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Impact Of Converging Disciplines In Curriculum Design For Biotechnology Minor In Industrial Technology

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2006 Annual Conference & Exposition


Chicago, Illinois

Publication Date

June 18, 2006

Start Date

June 18, 2006

End Date

June 21, 2006



Conference Session

Innovative Curriculum in ET

Tagged Division

Engineering Technology

Page Count


Page Numbers

11.716.1 - 11.716.10



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Paper Authors

author page

Kari Clase Purdue University

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NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

Impact of Converging Disciplines in Curriculum Design for Biotechnology Minor in Industrial Technology

Tremendous advances are being made in pharmaceutical and biotechnology discoveries and their applications (including manufacturing), as well as in health care services. As a result, there is an increasing sophistication of the products and services available and being developed, with an ever-widening scale of applications and marketing. The growth of biotechnology results in ever-expanding needs for college graduates who have knowledge of life-science based products and processes. There have been numerous reports of current and projected shortages of human resources possessing the required knowledge in the growing industry. In order to address the gap between education and the workforce, the Department of Industrial Technology has developed an academic minor in biotechnology being implemented in fall 2004.

This interdisciplinary biotechnology initiative is the result of a partnership among the Department of Industrial Technology, the Department of Biology, and the Department of Pharmacy. The program is administered within the Department of Industrial Technology. The minor is taken while the student continues his/her academic field of study and is made up of the following courses: Fundamentals of Biology, Molecular Biology and Genetics, Cell Biology, Biotechnology Laboratory courses, Regulatory Compliance, Process Quality Control, and Bioinformatics. The minor is available to any Purdue University student majoring in any four-year degree baccalaureate degree program, i.e., science, technology, engineering, agriculture, pharmacy. The purpose of the minor is to offer the graduates of these four-year programs the basic knowledge and understanding of life-science based products, processes, and product quality to seek employment opportunities in the area of biotechnology and biotech-manufacturing.

The objectives of this paper are to describe the design and implementation of the new curriculum. • Three courses within the biotechnology minor have been designed by faculty within the Department of Industrial Technology: Biotechnology Laboratory I, Biotechnology Laboratory II, and Bioinformatics. • The paper describes selection criteria for course content and topics as it pertains to biotechnology manufacturing.

The courses within the biotechnology minor prepare students from multiple degree programs for careers within life science-based industries.


Biotechnology refers to harnessing the properties of a living organism to develop and manufacture products that benefit human life. Although the biotechnology field has existed for nearly a century, scientific advances have caused exponential growth over the past decade. This growth has resulted in an industry with a shortage of employees familiar with and skilled in the biotechnology field and therefore, a dramatic increase in

Clase, K. (2006, June), Impact Of Converging Disciplines In Curriculum Design For Biotechnology Minor In Industrial Technology Paper presented at 2006 Annual Conference & Exposition, Chicago, Illinois. 10.18260/1-2--516

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