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MSc Biological Sciences / Course details

Year of entry: 2020

Course description

Our MSc Biological Sciences course offers a unique opportunity to experience research projects across a broad range of disciplines and laboratory environments before you start a career in research.

You will gain research experience and professional skills - perhaps 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 go into.

You choose the laboratory placements from a list provided by your programme director. Projects on this list come from any of our areas of research within the biological and biomedical sciences. As we have over 200 research-active labs, we can offer a wide range of projects to choose from. For an idea of the breadth of available projects, browse our Research pages.

Our course will also help you to develop transferable skills in essential areas such as experimental design, statistics, bioethics and science communication.

Special features

Wide range of research projects

Choose placements with more than 200 labs at the University to help you decide on an area to specialise in for your future research career.

Teaching and learning

We use a range of teaching and learning methods, including tutorials, workshops, seminars and research placements.

Find out more by visiting the postgraduate teaching and learning page.

Coursework and assessment

We will assess your progress using:

  • written reports on your research projects and tutorials
  • oral presentations
  • written assignments
  • posters
  • multiple choice exams
  • critical assessment of literature
  • online statistics exercises.

Course unit details

The course runs for 12 months. You require 180 credits to complete the course, of which:

  • 120 credits are project based
  • 60 credits are from transferable skills units.

Transferable skills

60 credits are achieved through completion of activities that develop your transferable skills in essential areas such as laboratory skills, experimental design, statistics, bioethics (included in the tutorial and workshop unit) and science communication.

The Experimental Design and Statistics unit 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 project.

  • Experimental Design and Statistics(15 credits)
  • Tutorial and Workshop(15 credits)
  • Science Communication (15 credits)
  • Laboratory Skills (15 credits)

Disclaimer

Our units teach the current trends in life sciences. Consequently, details of our units may vary over time. The University therefore reserves the right to make such alterations to units 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 units available to you. If in doubt, please contact us.

Course unit list

The course unit details given below are subject to change, and are the latest example of the curriculum available on this course of study.

TitleCodeCredit ratingMandatory/optional
Tutorial and Workshop BIOL60210 15 Mandatory
Scientific Communication BIOL60330 15 Mandatory
Statistics & Experimental Design BIOL65161 15 Mandatory
Research Project 1 BIOL66121 30 Mandatory
Research Project 2 BIOL66132 90 Mandatory
Laboratory Skills Unit MEDN66111 15 Mandatory

What our students say

The breadth of taught modules and project topics on offer as part of the MSc Biological Sciences course at the University of Manchester mean that you can tailor this masters course to your own interests and strengthen your CV by picking up new skills which complement your existing ones. Developing such a diverse skillset makes you a very strong candidate for future job or PhD applications - in my case, the skills which I learnt during this MSc course helped me to secure a funded PhD project researching a topic I am extremely passionate about.

Bethan Critchley / 2018 Biological Science Alumni.

Facilities

You will be able to access a range of facilities throughout the University.

Disability support

Practical support and advice for current students and applicants is available from the Disability Advisory and Support Service .