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Protein Structure Determination


There are no classes currently available for registration.


The 3D structure of a protein is important for understanding its function and for rational drug design. Our online short course, Protein Structure Determination, gives you a general overview of the three main methods for determining protein structures and how the quality of these is evaluated:

  • protein X-ray crystallography
  • protein NMR
  • macromolecular electron microscopy

Protein structure is fundamental to understanding how life works at the molecular level. Recent technical advances in structural biology mean more and larger protein complexes are being determined at near atomic resolution. Having already gained a general scientific training, this course will give you an appreciation of how protein structures are determined and the ability to critically evaluate them and the structural biology literature. 

The course features a live online tutorial for each section. It is assessed by a 1.5-hour examination (66%) and regular coursework (34%).

You may also be interested in our courses on Protein Crystallography and Macromolecular Electron Microscopy that go into further depth on the methods above and are ideal if you wish to carry out these techniques yourself.

30 credits at level 7

  • Entry requirements

    Entry requirements

    Most of our short courses have no formal entry requirements and are open to all students.

    This postgraduate-level course is suitable if you are aspiring to work in structural biology or are wanting to understand structural biology publications and working, for example, as a medicinal chemist, pharmacologist, biochemist, neuroscientist, molecular biologist, cell biologist or computational biologist. We accept graduates in any scientific discipline, including computer science and psychology. You will need a basic understanding of protein structure (alpha helix, beta sheet, peptide bond) and some simple organic chemistry. If you do not have this already, then please take our Principles of Protein Structure short course first.

    As part of the enrolment process, you may be required to submit a copy of a suitable form of ID.

    International students who wish to come to the UK to study a short course can apply for a Visitor visa. Please note that it is not possible to obtain a Student visa to study a short course.

  • How to apply

    How to apply

    You register directly onto the classes you would like to take. Classes are filled on a first-come, first-served basis - so apply early. If you wish to take more than one short course, you can select each one separately and then register onto them together via our online application portal. There is usually no formal selection process, although some modules may have prerequisites and/or other requirements, which will be specified where relevant.