Biological Sciences BSc
The Biological Sciences BSc offers you an extremely wide choice of optional modules ranging from molecular genetics to behaviour and ecology, and a flexible programme of study. Taught across the Faculty of Life Sciences, we offer a breadth of biological education unmatched in almost any other UK university.
- UCAS code
Full-time: 3 years
- Application deadline
- 15 January 2019
- London, Bloomsbury
- Biology required plus one from Chemistry, Mathematics or Physics.
- ABB (more about contextual offers)
- Biology at grade A required plus one from Chemistry, Mathematics or Physics.
- English Language and Mathematics at grade B or 6. For UK-based students, a grade C or 5 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-requirements
- A total of 18 points in three higher level subjects including Biology at grade 6 and one from Chemistry, Mathematics or Physics, with no score below 5.
- 34 (more about contextual offers)
- A total of 16 points in three higher level subjects including Biology at grade 6 and one from Chemistry, Mathematics or Physics, 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:
Not acceptable for entrance to this programme
Not acceptable for entrance to this programme.
D3,D3,D3 in three Cambridge Pre-U Principal Subjects. Biology required plus one from Chemistry, Physics or Mathematics
A,A,A at Advanced Highers (or A,A at Advanced Higher and A,A,A at Higher). Biology required plus one from Chemistry, Physics or Mathematics at Advanced Higher.
Successful completion of the WBQ Advanced Skills Challenge Certificate plus 2 GCE A-Levels at grades AAA. Biology required plus one from Chemistry, Physics or Mathematics.
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 Undergraduate Preparatory Certificates (UPCs) are intensive one-year foundation courses for international students of high academic potential who are aiming to gain access to undergraduate degree programmes at UCL and other top UK universities.
Typical UPC students will be high achievers in a 12-year school system which does not meet the standard required for direct entry to UCL.
For more information see: www.ucl.ac.uk/upc.
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.
You will have the opportunity to choose a specialist degree route: Biodiversity and Conservation, Genetics, Human Genetics, Cell Biology, or Zoology.
Our research-led teaching takes advantage of our links with London-based organisations including the Natural History Museum, ZSL London Zoo, the UCL Institute of Healthy Ageing and the UCL Centre for Biodiversity and Environment Research.
You will have the benefit of our excellent facilities, including our field station at Blakeney Point in Norfolk, our on-site museum, the Grant Museum of Zoology and the newly refurbished UCL Cruciform Hub.
Our Summer Studentship scheme allows second-year students to experience original research in the laboratory or the field.
In each year of your degree you will take a number of individual modules, normally valued at 15 or 30 credits, adding up to a total of 120 credits for the year. Modules are assessed in the academic year in which they are taken. The balance of compulsory and optional modules varies from programme to programme and year to year. A 30-credit module is considered equivalent to 15 credits in the European Credit Transfer System (ECTS).
The first year of this programme covers a core range of subjects from across the spectrum of biological sciences, giving you a firm foundation upon which to base your later choices.
In your second year, you can either continue towards a degree in general biological sciences, or you can choose from five specialised degree routes.
In your third year you have the choice to take modules from many different subjects across UCL. You can choose a research or a literature project based with one of UCL's research groups.
Specialist degree programmes
You can transfer to any of the following specialist degree programmes after year one:
Biodiversity and Conservation focuses on the interactions between organisms and populations with the environments they inhabit;
Cell Biology focuses on cell function and its role in major human diseases;
Genetics focuses on evolutionary, genomic and population genetics;
Human Genetics focuses on gene function in disease; and
Zoology focuses on the study of animals in all their complexity and diversity.
An indicative guide to the structure of this programme, year by year.
Core or compulsory module(s)
Biochemistry and Molecular Biology
Introduction to Genetics
Introduction to Microbiology
Cells and Development
Life on Earth
Methods in Ecology and Evolution
Either Chemistry for Biologists or Fundamentals of Biology
In the second year, you will have the opportunity to either remain on the generalist Biological Sciences programme, or select a specialist route in:
Biodiversity and Conservation
Core or compulsory module(s)
Introduction to Research
You will select 2.5 to 3.0 credits from a wide range of optional modules in your chosen degree programme and from other approved disciplines within UCL.
The programme consists of lectures, seminars, tutorials, practicals, e-learning and supported personal study. You will have the opportunity to take part in UCL's world-leading research from your first year onwards, either in the laboratory or studying animals and plants in their natural habitats.
Initially you will be assessed primarily by end-of-year examinations with a smaller component from practical reports or other coursework such as essays. As your programme progresses research-based coursework exercises will become more important, culminating in a final-year project.
Detailed course descriptions are available on the department website: Biological Sciences BSc.
Biological Sciences can lead to a wide range of careers. There is key skills training embedded in our degrees (e.g., in statistics, computing and in giving presentations), which helps make you attractive to employers.
Many of our graduates choose to undertake further studies, aiming for a research career in a university or in industry. As well as careers in scientific fields, such as in the health service, conservation or the pharmaceutical industry, our graduates have also pursued further training or employment in management, teaching, accounting, the civil service and law.
First career destinations of recent graduates (2013-2015) of this programme include:
- Laboratory Research Assistant, UCL
- Full-time student, MRes in Cancer Biology at Imperial College London
- Full-time student, MRes in Synthetic Biology at UCL
- Executive Research Consultant, MBA & Company
- Full-time student, MRC Centre for Neuromuscular Diseases PhD programme at UCL
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 2013-2015 graduating cohorts six months after graduation.
UCL is commited to helping you get the best start after graduation. Read more about how UCL Careers and UCL Innovation and Enterprise can help you find employment or learn about entrepreneurship.
Fees and funding
The fees indicated are for undergraduate entry in the 2019/20 academic year. The UK/EU fees shown are for the first year of the programme at UCL only. Fees for future years may be subject to an inflationary increase. The Overseas fees shown are the fees that will be charged to 2019/20 entrants for each year of study on the programme, unless otherwise indicated below.
- UK/EU students
- £9,250 (2019/20)
- Overseas students
- £24,760 (2019/20)
Full details of UCL's tuition fees, tuition fee policy and potential increases to fees can be found on the UCL Students website.
Various funding options are available, including student loans, scholarships and bursaries. UK students whose household income falls below a certain level may also be eligible for a non-repayable bursary or for certain scholarships. Please see the Fees and funding pages for more details.
If you are concerned by potential additional costs for books, equipment, etc. on this programme, please get in touch with the relevant departmental contact (details given on this page).
The scholarships listed below are for 2018 entry. Funding opportunities for students applying for 2019 entry will be published when they are available.
The Scholarships and Funding website lists scholarships and funding schemes available to UCL students. These may be open to all students, or restricted to specific nationalities, regions or academic department.