Biological Sciences BSc(Hons)

2021-22 (also available for 2022-23)

It’s not too late to apply for September 2021. Find out more

Start date

20 September 2021

Duration

3 years full-time
4 years inc. placement year

Entry requirements

A Level - BBC

BTEC - DMM

See full entry requirements

Places available (subject to change)

25

About the course

Biological Sciences is a fascinating subject area and it’s related to our everyday existence. It studies life and living organisms including their structure, function, growth, origin, evolution, distribution and taxonomy. From the growth and division of simple bacteria through to the evolution, development, growth and adaptation of complex multi-cellular organisms, and the emerging role of genomics in personalised medicine and biodiversity in a changing world.

  • This course is accredited by the Royal Society of Biology.
  • You’ll have the opportunity to study core topics and consider contemporary issues in all major aspects of biology. Optional choices in each year of your course provide you with opportunities to specialise further in core areas of molecular cell biology, organismal biology, and ecology and environmental biology. Or alternatively, you can vary your choice of optional modules to keep your coverage of the biological sciences broad.
  • Your learning will be supported by doctoral-level academics with expertise or active research interests in diverse areas of biology and genetics, including cancer pharmacology, ancient and modern patterns of human migration, environmental and evolutionary microbiology, novel antimicrobials, and the cell biology of human disease.
  • You’ll receive hands-on practical training in the laboratory using modern equipment, developing the skills and interests that help to prepare you for a research dissertation in the final year. As a further boost for your CV and employment prospects there’s also the opportunity of a placement year in industry or research in the third year of the course.
  • As a student on this course you’ll be able to apply for undergraduate membership of the Biochemical Society and The Physiological Society (UK). You’ll also be eligible for student affiliate membership of the Royal Society of Biology and upon successful graduation be eligible to apply for one year associate membership, this can help open up networks at a crucial time when applying for jobs.

I really enjoyed carrying out hands-on research as part of my degree. This and the course structure have refined my interests and prepared me for employment and entrepreneurship.

None

Annie Omoregie, Medical Biology with Research Placement BSc(Hons)

Course detail

Core modules:

Research Skills

Research in science ranges from finding out what is already known to carrying out investigations to add to our store of knowledge. This module provides the requisite background skills for successful completion of an Honours Degree in Biology. Basic generic skills involving literacy, numeracy and use of IT are applied to summarising, understanding, interpreting and presenting data generated by laboratory investigations. Throughout the module the emphasis is on learning the skills that will be used in various parts of the degree course. Acquisition of learning skills takes precedence over memorising facts. Learning about current topics in science involves finding peer-reviewed scientific literature (using library facilities and database searches), and summarising it with source attribution as a report using correct scientific style. Basic statistics is taught using spreadsheet and statistics programs. You'll also have the opportunity to build up a portfolio of evidence relating to your skills for Personal Development Planning.

Dynamic Living Systems

This introductory module in biogeography defines and explains the major geographic patterns of life on Earth and explores how different terrestrial and oceanic ecosystems are shaped by natural processes and human activity. Some of the planetary processes and nutrient cycles introduced in the Global Earth Cycles module are re-considered in this module from the perspectives of contemporary and prospective global patterns of animal, plant, and microbial diversity. Introductory consideration of the interaction between organisms with their environments provides a foundation for the intermediate level module Ecological Adaptation and Conservation Management. The course is primarily lecture-based but a number of tutorials are included to reflect on and provide supplementary information for the lecture course. A short oceanography-themed laboratory series also features on the module. This module can be taken independently of other foundation-level geography modules, but the oceanography-themed laboratory classes provide a complement to the analytical work performed for the module Global Earth Cycles.

Molecular and Cellular Biology

This module starts with an introduction to basic cytology, the cellular basis of life is considered and a comparison between prokaryotic and eukaryotic cells performed. The concept of 'compartmentalisation' is dealt with and the lecture course follows a 'walk through the cell' theme where each organelle is dealt with individually, both in terms of structure and function. Cell culture techniques are introduced, in particular the use of mutants and complementation to analyse biological processes is considered. The problems of packaging DNA in a eukaryotic chromosome is also discussed. The module extends to consider genetic analysis in a number of systems. Simple Mendelian genetics is considered together with more complex linkage analysis and its uses in identifying genes. The special genetic systems of bacteria and fungi are introduced with examples of the strategies employed to make use of these systems.

Physiology 1: Structure and Function

This module covers all the major organs of the body together with models of normal and abnormal bodily function. Emphasis will be directed to the concept of homeostasis and the integration of dynamic processes involved in the maintenance of health.

Option modules:

Choose one module from each list (Pool A and Pool B), which may include-

Pool A

Biochemistry 1

​Biochemistry 1 gives a basic account of the structure and function of biological macromolecules, particularly proteins and is illustrated by reference to such molecules as haemoglobin. A firm grounding in enzyme action is provided and this is supported by a number of practical classes. The relationship between genes and proteins and the Central Dogma of Molecular Biology are emphasised. A foundation in the study of metabolism is provided, directing you towards an understanding of the underlying principles rather than rote learning of metabolic courses. The subject provides the basis for further studies in subjects such as Cell Structure and Pharmacology. The subject is delivered by formal lectures and in laboratory classes. However your learning is supported by tutorial classes, the provision of web-based material and, where necessary, a limited amount of individual tuition.

Chemical and Physical Principles of Biology

​This module introduces you to the basic principles in chemical and physical science necessary for a sound understanding of modern biology. It is suitable for those students who have not studied any science beyond GCSE level and aims to prepare them for the more chemical topics and also to assist in the understanding of some of the theory behind techniques such as spectrophotometry and electrophoresis. The subject is delivered by formal lectures and in laboratory classes. However, your learning is supported by tutorial classes, the provision of web-based material and, where necessary, a limited amount of individual tuition. An introduction to atomic structure and the periodic table is followed by an account of chemical bonding sufficient to understand descriptions of the structure and properties of biologically important substances. Simple chemical kinetics and thermodynamics are also briefly covered along with an outline of the SI system of units. States of Matter is delivered mainly in a qualitative manner, sufficient to support such topics as respiratory physiology.

Pool B

The World of Microbes

This module aims to introduce you to the full range of microbial life and the techniques used to study microorganisms and begins by introducing the diversity and countless activities of microbes. Subsequently, the structural and functional components of the cell and the similarities and differences of prokaryotes and eukaryotes are highlighted. Control of microbial growth, nutritional categories of microbes and environmental factors influencing the growth and viability of microbes are also investigated. The module then examines the biology of eukaryotes (fungi, algae and protozoa) by exploring classification, growth, asexual and sexual reproduction and nutritional adaptations. Finally, the classification of microorganisms using the Whittaker five kingdom system and the Woese three domain system is reviewed, as well as criteria for the identification of microbes. The associated practical classes are designed to develop your laboratory skills and familiarity with the basic microbiological methods.

Global Earth Cycles

This module introduces you to the natural global processes that have shaped the world we live in. It will explore how the past and current environment has been influenced and the interaction between the biosphere and the geosphere. It will begin with the emergence of life on earth and how the generation of oxygen via photosynthesis transformed the terrestrial environment. The module will then progress to examine the classical nutrient cycles (C, N, S, P, Fe, I) and how human intervention has modified and accelerated them. The role of basic soil processes (CEC, hydraulic conductivity, alkalinity etc) in the retention and release of elements and how these impact plant, animal and human nutrition will also be explored. The module will particularly focus on the impacts of agriculture, industry and global climate change. The module has a strong practical component with a focus on fieldwork, data collection, analysis and reporting. The fieldwork element of this module will be delivered during scheduled class time.

Entry requirements

BBCat A Level  including a grade B in a relevant Science subject. The endorsement for practical work is an essential part of Science A Level study, and is a requirement for entry to our degree course.

112 UCAS tariff points from a combination of Level 3 qualifications including a grade B in a relevant Science subject at A Level.

DMM in BTEC Level 3 Extended Diploma in Applied Science . Alternatively a BTEC Level 3 Extended Diploma in Health and Social Care is acceptable but must be accompanied by another Science A Level at grade C or above.

  • Access to Higher Education Diploma with 45 Level 3 credits at Merit or above to include modules in relevant science subjects.
  • 112 UCAS tariff points from International Baccalaureate qualifications which should include modules in relevant science subjects.

If you do not have the appropriate qualifications for direct entry to this degree you may be able to apply to our Science Extended Degree (BCF0).

If your first language is not English, you will need to meet the minimum requirements of an English Language qualification. The minimum for IELTS is 6.0 overall with no element lower than 5.5, or equivalent will be considered acceptable. Read more about the University’s entry requirements for students outside of the UK on our Where are you from information pages.

Other suitable experience or qualifications will be considered. For further information please see the University's minimum entry requirements.

Meet our students


Covadonga is studying Medical Genetics BSc(Hons). Watch her film to learn more about the modules she studies, her placement experience and the help she gets from her tutors.

Placements


In the third year of this course, you’ll get the chance to step out of the classroom and into the real world on an optional placement year working for an organisation related to your areas of interest. This is when you’ll really be able to see your knowledge in action, pick up invaluable skills for your future career and boost your employability to help you hit the ground running after graduation.

You could stay to do your placement in the UK or experience a new culture and work abroad for one year. Where could this year take you?

Previous students in the Biological Sciences subject area have undertaken placements with Abcam plc, the Edinburgh Cancer Research Centre, Leeds Institute of Cardiovascular and Metabolic Medicine, Pfizer, Solvay (Novecare), The European Molecular Biology Laboratory (Germany) and Sooam Biotech Research Foundation (South Korea).

Going on placement meant I learnt new skills and techniques and had my findings reported back to local coroners to identify causes of death.

None

Isabel Gatenby, Medical Biology BSc(Hons), placement with West Yorkshire Analytical Services, Morley

Your career


Graduates from our Biological Sciences courses can consider a wide range of career options in areas such as medical research, the NHS, molecular sciences, medical genetics, pharmaceuticals, developing scientific patents, medical sales or marketing, medical writing and teaching.

Biological Sciences BSc(Hons) is a new course and therefore there are no graduates as yet. However, previous graduates have gone on to work in roles such as Clinical Study Co-ordinator in Ophthalmology at NHS, Laboratory Technician at ALS, Microbiology Medical Laboratory Technician at IDEXX Laboratories and PhD Researcher at the University of Huddersfield.**

*Whilst this is a new course and therefore no graduate statistics for this specific course are available, 95% of graduates from courses in this subject area at Huddersfield are in work and/or further study fifteen months after graduating (HESA Graduate Outcomes 17/18, UK domiciled graduates).

**LinkedIn

95% Graduates employed*

Student support

At the University of Huddersfield, you'll find support networks and services to help you get ahead in your studies and social life. Whether you study at undergraduate or postgraduate level, you'll soon discover that you're never far away from our dedicated staff and resources to help you to navigate through your personal student journey. Find out more about all our support services.

Important information

We will always try to deliver your course as described on this web page. However, sometimes we may have to make changes as set out below.

Changes to a course you have applied for

If we propose to make a major change to a course that you are holding an offer for, then we will tell you as soon as possible so that you can decide whether to withdraw your application prior to enrolment.

Changes to your course after you enrol as a student

We will always try to deliver your course and other services as described. However, sometimes we may have to make changes as set out below:

Changes to option modules

Where your course allows you to choose modules from a range of options, we will review these each year and change them to reflect the expertise of our staff, current trends in research and as a result of student feedback or demand for certain modules. We will always ensure that you have a range of options to choose from and we will let you know in good time the options available for you to choose for the following year.

Major changes

We will only make major changes to the core curriculum of a course or to our services if it is necessary for us to do so and provided such changes are reasonable. A major change in this context is a change that materially changes the services available to you; or the outcomes, or a significant part, of your course, such as the nature of the award or a substantial change to module content, teaching days (part time provision), classes, type of delivery or assessment of the core curriculum.

For example, it may be necessary to make a major change to reflect changes in the law or the requirements of the University’s regulators; to meet the latest requirements of a commissioning or accrediting body; to improve the quality of educational provision; in response to student, examiners’ or other course evaluators’ feedback; and/or to reflect academic or professional changes within subject areas. Major changes may also be necessary because of circumstances outside our reasonable control, such as a key member of staff leaving the University or being unable to teach, where they have a particular specialism that can’t be adequately covered by other members of staff; or due to damage or interruption to buildings, facilities or equipment.

Major changes would usually be made with effect from the next academic year, but this may not always be the case. We will notify you as soon as possible should we need to make a major change and will carry out suitable consultation with affected students. If you reasonably believe that the proposed change will cause you detriment or hardship we will, if appropriate, work with you to try to reduce the adverse effect on you or find an appropriate solution. Where an appropriate solution cannot be found and you contact us in writing before the change takes effect you can cancel your registration and withdraw from the University without liability to the University for future tuition fees. We will provide reasonable support to assist you with transferring to another university if you wish to do so.

Termination of course

In exceptional circumstances, we may, for reasons outside of our control, be forced to discontinue or suspend your course. Where this is the case, a formal exit strategy will be followed and we will notify you as soon as possible about what your options are, which may include transferring to a suitable replacement course for which you are qualified, being provided with individual teaching to complete the award for which you were registered, or claiming an interim award and exiting the University. If you do not wish to take up any of the options that are made available to you, then you can cancel your registration and withdraw from the course without liability to the University for future tuition fees and you will be entitled to a refund of all course fees paid to date. We will provide reasonable support to assist you with transferring to another university if you wish to do so.

When you enrol as a student of the University, your study and time with us will be governed by a framework of regulations, policies and procedures, which form the basis of your agreement with us. These include regulations regarding the assessment of your course, academic integrity, your conduct (including attendance) and disciplinary procedure, fees and finance and compliance with visa requirements (where relevant). It is important that you familiarise yourself with these as you will be asked to agree to abide by them when you join us as a student. You will find a guide to the key terms here, along with the Student Protection Plan, where you will also find links to the full text of each of the regulations, policies and procedures referred to.

The Office for Students (OfS) is the principal regulator for the University.

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