Master in Computational Biology

General Objectives of the Course

The present proposal seeks to address the specific academic training needs required of students who wish to enter the field of Computational Biology as qualified professionals. This program of second cycle studies aims to provide students with a comprehensive and integrated view of the scientific, technological, technical and ethical topics associated with Computational Biology.
After completion of the degree the student should (i) have a good knowledge of fundamental biology, (ii) be familiar with the main sources of biological and biomolecular data, (iii) master the main programming languages and analysis tools used in Computational Biology, and (iv) demonstrate solid aptitudes for modeling biological and biomolecular systems and for the analysis of biological and biomolecular data, in a context of fundamental research as well as of biomedical and biotechnological application.

Admission Requirements

First cycle in Biology, Biochemistry, Cellular and Molecular Biology, Chemistry, Medical Chemistry, Mathematics, Applied Mathematics, Physics, Physical Engineering, Technological Physics, Applied Physics, Biomedical Engineering, Pharmaceutical Sciences, Computer Science, Informatics Engineering, Electrotechnical and Computational Engineering or in similar fields, or pre­Bologna degree in one of these areas, or to hold a teaching, scientific or professional curriculum that the Program Coordination recognizes as sufficient to attest the ability to complete this cycle of studies.

Candidates should check the admission requirements available on this site, in addition to the information provided here.

Professional Goals

The main professional goals are research and services in business or academic environment in the areas of biotechnology and biomedicine. At the national level, and in particular in the Coimbra-Cantanhede axis, there are already several companies (eg. Coimbra Genomics, BSIM Therapeutics, Ophiomics, SilicoLife) and services (eg., Genoinseq) that have computational biology as the central axis of their activity. In addition, computational biology has a central and growing importance in personalized medicine and in advanced clinical diagnosis, which motivate a growing demand for professionals with this training in the health sector. Computational biology is also gaining increasing importance in biomedicine and biotechnology research that is carried out in national and local research centers. The current shortage of human resources in the field of computational biology is already recognized as a critical limitation to the development of these companies and institutions.
Examples of activities in the above companies and institutions that require computational biologists include (i) the modeling of biochemical and physiological processes at the service of discovery of new therapies, (ii) molecular modeling at the service of drug development, (iii) genomic, metabolomic and proteomic data at the service of clinical diagnosis and profiling / adaptation of organisms for biotechnology purposes; (iv) analysis of microscopy images and medical imaging.

Mode of Study

Daytime / Full-time / Face-to-face

Teaching / Evaluation language(s)

Portuguese and/or English

Examination Regulations, Assessment and Grading

The evaluation and classification rules are those of the Pedagogical Regulation of the University of Coimbra, Regulation 321/2013, of August 23.

Learning Objectives and Intended Skills

The training objectives of this Master's Degree include the acquisition of a robust scientific and technical knowledge and strong competences in topics associated to the application of the principles, methods and techniques of Computational Biology to areas of biological research, biomedicine and biotechnology. In particular, after this master the student will be able to use and develop computational tools in the study of large samples of biological data (e.g. genomic or proteomic data), to use computational tools for modelling structural biology systems capable to suport new drug development and the research of biomolecule dynamics, to develop new computational and mathematical models capable of simulating biological systems and the development of pathologies both at intracelular and tissue levels, and to know the current stae-of-the-art of Computational Biology. These skills will allow the student to support the scientific and technological development in the context of biology and/or biotechnology both in academic and business environments. This master's degree also aims at developing skills of an instrumental (gathering information from various sources, capacity for analysis and synthesis, problem solving, decision-making), interpersonal (ability to communicate orally and in writing in a strongly multidisciplinary environment, respect for diversity, high sense of professional ethics, ability to work in a group, critical thinking) and systemic nature (adaptation to new situations, autonomy and responsibility, initiative, selfawareness of limitations and abilities) in the field of computational biology.

Course Coordinator(s)

Irina de Sousa Moreira

Recognition of Prior Learning

It is foreseen to recognize the previous training of candidates, as well as their professional experience, according to UC’s own Regulation on Previous Training and Professional Experience Creditation.

Qualification Requirements and Regulations

The relevant legislation for the attribution of a Master Degree is DL 74/2006, of March 24, with subsequent amendments, Portaria 782/2009, of July 23

Graduation Requirements

To obtain the Master's degree in Computational Biology (MBC) it is necessary to complete 120 ECTS, including a original dissertation, which results from research work.

Access to Further Studies

The Master in Computational Biology gives access to 3rd Cycle (PhD Programs) in related áreas, including PhD programs in Biology, Cellular and Molecular Biology, Biochemistry, Computer Sciences, Applied Mathematics, Chemistry and Physics.

Study Programme

Computational Biology

Academic year

Course Type
2nd Cycle Studies - Advanced Specialisation Master Programme

DGES Code: MB20

Qualification Awarded: Mestre

Duration: 4 Semester(s)

ECTS Credits: 120.0

Category: Advanced specialization second cycle


Call for Applications


1st Semester
Start date: 21-09-2020
End date: 18-12-2020
2nd Semester
Start date: 08-02-2021
End date: 21-05-2021


Agência de Avaliação e Acreditação do Ensino Superior
2020-07-31 a 2026-07-30
Direcção Geral de Ensino Superior