UCL Biosciences

1st Year Students 2015

Will you be starting a new undergraduate course in UCL Biosciences this September?

For further information, including induction week timetables and joining instructions, please see our Undergraduate Induction Week webpages.

BSc Biomedical Sciences (B990)


What is Biomedical Sciences?

Biomedical science is a dynamic and fascinating field. Medicine and healthcare are becoming increasingly sophisticated and global demand is growing for people highly-skilled in this field. Work undertaken by biomedical science graduates are making important and dramatic contributions to the improvement of human health.

Degree Benefits

  • UCL is a long-standing centre of excellence in biomedical science subjects and is internationally recognised for its strength within the field of biomedical research.
  • You will have the opportunity to transfer to one of nine specific degree programmes from the second year, or to continue with the general Biomedical Sciences programme.
  • You will be taught by experts in the different subjects, but will also be encouraged to discover how the subjects overlap and interact, allowing your studies to have both breadth and depth.
  • Excellent facilities include laboratories, library collections and computer cluster rooms. Get involved with the activities of the student-run Biosciences Society, which organises seminars, careers evenings and other social events.

Degree Features

  • After completing your first year, if you find that your interest becomes focused on one specific subject area, then you can transfer into a specialist degree programme:

   Anatomy and Developmental Biology*
   Human Genetics*
   Immunology and Infection*
   Molecular Biology*
   Physiology and Pharmacology*

   (*programmes available for entry only in the second year)

  • If you wish to remain with the general Biomedical Sciences programme you will have an extensive choice of options covering a wide spectrum of topics in your second and third years.

Entry Requirements
  • For all current entry requirements, including UK, Overseas and English Language requirements, please see our page within the UCL Undergraduate Prospectus

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

The Admissions Process
  • Once you have submitted your application to UCAS, we will receive a copy of your UCAS form for consideration.
  • Your application will initially be assessed based on your grade predictions (or achieved grades if you have already completed your exams) as they relate to our entry requirements and your personal statement.  
  • If we would like to consider your application further, a decision will then be made on your application, using your personal statement and reference.
  • Finally, if we wish to make you an offer, you will be invited to a post-application open day.  Open day attendance is optional but we strongly recommend you to visit to see the facilities and find out more from current students and staff.

Open Days
  • Open days will include UCL and subject talks, a research talk given by a lecturer at UCL, refreshments and tours with current UCL students and an opportunity to talk to members of staff who will answer any questions you may have.  Please note, attendance at the open day does not form part of our admissions selection process and is optional.
  • If you are yet to apply for our programme and would like to visit UCL, you can attend the annual UCL Open Day.  The next Open Day will take place on Friday 3rd July, Saturday 4th July and Saturday 12th September.

Funding and Scholarships
  • For further information on the UCL Scholarships and Funding available for undergraduate students, please see the UCL Fees and Finance page

 Contact Us
  • We hope that this site has provided you with all of the necessary information you may need if you are considering to apply for our programme.  Don't forget to check out our FAQs page on the next tab above.  However, if you would still like further advice, please do not hesitate to contact the Division of Biosciences Admissions Office:

Contact: Marcella Baterip

Email: biosciences-admissions@ucl.ac.uk; m.baterip@ucl.ac.uk

Tel: +44(0)207 679 7169

Modules for Year 1

In the first year all courses are mandatory and are designed to give you a firm foundation on which to make an informed choice for later years.

  • ANAT1003 Introduction to Human Anatomy
  • BIOL1005 Introduction to Genetics
  • BIOC1001 Biochemistry and Molecular Biology A
  • CELL1002 Introduction to Cell Biology
  • CHEM1602 Chemistry for Biology Students
  • PHAR1001 An Introduction to Mechanisms of Drug Action
  • PHOL1001 Mammalian Physiology

Modules for Year 2

The Biomedical Sciences degree is extremely flexible and allows you to choose from 5 different specialist pathways.  The core modules for each pathway are shown below. In addition to these core modules you will be able to choose optional modules from a wide range within Biosciences and UCL-wide.

As well as the 5 pathways, you also have the option of transferring on to one of our specialist programmes (please see list under 'degree features' above).  For information regarding these programmes please see them in the list on the main page.

Focus on Organs and Systems:

  • ANAT2050 Human Anatomy and Embryology
  • BIOS2001 Writing and Presenting Biosciences
  • PHOL2001 Animal and Human Physiology: Integrative Physiology
  • STAT6101 Introduction to Statistical Methods and Computing

Focus on Control System:

  • BIOL2004 Fundamentals of Molecular Biology
  • BIOS2001 Writing and Presenting Biosciences
  • PHOL2003 Animal and Human Physiology: Systems Neuroscience
  • PHOL2005 Structure and Function of Nervous Sysytems
  • STAT6101 Introduction to Statistical Methods and Computing

Focus on Developmental Biology:



  • BIOL2010 Biology of Development
  • STAT6101 Introduction to Statistical Methods and Computing

Focus on Drugs:

  • PHAR2002 General and Systematic Pharmacology






  • BIOC2003 Further Topics in Biochemistry


  • STAT6101 Introduction to Statistical Methods and Computing

Focus on Cells and Molecules:


  • BIOC2003 Essential Molecular Biology
  • CELL2008 Integrative Cell Biology
  • STAT6101 Introduction to Statistical Methods and Computing

Modules for Year 3

Year 3 will mainly focus on a research project.  Students can choose either a literature based project or, more usually, a laboratory based project where students are attached to a research group either within the Faculty of Life Sciences, or at one of the Research Institutes that are a part of UCL: Institute of Child Health, Institute of Ophthalmology, Institute of Neurology, Ear Institute or Wolfson Institute of Biomedical Research.

The area of research will depend on which stream or interest a student has taken in year 2.  Available projects are shown below.

Laboratory Research Projects:

  • ANAT3903 Anatomy Experimental Project
  • BIOC3002 Biochemistry Experimental Project
  • BIOL3005 Biology Experimental Project
  • NEUR3903 Neuroscience Experimental Project
  • PHAR3010 Pharmacology Experimental Project
  • PHOL3902 Physiology Experimental Project

Literature Research Projects:

These FAQs are specifically for the Biomedical Sciences programme.  Please see Division of Biosciences Admissions FAQs for answers to general admissions queries.

1. How will I be taught?

A wide variety of teaching methods are used, including lectures, tutorials, workshops and laboratory work. Each module will have its own set of teaching methods.

2. How will I be assessed?

A mixture of coursework, exams and practical work form the basis of assessment. The weighting varies depending on which modules you choose.

3. Is it possible to take modules in other departments?

It is possible to choose modules in other departments. You will receive advice from your personal and degree programme tutors on which modules are best for your chosen degree path.

4. What support is available during the Biomedical Sciences degree?

All kinds of support are available to students, whether it academic, financial, welfare or career advice. You will also have a personal tutor and a dedicated teaching administrator throughout each year of your degree who will provide guidance.

5. Is there a recommended reading list?

No. There is no set reading list before students arrive at UCL.

6. What careers are suitable for Biomedical Sciences graduates?

Because of the wide variety of eventual specialisations, the Biomedical Sciences degree naturally has a broad range of career outcomes.  Many students in Biomedical Sciences typically go to work in the pharmaceutical related industries, or into further study and research. 

Medicine is also becoming increasingly available as a graduate-entry programme in the UK, with institutions offering 'accelerated' graduate programmes; a good degree in Biomedical Sciences is ideal preparation for this.

The Biomedical Sciences degree also provides students with skills in logical thinking and decision-making which makes graduates valuable in many fields such as the medical or scientific civil services, management, teaching or journalism.

7. How many places have you on offer?

The Biomedical Sciences degree has approximately 150 places available each year.

8. How competitive are places for the Biomedical Sciences course?

Competition for places is very strong, but all applications received before the deadline will be assessed by the same set of entry criteria. Only the best will be shortlisted so it is vital your personal statement and references are strong and demonstrate your strengths and character.

9. What work experience must I include on my application?

There is no absolute requirement for Biomedical Sciences but any science related work experience included in your personal statement will be seen as very positive.

10. I would like to visit UCL and talk to the admissions tutor, when can I do that?

Information on our annual Open Day can be found on the UCL website. The UCL study information centre can provide information and a self-guided tour brochure.  It may be possible to arrange an appointment if you are unable to attend the open day. Please contact the Admissions Office for more information: biosciences-admissions@ucl.ac.uk

As part of the admission cycle we invite all short-listed UK students to an open day including a tour, meeting students and discussions with the admissions tutor.

11. I did not get the required grades to be admitted to your course, will you reconsider my application if I resit my examinations?

Re-sit applications are considered on an individual basis. 

12. I am applying to four medical schools and my personal statement reflects this. Do I need to supply a separate statement to cover my fifth choice for Biomedical Sciences? 

No, we are happy to use your personal statement for Medicine, but if you wish to send us a separate statement please email it to the Admissions Office biosciences-admissions@ucl.ac.uk

13. Can I transfer to Medicine? 

Unfortunately you are unable to transfer to Medicine during the course.  If you finish the BSc degree and achieve a 2:1 or higher, you are normally eligible to apply for graduate-entry Medicine programmes around the UK (please check individual institutions for this).