Skip to main content

Trinity College Dublin, The University of Dublin

Menu Search



B.A.; 4 years full-time; 515*

What is Biochemistry?

Biochemistry deals with the structure and function of the building blocks of life, such as proteins, lipids and nucleic acids, and how these various components work together in living organisms. Biochemists have developed key technologies and instruments that are used widely in the life and medical sciences. Biochemistry helps us understand the molecular basis of disease and disorders, it is concerned with the development of new therapeutics, and all major pharmaceutical companies use it to help aid their development of new drugs for cancer, infectious diseases and other pathological conditions. Biochemistry is also an essential component of biotechnology, where processes for the production of foods and fuels, and enzymes and other proteins are developed.

Is this the right course for you?

If you are interested in chemistry or biology then biochemistry is a good choice for you. Biochemistry has a strong medical slant at Trinity and is an ideal choice if you are interested in biomedical sciences.

Why study Biochemistry at Trinity?

Biochemistry is an internationally recognised discipline at Trinity. There are currently fifteen principal investigators in the discipline of Biochemistry within the school of biochemistry working on topics such as cancer biology, obesity, diabetes, neurobiology, neurodegeneration, autoimmunity, parasitology, immune-metabolism, protein structure and drug development. The School is located in a ‘state of the art’ research and teaching facility, the Trinity Biomedical Sciences Institute, which has enhanced many activities in the school and allowed direct interaction with colleagues in immunology, medicine, pharmacy, chemistry and neuroscience.

What will you study?


Protein Structure and Function, Membrane and Cell Biology, Nucleic Acids and Gene Expression, Biochemistry in Health and Disease, Research Skills and Biochemical Analysis.


Neurobiology, Developmental Biology, Microbial Diseases, Stem Cell Biology, Cancer Biology, Metabolic Diseases, Structural Biochemistry and Cellular Imaging, Immunology, Research Project in Biochemistry.

If you would like to find out more detailed information on all the modules offered, see:

Study abroad

The school participates in the Erasmus scheme which offers the opportunity for students to spend their third year studying in a university in the UK (University of Glasgow), France (Université Joseph Fourier, Grenoble) or Germany (University of Mainz). Further information on the year abroad programme, and a list of partner universities, can be found at:


This degree will equip you to work in all major aspects of biochemistry, cell and molecular biology. Currently biochemistry graduates work in hospitals, commercial laboratories dealing with analysis, biotechnology, food science, pharmaceuticals or diagnostics. Biochemistry graduates also benefit from their training in critical thinking, analytical reasoning and presentation and communication skills. Consequently, our recent graduates are in high demand in careers not related directly to biochemistry such as communication, information systems, teaching, management, patent law and journalism. Examples of companies where biochemistry graduates from Trinity are employed include Abbot, Andor Technology, Kerry Group, MSD, Novartis, and Pfizer. In addition, recent graduates also work in organisations such as the HSE, Forensic Science Ireland, Teagasc and also in science journalism in RTE, BBC, Nature group. Biochemistry graduates are also employed in scientific administration in organizations such as the HRB, the Wellcome Trust and the European Commission. Many graduates are also employed in teaching at second and third level.

Further information


Email: | Tel: +353 1 896 1608

Graduate Profile

Liz Bonnin

Science and Wildlife TV Presenter, Masters in Wild Animal Biology and Conservation.

B. A. Mod. Biochemistry

Ever since I moved to Dublin I wanted to go to Trinity College. I used to walk around the walls of the college, saying to my school friends Some day I am going to go there!". Thankfully I made it into the college and I still believe it is the best college in the country.

The first two years of the course were excellent, made up of a large year, covering all the sciences including zoology, genetics and microbiology giving us a really knowledge of each discipline. By the third year, you got to choose the science you wished to specialise in and because I had a natural ability for biology and chemistry, combined with the fact that I found the whole idea of understanding all biological processes down to their chemical equations really interesting, I chose Biochemistry. The classes at this stage were much smaller and therefore you got a lot more out of each class.

Studying Biochemistry at Trinity College certainly gave me a real sense of achievement and there is no doubt that the discipline you learn, the skills you acquire and the experiences you have here will last you a lifetime. I am always very proud to say I went to Trinity.

I applied for my Masters at the Zoological Society of London last September and although I had not specialised in Zoology, which was a requirement for the course, the fact that I went to Trinity certainly made a big difference. Trinity College has an excellent reputation for its academic standard and having a degree from the college will undoubtedly open doors for you in the future - it certainly did for me!

Graduate profile

Name: John Rouse, B.A. (Biochemistry)

Job Title: Principal Investigator/Scientist

Why did you choose TCD?

At the time I applied, TCD had the reputation for being the best university in the whole of Ireland - and it still does! The average class size in the junior (third) and senior (fourth) sophister years in Natural Sciences, when students start to study a specialised" topic, is much smaller than in other universities. This means it is easier to discuss interesting topics during lectures, and to ask questions. In addition, the choice of disciplines available for specialising in was brilliant, and is even greater these days. These factors together with the course description, which sounded very interesting, led me to choose TCD. And it turned out to be the right decision - 100%! Also, it's a lovely place.

What did you think of your time of TCD?

It was pretty amazing. In the first two years, classes are big and you have the chance to meet a lot of people; I still keep in touch with people I met at that stage. If you are really interested in science then the first years are incredible because at last, you can scratch past the surface of really interesting topics only alluded to in secondary school. You learn about things, weird and wonderful that you didn't even know existed! I'm now a biochemist and I really only discovered this discipline in my second year at TCD, I didn't really know about it before. At the end of the second year, you choose a specialised subject - biochemistry in my case - and become part of the relevant department. That's nice because you kind of enter in a more intimate environment, like a family. Lectures in third and fourth years are amazing because you get to learn about your favourite subject in great detail; I couldn't get enough! One set of lectures I heard in fourth year inspired me to start working on a topic that I still work on today.

Where did you go next?

I went to do a Ph.D. - a doctorate - in biochemistry at the University of Dundee, because it is one of the best research centres in the world. I spent three great years there and was lucky enough to be one of the first people to discover a new enzyme in cells that we subsequently found to be important for fighting infection. When I finished my Ph.D., I went to do post-doctoral research at the University of Cambridge, UK. In 2002, I went back to Dundee to set up my own research laboratory and that's where I have been ever since. These days we are trying to understand what goes wrong in cells before they turn cancerous and how cells deal with DNA damage.

How did being at TCD help your career?

TCD graduates are in serious demand in Dundee and in many other universities that I have visited around the world. The extremely high standard and depth of training at TCD is very highly regarded and a high percentage of graduates have gone on to do very well in science. These days, more and more people have primary degrees - some are of a higher standard that others. There is a more competition than ever for research posts and other jobs but a degree from TCD really does provide graduates with a major advantage.

Course Options




4 years full-time

Points Required


CAO code (Central Applications Office code) is


Minimum entry points required are 515*
More information on minimum entry points


Students who wish to study Biochemistry for their degree apply to the Science degree (TR071) and may select Biochemistry as their specialist subject for the 3rd and 4th years.

Junior Freshman (first year) prerequisites: Chemistry CH1101 and Chemistry CH1102. Also, Mathematics or Mathematical methods.

Senior Freshman (second year) prerequisites: Biology BY2201, BY2203, BY2205 and BY2208.

For details of the first two years of the Science course, including entry requirements, see TR071: Science (common entry).

Admission Requirements

For general admission requirements please click here


To apply to this course, click on the relevant Apply Link below

EU Applicants

Read the information about how to apply, then apply directly to CAO.

Mature Student – Supplementary Application Form

Read the information about how to apply as a mature student then select the link below to complete the TCD Supplementary Application Form for mature students.

Science, 4 years full-time Closing Date: 01/FEB/2016

Non-EU Applicants

  • Science, 4 years full-time Closing Date: 30/JUN/2016
  • CAO code (Central Applications Office code) is



    Students who wish to study Biochemistry for their degree apply to the Science degree (TR071) and may select Biochemistry as their specialist subject for the 3rd and 4th years.

    Junior Freshman (first year) prerequisites: Chemistry CH1101 and Chemistry CH1102. Also, Mathematics or Mathematical methods.

    Senior Freshman (second year) prerequisites: Biology BY2201, BY2203, BY2205 and BY2208.

    For details of the first two years of the Science course, including entry requirements, see TR071: Science (common entry).