|Study location||United Kingdom, Birmingham|
|Type||Bachelor courses, full-time|
|Nominal duration||3 years|
|Tuition fee||To be confirmed|
Undergraduate diploma (or higher)
Required subjects and grades:
The entry qualification documents are accepted in the following languages: English.
Often you can get a suitable transcript from your school. If this is not the case, you will need official translations along with verified copies of the original.
IELTS: 6.0 (with a minimum of 5.5 in each component)
At least 1 reference(s) must be provided.
A motivation letter must be added to your application.
Zoology is the study of animal life across all levels of organisation; from the evolution and adaptations of whole organisms to the activities of animal cells and the biochemical processes that maintain them.
In recent years the development of new technologies has opened new avenues to study collective behaviour of animals in the wild as well as understanding the cellular and molecular foundations of animal biology.
This course builds on the BSc Biological Sciences course and allows you focus increasingly on modules covering various aspects of animal biology and zoology. This includes evolution, animal behaviour and ecology.
In Introduction to Evolution and Animal Biology you will study the diversity of animal species, and their adaptations, including complex behavioural strategies, reproductive and survival strategies and how these can be understood in the context of evolution. Along with all of the other students on the Biological Sciences programmes you will take other modules (listed below) designed to introduce you to all aspects of this broad subject discipline.
First year modules
Key First Year Module:
Introduction to Evolution and Animal Biology | Watch video – An overview of introduction from the pre-biotic era to Darwin and his impact. Natural selection, the origins of altruism and sexual reproduction, genetic determinants of evolution.
Fundamentals of Biochemistry – Fundamental biochemical processes taking place inside cells
Genetics I – Storage of genetic information, gene expression and regulation, mitosis and meiosis, gene linkage and chromosome mapping.
Introduction to Microbiology | Watch video – Broad introduction to microbiology with a focus on infectious disease, covering bacteria, fungi, protists, archaea and viruses
Cell Biology and Physiology – Tissues, organelles, reproduction and development.
Ecological Concepts and Plant Sciences – This module provides a broad overview of the biology of our environment, including topics such as climate change, conservation, ecophysiology and cell biology of plants.
The key second year module for zoologists is Animal Biology; this module takes an evolutionary and comparative approach to the study of animal behaviour and its underlying mechanistic control by the nervous system. You choose 4 other optional modules from the list below: Ecology, Cell and Developmental Biology and a field course, particularly Adaptations to Aquatic Environments, are good choices for a zoologist.
Second year modules
Key second year module:
Animal Biology – This module explores how the central nervous system translates sensory stimuli to behaviour. Topics include comparative neurobiology, biological timekeeping, sensory biology, learning and behaviour and others.
Core module taken by all second year students:
Molecular Biology and its Applications – Genetic analysis and gene cloning, DNA fingerprinting and forensics, genomics and computational approaches to genetics.
Communication and Skills in Biosciences – Science communication in videography, writing and speaking, ethics in science, analysis of the scientific literature.
Example optional modules may include:
Microbes and Man – The impact of microbes on humans, bacteria, fungi and viruses, common themes of infectious disease mechanisms.
Cell and Developmental Biology – Development of multicellular organisms, interaction between cells and the cellular matrix, regulation of stem cell function.
Genetics II – Organisation of genes and genomes, generation of genetic diversity, gene transmission and analysis of problems in transmission and molecular genetics.
Evolution of Humans and Other Animals – The primary aim of this module is to provide students with a comprehensive understanding of comparative animal biology in an evolutionary context.
Human Structure and Function – Human anatomy and how it relates to its function and evolutionary origin.
Critical Issues for 21st Century Ecosystems – Core skills in ecosystem knowledge
Plant Sciences: from Cells to the Environment | Watch video – Plants interact flexibly with their environment. This module explores the cellular and molecular features facilitati ng such interactions, including interactions with parasites. The module introduces the model plant Arabidopsis, and you will design and test hypotheses in specific experiments
The final year is made up of a combination of taught modules and independent study. It is here that the link between the teaching and the research in the school is particularly important. The final year allows choice from a range of specialised topics in zoology, which are informed and inspired by the research being carried out in the school.
Central to the final year is the research project, which makes up one third of the credits earned in the final year. This allows you to join one of our many research groups, providing the fascinating opportunity to experience research first hand and to contribute to current research projects.
Project work is not limited to the laboratory; some students will do more ecology- or behaviour- based projects involving field work that may be in a UK zoo or further afield.
Final year modules
Choose a research project and at least 2 final year modules from:
Cellular Neurobiology * | Watch video – Neuronal function and neural development, synaptic function, transmitter receptors and ion channels.
Adaptation to changing environments – This ecology-oriented module examines behavioural, physiological and molecular mechanisms of adaptation to environmental stress. It examines animals’ mechanisms to respond to changes occurring on varying timescales and over diverse geographic areas
Living in Groups: Collective Behaviour in Animals | Watch video – This module explores features and rules of group behaviour in animals. Introducing formal concepts such as Social Network Analysis, the module defines fundamental rules that govern collective behaviour, and how individuals partake in making and communicating decisions.
Example optional modules may include:
Bacterial Gene Regulation – How genes are switched on or off in response to external stimuli, how control of gene expression can be explored experimentally.
Eukaryotic Gene Expression – Control of gene transcription, chromatin structure, pre-mRNA processing, mRNA translation and degradation.
Applied and Environmental Microbiology – Microbial communities, how they compete, and behave socially.
Genetics III: Genetic Variation in Humans and other Eukaryotes – Genetic variation in humans and model organisms, dynamics of chromosome organisation during mitosis and meiosis, genome instability.
Plant Science in the 21st Century | Watch video – Plant growth and development in relation to food supply, biofuels and climate change. Research-based module with emphasis on analysis of the current research literature.
Structures of Destruction – Bacterial and viral pathogens explored from the perspective of their molecular structures, protein misfolding and amyloid diseases.
Cancer Biology – Regulation of cell division and aberrations in malignant tumours, genetic bases of tumourigenesis, programmed cell death.
Human Evolution – Genetics and genomics, development of bipedalism, development of society and how humans’ activity applies selective pressure on the evolution of HIV.
Molecular and Cellular Immunology | Watch video – Evolution of the immune system, innate immunity, cell biology of immunity, structural basis of discrimination between self and non-self.
Biodiversity and Conservation Management – Examining the scientific basis of conservation, the threats facing biodiversity and how those threats are assessed, why population size is critical and how biodiversity is maintained either in nature or at a backup location.
Conservation Practice: Genes to Ecosystems – Examining the scientific basis for conservation and its genetic foundation.
Molecular Basis of Bacterial Infection | Watch video – Evolution of bacterial virulence, antibiotics and antibiotics resistance, genomic data in analysing pathogenicity.
Advances in the biosciences are having a profound impact on our daily lives in areas from human health to conservation. Biotechnology, biological pharmaceuticals, and personalised medicine are key growth areas in the health sector. Environmental remediation, climate change and related themes pose multi-faceted challenges for the coming decades. Expert knowledge in biology and the life sciences will be in high demand for the foreseeable future, with bright prospects for exciting and rewarding careers in research, teaching, industry, the NHS and the public sector.
A substantial part of our graduates choose to take a further degree, a postgraduate Masters or PhD. For many career paths, a further degree is an essential stepping-stone, including (but not limited to) careers in research. Our graduates are highly sought after by universities around the world, many stay in Birmingham and join one of our prestigious research groups. Did you know that PhDs are fully funded and that postgraduate students receive a tax free stipend equivalent to a salary?
We are currently NOT ACCEPTING applications from NON-EU countries, except Georgia and Serbia.