Gene Expression and Pathways

Knowledge of how gene expression is regulated is essential to understanding cellular structure and function, both in normal cells and in the disease state.


No prerequisites

Drug Quality Fundamentals: Quality Control of Small Molecule Drugs and Biologics

This introductory course provides an overview of key drug quality concepts and standards for the pharmaceutical and biotechnology industries. Interactive lectures explore quality system and control process best practices in clinical development, drug manufacturing and for commercial products. You'll learn the roles and responsibilities of quality assurance (QA) and quality control (QC) in ensuring the safety, efficacy and quality of drug products. You'll contrast specific quality attributes of large-molecule recombinant biological products with those of small molecule drugs.


Offering code Offering title
BTEC.X401 Drug Development Process
REGL.X400 Good Manufacturing Practices
REGL.X403 Regulation of Drugs and Biologics

Molecular Diagnostics

Rapid advancements in molecular diagnostics are drawing the attention of the bioscience industry, regulatory agencies, clinicians, patients and insurers alike. This survey course provides a foundation in the basic science and technologies that underlie the emerging field of molecular diagnostics, and highlights potential impacts on the healthcare landscape.
Interactive lectures explore the intricate relationship between the human genome and diagnostic tests.


No prerequisites

Sections :

Section Start Date Time Location Cost Instructor Name Full Schedule Enroll
BTEC.X410.(1) 7/7/2018 09:30 AM SANTA CLARA 580 Parisa Mousavi-Shafaei View Enroll

Bioscience Program Information and Q&A Session

This free evening event is an informal discussion geared towards new or returning students interested in one or more of the Bioscience certificate programs -- Biotechnology, Bioinformatics, Clinical Trials, Medical Devices, and Regulatory Affairs. The event begins with a short overview of the Bioscience certificates, followed by an open-floor segment for audience questions.


No prerequisites

Bioinformatics Certificate Completion Review

Once all of the certificate requirements have been met and your final grades are posted, please access your Student Portal to enroll in the “Certificate Completion Review” to begin the review process. Please allow up to 4 weeks to receive your certificate.


No prerequisites

Sections :

Section Start Date Time Location Cost Instructor Name Full Schedule Enroll
O-CE0060.(008) // 04:00 PM 75 View Enroll

Biotechnology Certificate Completion Review

Once all of the certificate requirements have been met and your final grades are posted, please access your Student Portal to enroll in the “Certificate Completion Review” to begin the review process. Please allow up to 4 weeks to receive your certificate.


No prerequisites

Sections :

Section Start Date Time Location Cost Instructor Name Full Schedule Enroll
O-CE0061.(008) // 04:00 PM 75 View Enroll



"In my personal opinion, it is the best time to be a computational biologist, as we have access to innumerable amount of resources and information; and biology is filled with unanswered questions."

Forbes, January 2017
How Machine Learning Is Transforming Bioscience Research"

Is Data In Your DNA?
When you view the world through a cellular lens, it’s hard to know just how big an impact your work could have. Molecular biologists, computational scientists and bioinformatics professionals tackle big subjects at the tiniest level and affect great change. Our Bioinformatics certificate offers a rich curriculum in statistical analysis, molecular biology, computational biology and more.

Pick up skills course by course or declare candidacy for the certificate to add a UC credential to your resume.

Biology Meets Big Data
Our program combines a strong focus on molecular biology with the computational programming skills you’ll need to pursue a career in this exciting field.

Contribute to Research
From stem cell biology to drug development and cancer research, our courses offer the theoretical foundation you need to make a difference in the scientific world.

Earn Two Certificates With Fewer Units—Complete two Bioscience certificates, simultaneously or in sequence, with fewer units, by selecting shared electives.

"The instructors are all people from the industry who give you the background you need, but at the same time they tell you, practically speaking, what you need to know."John Irving, Alumnus


•  Global Bioinformatics Market Expected to Grow to $95.5B by 2025  (, July 2017)
•  The Future Of Healthcare Delivery Relies On These Four Areas Of Informatics Research (Forbes, November 2017)
•  The Collaborative Nature Of Healthcare Innovation (Forbes, June 2017)

The Profession

"Over the years, I have had students in my class with bachelor’s and master's degrees, and doctoral-level experience in varied subjects, such as nursing and dentistry. I have also had intellectual property lawyers working in biotech firms who want a greater understanding of the process to help bring a new drug to the marketplace."

— Edward Rozhon, Chair/Instructor Bionformatics and Biotechnology programs

High Job Demand • High Salary • Great Opportunity to Benefit Society

Whether your focus is molecular biology or computational analysis, the future of bioinformatics is blindingly bright. In early 2017, MoneyCNN ranked one popular bioinformatics job, biostatistician, among the top 50 best jobs in America due to its high salary scale, personal satisfaction, flexibility and benefit to society. The estimated job growth varies from 10 percent over the next 10 years, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, up to 34 percent in the next 10 years, according to MoneyCNN,  

Students taking Bioscience courses at UCSC Silicon Valley tend to are a highly diverse group comprised of different educational backgrounds, country of origin and career goals. Our courses and certificate programs are aimed at people who are in the field and want to pivot to a new field, those who want to start a whole new career, or professionals who are working to stay current in the rapidly changing world of bioinformatics. Learn to apply math and statistics or a background in computer programming, to research the latest public health issues, conceive and design studies, work with problematic data, analyze results, and how to publish or present findings.  Other common careers enhanced by a bioinformatics certificate include:
•  Medical professionals such as physicians or genetic counselors
•  Biologists who employ computational methods
•  Bioinformatics engineers who create the computational methods to use in science research
•  Core facilities researchers at scientific institutions
•  Software developers who develop new algorithms and tools for bioinformatics research
•  Educators or PhDs interested in pursuing a teaching career in tandem with research
•  Data analysts who want to focus on scientific applications

$55,570 - $91,520, typical annual salary for a bioinformatics scientist (CareerOneStop, 2017)
$74,790 - median annual salary for a bioinformatics scientist (O.Net, 2017)
$131,904 - annual salary for a bioinformatics scientist in the San Jose area (Glassdoor, November 2017)
$91,800 - annual salary for a biostatistician in the U.S. (MoneyCNN, 2017)

“A lot of the PCR/gene expression jobs I was looking into wanted someone with a background in bioinformatics. I realized, while it’s great to have knowledge, lots of times people want some sort of objective measurement of achievement. The Extension program offered a credential that I could put on my resume.”

John Irving, Alum, Bioinformatics certificate, 2013


“The things I learned at UCSC Extension, along with the experience I already had in the lab, really helped me get the job.

 Niharika Deodhar, Alum, Bioinformatics, Biotechnology certificates, 2016

Program Objectives
•  As a graduate of the Bioinformatics certificate program, you’ll have the skills to:
•  Use public domain bioinformatics tools, including Genbank and PBD
•  Employ the Statistical Design of Experiment (SDOE) to analyze experimental data and factors affecting outputs
•  Distinguish key molecular biology techniques, including gene cloning, manipulation and sequencing; PCR; RNA interference; and gene expression analysis
•  Complete a computational biology project using Java
•  Recognize sequence analysis techniques such as Hidden Markov Models and RNA analysis
•  Query and read DNA sequences from Fasta files

At UCSC Extension, courses are developed by program chairs and faculty according to the rigorous University of California standards and designed to meet the economic needs of each industry. Our instructors represent the best of both worlds.

Program Chair
EDWARD ROZHON, Ph.D., has an extensive background [UE1]  in microbiology and immunology and worked in the non-clinical and clinical areas of drug development. He has contributed to the development of numerous drugs for the treatment of viral and bacterial diseases, autoimmune diseases, as well as cancer. Dr. Rozhon has worked at major biotech and pharmaceutical companies. He recently retired from Genentech where he was a senior manager of clinical trials for autoimmune, infectious, and ophthalmologic diseases, and previously worked with including Schering-Plough and Roche. . Dr. Rozhon completed a doctorate at Indiana University and pursued postdoctoral training in neurovirology at the University of Alabama School of Medicine and at Northwestern University School of Medicine, where he was subsequently appointed as faculty. His research focused on the pathogenesis of viral diseases. He has published research papers in peer-reviewed scientific journals and authored chapters in several textbooks. Dr. Rozhon has taught courses in drug development and virology at UCSC Extension for more than 15 years.


Program Format
UCSC Extension’s Bioinformatics courses are offered at UC Santa Cruz Silicon Valley Campus, a beautiful facility located on the corner of Scott and Bowers in Santa Clara. Many of our courses are available online. Choose courses according to your interest or declare candidacy in the certificate for a more comprehensive overview of the field.

Bioinformatics Courses
16 unit minimum
Prerequisites: 2 (only if needed)
Required: 3 courses

Electives: 3-4 courses; 7 units necessary
To complete the certificate, you must complete a minimum of 16 units; 9 units of required courses and at least 7 units of elective courses.
GPA: 3.0, with a C or better in all courses. 
•  An introductory course in molecular biology
•  Statistics,
5 units         

Required Courses:
•  Bioinformatics Tools, Databases and Methods,
3 units
•  Experimental Methods in Molecular Biology, 3 units
•  Statistical Analysis and Modeling for Bioinformatic and Biomedical Applications, 3 units

7 units required
•  DNA Microarrays: Principles, Applications and Data Analysis
, 3 units
•  Drug Discovery, Introduction, 3 units
•  Gene Expression and Pathways, 2 units
•  Genomics and Next Generation DNA Sequencing: Methods and Applications, 3 units

All courses require a familiarity with the principles of modern molecular biology. You can satisfy this requirement with an introductory course in molecular biology (taken within the last five years) or with equivalent professional experience. In order to take "Statistical Analysis and Modeling for Bioinformatics and Biomedical Applications," you need to already understand probability and statistics. Students without this background should first complete "Statistics" or the equivalent prior to taking "Statistical Analysis and Modeling for Bioinformatics and Biomedical Applications."

Recommended Course Sequence
After completing the prerequisite, those new to the field of bioinformatics should start with "Bioinformatics Tools, Databases" and "Methods and Experimental Methods in Molecular Biology." Courses may then be taken in any sequence, unless otherwise specified in the individual course description.

Want to learn more about our curriculum in person? Join us for a free Info Session to learn more about our courses, faculty, and program requirements. Learn more on our Events page.

The rough cost of the Bioinformatics certificate is estimated at $6000.



No application is required to enroll in our courses or certificate programs. Information about our open enrollment process can be found on our Enrollment page. If you have any questions about our programs, please contact the UCSC Extension Outreach office by phone at 408-861-3860, or by email at From the schedule below, click on a course title to see sections available for enrollment. You may view the full course schedule, or enroll in the course, by clicking the respective button. The course type offerings (classroom, online, blended) are guidelines and subject to change. A blended (hybrid) course has both classroom and online components.

Declaring Candidacy

If you intend to pursue a certificate, declaring candidacy establishes program requirements early in your studies, so any subsequent curriculum changes do not affect your progress. It does not limit what courses you can take; and it helps you structure your professional development program for maximum benefit to you. Go the declare candidacy page to establish your requirements for this program. Certificate program requirements must be completed within three years of declaring candidacy.

Course Schedule

1. Prerequisite(s):
classroom : Classroom
online : Online
hybrid : Blended
Offering Code Offering Units Fall Winter Spring Summer
BINF.X404 Statistics 5.0 Online Online Online Online
2. Required Courses
classroom : Classroom
online : Online
hybrid : Blended
3. Elective Courses
classroom : Classroom
online : Online
hybrid : Blended
4. Required Certificate Review
classroom : Classroom
online : Online
hybrid : Blended
Offering Code Offering Units Fall Winter Spring Summer
O-CE0060 Bioinformatics Certificate Completion Review