May 30, 2024  
2023-2024 Florida Tech Catalog 
2023-2024 Florida Tech Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Biochemistry, M.S.

Major Code: 8032 Degree Awarded: Master of Science
Delivery Mode(s): Classroom Admission Status: Graduate
Admission Materials: Résumé/CV, transcripts Location(s): Main Campus - Melbourne

An applicant for admission to the master’s program in biochemistry should have an undergraduate degree in biochemistry, chemistry or in a related area. Typically, a minimum of eight semester courses should have been taken in four of the five major fields of chemistry: organic, analytical, physical, inorganic and biochemistry (required); as well as appropriate courses in mathematics and physics. Applicants may be admitted on a provisional basis with the requirement that undergraduate deficiencies be corrected during the first year of study. Proficiency examinations are administered to all new students the week before the beginning of classes as an aid in planning each program of study.

Admission Requirements

General admission requirements and the process for applying are presented under Graduate Academic Information . GRE scores from both the general and subject tests in chemistry are recommended but not required. All admitted students are enrolled in the nonthesis option by default. See below for information about transferring to the thesis option. Admission to this program is available for the fall and spring semesters only.

Degree Requirements

The Master of Science in Biochemistry is based on successful completion of either a thesis option requiring a minimum of 30 graduate credit hours following an approved program plan, a research proposal, thesis and oral examination in defense of the thesis; or a nonthesis option requiring 30 graduate credit hours following an approved program plan that includes the 3-credit hour CHM 5095 Chemical Research Projects , and a final program examination. Students will be placed in the nonthesis option by default.

Thesis Option (department head approval required)

A thesis based on research conducted in residence at Florida Tech under the direction of a member of the chemistry department graduate faculty is required. During the first academic semester, the student selects a faculty member to serve as the research advisor. During the same semester and with the assistance of the advisor, the student selects an advisory committee, prepares a program plan and defines a research topic. The student then progressively continues through the stages of the research proposal, research, thesis and oral examination. Throughout this period, the advisory committee provides assistance and direction to the student and serves as the review board for the research proposal, thesis and oral examination.

Nonthesis Option (default option)

The nonthesis option requires advisor guidance in the selection of six credit hours of coursework relevant to the student’s area of interest, and CHM 5095 Chemical Research Projects  in lieu of the thesis. The research will be primarily literature-based and includes the successful completion of a final program examination.


Each student follows an individual program plan. The program plan must have a minimum of 30 credit hours. For the thesis option this includes: six credit hours of chemistry (CHM) coursework, six credit hours of biology (BIO) coursework, six additional credit hours of relevant courses, and twelve credit hours of thesis (BIO 5999  or CHM 5999 ). For the nonthesis option this includes: six credit hours of chemistry (CHM) coursework, six credit hours of biology (BIO) coursework, fifteen credit hours of relevant coursework, and three credit hours of BIO 5995  or CHM 5095 . Students in either option must register for CHM 5900 Chemistry Graduate Seminar  each semester offered. All courses selected for inclusion on the program plan are subject to approval by the program chair.


Areas of Specialization

Medicinal Chemistry Specialization

The area of medicinal chemistry provides students with a strong background in discovery, identification and synthesis of biologically active compounds. This background enables students to interpret bioactive compounds’ mode of action at the molecular level and to construct the structure-activity relationship (SAR) that is the relationship between chemical structure and pharmacological activity for a series of bioactive compounds. 

Artificial Intelligence in Biochemistry Specialization

Artificial Intelligence in Biochemistry offers students the opportunity to specialize in the use of deep learning technology in biological sciences, including spectroscopy, microscopy, bioinformatics, protein structures and ligand binding. The chemistry program encourages a multidisciplinary STEM approach to incorporate AI into their M.S. specialization.

Total Credits Required: 30