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Department of Chemical Engineering and Biotechnology


Chemical Engineering and Biotechnology (BA/MEng) at Cambridge

Chemical engineers and biotechnologists use fundamental science to solve real-world problems, developing environmentally and economically sustainable methods to make chemical and biological products, and tackling global challenges in sustainability, energy and healthcare.

Our undergraduate course is designed to teach the scientific principles that underpin chemical engineering and biotechnology, and their application to real-world systems. The course has a new structure, with the first entrants starting in October 2023. The course deliberately aims to integrate chemical engineering and biotechnology together, rather than these being viewed as separate topics.

As a graduate of the course, your future career could involve:

  • Creating chemical and biological processes to transform molecules into valuable products.
  • Designing chemical and biological products for the benefit of society.
  • Using new technologies to facilitate the energy transition away from fossil fuels and to mitigate the effects of climate change.
  • Provision of improved healthcare and therapeutics.
  • Using systems thinking to improve sustainability of processes and products.

The focus on fundamental principles and the variety of transferable skills you will acquire means there are plenty of career opportunities outside the chemical and biotechnology industries, as well as within them.

Your qualification

You can study for three years to graduate with a BA(Hons) degree, however, most students complete the course in four years and graduate with an MEng qualification.

Both current BA (Hons) and MEng courses are accredited at the appropriate level by the Institution of Chemical Engineers. This means that after graduation and 4 years of relevant experience, students can apply for Chartered Engineer status without taking further exams. Accreditation is subject to satisfactory performance in essential components.

Teaching and facilities

We are housed in a purpose-built, bespoke building with state-of-the-art facilities to support our world-leading research and teaching activities. We have excellent lecture facilities, a recording studio, brand-new teaching and biotechnological laboratories, break-out spaces for small-group teaching and a MakerSpace. Find out more about the academic staff in our department.

Find out more

Watch the course overview presentation by our Director of Teaching, Professor Geoff Moggridge, our see some of our sample lectures on the right.

Key information

Visit the main course page on the University of Cambridge Undergraduate Admissions website to find details on entry requirements, how to apply and life at Cambridge.

Contact us


Telephone: +44 (0)1223 748 999 

Address: Department of Chemical Engineering and Biotechnology, West Cambridge Site, Philippa Fawcett Drive, Cambridge, CB3 0AS 

All photos © Martin Bond