Undergraduate prospectus

  • Start date: September 2016

Human Sciences BSc

UCL is one of the few universities in the UK to offer a Human Sciences programme. This interdisciplinary degree draws on teaching from a range of departments, and offers enormous flexibility and opportunity for you to develop your own areas of interest and specialisation in the study of humankind.

Key Information

Degree Programme
Human Sciences BSc
UCAS code
3 years
Application deadline
15 January 2016
Subject area
Human Sciences
Total intake (by subject area)
40 (2016 entry)
Applications per place (by subject area)
3 (2014 entry)
Research Excellence Framework
Interdisciplinary programme: see contributing departments

Entry requirements

A Levels

Science subject required, preferably Biology.
AS Levels
For UK-based students a pass in a further subject at AS level or equivalent is required.
English Language and Mathematics at grade B. For UK-based students, a grade C or equivalent in a foreign language (other than Ancient Greek, Biblical Hebrew or Latin) is required. UCL provides opportunities to meet the foreign language requirement following enrolment, further details at: www.ucl.ac.uk/ug-reqs

IB Diploma

A total of 18 points in three higher level subjects including science (preferably Biology at grade 6), with no score below 5.

UK applicants qualifications

For entry requirements with other UK qualifications accepted by UCL, choose your qualification from the list below:

Equivalent qualification

Not acceptable for entrance to this programme

Not acceptable for entrance to this programme.

D3,D3,D3 in three Cambridge Pre-U Principal Subjects, including a science subject (preferably Biology).

AAA at Advanced Highers (or AA at Advanced Higher and AAA at Higher), including a science subject (preferably Biology) at Advanced Higher.

Successful completion of the WBQ Advanced Diploma Core with grade A, plus 2 GCE A-levels at grades AA, including a science subject. Preferably to include Biology.

International applications

In addition to A level and International Baccalaureate, UCL considers a wide range of international qualifications for entry to its undergraduate degree programmes.

Undergraduate Preparatory Certificates

UCL offers intensive one-year foundation courses to prepare international students for a variety of degree programmes at UCL.

The Undergraduate Preparatory Certificates (UPCs) are for international students of high academic potential who are aiming to gain access to undergraduate degree programmes at UCL and other top UK universities.

For more information see our website: UCL Undergraduate Preparatory Certificate.

English language requirements

If your education has not been conducted in the English language, you will be expected to demonstrate evidence of an adequate level of English proficiency. Information about the evidence required, acceptable qualifications and test providers can be found on our English language requirements page.

The English language level for this programme is: Good

A variety of English language programmes are offered at the UCL Centre for Languages & International Education.

Degree benefits

  • You will benefit from being exposed to a variety of disciplinary approaches in the contributing departments and access to outstanding departmental resources.
  • The programme offers a wide choice of individual course combinations from life sciences, social and historical sciences and physical sciences.
  • Strong pastoral and academic support. The Human Sciences Tutor and your Personal Tutor will be available for consultation on structuring your programme.
  • A student committee organises academic and social events for Human Sciences students, such as a series of guest speakers.

Degree structure

In each year of your degree you will take a number of individual courses, normally valued at 0.5 or 1.0 credits, adding up to a total of 4.0 credits for the year. Courses are assessed in the academic year in which they are taken. The balance of compulsory and optional courses varies from programme to programme and year to year. A 1.0 credit is considered equivalent to 15 credits in the European Credit Transfer System (ECTS).

In your first year you mostly follow a common syllabus, taking courses in human structure and function (anatomy, physiology, biochemistry and genetics) and in human interactions (anthropology and psychology). Students may also choose between courses in Human Ecology and Revealing Science.

In year two you take the compulsory course, The Human Sciences in Society, in which students work in a group to explore a topic of their choice within the social sciences, and Statistical Methods in Computing.

In year three your compulsory course is the Human Sciences Seminar Project, wherein you design and carry out a small research project, which you write up as a dissertation.

You choose your remaining courses in years two and three from the extensive range of options in biomedical, biological, environmental, social, historical or philosophical areas.

Year One

Compulsory courses

General Biochemistry
Introduction to Biological Anthropology
Introduction to Genetics
Introduction to Human Anatomy
Introduction to Psychology for Biologists
Mammalian Physiology

Optional courses

Human Ecology: Geographical Perspectives
Revealing Science

to the value of 0.5 credits.

Year Two

Compulsory course

The Human Sciences in Society
Introductory Statistical Methods and Computing

Optional courses

You will select 3.0 credits from a wide choice of optional courses. Popular examples include:

Human Anatomy and Embryology
Modern Languages
Primate Behaviour and Ecology

Final Year

Compulsory course

Human Sciences Seminar Project

Optional courses

You will select 3.0 credits from a wide choice of options, examples include:

Biology of Ageing
Clocks, Sleep and Biological Time
Communicating Science in Digital Environments
Neurodegenerative Diseases
Policy Issues in the Life Sciences

Your learning

Teaching in the first year is by lectures, small-group tutorials, workshops, practicals and laboratory sessions. Your second-year core course will involve lectures, group work and debates. The optional courses taken in other departments will be taught in a variety of ways according to the nature of the course and the usual practice of the department concerned.


Assessments include essays, web-based examinations, written examinations, practical reports, briefing papers and debating performance. The third-year dissertation is assessed solely on the written report; however you will be required to make a short presentation of your topic in the second term.

Further Information

Detailed course descriptions are available on the department website: Human Sciences BSc.


The programme aims to provide a wide, scientific knowledge of the life of humans. Graduates of the programme will be scientifically literate, numerate and easily able to communicate across a wide range of disciplines.

The Human Sciences BSc teaches a broad base of knowledge across many different subject areas. It is therefore no surprise that graduates have entered a variety of careers: journalism, nutrition, science communication, management, accountancy, teaching and the finance industry, to mention a few.

A number of graduates pursue further studies, including Master's degrees in various fields, and, although the degree is not intended as a preliminary to them, qualifications in law and medicine.


First career destinations of recent graduates (2010-2013) of this programme include:

  • Full-time student, MSc in Biomedical Sciences at UCL (2013)
  • Full-time student, MSc in Technology Entrepreneurship at UCL (2013)
  • Production Assistant, Red Bee Media (2013)
  • Graduate Sales Executive, Atos (2013)
  • Research Associate, Indigold Creative (2013)

*Data taken from the 'Destinations of Leavers from Higher Education' survey undertaken by HESA looking at the destinations of UK and EU students in the 2010-2013 graduating cohorts six months after graduation and, where necessary, department records.

UCL is commited to helping you get the best start after graduation. Read more about how UCL Careers, UCL Advances and other entrepreneur societies here: Careers and skills.

Fees and funding


UK & EU fee
£9,000 (2016/17)
Overseas fee
£21,320 (2016/17)


Details about financial support are available at: www.ucl.ac.uk/study/ug-finance


The Scholarships and Funding website has a comprehensive list of scholarships and funding schemes available for UCL students. These can be available for specific nationalities, regions, departments or open to all students.

Application and next steps

Your application

The Human Sciences BSc is very popular, consequently entry to the programme is competitive. When assessing your application we will be looking for proven and predicted examination performance, and also for evidence of your interest in both sciences and humanities, for example in the breadth of your A level or other qualifying studies.

How to apply

Application for admission should be made through UCAS (the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service). Applicants currently at school or college will be provided with advice on the process; however, applicants who have left school or who are based outside the United Kingdom may obtain information directly from UCAS.

Application deadline: 15 January 2016


All candidates will be considered on the basis of their UCAS application. Criteria will include proven and predicted academic performance and a clear demonstration of your desire to study a broad-based interdisciplinary degree, your understanding of what the degree entails, and your initiative, motivation and communication skills.

Selected candidates who are resident in the UK will be invited to attend an open day. Your visit will include introductory talks about UCL, UCL Division of Biosciences, and the Human Sciences degree. You will also be given a tour of UCL and the opportunity to meet current Human Sciences students.

Candidates resident outside the UK will not be required to attend an open day.

For further information on UCL's selection process see: Selection of students