Programme info

What does the programme entail?

The field of biomedical sciences

The field of biomedical sciences studies both the healthy and sick human and the relevant animal models.

Biomedical sciences can be distinguished from biology, bio-engineering and veterinary sciences by means of the clear emphasis on humans.

The programme does not focus on acquiring clinical skills, as this is covered in medicine and pharmacy, but prepares you to conduct technological or scientific research in a clinical context.

In Antwerp, the biomedical sciences programme is a multidisciplinary programme taught by lecturers from the faculties of Pharmaceutical, Biomedical and Veterinary Sciences, Medicine and Sciences.

Specialising in infectious and tropical diseases

In the Infectious and Tropical Diseases specialisation, you acquire a good understanding of various aspects of host-parasite interaction (immunology, pathology, clinical aspects) and learn to recognise patterns in the epidemiology of (tropical) diseases, as well as relating them to ecological conditions, and on this basis you also learn to evaluate or propose strategies for disease control.

You learn to describe and analyse a tropical biomedical scientific problem independently, to report on it and propose solutions, which may contribute to product development in the pharmaceutical and biotech industry, such as vaccine research, drug screening and diagnostics.


Using the basic knowledge taught on the Bachelor’s programme as a point of departure, the Master’s programme focuses on the research specialisations in which the University of Antwerp has come to excel.

Collaboration between the Institute for Tropical Medicine , with its international reputation, and the university laboratories, which undertake research assignments for the World Health Organisation, among others, provide you with a unique opportunity to participate in high-level epidemiological, ecological, molecular biological, microbiological, virological and immunological research on HIV, malaria and other infectious and imported diseases.

Are you eligible to start the programme?

Degree requirements

Direct access: Bachelor of Science (academic degree, minimum 180 ECTS) in:

  • Biomedical Sciences
  • Biochemistry
  • Biotechnology
  • Bio-engineering: cell and gene biotechnology
  • Pharmaceutical Sciences
  • Biology
  • Medicine
  • Veterinary Medicine

If your degree was not issued by a recognised educational institution in Flanders or the Netherlands, you will also have to provide evidence of your level of English. Please consult the admission procedure.

Language requirements

If your degree was not issued by a recognised educational institution in Belgium or the Netherlands, you will also have to provide evidence of your level of English.
You can do this in two ways:

  • by proving that you took classes in English for at least one academic year during your Bachelor or Master degree. The selection committee may require additional proof of your command of English.
  • by submitting your results on a TOEFL or IELTS language test, with the following minimum scores:
    • paper-based TOEFL: minimum 550
    • internet-based TOEFL: minimum 80
    • IELTS: minimum total score of 6.5 and minimum score of 6.0 for each individual component
    • Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR):  minimum B2.

Results obtained on other language tests will not be accepted.

See also general information on the language requirements.

What prior knowledge is required?

Basic knowledge of microbiology and immunology is required so that you may have a chance of completing the programme successfully.

Research in your programme

In view of the Master’s programme’s specialisations, the faculty's research is closely interwoven with the educational programme components.

A very important aspect of the Master’s programme is the dissertation. This involves a supervised research project, which students conduct independently. The dissertation is composed with the help of one of the research units providing support to the programme. During its practical implementation, students are involved in the ongoing scientific research in the research unit.

During your Master’s programme, you also receive lectures that are based on a discussion of recent scientific publications. Consequently, students are involved in scientific research as much as possible and thus gain an insight into the progress being made in their discipline.

In addition, all programme components are kept up-to-date with the latest research developments.

Practical experience on your programme

The Master’s programme places a particular emphasis on practical experience. The first year includes six-week lab internships and in the second year you can spend almost eight months conducting full-time research as part of your Master’s dissertation.

Each programme component also has a practical module. These modules may range from advanced theoretical exercises and simulations through to demos of high-tech techniques in specific research labs and conducting advanced experimentsindependently in the practice rooms.