Biology

2017 entry

BSc (Hons) Biology

Course fees

Tuition fee type Cost (per annum)
Full time home/EU tuition fee: £9,250 per annum*
Full time international tuition fee: £12,660 per annum
Full-time industrial placement year fee: £1007 per annum*

*Subject to yearly increases

Course type

BSc (Hons)

UCAS info

Points required: 112

UCAS code: C100

Institute code: L51

Study mode

Three years full time, four years with sandwich year, four or five years with foundation

About your course

The BSc (Hons) Biology programme at Liverpool John Moores University gives you the opportunity to study a variety of specialisms, such as genetics, microbiology, ecology, along with health and disease states, while also offering you opportunities to complete exciting placements and overseas fieldwork.

  • Stepping stone to careers in microbiology, embryology, clinical science, microbiological food and water safety
  • Option to choose between a year's work placement or a 135 hour work-based learning placement
  • £6million invested in state-of-the-art teaching facilities
  • Opportunities to take part in overseas fieldwork
  • International Foundation Year course available offering direct progression onto this degree programme - visit LJMU's International Study Centre to find out more

The tropical expedition was a great experience. We visited a beautiful country and lived within a different culture. The practical experience in fieldwork and report writing has been invaluable.

Graduate

When I started at Liverpool John Moores University I was able to take a broad spectrum of modules and this helped me to realise that my main interests lay in areas such as cancer, and immunity and Infection. Numerous laboratory practical classes increased this interest and led to my final year honours project on the control mechanisms of cancerous cells. I am currently applying for PhDs in the area of cancer research.

Fergus Watson, Biology graduate

Work-related learning

Translating your academic studies into essential professional experience

As part of your work-related learning, you have the opportunity to undertake a 135 hour work-based placement or a 12-month placement with a relevant organisation in the UK or abroad. This work experience will not only give you a chance to put into practice what you have learnt in the first two years, it will also help you develop your personal skills and add real value to your CV. Many students who undertake placements have gone on to work for the same organisation once they have graduated.

Support and guidance

Dedicated personal tutor plus study skills support

Throughout your course you will have the support of a personal tutor who will be available to discuss course-related matters in both tutorial sessions and one-to-one progress review meetings. These meetings are to monitor your performance and identify action plans for improvement. A dedicated supervisor will also provide support during your research project and/or work-based learning.
 

Course details

Biology impacts on so many different aspects of our lives, from conservation, genetic engineering to fighting disease, and as such, it is one of the broadest and most interesting sciences to study, with countless opportunities to specialise.

At LJMU we recognise that, because of the vast array of subject areas within the field of biology, you may want to get a feel for which ones interest you most before specialising, which is why we keep the degree broad based in the first year. In the first year, you will typically cover core modules in Genetics and Evolution, Microbiology, Physiology, Ecology, Practical Skills for Biology and Fundamentals of Scientific Research.

In the second and third years, you can either continue to keep your degree broad based, or you can specialise by choosing optional modules from a wide range topics, which may include Genes and Genomes, Immunology and Infection, Developmental Biology, Ecology Field Skills, Marine and Freshwater Biology, Applications of Genetics in Health and Disease, Neurobiology and Parasitology.









One of the real bonuses of this course are the opportunities for overseas travel. For example, there is an Ecology Field Skills option which includes a European field trip or Tropical Expedition option in the third year that currently includes a field trip to Costa Rica.    

On top of the overseas visits, you have the chance to undertake a short 135 hour work-based learning placement or a year-long industrial placement. So you will have plenty of opportunities to put what you have learnt into practice and acquire the transferable skills that employers look for.

What you will study on this degree

Please see guidance on core and option modules for further information on what you will study.

Level 4

  • Genetics and Evolution
  • Microbiology
  • Physiology
  • Ecology
  • Practical Skills for Biology
  • Fundamentals of Scientific Research

Level 5

  • Diversity and Evolution of Life
  • Physiology of Life
  • Research Skills and Employability

The following options are typically offered:

  • Developmental Biology
  • Genes and Genomes
  • Ecology Field Skills
  • Immunology and Infection
  • Marine and Freshwater Biology

Level 6

  • Health and Disease
  • Research Project

The following options are typically offered:

  • Advanced Immunology and Infection
  • Applications of Genetics in Health and Disease
  • Applied Marine Biology
  • Forensic Bioscience
  • Frontiers of Ecology
  • International Expedition
  • Neurobiology
  • Parasitology
  • Work-Based Learning

Further guidance on modules 

The information listed in the section entitled ‘What you will study’ is an overview of the academic content of the programme that will take the form of either core or option modules. Modules are designated as core or option in accordance with professional body requirements and internal Academic Framework review, so may be subject to change. Students will be required to undertake modules that the University designates as core and will have a choice of designated option modules. Additionally, option modules may be offered subject to meeting minimum student numbers.

Please see the programme specification document for further details on this course.

Programme specification document (PDF)

Teaching and learning

Excellent facilities and learning resources

Teaching is mostly via lectures with interactive workshops in the form of group discussions, worked examples or practical demonstrations. Lecture material can also be found in our library and on our virtual learning environment, Blackboard.

In addition, fieldwork and laboratory sessions give you a chance to observe animals and plants first-hand and develop your practical skills, while small tutorial groups provide a forum for discussing course material more informally. You will also have progress review meetings with your personal tutor.

Formal teaching accounts for approximately 14-16 hours of your study time each week; you will be expected to spend the rest of your time in private study.

Your lecturers

Expert tuition and support

You will be taught by academics who are experts in their particular fields, but you will also make contact with all kinds of professionals working in the field of biological sciences, either when they visit the university to give guest lectures or when you take part in fieldwork with organisations.

Assessment and feedback

Assessment varies depending on the modules you choose

Most modules are assessed by exam and coursework, and some via coursework only. All students perform differently depending on how they are assessed, which is why we use a combination of assessment methods. Exams may therefore include a range of question types e.g. multiple choice, short answer, interpretative, problem-based learning and essay. Coursework assessment could be in the form of phase tests, fieldwork/practical reports, data handling, oral presentations, poster presentations, group discussions, essays or the evaluation of your practical skills. These are based on individual assignments but some require group work.

Feedback on coursework assessments is normally provided within three weeks of submission and may be via Blackboard, face-to-face or in writing. We believe that constructive feedback is vital in helping you identify your strengths as well as the areas where you may need to put in more work.

Entry requirements

Please choose your qualifications below to view requirements

Minimum points required from qualifications

112

GCSE and equivalents

  • Applicants must have obtained grade 4 or grade C or above in English Language and Mathematics GCSE or • Key Skills Level 2 in English/ Maths • NVQ Level 2 Functional skills in Maths and English Writing and or Reading • Skills for Life Level 2 in Numeracy/English • Higher Diploma in Maths/ English • Functional skills level 2 in Maths/ English

A Levels

  • Minimum number of A Levels required: 2
  • Subject specific requirements: Biology or a related science at Grade C or above
  • Is general studies acceptable? No
  • Are AS level awards acceptable? Acceptable only when combined with other qualifications
  • Average A Level offer: BBC
  • Maximum AS Level points accepted: 20

BTEC qualifications

  • BTEC certificate: Acceptable only when combined with other qualifications
  • 90 credit diploma: Acceptable only when combined with other qualifications
  • Diploma (QCF): Acceptable on its own and combined with other qualifications
  • Diploma subjects / grades required: D*D* if studied on its own or to the total of 112 UCAS points if combined with other qualifications
  • Extended diploma (QCF): Acceptable on its own and combined with other qualifications
  • Extended diploma subjects / grades required: DMM. Must include a significant number of science-based modules, usually a minimum of six.

Access to Higher Education Diploma

  • Access to Higher Education Diploma acceptability: Acceptable on its own and combined with other qualifications
  • Further information: Access programme must have been taken be in a relevant subject area, minimum of 24 Distinctions and 12 Merits required

International Baccalaureate

  • International Baccalaureate: Acceptable on its own and combined with other qualifications
  • Additional information: 26 IB Diploma Points - specific grades are required from Science

Welsh awards

  • Welsh Baccalaureate: Acceptable only when combined with other qualifications

Irish awards

  • Irish Leaving Certificate: Acceptable on its own and combined with other qualifications
  • Grades / subjects required: 112 UCAS points from a minimum of 5 subjects

Additional entry requirement information

​Please contact the University if you have any questions regarding the relevance of your qualifications.

Will I be interviewed?

No interview required (UCAS application form only)

IELTS

6.0 (minimum of 5.5 in each component)

Can this course be deferred?

Yes

Is RPL accepted on this programme?

Yes

International requirements

Please Note: All international qualifications are subject to a qualification equivalency check via NARIC.

Finance and fees

Find out more about the student funding available from LJMU as well as government grants and loans and targeted support for students with children/dependants or disabilities.

Different funding arrangements will apply if you are from Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland or other countries in the EU. If you normally live in Scotland, Wales or Northern Ireland you will still be eligible for loans for tuition fees as well as grants and/or bursaries plus loans for living costs. It's just that the amounts available may be different to those stated here as these apply to applicants who live in England.

LJMU scholarships

LJMU's scholarships are open to all full-time Home and EU undergraduates that are liable to pay tuition fees. These awards are not income assessed, and if successful you will be awarded a scholarship for each year of your course worth between £1,000 and £10,000. This money does not need to be repaid and it's up to you to decide what you want to spend it on.

LJMU bursary

LJMU bursaries are means-tested, which means your household income must be below a certain level in order for you to qualify for this funding.

The money you receive does not have to be repaid and is intended to help you meet some of the costs associated with being a student. You will receive a bursary for each year of your course providing you still meet the eligibility criteria.

Tuition fees

In line with most universities, LJMU charges an annual tuition fee of £9,250 for most of our degrees.

If you opt to complete a foundation year as part of your degree, your first year tuition fee will be £7,700.

The important thing to remember is that you don't have to pay your tuition fees upfront when you enrol.

Instead you can take out a tuition fee loan, which doesn't have to be repaid until after you leave LJMU and start earning over the threshold. Currently the threshold is £21,000 for students resident in England.

As long as you have not been to University before and meet the residency rules both full and part-time students are eligible to apply for tuition fee loans.

For more information on tuition fee loans, go to: www.gov.uk/student-finance

LJMU is committed to ensuring that students understand the full cost of studying at LJMU. Our programmes have no hidden costs and your tuition fee covers all expenses associated with your core modules, including:

  • Safety equipment, such as lab coats and goggles
  • Uniforms for nurses, paramedics and other professional placement students (if applicable)
  • UK field trips
  • Educational visits
  • Student exchanges
  • Criminal Records Bureau checks
  • Professional sector regulatory body membership
  • Governing body awards

Living costs

In addition to your tuition fees, eligible students can also choose to take out a maintenance loan for each year of your course to help you meet the costs of being a student.

The money will have to be paid back but only after you leave LJMU and starting earning over the income threshold, currently £21,000 for those resident in England.

Part-time students are not eligible to take out these loans.

For more information on student loans, go to:www.gov.uk/student-finance

Image of lab

Paying back your student loans

Any loans you take out while studying will be added together into one loan account. This means that when you start paying back your student loans, you will only make one affordable monthly payment. This monthly repayment will be the same regardless of how many loans you have taken out. That’s because your repayments are based on a percentage of your salary not how much you borrowed from the Student Loans Company.

The current threshold for students normally resident in England is £21,000. Once your income goes over this threshold your employer will start taking repayments from your salary just like tax and national insurance. If your income falls below £21,000 your repayments will stop.

Career prospects

Completing this BSc Biology programme will open up a vast range of career opportunities.

Many of our students have gone on to work in a variety of biological areas, such as embryology, clinical science, research and development laboratories and microbiological food and water safety, as well as working for:   

  • The Hewitt Fertility Centre at Liverpool Women’s Hospital, Unilever, Axion Veterinary Laboratories, Astra Zeneca/MedImmune, Bioquell, Elucigene Diagnostics, The Christie Hospital, Ecus Ltd, Pathology Laboratory Southport NHS Hospital
  • Conservation organisations, including Chester Zoo, Brecknock Wildlife Trust and Operation Wallace
  • Environmental agencies, such as Kingfisher Environmental Services

Some prefer to continue their studies with postgraduate study (PGCE/PGDE, MSc, MPhil, MRes, or PhD) in topics as wide ranging as human nutrition, oncology, molecular medicine, tropical medicine and embryology, and some transfer their enthusiasm for biology to others via careers in teaching and lecturing.

New for 2017 – CareerSmart programme

All students in their first year of study will have an opportunity to engage with the CareerSmart programme as an integral part of a core module of study. Once you have completed this, a wide range of other career-related provision and services will be available to support your development throughout your studies.

The new CareerSmart e-learning tool will introduce you to the steps involved in making informed choices about your career. It will enable you to consider your strengths and development areas, your career motivators, the options available to you and the necessary steps to take to achieve your career goals. 

 

International Scholarships

Studying at LJMU offers international students excellent value for money and the opportunity to secure an internationally-respected qualification plus outstanding career prospects.

Each year, LJMU offers a range of prestigious international scholarships. Further details of the scholarships offered to applicants wishing to study at the University from September 2017 onwards will be available on this page in the coming months.

For the most up-to-date information about studying at Liverpool John Moores University, and the International Scholarship programme, please visit the International pages.

International Foundation Year and International Year One programmes

LJMU offers international students the option of completing International Foundation Year and International Year One programmes at the University’s International Study Centre. These courses are managed and taught by Study Group, a world leader in education and training for international  students. For more details on the International Study Centre, go to www.ljmuisc.com/

English language qualifications

All international applicants must have an internationally recognised English language qualification, such as IELTS (International English Language Testing Service). Your English language qualification must have been certified within the last two years for verification purposes. LJMU will accept other UKVI-recognised English language tests providing you attain the appropriate level.

This table summarises the minimum scores required by LJMU.

Please note: your specific course requirements may differ.

For course-specific English Language requirements, click the Entry Requirements tab above.

To find out what qualifications are applicable in your country please visit the international pages.

Type of Programme IELTS Pearson
International Foundation Programme 4.5 50-57 (Min. 51 in each component for UKVI Purposes)
Undergraduate degrees 6.0 50-57 (Min. 51 in each component for UKVI Purposes)
MPharm 7.0 Not accepted

English language support to improve IELTS

If your English language level does not meet the required entry requirements for your course you may still be offered a place on the condition that you successfully complete an English for Undergraduate Study course at LJMU’s International Study Centre.

Please contact the International Study Centre and talk to one of our multi-lingual Student Enrolment Advisers (www.ljmuisc.com/) or email: international@ljmu.ac.uk for more details.

Tuition fees

International students are liable to pay a minimum of 50% of their tuition fees when they complete their enrolment at the University. The outstanding balance must be paid in full within 4 months of your enrolment date.

Living Costs

When you apply for your visa or entry clearance, you will need to provide evidence of having enough money to support yourself for the duration of your programme and to pay for all of your living expenses. The good news is that the cost of living in Liverpool is one of the lowest in England, which means your money will go even further, allowing you to enjoy your student experience to the full.

In addition to academic fees, you must budget for living costs such as accommodation, food, clothing, books, local travel and entertainment. The UKVI requires that students studying outside London must have £7,200 to pay for their living costs (or £800 per month).

LJMU’s undergraduate courses run over an academic calendar of nine months so you will need to show that you have at least £7,200. If your course lasts 6 months you will need to demonstrate you have £4,800.

Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS)

Before you can apply for permission to enter or remain in the UK under Tier 4 you will require a valid Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies or CAS. LJMU will only assign a CAS once you have satisfied the conditions of any offer made to you and you satisfy the University’s obligations as a Tier 4 Highly Trusted Sponsor. For more details, visit the international students section.

Academic Technology Approval Scheme Certificate (ATAS)

If you have applied to study an Enhanced Undergraduate Degree (such as an MEng) course at LJMU, you should check if you require an Academic Technology Approval Scheme or ATAS certificate.

You can find out more on the British Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) website: www.fco.gov.uk/en/about-us/what-we-do/services-we-deliver/atas/who-atas/

Alternatively, contact LJMU’s International Admissions Team (int-admissions@ljmu.ac.uk)for guidance.

Your visa application

As soon as you have received an offer of a place at LJMU you should contact the Entry Clearance Office at the British Embassy, British High Commission or Consular Office in your own country to check whether you need a visa for entry into Britain. You are advised to do this as soon as you can as the visa application process can take a long time.

Please Note: To obtain an Entry Visa you should go to the British Embassy or High Commission in your own country, and present the following documents:

  • Passport
  • A valid LJMU Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS)
  • Evidence of financial support for the programme
  • Two recent photographs of yourself (passport-size)
  • All relevant educational diplomas and certificates (as stated in your CAS)
  • A declaration of your intent to return home on completion of your course of study

The University may make changes to a programme of study or module where such changes are deemed to be beneficial to students, are minor in nature and unlikely to impact negatively upon students or become necessary due to circumstances beyond the control of the University.
Further guidance on programme changes

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