Illuminated robots next to molecule models

Bioinformatics

Which computer-assisted analysis methods are suited to predict genetic predispositions? How does the body react to medication? And how is it actually possible to process large amounts of data? If you find these questions interesting, then you have come to the right place!
Illuminated robots next to molecule models
Image: Jan-Peter Kasper (University of Jena)
Key facts
Degree
Bachelor of Science
Duration
6 Semesters
Credits/ECTS
180
Teaching language
German
Tuition fee
None
Semester contribution
€ 266,10
Start of studies
Winter semester
Part-time possible
Yes
Application & Deadlines

Content of the study programme

Do computer science and life sciences go together? Briefly put yes—very well, in fact! These two areas combined form an exciting, innovative and future-oriented field of research. This study programme trains you to become specialists who are competent in two areas at the same time: After all, bioinformaticians speak both the language of computer science and that of the life sciences in order to solve problems with computer-assisted methods. What is best: They can mediate between precisely these two fields and establish connections. When it comes to predicting genetic predispositions for various diseases or the ways in which medicines work, for example, bioinformatics comes into play. The ultimate goal is to decipher the blueprints of humans, bacteria and plants and to uncover the connections in the development of diseases. If the genome of a living being is fully analysed as quickly as possible, mutations can also be detected, for example. Bioinformatics is a key technology that is being increasingly used by industry. This is why biotechnology and pharmaceutical companies, as well as biomedical research companies, are desperately looking for young talent. 

Problems in the life sciences from biology, biotechnology and medicine need to be addressed and answered using mathematical and computer science methods. For this reason, the focus at the beginning of the study programme is on the basics of biology (especially molecular biology), computer science and mathematics. You will acquire programming skills and the foundations of bioinformatic thinking. Afterwards, you will expand your knowledge and deal with practical programming and implementation of algorithms as well as molecular evolution and molecular structures, among other things. 

Video: Sebastian Böcker

Structure

Student is sitting in front of a blackboard Student is sitting in front of a blackboard Image: Jan-Peter Kasper (University of Jena)

The bachelor's degree is the first professional qualification. The standard period of study is six semesters, during which various forms of courses (e.g. lectures, exercises or internships) are offered for the individual modules.

If you take a single-subject bachelor’s programme in ‘Bioinformatics‘, your field of study will comprise 180 credit points (CP for short; 1 CP = 30 hours for attendance, preparation and follow-up work, private study, assessed coursework and examinations).

The first phase of the programme (1st to 3rd semester) serves to provide orientation, bridge any gaps in prior knowledge, train programming skills, and acquire basic knowledge and skills. In the second study phase (4th to 6th semester), you will extend this knowledge and deepen it in the compulsory elective area in bioinformatics, computer science and biology.

How might your study programme shape up?

1st semester 2nd semester 3rd semester 4th semester 5th semester 6th semester
Introduction to Bioinformatics I
(12 CP)
Computability and Complexity
(6 CP)
Proseminar Bioninformatics
(3 CP)
Project Data Mining and Sequence Analysis
(6 CP)
Proseminar Bioinformatics
(3 CP)
Structural Programming
(9 CP)
Introduction to Bioninformatics II
(9 CP)
Required elective area 1 (Bioinformatics)
(18 CP)
Introduction to Genetics
(4 CP)
Practical course Molecular Biology
(8 CP)
Required elective area 2 (Computer Science)
(12 CP)
Elective area 4 (Key Competences)
(3 CP)
Linear Algebra
(6 CP)
Algorithms and Data Structures
(9 CP)
Introduction to Probability Theory
(6 CP)
Required elective area 3 (Biology)
(15 CP)
Discrete Structures I
(6 CP)
Introduction to Cell Biology
(3 CP)
Biochemistry
(9 CP)
Practical course Programming
(6 CP)
Molecular Evolution
(3 CP)
Bachelor thesis
(12 CP)
  Basic Calculus
(6 CP)
  Numerical Analysis
(6 CP)
   

Abbreviations: CP = credit points

More detailed information can be found in the module catalogue for the study programme [in German].

Why study in Jena?

Bioinformatics is perfect for me, because programming combines logical thinking and creativity, and because due to the biological orientation, I always know what am I calculating something for.

Nadja Gorczak, student

  • Excellent research: The three professorships for bioinformatics of the Faculty of Mathematics and Computer Science and the Faculty of Biosciences are integrated into the Jena Centre for Bioinformatics (JCB), which is renowned even abroad. It also incorporates other working groups at the University and non-university institutes, several of which are involved in the study programme.
  • Optimum support: Lectures are delivered in front of small groups of students. This gives you the opportunity to come into direct contact with lecturers and also creates space for individual discussions.
  • Close cooperation: The Institute of Computer Science also maintains staff and content-related links to high-tech businesses in Jena, Thuringia and the whole of Germany as well as with globally operating enterprises.
  • Possibilities without borders: Experience internationality! The University attracts students and scientists from all over the world with its appealing conditions and shapes Jena's character as a future-oriented and cosmopolitan city — ideal conditions for international prospective students [mp4, 55 mb].
  • Adventure abroad: If you dream of spending a semester abroad, you can easily make it come true. Our University has a worldwide network of partner universities.

Behind the scenes

Petrischale
Jena is home to numerous biological, biochemical and bioinformatics institutes, working groups and companies—the ideal place to gain a foothold in bioinformatics research during your studies.

What can you do after your studies?

Areas of employment for graduates

  • sequence and genome analysis
  • databases
  • software development
  • data analysis
  • modelling and simulation
  • systems biology
  • research (usually after completing a doctorate)

Postgraduate master’s programmes at our University

What are the personal requirements?

  • an interest in scientific questions;
  • solid knowledge in biology, chemistry, physics, and mathematics;
  • basic computer skills
  • the ability to study independently;
  • sound knowledge of English as the language of sciences;
  • interest in analysing and solving complex problems 
  • understanding of a logically structured way of thinking

Admission requirements

University entrance qualification Expand entry

A university entrance qualification, such as a general secondary school leaving certificate, is required for admission onto the study programme.

More information on university entrance qualifications can be found here.

Language requirements Expand entry

Admission and language requirements for applicants of foreign nationality and without German Abitur: www.uni-jena.de/en/study-orientation-international

Contacts

Subject-specific academic advisor — apl. Prof. Dr Peter Dittrich
Subject-specific academic advisor — Prof. Dr Stefan Schuster
Examinations Office of the Faculty of Mathematics and Computer Science
Examinations Office of the Faculty of Biological Sciences
Student Representative Committee Bioinformatics
Central Student Advisory Service
Office hours:
We offer consultations and the handling of your concerns in person, via video chat or telephone. Appointments can be made by phone or via service desk.

Consultation hours:
Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday from 9:00 to 12:20, Tuesday 14:00 to 18:00 and on Wednesday and Thursday from 14:00 to 16:00.
Video chat:
Videochat Zeiten
Monday to Friday 12.30 to 13:00
Videochat Passwort
ZSB2020
Student Service Centre
Opening hours:
Monday 10 - 12
Tuesday 13 - 15
Wednesday 10 - 12
Thursday 13 - 15
Friday 10 - 12

Updates / adjustments may occur at any time. Thank you for your understanding!

We currently provide advice and handle your concern solely also via phone and service desk.

You can reach us by phone
Monday to Friday from 9:00 to 11:00
Postal address:
Friedrich-Schiller-Universität Jena
Studierenden-Service-Zentrum
07737 Jena
International Office - International students
University Main Building
Fürstengraben 1
07743 Jena