Explore current developments in the biological sciences to gain a strong foundation in this rapidly developing scientific discipline concerned with the study of living things.
The Biological Sciences extended degree programmes include a foundation year, which will provide you with a sound introduction to key elements needed for studying Biological Sciences at degree level. Our extended degree programme will provide you with a thorough and supportive academic preparation for study. The Foundation year is carefully designed to build your confidence in your abilities, develop essential academic and study skills, and provide you with subject specific knowledge as a basis for success in your following three years.
In your extended degree, you will explore the essence of life and living organisms with this fascinating course, understanding the molecular, cellular and organismal aspects. You will develop skills and understanding right across the biological disciplines.
You will study expanding areas such as biotechnology, which harnesses cellular and bimolecular processes to develop technologies and products to improve our heath, and recombinant DNA technology, which are DNA molecules formed by laboratory methods to create new sequences of DNA, and their social implications. You will also develop your understanding of traditional aspects of animal and plant biology and learn about the diversity and evolution of life.
This course will provide opportunities to work in our state-of-the-art laboratories, participate in field trips, and conduct your own research projects. We offer exciting modules such as ‘Chemistry of Life’ where you will work in the laboratory to study the structure, evolution and biochemistry of the cell, or ‘Human Ecology’ where you will learn the essentials of human diversity and adaptation, or ‘The Brain in Health and Disease’ where you will study the basis of neurobiology and understand the latest developments in brain research.
During the foundation year, you will complete core modules in English and Mathematics, as well as an extended project which will develop your skills in carrying out research, using scholarly sources, drawing comparisons between your own research and that of others and documenting your findings. You will study two modules in Life Sciences which will give you the opportunity to explore methods of scientific thinking and reasoning in an enquiry-based way. You will also be introduced to key concepts in human physiology that are common cornerstones of the different degree programmes.
In your first year, you are introduced to the key areas of Biology including molecular biology, physiology, ecology, evolution and the diversity and details of the major animal and plant groups, while also gaining knowledge in basic biochemistry, and biometrics and data handling.
Focus on the key areas that interest you, from a broad range of modules, in your second year. Recent modules have covered topics including organisms and ecology; evolutionary biology and behaviour; and molecular biology, physiology and biomedicine. The Research Methods module includes the development of a research proposal on a zoological topic of your choice. A residential field course in rural south Wales provides a week-long immersion into field and lab data collection.
In your final year, you may select advanced modules from any area of biology, and you will have the opportunity to specialise further. An independent research project will account for one third of the final-year assessment and allows you the opportunity to collect seminal data on a topic of your choice, advancing current knowledge in that area. You will also get the opportunity to attend a field trip based in South Africa.
Here are some examples of the various modules we currently offer:
"I developed my laboratory skills and had the chance to design my own experiment as part of a field course to Wales."
BSc Biological Sciences
4 years (full-time)