THE scientific discipline of medical bioscience investigates human health and disease, with some US$240bil (RM1tril) spent on research and development annually.
Therefore, picking a university that could instil the knowledge required – such as biology, anatomy and biochemistry and the para-clinical fields of immunology, microbiology, pathology, toxicology and pharmacology – in a multidisciplinary approach to healthcare is crucial.
Moreover, studying at a university with a stellar international reputation also has an added advantage, something that Monash University Malaysia alumni Dr Kaiser Karim can attest to.
According to Dr Kaiser, who graduated in 2013, the university’s strong global reputation in biomedical research was a factor for him to join its medical bioscience programme at the School of Science.
He shared that Monash’s education and training helped strengthen his application for a PhD and subsequently, his current role at Bit Bio in the United Kingdom.
“At Monash Malaysia, I was amongst an international mix of talented and brilliant young minds, which is no different from Cambridge.
“Coming from a small town in Selangor, studying at Monash University provided some of the informal education one hopes for when studying abroad. There, I developed a globalised view of the world,” he said.
Roadmap for success
Meanwhile, Novo Nordisk medical scientific liaison Dr Joelin New, who completed her bachelor degree in 2007, said the programme was comprehensive and well structured.
She said, “I enjoyed the learning process and was always looking forward to the next lecture session. The programme was also helmed by qualified and dedicated teaching staff.
Dr New also shared that the knowledge and skills learnt at the university has been a great help in her career.
"The programme trained me to be independent in my thought processes, be thorough in communicating my ideas and empowered me to handle any challenges in a constructive manner — similarly to how a hypothesis should be tested and dissected in a research project.
“These are important traits that employers will look out for when scouting for potential candidates and personally, it has proven to be useful when encountering various hurdles," she said.
“Students were free to hold intellectual discussions with their mentors and peers alike,” shared Dr New on her time at Monash University Malaysia.
With the varying degrees of lockdown imposed on the country, educators have been resilient in their efforts to ensure that lessons continue for students.
School of Science senior lecturer Dr Michelle Yap Khai Khun is committed to providing educational continuity for her students by creating user-friendly e-learning modules on a platform called LT online to develop active learning during the pandemic.
Dr Yap said, “This online tool addresses outcome-based learning and emphasises the importance of inclusivity and diversity of experiential learning, especially during this unprecedented time.”
The online tool is fully interactive and customisable. It can create interactive questions such as image annotations, multiple choices and graphs for pre-lab, in-lab, or even post-lab assessments.
The tool also allows for group work and collaborative learning. Students can access remotely to LT online without the need for special software — which is especially important during the pandemic.
The medical bioscience programme also aims to provide students with an opportunity to explore the practical side of their disciplines through hands-on laboratory sessions, which in turn would aid in developing problem-solving and critical thinking skills.
Besides that, students would have to complete a compulsory internship programme at hospitals, private pathology and universities research laboratories.
Students can also choose to pursue a career in pharmaceutical companies, by introducing and providing expert knowledge of new drugs and equipment, or also in government regulatory bodies to protect and promote public health and safety through the implementation of proper regulations.
For more information on the courses offered at the School of Science, Monash University Malaysia, visit here.