Postgraduate Certificate:
Techniques in Structural Molecular Biology (TSMB)

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Distance Learning: Techniques in Structural Molecular Biology (TSMB)

Postgraduate Certificate

Course details


Course Aims

This Postgraduate Certificate provides students with a theoretical background for the techniques commonly used in structural biology.

There are 12 sections of course material with each section being 2 to 4 weeks long. There are 3 breaks during the syllabus during which tests and self-assessment take place.



Most students will need to spend between 6 and 8 hours per week during term time. The programme is taught entirely via the Internet, using a range of innovative techniques including online tutorials. Protein structures are presented and manipulated using interactive graphics embedded in web pages.

All teaching is Internet-based. The course material is released on a dedicated, password protected website in twelve sections. Students interact with their tutors and fellow students through email lists, submit written assignments by email, and attend online tutorials in real time using a chat-room based interface. They also have access to the electronic journals available in the Birkbeck e-library.



One written paper (which may be taken at an exam centre close to you); and coursework.


Technical requirements

There are some basic technical requirements for all our distance learning courses. All course correspondence will be electronically based. You will need:

  • Regular access to a computer (PC, UNIX or Mac operating systems) capable of running forms and graphics browsers (e.g. Firefox, Netscape, MacWeb XEmacs, Mosaic).
  • Reliable access to the internet.
  • Some familiarity with installation of simple software packages and with transferring/downloading data.
  • Familiarity with E-mail.


Special features
  • TSMB may be taken as a stand-alone Postgraduate Certificate or as part of the School of Crystallography's innovative distance learning MSc in Structural Molecular Biology.
  • Innovative use of the Internet providing flexible study patterns.
  • Research Assessment Exercise grade 5A department


Course contacts

TSMB Course Administrator

Enquiries about the course should be directed to:

Room 612
Department of Biological Sciences
Birkbeck, University of London
Malet Street, London WC1E 7HX
United Kingdom

Phone: +44 (0)20 7631 6238

TSMB Admissions Tutor/ Course director

Dr Nicholas Keep

Telephone: 020 7631 6852