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Programs / Science / Computational Biochemistry

Program Summary

The modern era of biochemistry has been transformed by the recent development of instruments which can generate vast amounts of information about entire genomes or thousands of proteins or metabolites. One of our biggest challenges in biochemistry is the development of tools to analyze and manage this flood of data.

The Computational Biochemistry program was developed to provide both training in computer science and a solid foundation in biochemistry.

As a student of Computation Biochemistry at Carleton University, you will be provided with a solid foundation in biology and chemistry, as well as with many opportunities to apply your knowledge to modern-day challenges facing the discipline.

Our programs help you understand how advancements in Computational Biochemistry can be successfully applied to a wide range of issues. By developing a strong foundation in both basic and applied science, you will become a better scientist, and your undergraduate education will allow you greater flexibility throughout your career.

Co-op opportunities

Carleton’s flexible and innovative co-operative education program offers you the opportunity to apply your classroom studies in a job placement. Co-op placements can give you work experience in private-sector biotechnology firms, government and university laboratories, or pharmaceutical companies.

In order to begin the co-op program, students must have completed at least two years of an Honours Bachelor of Science program. Co-op students complete at least three work terms during their degree program.

Hands-on lab experience

Our Biochemistry programs provide you with hands-on work experience in well-equipped laboratories. If you are an Honours Biochemistry student, you will have the additional opportunity to develop a research project in an area of special interest, working alongside a faculty advisor. Not only will you graduate with exceptional hands-on experience with some of the most up-to-date methodology, but you will also have a defined area of expertise.

Excellent research facilities

The Institute of Biochemistry is housed in two buildings at Carleton University: the Nesbitt Biology Building and the Steacie Chemistry Building. The teaching that we do in laboratories and the research that students share in are abundantly supported by the latest in biological instrumentation and state-of-the-art computer facilities. Included in the pool of instruments and techniques available to students are excellent light and electron microscopes, digital imaging hardware and software, PCR and other molecular biological techniques, and research-grade spectrophotometers. Many of these instruments and techniques are used by students in our introductory courses.

The Nesbitt Building is state-of-the-art with open-concept architecture to foster collaborative work and to invite interaction between scholars. Design features such as open laboratories, lounges used by both students and faculty, and faculty offices clustered in a central area, promote an atmosphere of shared learning.

The Ottawa area is one with considerable environmental and biotechnology companies. Several government departments are involved with the research that leads to environmental legislation and regulations, and over 100 companies are conducting research in medical, agricultural and environmental biotechnology. Associations with these organizations, as well as with the National Capital Commission, national museums and the National Research Council Canada, can provide you with unparalleled research and study opportunities.

Computational Biochemistry – BSc (Honours)

Computational Biochemistry (Honours)

Computational Biochemistry allows you to complement your studies in biochemistry with a rigorous program in computer science, mathematics, computational methods and data analysis. It will give you a strong background in core areas of biology and chemistry such as genetics, cell biology, organic chemistry and analytical chemistry. You will take a variety of lecture and laboratory biochemistry courses, including bioinformatics. Optional courses allow you to focus on areas such as molecular genetics, pharmaceutic drug design, functional genomics and protein structure and function.

First-year experience

Carleton introduces you to issues of contemporary science in a first-year seminar course called Seminar in Science (NSCI 1000). You will attend six special lectures given by prominent Canadian researchers, as well as small group seminars led by a professor who acts as both your mentor and teacher. Through assignments, presentations and discussions, you will develop analytical and communication skills needed for success in the world of science.

The workplace

Carleton Computational Biochemistry graduates go on to a wide range of careers. Many work in Ottawa’s growing biotechnology sector or in pharmaceutical companies, government and private-sector labs, research institutes and industry.

Others use their background to prepare for graduate school or for studies in medicine, dentistry and pharmacy.

Computational Biochemistry graduates are prepared for careers in the growing field of bioinformatics, working in areas such as drug design, the synthesis of new biomaterials, the mapping of brain function and genomic research.

Graduate studies

Graduates of any of our Honours programs are generally well qualified to go on to graduate studies. If you think that you may wish to pursue an advanced degree, you are encouraged to investigate graduate programs early in order to ensure that your program is suited to meet the relevant graduate-level requirements.

Professional programs

Many professional programs, including medicine, dentistry, teaching and veterinary science, encourage applicants from a variety of backgrounds to apply. Biochemistry can provide a strong foundation for many of these programs.