Erudera's Complete Guide to Studying Biology in The UK
Biology has taken a place among the most dominating fields of modern science. Due to the United Kingdom's reputation of offering one of the best educations, students from all over the world come to study biology in the country - which makes the competition for places to study in the United Kingdom quite intense. Even so, with all the work that biologists are doing to solve the various challenges society is facing, studying biology in the United Kingdom will be more than worth it for your future career.
Reasons to Study Biology in the United Kingdom
Study in some of the best universities worldwide
The United Kingdom lists among the top destinations for international students, and that is mostly due to the great universities it is home to. These universities lead the list of some of the best universities around the world, and once you obtain a degree from one of them, you will be held in high esteem by employers. Graduating from one of the UK’s universities will definitely give you an advantage in employment opportunities.
You will be taught by renowned academics
An advantage of studying the field of biology in the United Kingdom is that you will develop your knowledge from highly qualified scientists that lead their respective fields. These professionals will encourage and help you to reach your full potential by using their research skills and discoveries to teach you the most up-to-date knowledge.
Choose from a range of study programs
Study programs that you can choose if you study Biology in the United Kingdom include Biodiversity and Conservation, Cell Structure and Function, Evolutionary Biology, Genetics, Global Change Biology, Impact of Microbes, Molecules of Life, Zoology, Biotechnology, Human Physiology, Ecology and not only. Choosing a program that you enjoy is of high importance since this will directly affect your studies as well as your career options in the future. However, due to the diversity of programs available for you, choosing a program will not be an issue.
Benefit from the practical experience in and out of the university’s premises
UK’s universities are known for taking advantage of their natural surroundings to create fieldwork experiences, apart from what they offer to their students inside their own premises.
So, while obtaining a degree in biology in the United Kingdom you will not only spend time in the laboratories of your university, attending lectures, tutorials, or seminars, but you will also undertake visits that will deepen your understanding of what is being learned inside your classrooms. Fieldwork experience will also encourage you to become more independent and actively contribute to the development of society.
In order to secure a place to study Biology in the United Kingdom, you must meet the qualification requirements of the university in which you plan to study. Many students who apply to UK universities take A-levels, but students that hold other equivalent UK qualifications can apply as well. Prospective students of a biology-related degree should have at least two A levels (or equivalent) including biology and chemistry.
Requirements may differ from the level of study you plan to undertake. One requirement that you must meet if English is not your native language is having proof of English language proficiency. For undergraduate studies, you may be required to submit your previous academic qualifications, transcripts, and proof of language proficiency. Usually, universities accept IELTS, TOEFL, PTE, MELAB scores, but it is best to make sure which test scores your university prefers.
For postgraduate studies, apart from your previous academic qualifications, proof of language proficiency, and transcripts, you may also be asked to submit a CV stating your work experience, letters of recommendation, and a personal statement.
All students applying for an undergraduate degree in the United Kingdom should apply via the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS). You can choose up to five courses, and the universities you apply to will not see where else you have applied. Note that you cannot apply to both the University of Oxford or the University of Cambridge through UCAS.
Make sure you send your complete application before the deadline since late applications will not be accepted. When applying for a postgraduate course you can either apply through UCAS or directly at the university of your choice. It is best to check if your chosen university accepts direct applications since some universities will not accept applications that are not sent through UCAS.
Degree Duration: How Long Does It Take to Study Biology in the United Kingdom?
Studying Biology in the United Kingdom comes with a set of advantages. You can choose between single, joint, and multiple course combinations. You can also study part-time and full-time. You also have the opportunity to choose courses with a placement also known as sandwich courses.
Undergraduate biology degrees in the United Kingdom usually take three to four years to complete, with most universities offering opportunities for a year’s work experience or studying abroad. With a sandwich BSc degree, you have an extra year of study where you gain additional work experience in an industry or abroad. With a joint degree, you have the opportunity of studying biology in combination with another subject.
Obtaining a Master’s degree in biology in the United Kingdom usually takes one to five years, depending on the country. During this period you will specialize in one of the areas of biology and obtain a Master's level qualification. You can also study for a degree accredited by the Society of Biology which means that you will be able to conduct your own research. This degree will take at least one year to complete.
Tuition Fees: How Much Does It Cost to Study Biology in the United Kingdom?
Considering that there are four countries in the United Kingdom and that there are many more Biology subdisciplines you can choose from, the cost of tuition fees may differ from one field/subdiscipline and country to the other. Unfortunately, international students that study in the United Kingdom will not be charged the same fees as home students. Tuition fees can start as low as $12,724 (£9,000) per year and can go up to $82,081 (£58,000).
Biology Jobs in the United Kingdom
Having a biology degree under your belt will give you the opportunity to choose between a variety of career options. You will find a biology graduate working in almost every setting you can think of. These include research laboratories, jungles, caves, universities, museums, forests, factories, hospitals, factories, and not only.
Jobs for biology graduates include, but are not limited to:
- Food Scientist
- Environmental Scientist
- Biological Scientist
- Marine Biologist
The salary for Biology graduates varies across various UK locations and industries. It also varies depending on the field you decide to specialize in. In the United Kingdom, a biology graduate can expect to receive a salary of $104,660 to $335,191 (74,500 to 237,000) per year.