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Biotechnology Proficiency Certificate

Biotechnology is an exciting and rapidly changing high technology field employing specially trained individuals. Laboratories in the biotechnology industry rely on technicians who are proficient at common tasks such as solution preparation, electrophoresis, microbial growth, and column chromatography. The Biotechnology Proficiency Certificate prepares students to meet biotechnology industry needs in the area of bioprocessing and fermentation. A strong industry need was also identified in the area of quality control and quality assurance, which is also addressed by this certificate. The curriculum has been reviewed and validated by biotechnology industries thus providing students with the knowledge and training to seek employment in biotechnology companies such as pharmaceutical manufacturing, research, medical and testing laboratories, biotechnology companies and agricultural industries. Several options exist for a student to obtain this proficiency certificate. The student may:

  1. Take only the courses leading to the certificate.
  2. Take the courses leading to the certificate as part of the Applied Science and Engineering Technology Associate Degree Program.

Upon completion of the Biotechnology Proficiency Certificate the student will be able to:

  • Apply the practical application of basic biotechnology laboratory skills
  • Understand the theory underlying the performance and application of these laboratory techniques.
  • Develop a working knowledge of industry regulations and guidelines, such as standards for good laboratory practice (GLP), biosafety and personal safety.
  • Gain a broad overview of the biotechnology industry, and understand the scientific principles and basic practical skills employed in the manufacture of biological materials via the fermentation process.

This certificate is open to interested students New students are normally required to take the College's placement test at their time of entry. Students who are identified as needing developmental course work must satisfactory complete the appropriate English and mathematics course as part of the certificate.


Course Number Course Title Prerequisites Credits
CHEM 121 College Chemistry CHEM 110, MATH 118 4

BIOL 123 Cellular and Molecular Biology CHEM 121 or CHEM 110 4

BIOL 211 Genetics BIOL 106 or BIOL 107 or BIOL 123 4

BIOL 241 Principles of Microbiology BIOL 106 or BIOL 107 or BIOL 109 or BIOL 123 4

BIOL 255 Biotechnology BIOL 123, CHEM 110 or CHEM 121, MATH 118 4

BIOL 256 Biotechnology II BIOL 255 4

CHEM 122 College Chemistry CHEM 121 4

Total Credits: 28


Successful completion of the program requires a “C” grade or better in each of the courses listed above. In order to receive a “C” grade or better and thus demonstrate competency, students must complete assignments, exams and participate in class activities.

The Division of Math, Science and Health Careers, Room W2-7, 1700 Spring Garden Street, Philadelphia, PA 19130, Telephone (215) 751-8430.

Gainful Employment Information

Gainful employment information is intended to provide students with better information about the effectiveness of college programs in preparing students for careers. Information provided includes estimated program costs and time needed to complete the program, financing options and related careers.

Review the Gainful Employment Information