Molecular Genetics Major - Bachelor of Science

Ever wondered why humans are so similar yet so different? Study the Molecular Genetics major in the Bachelor of Science to find out more.

Study molecular genetics at AUT to be part of the biotechnology revolution, and help develop new medicines and make agriculture more sustainable. Learn about the basic molecules of life and how they work, how we study them, and how they’re being used to understand our world and to ensure our future health and environment.

Molecular genetics can open doors to a range of careers including medicine and drug development, research, agriculture, conservation management, policy development, product development, food science, microbiology, forensics.


This is part of the Bachelor of Science.

Start date: 2020

Year 1

Complete the following papers

BIOL501 Biological Sampling and Interpretation
CHEM501 Principles of Chemistry
CHEM502 Biological Chemistry
HEAL506 Knowledge, Enquiry and Communication
HEAL507 Health and Environment
MICR501 Microbiology

And at least two of

BIOL502 Plants and Animals
ECOL501 Ecology and Evolution
ENVS501 Biodiversity
ENVS522 Our Dynamic Earth
ENVS523 Human Geography
SCIE503 Biophysics

Year 2 and 3

Level 6 papers

Complete the following papers:
CHEM602 Biochemistry|
GENE602 Principles of Genetics
GENE603 Cells, Genes and Molecules
SCIE602 Research Techniques

Level 7 papers

Complete at least three of the following papers:
CHEM707 Protein and Metabolic Biochemistry
GENE701 Molecular Genetics
GENE702 Medical Diagnostics
GENE703 Computational Genetics
GENE704 Microbial Genetics

Plus five elective papers, or three electives and the Research Project paper.

Workplace experience

In your final year you can enrol in the Research Project paper (30 points) if you have at least a B grade average in 60 points at level 6. This may involve working on a project related to your major.

SCIE701 Research Project

Institutes and employer organisations involved include:

  • Plant and Food Research
  • Manaaki Whenua Landcare Research
  • AgResearch
  • Institute of Environmental Science and Research (ESR)
  • SCION (Rotorua)
  • Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment
  • Environmental Protection Authority
  • Ministry for Primary Industries

Research scientist for government and private research institutes, or Non-Government Organisations (NGOs) including:

  • Plant and Food Research
  • Manaaki Whenua Landcare Research
  • AgResearch
  • Institute of Environmental Science and Research (ESR)
  • SCION (Rotorua)

Scientist working for government departments and ministries or regional or city councils, including:

  • Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment
  • Auckland Council
  • Environmental Protection Authority
  • Ministry for Primary Industries
  • Department of Conservation

*After completing a graduate diploma in education.

Key features
  • High demand for molecular geneticists
  • Skills to work with meta data
  • Opportunity to complete a major research project in your final year
See yourself as
  • Having creative problem-solving skills
  • Interested in the genetic basis of life
  • Curious about how genetic data can be used in medicine, conservation and agriculture

The information on this page was correct at time of publication. For a comprehensive overview of AUT qualifications, please refer to the Academic Calendar.