Master of Science (M.Sc.)
This international program Agricultural Biosciences focuses on basic biological research for an efficient and sustainable agricultural production of crop and livestock species. It integrates quantitative and computational approaches in a unique, interdisciplinary agricultural study program.TUM School of Life Sciences Weihenstephan
Due to the current situation, the application deadlines for Master's programs for the winter semester 2020/21 will be extended once until June 30, 2020.
Information on Degree Program
What does this program cover?
Agricultural biosciences offer solutions to major societal challenges. They can make significant contributions to securing food supplies, preserving natural resources, and mitigating the effects of climate change.
The M.Sc. Agricultural Biosciences is shaped by the vision of the TUM School of Life Sciences offering a basic, mechanistic understanding of biological processes underlying agricultural crop and livestock production combined with expertise in handling data rich challenges and quantitative data analysis.
In contrast to other master´s programs that have a specialized view on basic research and distinguish between plant and animal science, we at TUM believe that a generic approach is more timely as many biological mechanisms are shared between plants and animals. A strong focus on molecular as well as computational methods reflects the TUM strategy to value innovation as the basis for knowledge.
The M.Sc. Agricultural Biosciences deals with different organisms, namely plants, animals and microbes. The program takes advantage of the synergistic effects created by integrated studies on plant and animal species teaching generic as well as specific biological concepts, methods and tools. It reflects the high level of innovation in agricultural biosciences and prepares graduates for a multi-path career allowing for flexibility and migration in the job market.
As a graduate in Agricultural Biosciences, you will have a profound knowledge of molecular, biochemical and physiological processes contributing to agricultural production. You are able to optimize processes leading to genetic improvement of crops and livestock. Through knowledge on the genotype-phenotype relationship, you can optimize production environments. Graduates learn how to integrate heterogeneous data from different disciplines, handle large experimental data sets and become proficient in predictive analytics. You can assess molecular and computational methods with respect to their impact and trade-offs in practice and can communicate their relevance for agricultural production in a livable environment.
How is the program structured?
During the first and second semester five compulsory modules - Physiology, Plant and Animal Cell Biology, Immunology: Crop and Livestock Health and Disease, Genetics and Genomics as well as Statistical Computing and Data Analysis - have to be completed. After passing these core courses, students possess solid knowledge in basic biological concepts relevant for agricultural production.
Elective modules are very important in the study program. You can choose from a list of different lab courses that cover either molecular or computational techniques. In addition, the program offers research tool modules that allow for independent study and enable students to perform research in the field of Agricultural Biosciences.
By opening a mobility window in the third semester students are encouraged to gain international study experience through exchange programs such as Erasmus+ or TUMexchange. If approved by the Examination Board you can take up a research internship outside TUM, e.g. with a qualified industry partner or an external research organization.
The fourth semester is devoted to preparing the Master's thesis that concludes the study program. In their thesis, students identify and address a research question in the Agricultural Biosciences by choosing and implementing appropriate molecular, experimental or data methods. The thesis raises your professional profile.
What is the language of instruction?
Required language skills for admission:
You need sufficient English language skills if you wish to apply for this program. Evidence of your language proficiency has to be submitted before the end of the application deadline. Learn more about recognized certificates and other ways to prove your English language skills.
This evidence of your language proficiency confirms that you comply with the minimum language requirements for admission to the program. Depending on the program and your individual background, it may be necessary for you to keep working on your language skills during your studies. Be sure to take a look at the services of our Language Center.
Language of instruction:
The language of instruction for this program is English.
Which further expertise and skills will I acquire?
As a graduate, you will...
- have a profound understanding of the scientific basis of biological processes relevant for agricultural production.
- be able to perform research in the field of Agricultural Biosciences and can link your knowledge and results to other disciplines.
- be aware of societal challenges and demands in the context of Agricultural Biosciences and possess the social skills to communicate across disciplines and cultures.
- have developed your self-competencies for navigating in a changing environment and managing complex projects.
Which professional opportunities can I take up with this qualification?
Upon graduating, you can find employment in the national or international job market, for example at universities, research institutes, in the public sector or in biotech, breeding and life science companies.
Career opportunities also open up in the field of international organizations such as the CGIAR centers, FAO and World Health Organization (WHO).
Furthermore, more and more young scientists with expertise in agricultural biosciences are finding employment in smaller companies and startups in areas such as biotechnology and machine intelligence providing technologies or service to the agricultural sector.
Graduates with combined expertise in molecular biology and quantitative and computational methods are highly sought after in the job market, as the number of graduates does not meet the demand of qualified personnel. It is expected that the demand will increase as molecular methods and machine intelligence will fundamentally change the agricultural sector and increase the demand for research and development.
Binding Regulations for Progression of Studies, Examinations and Application
Application and Admission
How do I apply?
Minimum requirements to apply for a Master's program at TUM are a recognized undergraduate degree (e.g. a bachelor’s) and the successful completion of the aptitude assessment procedure. Aptitude assessment allows the TUM school or department to which you are applying the opportunity to evaluate your individual talents and motivation for study.
During the application period, you must apply through the TUMonline application portal and upload your application documents.
If you receive an offer of admission, you will additionally have to submit individual documents as notarized hardcopies by post to be enrolled.
Generally, applicants with a qualification for postgraduate studies (e.g. a bachelor’s) obtained outside of the EU / EEA must have their documents reviewed in advance through uni-assist.
Which documents do I need to submit during the online application?
- Application for Admission (upload - signed)
- Degree Certificate and Diploma or Subject and Grade Transcript of Studies to Date
- Transcript of Records
- Letter of Motivation
- Proof of English Language Proficiency
- Complete and Current Résumé
- Preliminary Documentation (VPD) if the qualification for graduate studies (e.g. a bachelor's) is obtained outside the EU/EEA
We may require additional documents depending on your educational background and your country of origin. Complete the online application to receive a comprehensive list of the required documents.
Which documents do I need to submit for enrollment?
- Application for Enrollment (signed)
- Most Current Photo (as for ID)
- Student Health Insurance Certificate
- Degree Certificate and Diploma (certified copy)
- Transcript of Records (certified copy)
We may require additional documents depending on the type of educational background you earned and your country of origin. After accepting an offer of admission in TUMonline, you will receive a list of documents you must submit to TUM in hardcopy for enrollment.
What application deadlines do I need to meet?
Application period for the winter semester: 01.01. - 31.05.
Our online application portal TUMonline will create an application form and a checklist with the documents you have to hand in. The checklist shows which documents you need for admission and which for enrollment.
You must submit the signed application form and all documents you need for admission before the application deadline.
Please also submit the documents we need for your enrollmentas soon as possible. If individual documents for enrollment are not available to you yet, you can hand them in up to five weeks after the start of the lecture period. However, we recommend that you submit all required documents well before the semester begins, as you will not be enrolled until all documents have been received.
Please check your TUMonline account regularly, to see if we have any queries to your documents or if you have to amend one or more documents.
On what basis does TUM select applicants for admission?
Selection takes place through an aptitude assessment procedure. Aptitude assessment is a two-part procedure after the submission of an official application to a program. In this procedure, the TUM school or department determines whether you meet the specific requirements for its master’s degree program.
In the initial stages, the grades you obtained during your bachelor's program, as well as your written documents, will be evaluated using a point system. Depending on the amount of points accumulated, applicants are either immediately admitted, rejected or invited to an admissions interview.
Where can I find the online application portal?
The online application process takes place through our application portal TUMonline.
What are my options after earning this degree?
You have earned your master’s degree and are ready to start your career? TUM Alumni & Career can assist you with questions regarding professional orientation, job search and job application.
If you are interested in continuing your studies, you will find information of doctoral studies at TUM, here.