A student examines cells through an inverted microscope.

BSc (Hons) Biology

Join a degree accredited by the Royal Society of Biology and discover the contribution of biology to modern society, from conservation to cloning, with the opportunity to carry out fieldwork in a rich diversity of local habitats.

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      • Studying Abroad Option Available
      • Sandwich Year Option Available
      • International Students Can Apply
      • Fieldwork
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      UCAS Code: C100
      Course Length: 3 Years Full-Time, 6 Years Part-Time
      Start Dates: September 2021, September 2022
      Subjects: Biology and Biosciences
      Location: Edge Hill University
      Example Offers: BBC-BBB (A Level) or DMM (BTEC)
      View full entry criteria

      Exploring the very mysteries of life is the essence of biology. It is at the vanguard of research into global issues such as disease, cloning, feeding growing populations, assessing health risks from foods, and humanity’s impact on our planet. You will study the full range of life, from tiny molecules to entire ecosystems, and gain an appreciation of the issues biological advances present to society. You will also develop your understanding of the scope and limitations of biological knowledge and techniques on a degree that is accredited by the Royal Society of Biology and includes detailed fieldwork in a rich diversity of habitats. The combination of technical, analytical and communication skills makes our graduates extremely employable.

      From September 2022 entry, this degree will also be available as a 4-year programme with an integrated foundation year.

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      In Depth

      What will I study?

      The degree encompasses the full breadth of the subject, spanning all levels of biological organisation from the molecular, cellular and organismal through to populations, communities and ecosystems.

      Year 1 is a common year across our Biology and Biosciences degrees. You will receive a firm foundation in cell biology and genetics, with optional modules introducing you to the basics of chemistry for biologists, the fundamentals of ecology, the evolutionary origins of biodiversity, and the structure and function of human anatomy and physiology. You will also undertake residential fieldwork in Cyprus.

      In Years 2 and 3 you will have the opportunity to tailor your degree to suit your interests by choosing modules from a number of distinct strands. These include evolution and genetics, biomedical science, cell biology, and biodiversity and conservation.

      Alongside other third year modules, your dissertation will help you develop and apply a range of research and transferable skills in the planning, execution and reporting of an individual research project, supported by a diverse team of researchers.

      How will I study?

      The programme has a strong practical base. Learning involves lectures, practical work, tutorials and fieldwork. The department has a wide range of practical facilities and we are keen to develop student skills in the areas of microscopy, microbiology and DNA technologies. The degree also involves a period of residential fieldwork in Cyprus, as well as the option to take part in a range of UK-based fieldwork opportunities.

      How will I be assessed?

      Modules are assessed by a mixture of coursework and examinations tailored to suit the subject area of each module. An extremely wide range of coursework is employed which may include practical portfolios, specimen collections, project reports, field notebooks and website development, plus individual and group oral presentations.

      Who will be teaching me?

      Our experienced and knowledgeable staff take pride in the quality of their teaching. Their research activity means they keep up-to-date with current developments in their areas of interest and pass this knowledge onto their students.

      The Biology department is friendly and approachable and of a size that enables us to know our students personally.

      A Great Study Environment

      Students prepare Blotting chambers for protein analysis for their biomedical research projects.Edge Hill University has over 30 years’ experience in delivering field biology degrees and has a wealth of experienced tutors, technical staff and field and laboratory equipment to support the study of biology on this programme.

      Our Biosciences building incorporates impressive, modern laboratories, offering exciting and highly relevant practical experience in some of the best equipped facilities in the country. Resources include fluorescence and scanning electron microscopes, DNA extraction and analysis equipment, and climate controlled insectaries.

      A number of the best nature reserves in the country are in close proximity to the campus. You will be taught within a short travelling distance of impressive field sites such as one of the finest saltmarsh and dune systems in Europe, restored mires of international importance, hay meadows and limestone woodlands. The University also has extensive grounds including meadows which serve as a useful area for demonstrating sampling techniques.

      The Department of Biology is home to an active research culture. An extensive network of relationships has been established with relevant environmental organisations and other universities in the UK and overseas, ensuring a rich, diverse and rewarding student experience.


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      Level 4 (Year 1 of Full-Time Programme)

      SCI1107Biology in Practice (20 credits)

      Biology in Practice looks at the nature of biological enquiry, the ways that biological knowledge develops, and the contribution biology makes to society. Part of this module will be delivered during a field trip to Cyprus (costs included in fees).

      Assessment: Coursework: 55%, Practical(s): 45%.

      SCI1116Genetics and Evolution (20 credits)

      Genetics and Evolution introduces the genetic and environmental control of an individual’s characteristics. The module outlines how variation at the DNA and chromosomal level leads to variation in the phenotype and genotype and the potential consequences of this variation including speciation. Taking a largely population genetics approach, you will study mutation, genotypic and phenotypic variation, meiosis, Mendelian inheritance, phylogeny and speciation.

      Assessment: Coursework: 60%, Written Exam(s): 40%.

      SCI1117Introduction to Cell Biology (20 credits)

      Introduction to Cell Biology focuses on the cell is the basic biological unit. Using a range of activities, you will examine the molecular components that determine the structure, biochemical nature and physiology of different cells. This will then enable you to appreciate the significance of a range of environmental influences. Practical activities, including a number of core biological exercises, will be used to reinforce these aspects and equip you with skills and confidence in scientific laboratory techniques. The aim is to equip you with an appreciation of scientific method and enhance your understanding of what constitutes a valid scientific investigation.

      Assessment: Coursework: 50%, Written Exam(s): 50%.

      You will select three of the following modules:

      SCI1112Ecology (20 credits)

      Ecology introduces concepts fundamental to populations and communities using examples from across habitats and ecosystems. You will learn the basic skills required for employment and further ecological study including plant and animal identification, field surveying, microscopy, safe laboratory and field practice, and, data handling. Half and full-day field trips include sampling animals and plants to develop concepts such as energetics, food webs, limiting factors and ecosystem functioning. You will gain an appreciation of the application of the subject to environmental, medical and resource issues in real-world scenarios. By undertaking group work, such as a poster presentation, you will learn how to communicate scientific ideas to a non-specialised audience, while through reporting on field experiments you will learn how to handle and interpret data.

      Assessment: Coursework: 100%.

      SCI1113Biodiversity (20 credits)

      Biodiversity provides an overview of the diversity of life, the major taxonomical groups and their phylogenetic relationship. Sub-divided into distinctive microbial (i.e. viral, bacterial and archaeal), plant, fungal, and animal sections, the module covers key findings on the definition, the origin, and the evolution of life. You will develop a range of subject-specific and transferable skills to enhance your employability, including microscopy and slide preparation, as well as information retrieval.

      Assessment: Coursework: 50%, Practical(s): 50%.

      SCI1115Chemistry for Biologists (20 credits)

      Chemistry for Biologists introduces the basics of chemistry, involving clear and lucid explanations of chemical concepts with a coherent problem solving approach. Building your understanding of the periodic table, atomic and molecular structures, pH, solutions, chemical reactions, model buildings and practical skills are the core elements of this module. The aim is to provide you with a toolkit of knowledge and practical skills within chemistry and linking to wider concepts within biological and physical sciences. Appropriate mathematical knowledge will be embedded throughout the module.

      Assessment: Coursework: 50%, Written Exam(s): 50%.

      SCI1118Anatomy and Physiology (20 credits)

      Anatomy and Physiology focuses on developing your knowledge of the structure and function of the human body. The module will equip you with an understanding of the inter-relationship between the systems of the body in the context of human health and disease. There will be a considerable emphasis on laboratory-based activities, including molecular techniques and practical physiological investigations.

      Assessment: Written Exam(s): 50%, Practical(s): 50%.

      Language modules, delivered at the Edge Hill Language Centre, are available to study as an integral part of this degree. A single Language module can be studied instead of one of the optional modules above.

      Level 5 (Year 2 of Full-Time Programme)

      SCI2308Research Methods in Biology (20 credits)

      Research Methods in Biology develops essential biological research methods and data analysis skills, providing a sound base for a future dissertation. The module begins with sessions on experimental design and statistical analysis, working with varied types of data, and culminates with the design and implementation of a one-week research project.

      Assessment: Coursework: 100%.

      SCI2319Laboratory Masterclass (20 credits)

      Laboratory Masterclass provides extensive experience and underpinning theory in such fundamental tools as an electron microscope, microbial techniques and DNA technologies to provide a thorough insight into the use and application of such equipment.

      Assessment: Coursework: 100%.

      You will select a total of 80 credits from the following modules:

      SCI2317Invertebrate Ecology (20 credits)

      Invertebrate Ecology explores the diversity of terrestrial and aquatic invertebrates, examining their life cycle, basic physiology, importance to ecosystem functioning and the range of services with which they provide society. You will learn quantitative sampling techniques as well as navigation, health and safety assessment and ethical considerations. You will also develop a sound knowledge of taxonomy for a variety of groups such as aquatic insects, spiders and beetles, gaining the identification, preservation and museum-standard presentation skills which are vital for employment in the sector or further ecological study. Concise scientific writing and the ability to understand relevant literature will be developed through a review of invertebrate sampling methodologies.

      Assessment: Coursework: 100%.

      SCI2324Nutrition (20 credits)

      Nutrition develops your understanding of the properties of food constituents. The acquisition of food and the anatomy of the digestive system will be investigated. You will gain an appreciation of the effects of nutrient deficiency and excess on the human body, as well as disease and disorders of the digestive process.

      Assessment: Coursework: 50%, Written Exam(s): 50%.

      SCI2327Marine Biology (20 credits)

      Marine Biology investigates marine communities across the globe. It considers their biological basis, the human pressures upon them and the routes by which conservation can be achieved. You will also examine the fundamental principles of a marine existence.

      Assessment: Coursework: 100%.

      SCI2330Field Botany (20 credits)

      Field Botany is a field-based module, providing you with an opportunity to conduct a detailed study of a particular group of organisms. The module introduces the full range of vascular plant diversity across a range of habitats alongside supporting work using keys and microscopes. The module also incorporates coverage of community classifications.

      Assessment: Coursework: 100%.

      SCI2332Molecular Genetics (20 credits)

      Molecular Genetics provides an understanding of several aspects of the regulation of gene expression both in prokaryotes and eukaryotes. The module is essential preparation for studying more advanced topics in the fields of genetics and biotechnology. You will explore and acquire practical skills in molecular techniques such as polymerase chain reaction (PCR), gene expression monitoring and genome editing by cloning. Basic concepts in bioinformatics will be introduced and you will gain hands-on experience of essential web-based tools and software for handling, analysing and interpreting molecular data.

      Assessment: Coursework: 40%, Written Exam(s): 60%.

      SCI2333Biogeography (20 credits)

      Biogeography examines spatial and temporal patterns of living organisms over the earth’s surface and highlights the fundamental processes and causal factors which determine these patterns. This includes themes such as climate, evolutionary history, continental drift, spatial area, isolation, succession and disturbance. Key themes such as biodiversity and the history and development of ecological communities through time run through the whole module. The module culminates in exploring the impacts of human mediated changes to organism distributions, particularly the effects of habitat fragmentation and invasive non-native species.

      Assessment: Coursework: 40%, Written Exam(s): 60%.

      SCI2334Biochemistry and Metabolism (20 credits)

      Biochemistry and Metabolism enhance your understanding of several advanced concepts in the field of life sciences. The module provides a global perspective on biomolecules, the different types of anabolic and catabolic pathways, as well as basic concepts in enzymology and eukaryotic and prokaryotic cellular energetics. In addition to the theoretical aspects of the module, you will develop a range of transferable and subject specific skills, such as basic laboratorial techniques, recording and analysis of experimental data, information retrieval and research, synthesis capabilities, and presenting scientific information to both specialised and non-specialised audiences.

      Assessment: Coursework: 100%.

      SCI2335Introduction to Biotechnology (20 credits)

      Introduction to Biotechnology provides a basic understanding of the principles of biotechnology and its practical applications. You will be introduced to the advances in biotechnological applications and their importance in a wide range of disciplines including agriculture, industry and medicine. The limitations of biotechnological applications will also be considered.

      Assessment: Coursework: 40%, Written Exam(s): 60%.

      SCI2336Biology of Disease (20 credits)

      Biology of Disease focuses on how a disease is an abnormal condition of an organism that impairs bodily functions. A disease may be caused by external factors, such as invading organisms, or it may be caused by internal dysfunctions, such as autoimmune disorders or environmental factors. This module examines the classic causes of disease and examines how they influence normal physiology.

      Assessment: Coursework: 40%, Written Exam(s): 60%.

      SCI2337Plant Diversity (20 credits)

      Plant Diversity is a field-based module studying vascular plant diversity in the Canary Isles. The module introduces the full variety of plant diversity found in different environmental gradients and is supported by laboratory and theoretical work. You will learn the basics of plant taxonomy and systematics and develop valuable field expedition skills.

      Assessment: Coursework: 100%.

      SCI2338Plant Form and Physiology (20 credits)

      Plant Form and Physiology provides you with an understanding of plant structure and physiology. You learn about basic leaf, root and stem structures, biochemical processes (for example, photosynthesis and water relations) and organism signalling. The module will also equip you with laboratory skills including microscopy, scanning electron microscopes (SEM), gas-analysis, porometry and thermal imagery.

      Assessment: Coursework: 50%, Written Exam(s): 50%.

      SCI2339Chemistry of Food (20 credits)

      Chemistry of Food uses a range of activities to explore the structural chemistry of food constituents, sources and properties. The chemical understanding of proteins, carbohydrates, fats, vitamins and minerals will help to examine the chemistry of food cooking, flavour changes, emulsifiers and fortification. Principles and application of electrochemistry, chromatography, atomic absorption, flame, UV and visible spectroscopy will be used for food samples analysis in the laboratory. Health and safety will also form part of discussions relevant to food industries for quality control. Appropriate mathematical knowledge will be embedded throughout the module.

      Assessment: Coursework: 100%.

      SCI2340Food Microbiology (20 credits)

      Food Microbiology provides an understanding of specialist areas of microbiology and its principles when applied to food. This will include food spoilage and preservation, food safety, food production where microbes are a fundamental part of the process (such as fermentation) and an introduction to quality control. You will also be introduced to advances in biotechnological applications and their importance in food production.

      Assessment: Coursework: 100%.

      SCI2341Up-Canopy Biology (20 credits)

      Up-Canopy Biology provides you with the essential knowledge and practical skills to study forest canopies. You will learn practical canopy access skills during a five day intensive Basic Canopy Access Proficiency (BCAP) course. The climbing course will have the option of external certification by Canopy Access Ltd who have over 20 years experience of providing rigging and technical rope training solutions for the wildlife film industry. You will learn how to access the canopy safely and the challenges associated with canopy climbing and sampling. The practical module components will be supported by a number of lectures and assessments that will introduce you to the ecology, physiology and diversity of forest canopies. You will also be introduced to the current and future challenges in the conversation and management of these systems.

      Assessment: Coursework: 60%, Written Exam(s): 40%.

      SCI2342Introduction to Food Science (20 credits)

      Introduction to Food Science provides an overview of the structure, function and interaction of food components. Practical activities will be carried out using a range of different food components. You will consider the importance of food quality, food safety and shelf life in terms of the need for the processing and preservation of foods. The chemical, physical, biological and nutritional changes that occur as a result of food processing and manufacturing will be identified with the addition of sensory and organoleptic food testing. Food-related experimental studies will also be conducted to investigate some of these changes.

      Assessment: Coursework: 60%, Written Exam(s): 40%.

      SCI2343Human Genetics (20 credits)

      Human Genetics involves the study of inherited and acquired genetic conditions at a variety of levels. The module builds on the fundamental principles of molecular biology and genetic inheritance studied to introduce you to inborn errors caused by inherited and acquired mutations, both in nuclear and mitochondrial DNA. You will consider modes of inheritance and their impact on families and personal lives. Human-related genetics will also be discussed on a molecular, clinical and pathological level, closing with a focus on the role of epigenetic effects, as well as environmental and population genetics studies.

      Assessment: Coursework: 50%, Written Exam(s): 50%.

      SCI2344Immunology and Infectious Diseases (20 credits)

      Immunology and Infectious Diseases recognises that humans live in an environment with a baffling array of infectious agents. These are of diverse composition, shape and size and seek to use the human body as a rich shelter to propagate their own genes. The effects of this are limited, however, by a series of defence mechanisms, whose action provides the basis of immunology. This module examines our defence mechanisms that lead to immunity. It also examines a number of infectious diseases and assesses how they influence normal physiology and impair bodily functions. You will consider both external factors, such as invading organisms, as well as internal dysfunctions, such as autoimmune diseases, and environmental factors.

      Assessment: Coursework: 40%, Written Exam(s): 60%.

      SCI2900Study Abroad Placement (40 credits)

      Study Abroad Placement enables you to enhance your employability by spending a period of time studying abroad. The module involves undertaking part of your studies at a partner university in another country, experiencing a different culture and a different education system. It provides an opportunity to improve your language skills, stand out in the professional job market, and open up new opportunities in the competitive international marketplace. You will be asked to describe and reflect upon scientific techniques and investigations undertaken at the partner institution, where the curriculum content studied will be highly relevant to your degree.

      Assessment: Coursework: 100%.

      If you studied a Language module in Year 1, you may wish to study a further Language module in Year 2. This would form an integral part of your degree in place of one of the optional 20 credit modules above.

      Level 6 (Year 3 of Full-Time Programme)

      SCI3350Biology Research Project (40 credits)

      Biology Research Project provides you with the opportunity to conduct your own research, complete a dissertation and apply the concepts, theories and practical skills acquired throughout your Biology degree. You will be mentored by experts in the field who will guide you through the research process from the start. You will identify a research question, develop the methodology to answer it, undertake the practical work, and summarise and analyse the data appropriately to place your findings in the wider context of the subject. A dissertation will be one of the most rewarding achievements throughout your degree and one which will provide you with the skills required to conduct further research in future.

      Assessment: Coursework: 100%.

      You will select four of the following modules:

      SCI3014Applications of Genetics (20 credits)

      Applications of Genetics explores the cutting-edge advances in molecular technologies including gene expression quantification, next generation sequencing and genome editing. You will learn about the latest developments and novel applications in this exciting field through exploring the current primary literature. You will also generate and interpret your own molecular data through a series of practical sessions. The module covers a number of important fields including medicine, disease diagnostics and therapy, population genetics, biotechnology and drug discovery.

      Assessment: Coursework: 40%, Written Exam(s): 60%.

      SCI3015Genomics and Bioinformatics (20 credits)

      Genomics and Bioinformatics centres on how the combination of sequencing and increased computational power has led to a revolution in the way genetic information is utilised and applied. From a human perspective, the sequencing of entire genomes will allow more precise diagnosis and intimations of risk, with attendant tailored treatments. Beyond humans the complex interplay between genome, epigenetic and life history is starting to be unravelled. This module takes you to the leading edge of the discipline and to the forefront of conservation and medicine.

      Assessment: Coursework: 60%, Written Exam(s): 40%.

      SCI3309Biodiversity and Conservation (20 credits)

      Biodiversity and Conservation is a field-based module providing you with an opportunity for a detailed study of habitats and conservation issues at protected sites. A diverse range of management issues across a range of organisms will be explored across varied habitats. This will be placed in the context of ecological theory, conservation legislation and wider pressures on the landscape.

      Assessment: Coursework: 100%.

      SCI3311Ecological Genetics (20 credits)

      Ecological Genetics aligns fieldwork and molecular genetic methods in order to understand the factors influencing genetic variation in populations. You will study speciation, gene flow, reduced population size and the impact of historical events such as glaciation.

      Assessment: Coursework: 50%, Written Exam(s): 50%.

      SCI3316Pathology (20 credits)

      Pathology details the fundamental cellular processes that lead to the development of disease. The module also explores how these processes relate to dysfunction within tissues and organs and ultimately the presentation of typical pathological phenotypes and patient symptoms. Diseases with genetic origins (such as congenital ichthyosis) and environmental origins (such as lung disease) will be considered, as will the interactions between the two (as in cardiovascular disease). There is a significant emphasis on delivering career-relevant laboratory skills used in the diagnosis of disease, particularly histological approaches as well as molecular techniques. Real-life case studies are considered throughout each topic, helping you to gain confidence in the identification of common disease traits through regular diagnostic lab simulations in class.

      Assessment: Coursework: 50%, Written Exam(s): 50%.

      SCI3318Invertebrate Ecology (20 credits)

      Invertebrate Ecology explores the diversity of terrestrial and aquatic invertebrates, examining their life cycle, basic physiology, importance to ecosystem functioning and the range of services with which they provide society. You will learn quantitative sampling techniques as well as navigation, health and safety assessment and ethical considerations. You will also develop a sound knowledge of taxonomy for a variety of groups such as aquatic insects, spiders and beetles, gaining the identification, preservation and museum-standard presentation skills which are vital for employment in the sector or further ecological study. Scientific writing and data analysis will be developed through the write-up of an experiment as a scientific paper.

      Assessment: Coursework: 100%.

      SCI3321Pharmacology (20 credits)

      Pharmacology details the development, application and action of drugs on the human system through a combination of practical and theoretical work.

      Assessment: Coursework: 50%, Written Exam(s): 50%.

      SCI3322Laboratory Masterclass (20 credits)

      Laboratory Masterclass exposes you to the skills required for working in a research laboratory which includes developing working knowledge of the safe use of laboratory equipment. The module also encompasses health and safety, including legal requirements, and good laboratory practice. It will develop your ability to identify research questions in a field of biology in which you have developed an interest and make a preliminary assessment of that research question.

      Assessment: Coursework: 100%.

      SCI3324Epidemiology (20 credits)

      Epidemiology is the study of factors affecting the health and illness of populations. You will investigate how disease patterns are monitored both nationally and globally, how changes in disease patterns are studied and how public health strategies are formulated. This is an important contemporary field of biology.

      Assessment: Written Exam(s): 100%.

      SCI3325Ecological Interactions (20 credits)

      Ecological Interactions equips you with an advanced understanding of the interactions that underpin ecological relationships in populations, communities and ecosystems. You will discover the variety of interactions that occur among animal, plant and fungi species and examine the key theories which underpin them. A combination of lectures, case studies and practical work will demonstrate the importance of these mechanisms to how ecosystems function. You will understand the importance of these interactions to applied contexts such as integrated pest management in agriculture and forestry and to wider society and the concept of sustainability. The module will enable you to rapidly assess the literature to derive evidence from it for supporting scientific hypotheses.

      Assessment: Coursework: 100%.

      SCI3327Advanced Tissue Applications (20 credits)

      Advanced Tissue Applications provides an in-depth understanding of the use of different cell and tissue-based applications in research, medical diagnostics and at the lab-clinic interface. You will obtain a wide perspective of the processing and analysis of protein-derived samples, including human and animal cells and tissue.

      Assessment: Written Exam(s): 60%, Practical(s): 40%.

      SCI3328Applications of Biotechnology (20 credits)

      Applications of Biotechnology provides you with an advanced understanding of the applications of biotechnology within various industries including food, medicine, environmental management and agriculture.  The module will focus on the product development process within these different industries, from research and development, through to large scale production. Relevant legal issues will also be considered.

      Assessment: Coursework: 100%.

      SCI3329Field Botany (20 credits)

      Field Botany is a field-based module, providing you with an opportunity to conduct a detailed study of a particular group of organisms. The module introduces the full range of vascular plant diversity across a range of habitats alongside supporting work using keys and microscopes. The module also incorporates coverage of community classifications.

      Assessment: Coursework: 100%.

      SCI3336Plants and People (20 credits)

      Plants and People provides you with a comprehensive understanding of the importance of plants to human wellbeing in economic and broader cultural settings. The module equips you with knowledge of the importance of plants in terms of human utility and less easily quantified areas such as aesthetic, symbolic and general wellbeing. You will learn about the manipulation of plants through traditional and novel methods and develop a deeper appreciation of their importance to conservation. You will also study practical methods of ex-situ plant conservation, breeding and biotechnology including micropropagation, in addition to developing the ability to analyse data relating to ethnobotany and ecosystem services.

      Assessment: Coursework: 100%.

      SCI3338Field to Fork (20 credits)

      Field to Fork provides a detailed analysis of alternative approaches to industrialised food production, based upon scientific, economic and other criteria. The major points along the food chain will be examined. Consideration of alternative approaches to intensive agriculture and mass production of highly processed food provides you with a broader context to the subject as a whole. This will be achieved through working closely with local producers alongside analysis of relevant data.

      Assessment: Coursework: 50%, Written Exam(s): 50%.

      If you studied Language modules in Years 1 and 2, you may wish to study a further Language module in Year 3. This would form an integral part of your degree in place of one of the optional modules above.

      Optional modules provide an element of choice within the programme curriculum. The availability of optional modules may vary from year to year and will be subject to minimum student numbers being achieved. This means that the availability of specific optional modules cannot be guaranteed. Optional module selection may also be affected by timetabling requirements.


      Timetables for your first week are normally available at the end of August prior to enrolment in September. You can expect to receive your timetable for the rest of the academic year during your first week. Please note that while we make every effort to ensure that timetables are as student-friendly as possible, scheduled teaching can take place on any day of the week. Wednesday afternoons are normally reserved for sports and cultural activities.


      Every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of our published course information, however our programmes are subject to ongoing review and development. Changing circumstances may necessitate alteration to, or the cancellation of, courses.

      Changes may be necessary to comply with the requirements of accrediting bodies, revisions to subject benchmarks statements, to keep courses updated and contemporary, or as a result of student feedback. We reserve the right to make variations if we consider such action to be necessary or in the best interests of students.

      Entry Criteria

      Entry Requirements

      Typical offer 112-120 UCAS Tariff points, preferably to include Biology or a related subject, such as Chemistry, Geography or Psychology, plus GCSE Mathematics at Grade C or Grade 4 or above (or equivalent).

      Other subjects will be considered if you have demonstrable interest or experience in biology.

      Example Offers

      Some examples of how you can achieve 112-120 UCAS Tariff points are detailed below.

      • A Level: BBC-BBB;
      • BTEC Extended Diploma (or combination of BTEC QCF qualifications): Distinction, Merit, Merit (DMM);
      • International Baccalaureate (IB): We are happy to accept IB qualifications which achieve the required number of UCAS Tariff points. Subject-specific requirements at Higher Level (HL) Grade 5 may apply;
      • Access to Higher Education Diploma: 45 credits at Level 3, for example 15 credits at Distinction and 30 credits at Merit or 24 credits at Distinction and 21 credits at Merit. The required total can be attained from various credit combinations.

      Please note, the above examples may differ from actual offers made. A combination of A Level and BTEC awards may also be accepted.

      As long as you have a minimum of two A Levels (or equivalent), there is no maximum number of qualifications that we will accept UCAS points from. This includes additional qualifications such as the Welsh Baccalaureate and Extended Project Qualification (EPQ), AS levels that haven’t been continued to A Level, and General Studies AS or A Level awards.

      For further information on how you can meet the entry requirements, including details of alternative qualifications, please visit www.edgehill.ac.uk/offers.

      EU students can get country-specific information about the University’s entry requirements and equivalent national qualifications at www.edgehill.ac.uk/eu.

      International students should visit www.edgehill.ac.uk/international for information on the entry criteria for overseas applicants.

      English Language Requirements

      International students require IELTS 6.0, with a score no lower than 5.5 in each individual component, or an equivalent English language qualification.

      If your current level of English is half a band lower, either overall or in one or two elements, you may want to consider our Pre-Sessional English course.

      Are there any alternative ways to meet the entry requirements?

      STEM Foundation Year

      With effect from September 2022 entry, if you would like to study this degree but do not meet the subject-specific entry requirements, you may wish to apply to study the programme as a 4-year course with integrated foundation year. The foundation year will equip you with key transferable skills and subject knowledge. Upon successful completion of the integrated foundation year, you will be able to progress onto Year 1 of this degree.

      Fastrack: Preparation for Higher Education

      If you have the ability to study for a degree but lack the necessary qualifications or confidence, our Fastrack: Preparation for Higher Education course could be for you. This free, seven-week programme provides a great opportunity to enhance your study skills and subject knowledge and demonstrate that you are ready to study a particular subject with us, in lieu of achieving the UCAS Tariff points in the entry criteria.

      Upon successful completion of a Fastrack course, you will be well placed to progress onto a corresponding Edge Hill University degree, although additional entry requirements may apply and the availability of specific programmes cannot be guaranteed. For more information, visit www.edgehill.ac.uk/fastrack.

      Recognition of Prior Learning

      Edge Hill University recognises learning gained elsewhere, whether through academic credit and qualifications acquired from other relevant courses of study or through recognition of an individual’s professional and employment experience (also referred to as ‘experiential learning’). This may include credit or learning undertaken at another university.

      Previous learning that is recognised in this way may be used towards meeting the entry requirements for a programme and/or for exemption from part of a programme. It is your responsibility to make a claim for recognition of prior learning. For guidance, please consult the University’s academic regulations (sections C7 and F3.1) or contact the faculty in which you are interested in studying.

      Career Prospects

      What are my career prospects?

      The knowledge, skills and personal attributes you will gain will enable you to compete successfully for biological and wider graduate employment or to engage with lifelong learning, research and enquiry.

      As a graduate of a degree accredited by the Royal Society of Biology, you will be eligible to receive one year of free membership of the Royal Society of Biology at Associate level. The Royal Society of Biology is the UK’s leading professional body for the biological sciences. As an Associate member, you will be able to take advantage of unique opportunities to engage with the life sciences, share your passion for biology and develop your professional network.

      Career paths include areas such as laboratory and field-based scientific enquiry, ecologist, environmental consultancy, management and protection, countryside ranger, postgraduate study or teacher training.

      How can I enhance my employability?

      It is useful to consider, even before you apply, how you will spend your time while studying and make the most of your university experience.

      Optional, additional activities may be available on this degree which could help to prepare you for a stimulating and rewarding career. These include:

      • Sandwich Years – you may have the opportunity to apply to complete a sandwich year placement, usually as the third year of a four year degree, and gain highly relevant work experience;
      • Studying Abroad – you may have the opportunity to apply to spend time studying or working abroad, usually as the third year of a four year degree, enabling you to immerse yourself in a different culture;
      • Learning a Language – you may be able to select language modules, delivered at the Edge Hill Language Centre, as an integral part of your degree (for which you will gain academic credits). Alternatively, it may be possible to participate in Language Steps classes as additional study.

      Please note, the availability of these additional activities cannot be guaranteed for all students. Depending on availability and the number of students wanting to participate, there may be a competitive application process for sandwich year placements or studying abroad opportunities or you may be required to secure a relevant placement yourself.


      Tuition Fees

      If you are a prospective UK student who will be joining this undergraduate degree on a full-time basis in academic year 2021/22, the tuition fee will be £9,250 per annum.

      Tuition fees for international students enrolling on the programme on a full-time basis in academic year 2021/22 are £12,500 per annum. Exemptions apply for EU/EEA and Swiss students who have settled or pre-settled status under the EU Settlement Scheme, as well as Irish nationals, who may be eligible for the UK full-time tuition fee rate.

      If you are a prospective UK student who will be joining this undergraduate degree on a part-time basis in academic year 2021/22, the tuition fee will be £77 per credit, i.e. £1,540 per 20 credit module. 360 credits are required to complete an undergraduate degree. EU/EEA and Swiss students who have settled or pre-settled status under the EU Settlement Scheme, as well as Irish nationals, may be eligible for the UK part-time tuition fee rate.

      The University may administer a small inflationary rise in tuition fees, in line with Government policy, in subsequent academic years as you progress through the course.

      Financial Support

      Subject to eligibility, UK students joining this undergraduate degree can apply for a Tuition Fee Loan from the Government to cover the full cost of tuition fees. UK students enrolling on the programme may also be eligible to apply for additional funding to help with living costs.

      For comprehensive information about the financial support available to eligible UK students joining this programme in academic year 2021/22, together with details of how to apply for potential funding, please view our Money Matters 2021/22 guide for your intended mode of study.

      EU/EEA and Swiss students who have settled or pre-settled status under the EU Settlement Scheme may be eligible to apply for financial support. Irish nationals should ordinarily apply to Student Universal Support Ireland (SUSI). Please see www.edgehill.ac.uk/eufinance for further details.

      Financial support information for international students can be found at www.edgehill.ac.uk/international/fees.


      Ten scholarship winners sitting together in a lecture theatre at the Scholarship Awards Evening.Edge Hill University offers a range of scholarships with a competitive application process for prospective full-time undergraduate students.

      These scholarships aren’t linked to academic success and celebrate determination, talent and achievement beyond your coursework, for instance in creativity, enterprise, ICT, performance, sport or volunteering.

      An additional scholarship, which you may qualify to receive, rewards outstanding A Level and BTEC grades.

      To find out more about scholarships, to assess your eligibility, and to meet some of our dedicated scholarship winners, visit www.edgehill.ac.uk/scholarships.


      How to Apply

      If you wish to study full-time, apply online through UCAS at www.ucas.com. Visit www.edgehill.ac.uk/applyucas to find out more about the application process.

      If you wish to study part-time, apply directly to Edge Hill University at www.edgehill.ac.uk/apply-part-time.

      Further information for international students about how to apply is available at www.edgehill.ac.uk/applyinternational.

      Should you accept an offer of a place to study with us and formally enrol as a student, you will be subject to the provisions of the regulations, rules, codes, conditions and policies which apply to our students. These are available at www.edgehill.ac.uk/studentterms.

      Visit Us

      If you are considering applying to study at Edge Hill University, the best way to gain an insight into student life is to discover our stunning campus for yourself by attending an open day. You can view dates and book your place at www.edgehill.ac.uk/opendays.

      Alternatively, if you are unable to attend an open day, you can find out more about our full range of events for prospective students, including campus tours and virtual activities, at www.edgehill.ac.uk/visitus.

      Request a Prospectus

      If you would like to explore our full range of degrees before you apply, you can order an undergraduate prospectus at www.edgehill.ac.uk/undergradprospectus.

      Get in Touch

      If you have any questions about this programme or what it’s like to study at Edge Hill University, please contact:

      International students should visit www.edgehill.ac.uk/international or email international@edgehill.ac.uk with any queries about overseas study.

      Course Changes

      Expand All This page outlines any material changes to course content, programme structure, assessment methods, entry criteria, and modes of study or delivery, implemented in the past two years.

      12th March 2021 - New Modules Added

      SCI2343 Human Genetics (20 credits) and SCI2344 Immunology and Infectious Diseases (20 credits) added as optional modules in Year 2.

      22nd June 2020 - Change of Modules

      SCI1116 Genetics and Evolution (20 credits) and SCI1117 Introduction to Cell Biology (20 credits) added as compulsory modules in Year 1. SCI1106 Variation, Evolution and Heredity (20 credits), SCI1108 Cellular Form and Function (20 credits) and SCI1114 Human Body Systems (20 credits) removed as optional modules in Year 1. SCI1118 Anatomy and Physiology (20 credits) added as an optional module in Year 1.

      SCI2319 Laboratory Masterclass (20 credits) changes from optional to compulsory in Year 2. SCI2331 Life on the Edge (20 credits) removed as an optional module in Year 2.

      SCI3336 Plants and People (20 credits) and SCI3338 Field to Fork (20 credits) added as optional modules in Year 3. HUG3125 The Wider Determinants of Overweight and Obesity (20 credits), HUG3153 Child and Adolescent Mental Health (20 credits), HUG3155 Applied Health Psychology in Context (20 credits), HUG3264 Exercise, Diet and Health Promotion (20 credits), SCI3017 Nerves, Brain and Behaviour (20 credits), SCI3310 Tropical Ecology (20 credits), SCI3314 Current Issues in Biology (20 credits) and SCI3326 Conservation Issues (20 credits) removed as optional modules in Year 3. SCI3350 Biology Research Project (40 credits) replaces SCI3330 Dissertation – Biology (40 credits) as a compulsory module in Year 3).

      Covid-19 - Biology Essential Information

      Biology Course Statement

      Some module elements that would usually take place in the autumn semester have been moved to the second semester. Residential fieldwork, including the Year 1 trip to Cyprus, may not be possible, depending on government guidance at the time.

      Teaching and Learning at Edge Hill University in 2020

      In this video Pro Vice-Chancellor, Lynda Brady, answers your questions and explains how teaching will work when you join us at Edge Hill University in September.

      Campus Facilities at Edge Hill University in 2020

      In this video Pro Vice-Chancellor, Lynda Brady, explains how we’re preparing the campus for your arrival in September and the facilities that will be available.