Carnegie Mellon University

Video text: Automated Science Lab;; Carnegie Mellon University

Handbook and Courses

Please consult the MSAS Handbook [pdf] for details about the curriculum.

The MSAS program will offer concentrations in different scientific fields. The initial concentration will be in Biological Experimentation. Additional concentrations will be offered in future years.

The required courses for the Biological Experimentation concentration is as follows:

Background Modeling & Analysis Automated Science Career Development
Applied Cell and Molecular Biology

Programming for Scientists

Essential Mathematics and Statistics for Scientists

Machine Learning for Scientists
Computational Genomics

Fundamentals of Bioinformatics
Laboratory Methods for Automated Biology I/ll

Automation of Scientific Research

MSAS Capstone and/or M.S. Research

Professional Issues in Automated Science


Automated Science Internship (optional)

Professional and Research Options

During the second year, students will take either two semesters of MSAS Capstone or two semesters of MS research, depending on their career goals.

Students who want to enter the workforce as soon as possible should take two semesters of MSAS Capstone; this is called the ‘professional option’. Those who wish to pursue a Ph.D. after completing their M.S. should take two semesters of MS Research; this is called the ‘research option’.  Students who elect to the Research option must find a research mentor and then enroll in two semesters of M.S. Research. Typically, students contact faculty directly to learn about available research opportunities.

The program’s academic advisor will consult with each student prior to the start of the second year to determine his or her best option. Note that all MSAS students are required to take 02-661 (MSAS Capstone 1), to demonstrate mastery of the techniques of Automated Science.

Graduation Requirements

  • At least 174 units of coursework, which includes the specific courses listed above and a minimum of two Computational Biology department graduate-level electives.
  • An average grade of B or above (GPA = 3.0) in those 174 or more units counted toward degree certification. No grade lower than a C (GPA = 2.0) can be counted toward degree certification.
  • Full-time course registration (at least 36 units) for each semester in the program
  • Courses counted for undergraduate degree certification cannot count for the M.S. degree


Students often secure internships in industry or academia during the summer between the first and second years, and less often during the academic year.  With the approval of the MSAS academic advisor, students may enroll in 02-802, Automated Science Internship, to receive three units of credit for completing an internship.  Approval will only be given if the internship is directly relevant to Automated Science.