Masters Degree in Integrative Genomics

Overview of the MSIG Program

The program is designed to provide students seeking a MSIG the necessary skills and intellectual background to work cooperatively with others in a research area that takes a systems-wide approach and incorporates an organism’s history and natural environment to understand the organization and expression of its many genes and gene products.

The students should be able to:

  • Identify the organisms and areas in ecology and evolution that link best to genomics and specifically functional genomics
  • Be familiar with, and in some cases have a working knowledge of, the
    • Molecular,
    • Statistical, and
    • Database tools for genomic analyses.

Specifically, the program will emphasize the areas of:

  • Genome comparisons,
  • Structure and function in communities,
  • Life history patterns,
  • Stress responses, and
  • Recent advances in the field of genomics.

Major competencies include:

  • Using equipment associated with
    • Gene discovery,
    • Sequencing genomes, and
    • Transcript profiling,
  • Being able to analyze data and think critically about one’s own research and that of others,
  • Communicating results effectively both orally and in writing, and
  • Working as part of a research team.

Students in the internship track will also take a marketing course and learn about the basics of marketing and management. Instead of conducting their own research, they will do an internship with a biotechnology company to learn about the business and gain technical and analytical skills.

 A Master of Science degree in Integrative Genomics is a new area of biological research that seeks to place the functional significance of an organism’s many genes into an ecological and evolutionary context. Integrative Genomics allows scientists to understand the success story that each species represents.

  1. Black Hills State University's MSIG program provides many unique opportunities:
    1. Location: We are situated in the Black Hills, which provides a natural laboratory for Integrative Genomics. We are also close to the Deep Underground Science and Engineering Laboratory (DUSEL) at Homestake Mine, allowing for collaboration with other major universities (to study, for example, the meta-genomics of the unique microbial communities found in extreme environments).
    2. Faculty: Our faculty encompass a variety of professional areas and interests:
      1. evolution and genetics
      2. ecological genetics
      3. conservation biology
      4. plant and animal physiology
      5. molecular biology
      6. molecular ecology
      7. functional ecology
      8. signal transduction
      9. statistical genetics
      10. microbiology
      11. transcript profiling
      12. behavior genetic analysis
    3. Facilities: Our state-of-the-art Ecological Genomics and Conservation Genetics laboratories and the Western South Dakota DNA Core Facility are among the modern laboratories that exist on our campus.
    4. Research: Research at BHSU involves various collaborations at major institutions.