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PhD Programme in Plant Breeding and Biotechnology

Duration: Six Semesters



The programme specific objectives include among others to:

a)      give graduates an opportunity to broaden their knowledge in plant breeding and biotechnology that will permit them to efficiently engage in science-led agricultural development;

b)      produce high caliber scientist who will lead training, manage and innovate the Research for Development agenda, and

c)      strategically invest in the building of a strong national-regional-global consortium to rationalize regional resources for agricultural innovative within Africa.


Structure and content

Admission of students: Candidates must satisfy all minimum requirements for admission into a PhD programme in Makerere University including holding a relevant MSc Degree in plant sciences.

Type of the programme: The PhD (Plant Breeding and Biotechnology) is constituted by course work and research leading to writing a thesis and accommodates both full-time and part-time students. The minimum duration is 36 months and the maximum is 7 years.

PhD qualification examinations: All students are required to sit and pass an oral and written PhD candidature exam to be considered PhD students.

Guidance: A doctoral committee is established for each candidate to set acceptable standards for the doctoral programme, and serve as the students advisory and performance assessment committee. The committee undertakes to monitor the student’s progress throughout the study period on behalf of the University Higher Degrees and Research Committee.


Year 1: Semester 1
Core Courses
CRS 9101 Applied Plant Breeding
CRS 9102 Advanced Molecular Biology and Genetics
CRS 9103 Applied Agricultural Statistics and Research Methods
CRS 9104 Advanced Plant Breeding
CRS 8109 Agronomy and Crop Physiology
CRS 9106 Molecular Plant Microbe Interactions
CRS 9107 Sustainable Seed Systems
CRS 9206 Personal Development and Soft Skills
Year 1: Semester II
Core Courses
ABM 7201 Agricultural and Food Marketing
ABM 8202 Programme Planning and Management
CRS 9202 Applied Molecular Biology and In Vitro Techniques
CRS 9203 Bioinformatics and Functional Genomics
CRS 9204 Advanced Insect Pest Management Systems
CRS 9205 Disease Management and Crop Loss Assessment
CRS 8201 Quantitative and Biometrical Genetics
SOS 9201 Soil- Plant- Atmosphere relations
Year 2 and 3:
CRS 9207 Dissertation (Submission and Defense)

Learning outcomes

The ability to

  • comprehend and evaluate new technologies in relation to existing knowledge
  • transfer principles and results from basic and strategic sciences to the development of ideas and processes.
  • evaluate methods for solving complex development problems
  • expand principles from basic science to organize experiments and solve problems
  • analyze and comprehend existing knowledge and to transfer knowledge to develop hypotheses and evaluate their usefulness in the context of farming problems
  • ability to formulate ethical problems and clearly communicate possible solutions
    • An understanding of all aspects of biotechnology related to crop improvement and management
    • Competence to design, experiment and develop new crop varieties
    • An awareness of attitudes to emerging scientific innovations and the ability to advise policy development for the greater benefit of society.
    • Personal mastery and soft skills to innovate change efficiently and work with communities and other actors

Recognition and accreditation obtained:

Uganda National Council for Higher Education (UNCHE)


Tuition Language