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Master in Biology of Organisms and Ecology with focus Approfondie

Master in Biology of Organisms and Ecology with focus Approfondie

This formation is taught in french and in english.

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  • Programme title
    Master in Biology of Organisms and Ecology with focus Approfondie
  • Programme mnemonic
    M-BIORA
  • Programme organised by
    • Faculty of Sciences
  • Degree type
    Masters 120 credits
  • Tier
    2nd cycle
  • Field and branch of study
    Sciences and technics/Sciences
  • Schedule type
    Daytime
  • Languages of instruction
    french / english
  • Theoretical programme duration
    2 years
  • Campus
    Plaine/Solbosch
  • Category / Topic
    Sciences and technics - Agronomy and bioengineering
  • Jury President
    Yves ROISIN
  • Jury Secretary
    Bruno DANIS

Details

General information

Degree type

Masters 120 crédits

Theoretical programme duration

2 years

Learning language(s)

french / english

Schedule type

Daytime

Campus

Plaine/Solbosch

Category(ies) - Topic(s)

Sciences and technics - Agronomy and bioengineering

Organising faculty(s) and university(ies)
Infor-études

Succeed in your studies

ULB offers a number of activities and resources that can help you develop a successful strategy before or during your studies.

You can make the transition to higher education easier by attending preparatory courses, summer classes, and information and orientation sessions, even before you start your studies at ULB.

During your studies, many people at ULB are there specifically to help you succeed: support staff in each faculty, (inter-)faculty guidance counsellors, tutors, and experts in academic methodology.

Presentation

Organism biology and ecology covers the entire diversity of life—bacteria, protists, fungi, animals, and plants—, but also the relationship between organisms, the environment, and humans.

Organism biologists are, all at once, witnesses, advocates, scholars and managers of the biological heritage of our planet, which is currently under serious threat from human activities. Their training should enable them to approach the living world from different perspectives.

This is why the Master in Organism Biology and Ecology teaches students to handle various experimental tools of analysis and observation: morphological, physiological, and molecular analysis techniques, statistical methods and modelling, management, cultivation or breeding of organisms, etc. The programe offers a comprehensive overview of living organisms, from the molecular scale to the scale of entire communities and ecosystems.

The skills taught are structured into four main categories:

1) Establish, maintain, and develop knowledge in the biological sciences.

2) Provide scientific expertise for problem-solving.

3) Develop and implement independent scientific research projects.

4) Communicate context-appropriate and audience-appropriate language.

Skills taught are structured in four main directions:

1) To establish, maintain and develop knowledge in the biological sciences.

2) To provide scientific expertise in problem solving.

3) To develop and implement independent scientific research projects.

4) To communicate in a language appropriate to the context and audience.

Most courses combine several approaches, including lecture classes illustrated with exercises or practical activities. Certain courses also require personal essays, usually based on literature research.

Members of the Department of Biology of Organisms are in charge of the Museum of Zoology and Anthropology, the Jean Massart Experimental Botanical Garden, and the African Herbarium and Botanical Library. These provide the original educational tools required for practical work, making them available to students for their personal projects.

The research focus and teaching focus include field courses in marine biology, terrestrial ecosystems, and eco-ethology, during which theoretical training is put into practice by conducting observations and field experiments.

The ‘tropics’ programmes, i.e. BEVT and TROPIMUNDO, also place emphasis on field training activities, organised by our tropical partners.

For all students, training in scientific research culminates with the dissertation. Each student integrates one of the research laboratories in the Department of Biology of Organisms or in the Interfaculty School of Bioengineering, where they are introduced to the basic methods and procedures of research.

In all focuses (except TROPIMUNDO), students are also taught how to write and present a research project, specifically their own dissertation. Upon completing their dissertation, students who have not received specific training in didactics must also learn how to compose and present a scientific communication.

The purpose of this Master is to advance scientific knowledge. It aims to train researchers who will enhance knowledge in organism biology and ecology using a scientific approach; experts who will answer questions, pose diagnoses, suggest initiatives for environmental protection, nature conservation, or sustainable development; and teachers who will transmit knowledge and skills to the next generation.

The programme also encourages students to gain international experience. It offers courses in English, offered in partnership with the Vrije Universiteit Brussel (VUB).

Student mobility and participation in intra- or extra-European exchange programmes is strongly encouraged. In particular, the focuses on BEVT and TROPIMUNDO are strongly oriented towards acquiring knowledge and experience on developing countries.

Mobility of students and their participation in intra- or extra-European exchange programs is strongly encouraged. In particular, the BEVT and TROPIMUNDO finalités are strongly oriented towards the acquisition of knowledge and experience in relation to developing countries.

Students in the research focus with the BEVT module (Biodiversity and Tropical Environments) spend their 2nd semester in Cameroon, Malaysia, or Senegal, where much of the programme is devoted to field work.

Students in the professional focus with the TROPIMUNDO module spend their 2nd semester in the South (Peru, Cameroon, Malaysia, or Australia) and their 3rd semester in a European university other than ULB (Paris, Cayenne, or Florence).

Students in the research focus are encouraged to take part in international exchange programmes (e.g. Erasmus), especially during the first and second

term.

The dissertation may also require field work abroad, especially for students who focus on tropical environments.

Partnership with the Vrije Universiteit Brussel (VUB): several courses—taught in English by professors from ULB, VUB, or in collaboration—are offered to

students of both universities.

The BEVT module is offered in partnership with the Université Pierre et Marie Curie (UPMC), the Muséum National d'Histoire Naturelle (MNHN) in Paris, the Université Cheikh Anta Diop in Dakar (Senegal), and the Universiti Malaysia Terengganu.

The focus on Erasmus Mundus Master programme course TROPIMUNDO is organised in collaboration with the Vrije Universiteit Brussel (VUB), the Université Pierre et Marie Curie (UPMC), the Muséum National d'Histoire Naturelle (MNHN, Paris), the Université de Guyane Française (Cayenne), the Università degli Studi di Firenze (UNIFI, Italy), the Universidad Científica del Perú (UCP, Iquitos, Peru), the Université de Dschang (Cameroon), the Universiti Malaysia Terengganu (Malaysia), and the University of Queensland (UQ, Brisbane, Australia).

Collaborations are also pursued with Federal Scientific Institutions in Belgium (Royal Institute of Natural Sciences, Botanical Garden of Meise, Royal Museum of Central Africa), whose scientific staff is commonly involved in teaching and supervising Master's dissertations.

Access conditions

Programme

Distribution of teaching areas, in credits

Research focus

Organism biology – general courses: 35

Electives: 30

Statistics – data processing: 5

Field courses (in temperate regions (‘general’ module) or in the tropics (‘biodiversity and tropical vegetal environments’ module): 15

Research training (including for the dissertation): 35

Teaching focus

Organism biology – general courses: 35

Statistics – data processing: 5

Field courses (in temperate regions): 15

Didactics: 30

Research training (including for the dissertation): 35

Professional focus: Erasmus Mundus Masters Course in Tropical Biodiversity and Ecosystems (TROPIMUNDO)

Organism biology – general courses: 18-21

Electives: 18-24

Courses on tropical topics: 24-33

Statistics – data processing: 3-16

Field courses (in tropical regions): 8-15

Research training (including for the dissertation): 30

What's next ?

Prospects

Industrial sector (biotech companies, pharmaceutical industry, agro-food industry, ‘green’ technologies): leading research programmes; consulting offices and publishing companies: scientific counseling and communication management; impact studies;

Nature conservation and environmental sector: conservation and management of biodiversity resources; management of nature conservation areas;

Education sector, from secondary schools to higher education institutions;

Academic sector (research and higher education: universities and other higher education institutions, research centres, museums, botanical gardens);

Public sector (local, regional, national, and European level): environmental management, biodiversity conservation and sustainable development: preparation of legal texts, policy implementation; quality control, biosafety, forensic laboratories, development cooperation.

Non-governmental organisations (nature conservation, development cooperation, sustainable development).

As researchers in the academic sector (universities, higher education institutions, museums, botanical gardens, etc.) or the private sector (biotech companies, pharmaceutical firms, agri-food industry), organism biologists are involved in developing fundamental and applied knowledge on living organisms and their functioning and evolution.

As experts in the public sector (public institutions and administrations in charge of environment and nature management, from the local to the European level), in non-governmental organisations (development cooperation, sustainable development), or in private consulting agencies, organism biologists are involved in impact studies, remediating environmental damage, preparing, implementing, and monitoring management plans for nature areas, and conservation, management, and exploitation of biodiversity resources.

Lastly, as teachers and leaders of educational projects in educational institutions, museums, and not-profit organisations in environmental education, biologists take part in science outreach and raising awareness of the role of living organisms for humans.

Industrial sector (biotech companies, pharmaceutical industry, agro-food industry, ‘green’ technologies): leading research programmes; consulting offices and publishing companies: scientific counseling and communication management; impact studies;

Nature conservation and environmental sector: conservation and management of biodiversity resources; management of nature conservation areas;

Education, from secondary schools to higher education institutions;

Academic sector: research and teaching in universities and higher education institutions;

Public sector (local, regional, national, and European level): environment and sustainable development: preparation of legal texts, policy implementation; quality control, biosafety, forensic laboratories, development cooperation, etc.

As a researcher in the academic sector (universities, high schools, museums, botanical gardens ...), or the private sector (biotech companies, pharmaceutical firms, agro-food enterprises), the organism biologist is involved in the development of fundamental and applied knowledge about living organisms, their functioning and evolution.

As an expert in the public sector (public institutions and administrations in charge of environment and nature management, from the local to the European level), in nongovernmental organizations (development cooperation, sustainable development)or in private consulting agencies the organism biologist is involved impact studies, in the implementation of the remediation of damage to the environment, in the preparation, implementation and monitoring of management plans of nature areas, in the conservation, management and exploitation of biodiversity resources.

Finally, as a teacher and leader of educational projects, in educational institutions, museums, not for profit organizations in environmental education, the biologist participates to science diffusion and public awareness of the role of living organisms for humans...

Industrial sector (biotech companies, pharmaceutical firms, agro-food enterprises, “green” technologies): leader of research programs; consultant firms and publishing companies: scientific advisor and responsible of communication; in charge of impact studies;

Nature conservation and environment sector: conservation and management of biodiversity resources; management of nature conservation areas;

Education sector, from secondary schools to higher non university schools;

Academic sector: research and teaching in universities and high schools;

Public sector (local, regional, national, European level): environment and sustainable development: preparation of legal texts, implementation of policies; quality control, biosafety, forensic laboratories, development cooperation;