Master's Programme in Infection Biology

Academic year 2022/2023

Photo for Master's Programme in Infection Biology 2022/2023

Infections are serious threats to the survival of humans, animals and plants all around the world. Our knowledge of the processes that govern microbial life must increase if we are to solve acute problems of antibiotic drug resistance and be able to predict and master threatening pandemics and the spread of new and old infectious diseases globally. The Master's Programme in Infection Biology gives you a broad knowledge of the complex field in a global perspective. Are you willing to take on a challenge?

Why this programme?

The Master's Programme in Infection Biology allows you to take advantage of Uppsala's strong environment for research and education in infection biology. The city has two universities (Uppsala University and Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences), two university hospitals (Uppsala University hospital and University Animal Hospital) as well as three national authorities (the Swedish Food Agency, the Swedish Medical Products Agency and the National veterinary institute) responsible for food safety, medical products and outbreak surveillance. In combination, this offers a very broad competence for those who have an interest in infection biology and infectious diseases.

During the programme you can expect to

  • learn to identify and analyse problems from complex contexts, and define strategies and relevant practical scientific approaches to address and solve them
  • be trained to evaluate global problems in infection biology from medical, economical, ecological and ethical perspectives
  • learn to work both individually and in an international team for conducting scientific research projects and investigations and summarise and present the results of these in speech and writing in a suitable way for both research colleagues and the public
  • meet and work with about 200 teachers and researchers working with infectious biology based on widely different scientific aspects and thus take part in an international network of specialists in infectious diseases.
Student profile
You have a genuine interest in all aspects of infection biology, from molecular mechanisms to surveillance on a global arena. You have a solid theoretical base in relevant subjects and also a practical experience that makes you feel confident in performing practical experimental lab work.

The English language is certainly not a problem for you. You are both knowledgeable and willing to express your thoughts in writing and speaking and expect to contribute as much to the development of others as you expect to learn from their experiences and knowledge. You are naturally curious and like to critically analyse and reflect on problems and to develop creative and innovative solutions that hold for sharp discussions. Whether you work individually or in groups, you take responsibility for your studies.

You are open and will take this opportunity to broaden your horizons towards different future opportunities. Since a PhD research education may be in your future, you will seize the opportunity to meet and discuss with prominent researchers who address various aspects of infection biology.


The programme leads to a Master in Medical Science (120 credits) with Infection Biology as the main field of study.


The first year of study will give you deep understanding of the molecular processes that control the interaction between viruses, bacteria, parasites and fungi and their hosts. The processes governing the infection process are described based on the immunological defence, but also on the infecting organism's strategies to escape this defence.
Clinical effects of infectious diseases are discussed from an organ-specific perspective, this also includes diagnoses, prevention and treatment of infections. Antimicrobial treatments and resistance mechanisms are discussed from a molecular and biochemical perspective and bioinformatics tools are used to explain the evolutionary evolution of microbes. Basic epidemiology provides knowledge of methods for describing the frequencies and spread of disease and health in populations, as well as evaluating causal relationships.
The first semester of the programme also includes a series of lectures that deal with a number of common science-related issues and that are given for several medical master's programs by the programme committee for the medical master's programs.
The second year provides knowledge about infectious diseases from a global "one health" perspective and addresses infection between animals and humans (zoonotic infections and epizootic infections) as well as food-borne infections. Tools for monitoring, controlling and preventing infections are discussed at both local and global levels, with particular emphasis on problems in developing countries. Possible measures and research strategies for reducing the emergence and spread of infectious diseases in low-income countries have a special focus in theory and practice. Research methodology and knowledge-based choices of analysis methods in advanced infection biology research are discussed and applied on the upcoming master thesis project.
During semesters two and three of the program, there is the opportunity to further deepen your practical laboratory skills by exchanging one or more courses for a research project course.
The programme is completed by an independent research project during the fourth semester corresponding to 30 credits. It is also possible to perform a 45-credits project, which you start working on in the middle of the third semester. The selected topic must fit within the field of infection biology and can be performed at an academic unit, company or public sector in Sweden or abroad.

Courses within the programme

Year 1
Microbiology and Immunology, 30 credits
Parasitology, Mycology and Clinical Infection Biology (partly at SLU), 15 credits
Antimicrobials, Evolution, Resistance and Epidemiology, 15 credits

Year 2
Infection Biology in a Global Perspective, 15 credits
Advanced Scientific Research and Methodology, 15 credits
Master's Degree Project in Infection Biology, 30 credits, or Master's Degree Project in Infection Biology, 45 credits

Learning experience

The teaching consists of lectures, seminars, project work and laboratory exercises. The lectures are strongly rooted in ongoing infectious biological medical research and during these you will meet specialists from various fields in infectious medical biology. Seminars and group exercises develop your ability to critically examine methods and results, compile facts and to draw conclusions from scientific texts and achieved results, as well as discuss and argue in a scientifically grounded way. Here you also get to practice your skills in planning, running, following up and reporting on projects, both individually and in teams. The practical experimental work will train your practical abilities and also the understanding for choice of methods, interpretation of results and based on these creation of hypotheses.
If resources are available, the third semester includes a two-week field course in infection biology in a low-income country under development.
Most courses are given at the Biomedical Center (BMC) at Uppsala University, but during certain course modules you will study at SLU. In other words, you will meet teachers and researchers from both Uppsala University and SLU, but also specialists from hospitals and other local authorities. The strong research connection offers an excellent basis for further doctoral studies.
The program's strong international character gives you, in addition to obvious course objectives, also an increased cultural intelligence of great importance for future collaborations.
The programme is given in Uppsala and the teaching is in English.


A broad and deep knowledge in infection biology will prepare you for work in basic and applied research and development in a wide variety of areas, such as, diagnostics, drug development, antimicrobial resistance problems, vaccinations, emergency management, food production, surveillance and epidemiology and developing country-specific diseases in animals and humans as well as zoonoses.

Employment may be found in academia and in drug and biotech companies. In the public sector, you can work in microbial laboratories related to health care, food and agriculture. In the One World perspective, here is also a need for your competence on predictions, surveillance and follow-up of outbreaks, both nationally and on a global scale. The strong links to research will be of particular use if you are heading for further PhD studies and a research career.

The programme's strong international character gives you, in addition to obvious course objectives, also increased cultural intelligence of great importance for future collaborations.

Graduates from the Master's Programme in Infection Biology are found spread around the world working as academic and biotech researchers, PhDs, hospital microbiologists and investigators at public health authorities.

Career support
During your time as a student, UU Careers offers support and guidance. You have the opportunity to take part in a variety of activities and events that will prepare you for your future career. Learn more about UU Careers.


For this programme, besides the general supporting documents, you also need to submit one (or more) programme-specific documents:
1. One template for your qualifying experiences an Application Summary Sheet;
2. Document(s) and/or letter(s) of recommendation certifying your previous practical research/laboratory work experience (if applicable).

There are two admission rounds for this Master's programme:

The first admission round in English is open to all international applicants at The last date to apply is 17 January 2022. Students who needs a residence permit for studies in Sweden can only apply at this admission round. We strongly encourage all international students to apply in this first admission round. Also Swedish applicants are welcome to apply here.

The second admission round in Swedish at and in English at is primarily for Swedish applicants. The last date to apply is 19 April 2022. Students who are citizens of a country within the European Union, European Economic Area and Switzerland and do not need a residence permit for studies in Sweden may also apply in this admission round. Students who do need a residence permit for studies in Sweden can not apply here.

Master's Programme in Infection Biology

120 credits

Autumn 2022, 100%, Campus

Location: Uppsala

Application deadline: 17 January 2022

Application code: UU-M3350 Application

Language of instruction: English

Academic requirements
A Bachelor's degree, equivalent to a Swedish Kandidatexamen, from an internationally recognised university. The main field of study must be in biology, bio-/medicine, biotechnology, pharmacy, pharmaceutical bioscience, (pharmaceutical) chemistry, medical science, agriculture, animal science, veterinary medicine or education giving knowledge in cell biology, genetics, (bio)chemistry, immunology and molecular biology. Knowledge and previous experience of laboratory work.

Language requirements
Proficiency in English equivalent to the Swedish upper secondary course English 6. This requirement can be met either by achieving the required score on an internationally recognised test, or by previous upper secondary or university studies in some countries. Detailed instructions on how to provide evidence of your English proficiency are available at

Selection: Students are selected based on:

  • quantity and quality of previous university studies relevant for the Master's Programme in Infection Biology
  • description of performed research project (i.e. abstract)
  • practical laboratory experiences gained during research work including letter(s) of recommendation certifying the place, length and performed tasks
  • statement of purpose describing your main interest in infectious diseases and expectations on the Master's Programme in Infection Biology.
Tuition fee-paying students and non-paying students are admitted on the same grounds but in different selection groups.


If you are not a citizen of a European Union (EU) or European Economic Area (EEA) country, or Switzerland, you are required to pay application and tuition fees. Fees cover application and tuition only and do not cover accommodation, academic literature or the general cost of living. Read more about fees.

Application fee: SEK 900

Tuition fee, first semester: SEK 72,500

Tuition fee, total: SEK 290,000

Contact and further resources

Is this programme right for you?


For programme specific information, please contact: Susanne Tingsborg (programme coordinator)

For admissions-related or general information, please contact our applicant support team;

Department of Medical Biochemistry and Microbiology

Uppsala Biomedical Centre, Husargatan 3, Uppsala

P.O. Box 582, SE-751 23 Uppsala, Sweden

+46 18 471 40 00