Biology BSc Hons
Biology involves the study of life at all levels of organisation, from the molecular biology of virus replication to the study of animals and plants in their natural habitats. Biology also touches on many aspects of contemporary life, from drug design and investigating the molecular basis of Alzheimer’s disease, to the migration and conservation of marine mammals.
Students interested in this course may also be interested in the Biology Integrated Masters course, which allows you to graduate with a Master in Biology.
These grades are the overall standards required to consider you for entry. Find out more about Standard, Minimum and Gateway entry requirements using academic entry explained and see which entry requirements you need to look at using the entry requirements indicator.
- SQA Highers
- GCE A-Levels
- IB points
If English is not your first language you will need an overall IELTS score of 7.0, with a minimum score of 6.5 in each component (Reading, Writing, Listening and Speaking), or an equivalent English language qualification.
For more information about admission requirements, please visit the university website.
Does this course require proof of English proficiency?
The TOEFL® test is accepted by 10,000+ universities and higher education institutes in over 150 countries. Book your test today!Learn more
In first year, modules introduce you to core subject material relevant to all degree programs in areas such as animal and plant biology, molecular biology, cell biology and genetics. Both of the following modules are compulsory.
- Biology 1
- Biology 2
In second year, modules are chosen which will best prepare you for your intended degree (or group of possible degrees) and new topics are introduced in some second-year modules such as evolutionary biology and ecology.
- Research Methods in Biology (compulsory)
You also take three of the modules listed below.
- Applied Molecular Biology
- Cell Biology
- Cell Systems
- Comparative Physiology
- Evolutionary Biology
- Invertebrate Zoology
- Molecular Biology
- The Oceans
- Vertebrate Zoology
In third year, you will continue to specialise in biology via a wide range of modules covering core topics. Modules that have been offered in previous years include:
- Animal Behaviour: A Quantitative Approach
- Geens, Cells and Development
- Ecosystems and Conservation
- Terrestrial Zoology.
In fourth year, students typically undertake an independent 7 to 12-month research placement hosted by an external institute or company. The external placement gives students the opportunity to practice and learn a range of scientific and generic skills, including experience in a working environment outside of St Andrews.
For biology students, this will be a 12-month research project, collecting data within a research group at St Andrews or in an external organisation (environmental company, conservation non-governmental organization or research institute). A research placement in an external organisation is subject to this being arranged and funded successfully by the student, facilitated by expertise in the School of Biology.
During fifth year, you will take advanced research-led modules in your chosen speciality subject to availability. Advanced modules offered in the past include:
- Advanced Microscopy and Image Analysis - Seeing is Believing
- Animal Cognition
- Chromatin and Genome Stability
- Complex Systems in Animal Behaviour
- Evolution in Action
- Evolutionary Developmental Biology
- Marine Mammals and Man
- Molecular Virology
- Scientific Communication in Biodiversity and Conservation.
- The CRISPR system for Antiviral Defence and Genome Engineering
Scholarships & funding
Several scholarship options are available. Please check the university website for more information.
The MBiol in Biology is taught through a combination of:
- practical classes
- field work
- research projects.
Typical class sizes include:
- First year: lectures 250 to 330, practicals 80 to 100 students
- Second year: lectures 80 to 150, practicals 40 to 60 students
- Third year: lectures 20 to 70, practicals 20 to 60 students
- Fourth year: 5 to 25 students
The practical elements of the course taught in the laboratory and in the field enable you to learn the wide range of skills required of a modern biologist. Students are provided with teaching microscopes and are taught in state-of-the-art teaching laboratories. Alongside the development of practical biological skills, students are also given the opportunity to expand on their presentation and IT skills.
During fourth year, your project will be fully supervised at the host institute or company.
When not attending lectures, tutorials and practical classes, you will be expected to continue learning independently through self-study. Typically, this will involve:
- working on individual and group projects
- undertaking research in the library
- preparing coursework assignments and presentations
- preparing for examinations.
Biology graduates are in high demand and are keenly sought after by institutions including the government, universities, research centres and major companies. Those who take an Integrated Masters degree receive advanced research training and are prepared for a career within the scientific sector.
Biology graduates have found success in a wide variety of careers including:
- professional biologists in biological research, conservation, higher education and the pharmaceutical, biomedical industries
- researchers and advisers in government
- advisers, researchers and managers in the National Health Service
- forensic scientists
- management consultants
- marketing and advertising experts.
About this institute
University of St Andrews
The University of St Andrews is Scotland’s first University. As a 600 year-old institution, we are known across the globe for our world leading quality and depth of research. For six centuries some of the world’s brightest and most promising...
Why study at University of St Andrews
The University of St Andrews is situated in a truly beautiful location. Part of a seaside town it is a picturesque and inspirational location to pursue your studies, where you will have the thinking space needed to be your very best. As a smaller university our size is one of our greatest strengths with class sizes allowing for a close and individual learning experience and giving great access and support from your teachers.
Graduates of St Andrews are highly sought after by employers around the world due to our reputation for excellence. A qualification from St Andrews will help you reach your ambitions and kickstart your career.
Consistently ranked as the best student academic experience in the UK by students in the National Student Survey, your time as a student in St Andrews will be unique and rewarding, leaving you with a prestigious qualification, but also memories and connections to treasure for years to come.
Want to know more about Biology MBiol Hons? Fill out the following form and we'll pass your details on to a representative from the school, who will respond to your enquiry.
Be the first to write a review!
You may also like...