Online course

Clinical Bioinformatics

  • Qualification: PGCert, CPD
  • Duration: 3 - 24 months, depending on the qualification level
  • Delivery: All taught units are delivered online
  • Workload: Approx 15 hours per week
  • Next enrolment: CPD - Nov 2021, PGCert - May 2022
  • Fees: PGCert - £5,000, CPD - £1,250 per unit
Genome

Introduction

Bioinformaticians are needed now more than ever

Bioinformatics provides an important bridge between cutting edge science and the delivery of genomic medicine in clinical practice.

Gain the necessary skills to produce high-quality bioinformatic workflows to analyse and interpret clinical genomic data, in addition to a critical understanding of data generation with our fully online, part-time Postgraduate Certificate.

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Key features

Guaranteed quality

Taught by a team that has successfully delivered the Clinical Bioinformatics Scientist Training Programme for the UK’s National Health Service.

Flexible learning

Study this course online and tailor your learning around your work and other commitments.

Real-world challenges

Includes real-world clinical case studies and will focus on providing the necessary bioinformatic skills to produce bioinformatics workflows to analyse clinical genomic data.

Real-life case studies provided by Manchester Centre for Genomic Medicine

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Benefits of the collaborative approach

  • Learn from a team that has been training clinical bioinformaticians for the NHS for years. 
  • The course includes real-world clinical cases. 
  • You'll learn skills to produce bioinformatics workflows to analyse clinical genomic data.

Key information

  • Delivery

    All units are delivered online so you can fit your studies around your work and other commitments.

  • Duration

    From 3 - 24 months, part-time.

  • Enrolment dates

    PGCert- May 2022, CPD Introduction to Clinical Bioinformatics-May 2022, CPD Introduction to Health Informatics-Sept 2022, CPD Introduction to Programming-Nov 2022, CPD Introduction to Next-Generation Sequencing-Feb 2023

  • Applications

    Due to a system upgrade, our online application form is currently unavailable. We will be launching a new application form in the week commencing 18 October, at which point we will start accepting applications for 2022 entry. If you would like us to email you when the new application form is launched, please submit your details here

  • Workload

    Approx 15 hours per week.

  • Course director

    Dr Angela Davies

Fees and funding

For entry in the academic year beginning May 2022, the tuition fees for the 1 year or the 2 year Postgraduate Certificate are £5,000.

Each unit is available individually as a CPD option lasting 3 months. The fee for each unit is £1,250.

During your induction with your dedicated Student Support Advisor you will arrange your payments. You can find further information about paying your fees  here

Entry requirements

We require an honours degree (minimum Upper Second) or overseas equivalent :

  • biological
  • medical
  • physical
  • computing sciences subject

We may also consider exceptional applicants with a Lower Second if you have research experience or equivalent professional experience.

Click here to see a full list of required admissions documentation.

Find out more

Contact us today

Complete the form below and our Course Advisor will contact you with the additional course information and relevant event invitations.

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Course overview

Who this course is for

This course is suitable for a range of healthcare professionals including bioscientists, clinicians, computer scientists, informaticians, clinical scientists.

This course is designed to develop your knowledge in this new field and enhance your career.

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Genomics in 2021

What you will learn

  • Understand the theory and practice of clinical bioinformatics.
  • Develop a critical understanding of how data is generated by clinical genomic laboratories.
  • Use this information and how it can be logically and systematically employed to deliver effective clinical management of genetic conditions.
  • Contribute to innovation, change and service developments in clinical science at both the laboratory and institutional levels.

Where and when you will study

Our PGCert in Clinical Bioinformatics is a fully online part-time course, with content delivered online using web-enabled technology systems. This allows for a truly flexible study experience so you can study in your own time when it is convenient for you. You will be supported through regular contact with your tutor as well as access to a wealth of resources including Jupyter to support your Python programming unit.

"Manchester is the first university worldwide to offer a fully online course in clinical bioinformatics. We've been training clinical bioinformaticians for the UK National Health Service since 2013, during that time we’ve seen huge changes in clinical genomics including: rapid changes in sequencing technologies, permitting clinical whole genome sequencing; the integration of resources such as gnomAD and Decipher for variant interpretation; and the concurrent professionalisation of clinical bioinformaticians. The rapid updates to workflows and associated rigour and quality assurance to integrate these changes means that clinical bioinformaticians are needed now more than ever to ensure the best possible outcomes and increased diagnoses for patients.”

Dr Angela Davies, Course Director

How it will benefit your career

Successful graduates of this course will gain the skills and knowledge to pursue and develop a career or hone a specialism in clinical bioinformatics.

Make a real difference in understanding disease processes and improving healthcare. This course provides a starting point for a career in this rapidly expanding area of healthcare.

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Hear from Dr. Constantinos Savvat
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Clinical Bioinformatics

Course units

  • Unit 1 - Introduction to Clinical Bioinformatics

    • Provide background knowledge of human genomics with particular emphasis to the clinical setting
    • Application of next generation sequencing technologies in the clinic
    • Introduction of basic next generation sequencing and how resulting genomic data is analysed
  • Unit 2 - Introduction to Health Informatics (15 credits)

    • Health informatics and the influence on the delivery of healthcare
    • The electronic patient record and the importance of coding healthcare delivery consultations
    • The human and organisational factors that are considered when introducing informatics solutions
  • Unit 3 - Introduction to Programming (15 credits)

    • Introduction to programming
    • Safe and effective software development practice
    • Develop practical programming skills
  • Unit 4 - Introduction to Next-Generation Sequencing (15 credits)

    • Extend your knowledge of the wide range of bioinformatics pipelines, tools and resources
    • How these tools are used by clinical bioinformaticians to support patient-centred care, diagnosis and treatment
    • Look at the ethical and confidentiality issues that arise with such sensitive data

Course structure

The course is delivered online and is designed to enable you to work and study simultaneously. You will receive a high level of support from the programme team and will have the opportunity to benefit from peer support by establishing a professional network with fellow students. 

Course learning aims

The course will give you:
  • knowledge and understanding of the theory and practice of clinical bioinformatics;
  • a critical understanding of how data generated by clinical genomic laboratories is used to develop a clinical diagnosis, and how this information can be logically and systematically employed to deliver effective clinical management of genetic conditions;
  • contribute to innovation, change and service developments in clinical science at both the laboratory and institutional levels by giving you a systematic and critical understanding of relevant knowledge, theoretical frameworks and advanced skills;
  • enhanced career-long development to support and enhance best practice in clinical bioinformatics.

Teaching and learning

This course is delivered entirely via blended-learning, which is fully online, including assessment.

Each unit runs over 10 weeks, with a nominal 15 hours per week of student work. Each week consists of:

An overview of the material - presenting the learning objectives for the week.

Explanatory material (approximately 3 hours of student activity per week) in the form of video lectures, papers/articles, the course text, and links to further resources.

Exercises (approximately 4 hours per week). These are formative, with feedback for them given in the tutorial.

Discussion (approximately 2 hours per week). You are encouraged to discuss the exercises and material in the forums where tutors will facilitate peer learning, providing feedback/input where necessary.

Formative questionnaire This is to gather your questions and highlight misconceptions ready for the tutorial.

Tutorial You will video conference with your tutor in groups of 6-8 to discuss and give/receive feedback.

There is also private study of approximately 5 hours per week consisting of:

  • revision
  • coursework
  • further practice (after the tutorials)
  • independent/further study.

The times specified for study will vary greatly throughout the weeks, for example you may spend longer in week 9 preparing for your assessed pieces, however discussion and participation in group work is central to your development as a learner in this course and therefore we expect you to contribute to these aspects through the duration of each course unit.

Coursework and assessment

Assessment is undertaken as coursework, including contribution to discussion boards, short presentations and clinical reports.

Assessment will be tailored to the practical activity associated with each unit.

Admissions information

From your initial expression of interest right through to graduation, you’ll receive all the support you need. We can support you with enrolment and subject assistance, administrative logistics and fee options, online learning skills, workload management and special circumstances including a possible professional entry route.

Entry requirements

Academic entry qualification overview

We require an honours degree (minimum Upper Second) or overseas equivalent :

  • biological
  • medical
  • physical
  • computing sciences subject

with sufficient evidence of the relevant units taken. We may also consider exceptional applicants with a Lower Second if you have research experience or equivalent professional experience.

Please provide two satisfactory professional or academic references and a copy of your CV detailing your full work experience. You will also need to provide a personal statement (approx. 500 words) detailing why you're interested in studying on the course.

If you're applying for a CPD unit, you will still need at least one reference as well as a CV and supporting personal statement.

English language

International students must demonstrate English proficiency through a secure and approved testing system.

We ask for English language proof if you are from non-majority English speaking countries (a list of majority English speaking countries, as defined by the UK Home Office, can be found  here ).

Specifically, we require a minimum of:

  • IELTS - (Academic) minimum 6.5 overall with 6.0 in writing
  • TOEFL: 575 paper-based
  • TOEFL: 230 computer-based (with a minimum score in the Test of Written English of 6.0)
  • TOEFL: 90 internet-based (with a minimum score of 22 in each component)
See further information about requirements for your country .
English language test validity
Some English Language test results are only valid for two years. Your English Language test report must be valid on the start date of the course.

Application and selection

How to apply

Due to a system upgrade, our online application form is currently unavailable. We will be launching a new application form in the week commencing 18 October, at which point we will start accepting applications for 2022 entry. If you would like us to email you when the new application form is launched, please submit your details here .

Advice to applicants

You'll need to submit:

A completed application form

Two references: One academic and one professional (see our  referee report  form  here  )

Personal statement (maximum 500 words) answering the following questions:

  • What attracts you to apply to this course?
  • What do you hope to gain from this course?
  • How will help you achieve your future aims and aspirations?

A recent copy of your CV detailing your professional experience

Degree certificate and official transcripts

Evidence of English language (if applicable, see entry requirements above for more information)

If you have any questions regarding the course or application process, please contact us on  studyonline@manchester.ac.uk    

Unit teaching dates:

  • Unit 1. Introduction to Clinical Bioinformatics  May 2022 - August 2022
  • Unit 2. Introduction to Health Informatics   September 2022 - November 2022            
  • Unit 3. Introduction to Programming For Clinical Bioinformatics   November 2022 - December 2022 and  January 2023 - February 2023         
  • Unit 4. Introduction to Next Generation Sequencing (NGS) Bioinformatics February 2023 -  May 2023

Here a link to previous webinars focussed on  Unit 3 Introduction to Programming  and  Unit 4 Introduction to Next Generation Sequencing (NGS)  . These webinars will provide more information on Python programming tools and the support given to those who do not have Python experience.

If you would like to find out more about the area of clinical bioinformatics and the role of clinical bioinformaticians you can  enrol on our free 5-week massive online open course  for a taster. Alternative you can email studyonline@manchester.ac.uk with any questions.

However, you can find out more about what it's like to study on one of Manchester's  blended-learning programmes  . 

How your application is considered

How to apply to a part time online or blended course at The University of Manchester - Your Guide

In this short video we explain how to apply to your chosen postgraduate part-time, online or blended course at The University of Manchester.

Additional cost information

Policy on additional costs

All students should normally be able to complete their programme of study without incurring additional study costs over and above the tuition fee for that programme. Any unavoidable additional compulsory costs totalling more than 1% of the annual home undergraduate fee per annum, regardless of whether the programme in question is undergraduate or postgraduate taught, will be made clear to you at the point of application. Further information can be found in the University's Policy on additional costs incurred by students on undergraduate and postgraduate taught programmes (PDF document, 91KB).

Regulated by the Office for Students

The University of Manchester is regulated by the Office for Students (OfS). The OfS aims to help students succeed in Higher Education by ensuring they receive excellent information and guidance, get high quality education that prepares them for the future and by protecting their interests. More information can be found at the OfS website.

You can find regulations and policies relating to student life at The University of Manchester, including our Degree Regulations and Complaints Procedure, on our regulations website.