Undergraduate Study

MSci Zoology

UCAS code C302
Duration 4 years
Entry year 2020
Contact

Web: Enquire online
Phone: +44 (0)1392 725818

Entry requirements

A levels: AAA
IB: 36/666
BTEC: DDD

View full entry requirements

Campus Penryn Campus
Discipline Biosciences

Overview

  • Our MSci provides an opportunity to work on a project focused on a specialised area aligned with one of our leading research groups
  • You will gain expertise in evolution, physiology, animal behaviour, ecology and conservation
  • Focus on an understanding of whole-animal biology, ecology and behaviour, and the evolution of animal life histories
  • Learn from some of the world’s leading biologists, working in evolution, behaviour, ecology and conservation
  • You will be exposed to a wide range of practical and theoretical techniques

10th for Biological Sciences

The Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2020

92% of Biosciences students agreed they were satisfied with the quality of their course

National Student Survey 2019

Extensive range of field courses in local, national and international destinations

7th in the world for Ecology

ShanghaiRankings Global Ranking of Academic Subjects 2019

Doing this degree has given me so many opportunities that I wouldn't have had otherwise. I've managed to do so many fantastic things. My favourite is a close call between my dissertation (the effects of aromatherapy on stress in rescue centre dogs) and being part of the Elephants and Bees Project in Kenya for a month, which was a priceless experience.

Lauren

MSci Zoology

Entry requirements

Qualification Required grades Required subjects
A-Level AAA A in one of the following subjects: Biology/Human Biology, Chemistry, Life and Health Sciences (Double Award only), Marine Science, Physics, Psychology or Maths/Pure Maths/Further Maths
IB 36/666 HL6 in one of the following subjects: Biology/Human Biology, Chemistry, Life and Health Sciences (Double Award only), Marine Science, Physics, Psychology or Maths/Pure Maths/Further Maths
BTEC DDD Applicants studying one of the following BTEC Extended Diplomas will be considered without GCE A-level Science: Applied Science, Animal Management, Agriculture, Countryside Management, Fish Management, Forestry and Arboriculture, Marine Biology
GCSE C or 4 and B or 5 Grade C or 4 in GCSE English language and grade B or 5 in Mathematics
Contextual Offer

A-Level: BBB
IB: 30
BTEC: DDM

Specific requirements must still be achieved, therefore where a grade A is required, offers will be ABC or ACC. Find out more about contextual offers.

International equivalences

View EU and international equivalences

NB General Studies is not included in any offer.

Course content

The four-year MSci Zoology programme mirrors the BSc Zoology programme during the first three years, and includes an additional fourth year during which you will undertake a research project, an advanced statistical modelling module and a literature review. The research project will focus on a specialised area aligned with one of our leading research groups. The remainder of your time will be spent on a two-week intensive field course in which your scientific field-research, debating, and presentation skills will be further developed.

The programme focuses on an understanding of the biology of animals, with an emphasis on whole animal biology, biodiversity, ecology and behaviour, along with the evolution of the whole spectrum of animal life histories.

This programme will provide you with the skills, concepts and experience to understand all aspects of modern zoology. The programme encourages an interdisciplinary approach and you will be exposed to a wide range of theoretical and practical techniques used to study the biology of animals of all types.

The modules we outline here provide examples of what you can expect to learn on this degree course based on recent academic teaching. The precise modules available to you in future years may vary depending on staff availability and research interests, new topics of study, timetabling and student demand.

Explore animals in the context of the environments in which they live. You will examine zoology from molecules to ecosystems and get experience with the modern techniques used to generate knowledge about animal systems.

Explore how animal development relates to the diversity of animal forms and examine animal behaviour as it relates to life history and adaptive evolution. You will experience a residential field course to gain an understanding of habitats and biodiversity.

Put your analytical and experimental skills to use through your research project with a member of academic staff. Work side-by-side with researchers, developing an independent research project. You will have the opportunity to go on one of our final year field courses to the Azores, Borneo, Costa Rica, the Galapagos Islands, India, Tenerife or Yukon-Alaska*.

*Field course destinations are subject to change. Please note, some optional/alternative field courses may incur additional costs.

The fourth year provides an opportunity to work on an advanced literature review and a research project, both focused on a specialised area aligned with one of our leading research groups. You will also spend two weeks on an intensive field course in which your scientific field research, debating and presentation skills will be further developed.

Fees

Tuition fees for 2020 entry

UK and EU students: £9,250 per year
International students: £22,950 per year

Please note that these figures may be subject to change.

Field work

Please note, some optional/alternative field courses may incur additional costs. When participating in field courses, you will be required to cover any visa costs and, if necessary, purchase anti-malarial medication and relevant immunisations.

You will also need to provide your own specialist personal equipment appropriate to the field course destination, e.g. walking boots, rucksack, mosquito net, sleeping bag, binoculars. You may incur additional costs dependent upon the specific demands of the research project chosen.

Find out more about tuition fees and funding

Field work

We pride ourselves in offering an extensive range of field courses across our Biosciences programmes with exciting local, national and international destinations.

These field courses not only allow you to apply the knowledge gained in the classroom to real-world situations in superb locations, but also provide a fantastic opportunity to forge lasting relationships with fellow students and academics.

Depending on your programme of study, you’ll have the opportunity to choose from a range of options including understanding the ecology and evolutionary biology of Switzerland or the Pyrenees, studying tropical biodiversity in Borneo, learning about special ecosystems of North Cyprus, visiting impressive seabird breeding colonies in Scotland or watching grizzly bears fish for salmon in Alaska, to name but a few.

Please note, whilst a compulsory field course is included in the tuition fee, some optional/alternative field courses may incur additional costs. Field course destinations are subject to change.

Learning and teaching

How will I learn?

  • Lectures
  • Seminars
  • Tutorials
  • Field work
  • Laboratory sessions
  • Independent study
  • Regular research seminars, by our staff and visiting lecturers

Learn from experts

We believe that every student benefits from being part of a culture that is inspired by research and being taught by experts. You will discuss the very latest ideas in seminars and tutorials and be an active member of a research team. Our academics bring their results from the laboratory and the field directly to their teaching, and our students also help to collect this data.

In your final year you will become an active member of our research team. We have very close links with a wide range of conservation organisations in the UK and overseas, such as the British Trust for Ornithology, Cornwall Wildlife Trust and Marine Conservation Society. These links mean you will benefit from frequent guest lectures, placement opportunities and project work.

Assessment

Your first year does not count towards your final degree classification, but you do have to pass it in order to progress. All marks after your first year count towards your final classification.

Modules are assessed using a variety of methods including essays, exams, presentations, laboratory reports and a dissertation.

Taking modules outside of your programme

Depending on your programme you can take up to 30 credits each year in another subject, for instance a language or business module, to develop career-related skills or widen your intellectual horizons.

You can boost your employability by using up to 30 credits each year to study a foreign language. If you study the language for more than one year you may be entitled to have ‘with proficiency in’ added to your degree certificate. The Foreign Language Centre will be offering modules in French and Spanish language from complete beginners up to advanced levels, plus German and Mandarin Chinese from beginner’s level.

If you achieve at least 60 credits in a language via our Foreign Language Centre you may be able to have the words ‘with proficiency in’ and the language added to your degree title.

Further details can be found on the Foreign Language Centre web pages

Academic support

  • Personal Tutor: You will have a Personal Tutor available for advice and support throughout your studies.
  • Study skills: Help with essay writing, research skills, time management, presentations and more.

Peer mentoring

All first-years will have the opportunity to join dynamic weekly groups, hosted by both second-year and PhD Biosciences students in Cornwall, which span a range of key areas, such as:

  • Social and pastoral care
  • Key skills
  • Employability
  • Discipline specific support

These groups allow you to benefit from advice from your more experienced peers, helping ease your transition into university life.

The subject of the inaugural meeting is decided by the group leader, but you can then suggest subsequent session topics, so sessions are tailored to your direct needs.

Social media groups, such as on Facebook and Google, are also used for continued group discussions and communication outside of the weekly meetings.

There are direct links between session content and modules, which immediately follow lectures where possible.

Facilities

Our facilities include:

  • Teaching laboratories
  • Computing suites
  • Field equipment for research projects
  • Library and online resources

Read more

The Biosciences staff at the Penryn Campus are extremely helpful and always willing to go above and beyond to make sure we have the correct support. Generally any issues we have can be sorted and the lecturers care about (and can recognise) every individual student. I feel honoured to have studied under such leading scientists.

Biosciences undergraduate student, Penryn Campus

Your future

Employer-valued skills this course develops

A degree in Biosciences will help you to develop a wide range of essential skills such as analytical problem solving, team work and organising and communicating information. Many of our students continue their studies in the subject by following a further degree and research in their chosen area.

Supporting your career in Biosciences

Each year Biosciences students are able to access a huge range of opportunities to support their future career options. Sector related careers and employability sessions are put on for the students over the course of their programme which include: career talks and networking events with visiting alumni and employers from a range of backgrounds, employability seminar series events hosted by employers, ‘Dragons Den’ style assessment days, mock interviews and an annual College of Life and Environmental Sciences Careers Fair where students can develop networking skills.

Careers Services

We have a dedicated, award-winning Careers Service ensuring you have access to careers advisors, mentors and the tools you need to succeed in finding employment in your chosen field on graduation. We offer the Exeter Award and the Exeter Leaders Award which include employability-related workshops, skills events, volunteering and employment which will contribute to your career decision-making skills and success in the employment market.

The University of Exeter has an excellent reputation with graduate recruiters and our students and graduates compete very successfully in the employment market. Whatever path you wish to follow, we’re here to help and support you with all your career and employability needs.

Career paths

Many of our graduates are employed in discipline relevant roles in the UK and overseas including laboratory-based positions, conservation management, ecology, teaching and nursing. Others use the skills gained on their course to enter widely different career paths in law, business or management. Whatever you choose to do after graduation, your Biosciences degree will stand you in good stead, with excellent employment prospects and transferable skills.

Recent graduates

Below are a few examples of initial jobs undertaken by graduates from our Biosciences undergraduate programmes. This information has been taken from the Destinations of Leavers from Higher Education (DLHE) Surveys 2016/17. Please note that, due to data protection, the job titles and organisations are listed independently and do not necessarily correspond.

Recent graduates are now working as:

  • Conservation Film-maker
  • Data Scientist
  • Ecologist
  • Field Research Assistant
  • Lab Technician/Research
  • Media and Communications Manager
  • Publishing Assistant
  • STEM Technician
  • Teaching and Learning Outreach Worker
  • Trainee Countryside Education Officer

Recent graduates are now working for:

  • Ambios Ltd
  • Badger Trust
  • Cancer Research UK
  • Eden Project
  • Madagascar Conservation and Research Institute
  • National Trust
  • Pricewaterhouse Coopers (PwC)
  • Springer Nature
  • Science Museum Group
  • Zoological Society of London (ZSL)

Further study

Further study is a popular choice for many students following graduation from a Biosciences undergraduate degree. Below are a few examples of further study undertaken by recent graduates of undergraduate programmes. This information has been taken from the Destinations of Leavers from Higher Education (DLHE) Surveys 2016/17.

  • BVetMed Graduate Accelerated
  • MPhil Biological Sciences
  • MRes Tropical Forest Ecology
  • MSc Climate Change Science and Policy
  • MSc Conservation and Biodiversity
  • MSc Conservation Science and Policy
  • MSc Ecological Consultancy
  • MSc Evolutionary and Behavioural Ecology
  • MSc Marine Environmental Management
  • MSc One Health (Infectious Diseases)

Read more