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Data Science: Molecular Biology

Why Major in Data Science: Molecular Biology?

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 titlesExamples 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 »

The Northwest Difference

The Northwest Difference

Founded in 1905, Northwest is a traditional campus with more than 7,200 undergraduate and graduate students. Located in the middle of everywhere, Maryville is two hours from Omaha, Nebraska and Kansas City, Missouri and 2 ½ hours from Des Moines, Iowa.

Textbooks and Laptops Included

Save more than $7,400 over four years through our textbooks and laptop program.

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19 million money for you

More than $19 million in scholarships and grants awarded annually.

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Career Ready. Day One.

Students organizations, internships and profession-based learning experiences ensure students are Career Ready, Day One.

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Graduation Rate: 89th percentile

Graduation Rate: 89th percentile of Northwest's national peer group.