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Biological Sciences MRes

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Fact file

Degree awarded
MRes
Duration
1 year (full-time)
Entry requirements

A First or Upper Second class honours degree, or the overseas equivalent, in a relevant science subject.

Full entry requirements

How to apply

Apply online

Course options

Full-timePart-timeFull-time distance learningPart-time distance learning
MResYNNN

Course description

The one-year Masters of Research (MRes) programme is an innovative route to starting out on a research career. The MRes will provide you with a unique opportunity to experience research projects over a broad range of disciplines and laboratory environments. Where better to study than in the Faculty of Life Sciences - one of the largest and most successful unified research and teaching organisations of its kind in Europe.

Our MRes programme allows you to gain research experience and professional skills, sometimes in a different area to your first degree, before deciding on a future career in industry or academic research. This will allow you to make an informed choice about the research area you want to invest your scientific career in.

You choose two laboratory placements which can be in any of the areas of research offered by the Faculty of Life Sciences. As we have over 200 research active labs we can offer you a wide range of projects to choose from. For an idea of the breadth of available projects, browse the Faculty research group pages.

The programme also helps to develop your transferable skills in essential areas such as experimental design, statistics, bioethics and science communication.

Fees

For entry in the academic year beginning September 2014, the tuition fees are as follows:

  • MRes (full-time)
    UK/EU students (per annum): £9,800
    International students (per annum): £20,600

The fees quoted above will be fully inclusive for the course tuition, administration and computational costs during your studies.

All fees for entry will be subject to yearly review and incremental rises per annum are also likely over the duration of courses lasting more than a year for UK/EU students (fees are typically fixed for International students, for the course duration at the year of entry). For general fees information please visit: postgraduate fees. Always contact the department if you are unsure which fee applies to your qualification award and method of attendance.

Self-funded international applicants for this course will be required to pay a deposit of £1000 towards their tuition fees before a confirmation of acceptance for studies (CAS) is issued. This deposit will only be refunded if immigration permission is refused. We will notify you about how and when to make this payment.

Contact details

Academic department
Faculty of Life Sciences
Telephone
+44 (0)161 275 5032
Facsimile
+44 (0)161 275 5456
Email
Website
www.ls.manchester.ac.uk/masterscourses/

Academic department overview

See: About the Faculty of Life Sciences.

Related courses

Related subject areas

Entry requirements

Academic entry qualification overview

A First or Upper Second class honours degree, or the overseas equivalent, in a relevant science subject.

English language

For MRes applicants whose first language is not English an IELTS score of 6.5 in each component, TOEFL 577 (paper based), TOEFL 233 (computer based) or TOEFL 90 (internet based) is required as a minimum.

English language test validity

Some English language test results are only valid for two years. Your English language test report must be valid on the start date of the course.

Other international entry requirements

We accept a range of qualifications from different countries. For more details see entry requirements from your country.

How to apply

Apply online

Interview requirements

All international applicants will be interviewed by Skype.

Re-applications

If you applied in the previous year and your application was not successful you may apply again. Your application will be considered against the standard course entry criteria for that year of entry. In your new application you should demonstrate how your application has improved. We may draw upon all information from your previous applications or any previous registrations at the University as a student when assessing your suitability for your chosen course.

Course description

The one-year Masters of Research (MRes) programme is an innovative route to starting out on a research career. The MRes will provide you with a unique opportunity to experience research projects over a broad range of disciplines and laboratory environments. Where better to study than in the Faculty of Life Sciences - one of the largest and most successful unified research and teaching organisations of its kind in Europe.

Our MRes programme allows you to gain research experience and professional skills, sometimes in a different area to your first degree, before deciding on a future career in industry or academic research. This will allow you to make an informed choice about the research area you want to invest your scientific career in.

You choose two laboratory placements which can be in any of the areas of research offered by the Faculty of Life Sciences. As we have over 200 research active labs we can offer you a wide range of projects to choose from. For an idea of the breadth of available projects, browse the Faculty research group pages.

The programme also helps to develop your transferable skills in essential areas such as experimental design, statistics, bioethics and science communication.

Teaching and learning

The programme comprises four compulsory components:

Research projects: Your two projects will provide experience in carrying through a substantive research project including the planning, execution and communication of original scientific research. They are assessed by written report.

Tutorials and Workshop Unit : Tutorials give you the opportunity to learn about research being carried out in the Faculty of Life Sciences and thereby to acquire a broad knowledge of biological sciences. The Bioethics Workshop gives you experience of exploring and debating some of the ethical issues that surround current scientific research. Activities for the Tutorials and Bioethics unit include preparative directed reading, private study and preparation of oral presentations. This unit is assessed by members of staff for the tutorial session and staff assessment of oral presentation during the tutorial and written reports

Science Communication Unit: This unit allows you to acquire the ability to listen to a presentation, understand the key concepts and record important details, and then summarise its contents in a brief written report. Activities include private study and preparation of written assignment. For each of 5 seminar presentations, a 500 word précis has to written. You are assessed on these assignments plus a poster and an oral presentation.

Experimental Design and Statistics Unit: This unit aims to introduce you to the procedures and tools used in the design of experiments and the methods and tools used in statistical data analysis. Activities include lectures, workshops, group discussions and e-learning. Assessment is through multiple choice exam, critical assessment of literature and online statistics exercises.

Coursework and assessment

The programme is recognised for the provision of MRes training by the BBSRC, and comprises four compulsory components:

Research projects provide experience in carrying through a substantive research project including the planning, execution and communication of original scientific research. They are assessed by written report.

The Tutorials give you the opportunity to learn about research being carried out in the Faculty of Life Sciences and thereby to acquire a broad knowledge of biological sciences.The Bioethics Workshop gives you experience of exploring and debating some of the ethical issues that surround current scientific research. Activities for the Tutorials and Bioethics unit include preparative directed reading, private study and preparation of oral presentations. This unit is assessed by peer-review of tutorial session and staff assessment of oral presentation during the tutorial and written reports.

The Teaching Seminars allow you to acquire the ability to listen to a presentation, understand the key concepts and record important details, and then summarise its contents in a brief written report. Activities include private study and preparation of written assignment. For each of 5 seminar presentations, a 500 word précis has to written.

The Experimental Design and Statistics unit aims to introduce you to the procedures and tools used in the design of experiments and the methods and tools used in statistical data analysis. Activities include lectures, workshops, group discussions and e-learning. This unit is assessed by multiple choice exam short answer and essay worksheet and critical assessment of literature.

Course unit details

This is a research focused Masters course. We do not teach using a traditional lecture-based format; instead we use an interactive approach where you learn through seminars, workshops, small group tutorials and during your research placements.

The programme starts in September and runs for 12 months. You require 180 credits to complete the programme, of which:

  • 135 credits are from research projects
  • 45 credits are from transferable skills units
Research Projects

Your projects each run for 18-weeks starting in October and April.

Transferable Skills

45 credits are achieved through completion of activities that develop your transferable skills in essential areas such as experimental design, statistics, bioethics (included in the tutorial and workshop unit) and science communication. Experimental Design and Statistics runs at the start of the year to prepare you for your research projects. Elements of the other units run throughout the year alongside your research projects.

Disclaimer: Our modules teach the current trends in life sciences. Consequently, details of our modules may vary over time. The University therefore reserves the right to make such alterations to modules as are found to be necessary. Before accepting your offer of a course, it is essential that you are aware of the current terms on which the offer is based. This includes the modules available to you. If in doubt, please contact us.

What our students say

Students on the MRes have described the course as 'a highly rewarding experience' and 'very worthwhile and enjoyable'. When asked why they had chosen to do the MRes course, students' most common responses were:

  • It's a good starting point for a career in research
  • I thought it would enhance my chances of finding a PhD
  • I wasn't sure which research area to choose for a PhD

Disability support

Practical support and advice for current students and applicants is available from the Disability Support Office. Email: disability@manchester.ac.uk

Career opportunities

MRes graduates acquire a vast array of subject specific and transferable skills and gain extensive laboratory research experience. The University of Manchester has a strong record of placing students in PhD programmes at Manchester and other universities and several of our graduates have pursued research careers in industry.