical Mechanical Engineering
    • English 4U or Français 4U
    • Advanced Functions 4U
    • Calculus and Vectors 4U
    • Biology 4U
    • Chemistry 4U
    • Physics 4U
    High 80s
    Biotechnology (Biochemistry and Chemical Engineering)
    • English 4U or Français 4U
    • Advanced Functions 4U
    • Calculus and Vectors 4U
    • Two of the following:
      • Biology 4U
      • Chemistry 4U
      • Physics 4U
      • Earth and Space Science 4U
    Mid 80s
    Chemical Engineering
    • English 4U or Français 4U
    • Advanced Functions 4U
    • Calculus and Vectors 4U
    • Chemistry 4U
    • Physics 4U
    Mid 80s
    Civil Engineering
    Mechanical Engineering
    Computer Science
    • English 4U or Français 4U
    • Advanced Functions 4U
    • Calculus and Vectors 4U
    Low 80s
    Computer Science and Mathematics
    Computer Engineering
    • English 4U or Français 4U
    • Advanced Functions 4U
    • Calculus and Vectors 4U
    • Chemistry 4U
    • Physics 4U
    Low 80s
    Electrical Engineering
    Physics and Electrical Engineering
    Software Engineering
    • English 4U or Français 4U
    • Advanced Functions 4U
    • Calculus and Vectors 4U
    • One of the following:
      • Biology 4U
      • Chemistry 4U
      • Computing 4U
      • Physics 4U
    Mid 80s
    Secondary V

    General requirements

    A minimum combined average of 84% is required for all prerequisite courses in science and mathematics.

    Students may be required to take up to two mathematics make-up courses at the University either the summer before or during their first year.

    Prerequisite courses

    Discipline Prerequisites and other requirements Admission average
    Biomedical Mechanical Engineering
    • English, Language Arts (Sec. V) or Français, langue d’enseignement (5e sec.)
    • Mathematics Technical and Scientific option or Science option (Sec. V)
    • Chemistry (Sec. V)
    • Physics (Sec. V)
    • Science and Technology (with or without option) (Sec. IV)
    84%
    Biotechnology (Biochemistry and Chemical Engineering)
    Physics and Electrical Engineering Mathematics
    Computer Science
    • English, Language Arts (Sec. V) or Français, langue d’enseignement (5e sec.)
    • Mathematics Technical and Scientific option or Science option (Sec. V)
    84%
    Computer Science and Mathematics
    Chemical Engineering
    • English, Language Arts (Sec. V) or Français, langue d’enseignement (5e sec.)
    • Mathematics Technical and Scientific option or Science option (Sec. V)
    • Chemistry (Sec. V)
    • Physics (Sec. V)
    84%
    Civil Engineering
    Computer Engineering
    Electrical Engineering
    Mechanical Engineering
    Software Engineering
    • English, Language Arts (Sec. V) or Français, langue d’enseignement (5e sec.)
    • Mathematics Technical and Scientific option or Science option (Sec. V)
    • One of the following:
      • Science and Technology (with or without option) (Sec. IV)
      • Chemistry (Sec. V)
      • Physics (Sec. V)
    84%

    These are minimum requirements only. They are subject to change. Admission is not guaranteed.

    See the full undergraduate admission requirements for more information.

    CEGEP

    General requirements

    A minimum combined average of 70% is required for all prerequisite courses in science and mathematics, except in Software Engineering, where a minimum of 70% is required for each prerequisite course.

    Students who are missing the mathematics prerequisite are required to take up to two replacement courses at the University the summer before or during their first year.

    Prerequisite courses

    Discipline Prerequisites and other requirements Admission average
    Computer Science
    • English (603) or Français (601)
    • Mathematics (201) Calculus I
    Low 70s
    Computer Science and Mathematics
    Computer Engineering
    • English (603) or Français (601)
    • Chemistry (202) General Chemistry or Organic Chemistry
    • Physics (203) Mechanics or Electricity and Magnetism
    • Mathematics (201) Calculus I
    Low 70s
    Electrical Engineering
    Physics and Electrical Engineering Mathematics
    Biotechnology (Biochemistry and Chemical Engineering)
    • English (603) or Français (601)
    • Mathematics (201) Calculus I
    • Two of the following:
      • Biology (101) General Biology I
      • Chemistry (202) General Chemistry of Organic Chemistry
      • Physics (203) Mechanics or Electricity and Magnetism
      • Mathematics (201) Algebra I
    Mid 70s
    Chemical Engineering
    • English (603) or Français (601)
    • Chemistry (202) General Chemistry or Organic Chemistry
    • Physics (203) Mechanics or Electricity and Magnetism
    • Mathematics (201) Calculus I
    Mid 70s
    Civil Engineering
    Mechanical Engineering
    Software Engineering
    • English (603) or Français (601)
    • Mathematics (201) Calculus I
    • One of the following:
      • Biology (101) General Biology I
      • Chemistry (202) General Chemistry of Organic Chemistry
      • Physics (203) Mechanics or Electricity and Magnetism
    Mid 70s
    Biomedical Mechanical Engineering
    • English (603) or Français (601)
    • Biology (101) General Biology
    • Chemistry (202) General Chemistry or Organic Chemistry
    • Physics (203) Mechanics or Electricity and Magnetism
    • Mathematics (201) Calculus I
    High 70s

    These are minimum requirements only. They are subject to change. Admission is not guaranteed.

    See the full undergraduate admission requirementsfor more information.

    Studying outside of Ontario or Quebec? Find your admission requirements.

    Admission averages vary between English and French programs. See the French page for the French program requirements.

    Contact us

    Do you have questions about this program?

    Julie Cormier-Doiron
    Liaison and Communications Officer
    Tel: 613-562-5800 ext. 6096
    genie.engineering@uOttawa.ca

    Jules Thibault
    Professor and Associate Chair Undergraduate Studies - Chemical and Biological Engineering
    Tel: 613-562-5800 ext. 6094
    jules.thibault@uOttawa.ca

    Undergraduate programs

    Not sure which program you should choose? You can always change your mind! As long as you meet the criteria, you can switch to another program even after starting your studies.

    References:

    1. jobbank.gc.ca: entry-level estimate calculated by compiling salary data by discipline (from low to average) in Canada to reflect industry earning.

    2. OSAP Ontario University Graduate Survey 2015-2016.

    3. coop.uottawa.ca: average of the program specific work terms average salaries. Salary average typically increase by work term. Calculated September 2017.

    4. CO-OP uOttawa: 2017.

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