Biology BSc (Hons)

4 years with placement year, starting in September 2018

Develop the knowledge and skills to play a vital role as a practical scientist and interpreter of modern bioscience.

You will learn about life on all scales, from the molecular to global ecosystems. You’ll start by studying a broad range of topics in modern biosciences before focussing on a few specific areas of biology. Specialisms include areas such as organismal interrelationships, developmental biology and genomic evolution.

In the first year you’ll study a broad introduction to biosciences through a set of core units. You’ll also gain hands-on experience of practical scientific techniques in dedicated undergraduate laboratories. You will be able to use your fundamental knowledge base to decide what area of biology you’d like to specialise in later.

In the final year you’ll undertake a research project, giving you first-hand experience as a researcher. Research areas include evolution and biodiversity, infection and immunity, industrial biotechnology and developmental biology.

You’ll graduate with a solid foundation for further study or for graduate roles where a broader knowledge of biosciences is needed. The skills you develop will also prepare you for a wide array of other careers.

Course structure

This course lasts 4 years. It starts in September 2018 and ends in 2022. Induction week starts on 24 September 2018.

  • Year 1
  • Year 2
  • Placement
  • Year 4

Units

As part of your course, you will take compulsory units covering key concepts. You may also be able to take optional units which assist you in developing your own interests.

You need to take 60 credits in each year of your course (usually split equally into 30 credits for each semester), so the number of optional units you can take depends on the number of compulsory units in each year of the course.

Six credits are the equivalent of at least 120 hours of study, including contact time with staff and independent study.

Compulsory course units

These compulsory units are currently being studied by our students, or are proposed new units.

Placement

Apply your skills and knowledge to a year working professionally. You’ll be employed full-time in a role that might be undertaken by a graduate. It will broaden your experience and transferable skills, giving you a competitive edge when applying for graduate jobs.

We have links with some leading employers including Cancer Research UK, GlaxoSmithKline, Field Studies Council, Public Health England, Royal Botanic Gardens Kew and Science Technology and Facilities Council (STFC).

Placement opportunities may not be guaranteed. Find out more about placements.

Learning and assessment

Learning

  • Laboratory sessions
  • Lectures
  • Seminars
  • Tutorials
  • Workshops

Assessment

  • Coursework
  • Essay
  • Multiple choice examination
  • Oral assessment
  • Practical work
  • Seminar
  • Written examination
  • Other

Contact time with staff

In your first year, you should expect to spend 30% of your time in a lecture or seminar setting and 70% of your time in independent study. Your unit option choices will determine your future contact hours.

Find out more about contact time with staff
Ellie McMullen
“The Biology course has really opened my eyes to the number of opportunities available to me once I graduate. Being taught by some of the top researchers in their fields has been truly inspiring.”
Ellie McMullen

BSc Biology with placement year (2017)

Entry requirements

Your application, especially your personal statement, should demonstrate your enthusiasm for studying biology. This might include relevant reading, voluntary or work experience, areas of interest from your current studies or other relevant extra-curricular and co-curricular activities. When describing your experiences you should reflect on what you have learnt from them, how they have influenced your development or how they are relevant to your future studies.

You will need a strong performance in Biology and a second science or mathematics subject as part of your entry qualifications. The second subject might be:

  • Chemistry
  • Electronics
  • Environmental Science
  • Food Science or Food Technology
  • Geography
  • Geology
  • Mathematics or Further Mathematics
  • Physics
  • Psychology
  • Statistics

If you are taking A levels, we may be unable to consider an A level in your own language (unless it is English or Welsh). We do not accept A levels in General Studies. If you are taking a GCE A level in a science subject, you will need to pass any separate science practical endorsement.

Qualifications

Select the country where your qualification comes from.

United Kingdom qualifications

Typical offer A level

AAA or A*AB

AAA or A*AB including A in Biology and an A in a second science or mathematics subject.

The second essential subject can be one of the following: Chemistry, Mathematics, Physics, Geography, Psychology, Further Mathematics, Environmental Science/Studies, Food Science (or Food Technology), Electronics, Geology, Statistics.

A level subjects that will not be considered in your application

A level General Studies will not be considered. We may be unable to consider an A level in your own language (unless it is English or Welsh).

Alternative offer A level

AAB

AAB including grade A in Biology and a second science or mathematics subject plus one of the following:

  • grade A in an EPQ
  • grade B in the Welsh Bacc Skills Challenge Certificate
  • grade M1 in Cambridge Pre-U Global Perspectives

Students presenting with one of the above project qualifications should receive both the typical offer and the alternative.

The second essential subject can be one of the following:

  • Chemistry
  • Mathematics
  • Physics
  • Geography
  • Psychology
  • Further Mathematics
  • Environmental Science/Studies
  • Food Science (or Food Technology)
  • Electronics
  • Geology
  • Statistics

A level subjects that will not be considered in your application

A level General Studies will not be considered. We may be unable to consider an A level in your own language (unless it is English or Welsh).

Typical offers for other qualifications

International Baccalaureate

36 points overall and 6, 6, 6 or 7, 6, 5 in three Higher Level subjects including 6 in HL Biology and a second HL science or mathematics subject.

Access to HE Diploma

Typical offer:
Pass the Access to HE Diploma (in Science or Science and Engineering), with at least 36 credits achieved at Distinction and 3 credits achieved at Merit or above. This must include at least 30 credits achieved at Distinction from STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics) units, of which at least 12 credits must be from Biology units.

BTEC

Typical offer:
D*DD in the BTEC Level 3 Extended Diploma (QCF) in Applied Science.

We are able to consider BTEC Level 3 Extended Diplomas (QCF) in Applied Science. It is important that your combination of optional units has an appropriate mix of Biology and Mathematics content to prepare you for our course. 'Unit 7: Mathematical Calculations for Science' is essential unless you have achieved a grade B or above in GCSE Mathematics. If we make you an offer, we may specify particular units in which you will need to achieve Distinctions. Please contact us to discuss the suitability of your optional units before making an application.

If you are studying towards a Cambridge Technical Level 3 Extended Diploma or a new specification BTEC Level 3 National Extended Diploma (RQF), please contact us for guidance.

See the ‘Combinations of qualifications’ section for information about combinations of A level and BTEC qualifications that we can consider.

Cambridge Pre-U

Typical offer:
D3, D3, D3 or D2, D3, M1 including grade D3 in Biology and a second science or mathematics subject.

Alternative offer:
D3, D3, M1 including grade D3 in Biology and a second science or mathematics subject plus one of the following:

  • grade A in an EPQ
  • grade B in the Welsh Baccalaureate Skills Challenge Certificate
  • grade M1 in Cambridge Pre-U Global Perspectives

If you apply with one of the above project qualifications you should receive both the typical and alternative offer.

Open University Credits

Typical offer:
Pass units worth 120 credits, including a minimum of a Pass 2 with 75% in a relevant Level 2 Biology unit.

Typically, we would be looking for you to have studied units worth at least 120 credits, including at least 30 credits at Level 2. We would ideally be looking for you to be taking units including S104: Exploring Science and Level 2 unit/s in Biology

This information is a guide and all students applying with Open University Credits will be considered on a case-by-case basis. We will consider your application carefully and take note of any previous qualifications or relevant work experience. We may be able to consider alternative units to those listed. Please contact us to discuss your profile.

Please note that taking OU credits may be counted as degree-level study by the Student Loans Company and therefore may be counted as previous study and have an impact on your ability to access student loans/grants for the entirety of your chosen degree. We recommend that you discuss this in detail with the SLC before following this progression route to the University of Bath.

Scottish Highers

AA in Advanced Highers including Biology and a second science or mathematics subject plus AAAAB in Scottish Highers. The second essential subject can be one of the following: Chemistry, Mathematics, Further Mathematics, Physics, Geography or Psychology.

Combinations of qualifications

Your application will be considered individually based on the particular combination of qualifications and subjects that you are taking.

We can consider combinations of accepted qualifications, such as A levels and a BTEC.

  • AA in A level Biology and a second science or mathematics subject plus D in the BTEC Subsidiary Diploma (QCF)/National Extended Certificate (RQF) OR the Cambridge Technical Introductory Diploma (QCF)/Cambridge Technical Extended Certificate (RQF). We cannot consider BTEC qualifications in Applied Science alongside Biology and a second science or mathematics subject.
  • AA at A level plus D3 in a Pre-U Principal Subject including Biology and a second science or mathematics subject.
  • AA at A level plus 6 in an IB HL Certificate including Biology and a second science or mathematics subject. While we do not consider the IB Careers Programme for entry, we are able to consider the combinations of components that are typically offered by this route, such as BTEC and IB HL Certificate combinations.
  • AA in A level Biology and a second science or mathematics subject plus A in the IFS Diploma in Financial Studies.

We can also consider combinations that are not listed and that do not include A levels. You should read the information about essential and preferred subjects and subject combinations. We cannot consider different qualifications if they are in the same subject area.

Fees and funding

Payment options

You can pay your tuition fees by Direct Debit, debit card, credit card, cheque, bank transfer or cash. You may also be eligible for a student loan to help you pay your fees.

Read more about your payment options

Fees

Your tuition fees and how you pay them will depend on whether you are a Home, EU, Island or Overseas student.

Learn how we decide fee status

Tuition fees

See the most recent fees for undergraduate courses.

Placement fees

Placement fees vary

You will normally pay a reduced tuition fee while on a placement period or studying abroad. Find out more about placement fees and study abroad fees.

Extra costs

Optional field course to Gower, South Wales: £300, or to Algarve, Portugal: £330, payable during the first semester of the second year. If you are in receipt of a University of Bath bursary these charges will be waived.

Budgeting

You will need to budget at least £100 for the cost of photocopying, printing and binding. You will also need to budget for the cost of text books.

Some courses involve visits away from campus and you may be required to pay some or all of the costs of travel, accommodation and food and drink.

If you’re on a placement, you’re responsible for your own travel, accommodation and living costs. You should also consider the financial implications if you go on an unpaid or overseas placement.

Application information

  • Course title
    Biology
  • Final award
    BSc (Hons)
  • Mode of study
    Full-time
  • Course code
    C111
  • Institution code
    B16
  • UK/EU application deadline
    15 January 2018
  • Overseas deadline
    15 January 2018
  • Application eligibility
    UK and Overseas students are eligible to apply

Course enquiries

Undergraduate Selection
admissions@bath.ac.uk
+441225383019

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