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Northwest Missouri State University


Data Science<br/><i>Emphasis in Molecular Biology</i> Major

Data Science
Emphasis in Molecular Biology

The Northwest Difference

The first of its kind in Missouri and the region, Northwest’s Data Science major is an interdisciplinary program with four areas of emphasis: computer science, business, molecular biology and geographic information systems.

The molecular biology emphasis focuses on bioinformatics, the crossroads between lab science and analytics. Today, scientists use a variety of approaches for characterizing cells and their interactions with each other and their environments. These approaches include genomics, the sequencing of whole genomes to determining the potential of a specific gene; transcriptomics, analyzing when and why genes are turned on or off at a given time; metabolmics, determining which metabolites are present or absent in a cell; and proteomics, determining which proteins are present or absent in a cell. Faculty focus on teaching how data are collected, analyzed and interpreted.

Career Opportunities

Data scientists are in high demand. A McKinsey Global Institute report estimates that by 2018, “the United States alone could face a shortage of 140,000 to 190,000 people with deep analytical skills as well as 1.5 million managers and analysts with the know-how to use the analysis of big data to make effective decisions.”

Job titles:

Examples of employers:

  • Bioinformatician
  • Biostatistician
  • Genome scientist
  • Molecular biologist
  • Research scientist
  • Biotechnology companies
  • DNA sequencing labs
  • Epidemiology research agencies
  • National Laboratories

Profession-Based Learning Experiences

Students gain hands-on experience while participating in project-based learning that allows them to interpret actual data with faculty members.

Study Abroad

Study Abroad

Study Abroad is an opportunity for students to apply hands-on international experience to their academic development. Faculty members provide short-term study programs that prepare students before, during and after the program. Two types of study abroad programs are available: faculty-led and traditional study abroad.

The traditional program may be a semester, summer or year-long program and is taught by Northwest’s international partner institutions.

For more information about study abroad opportunities »