Overview


Human physiology is the study of how our body works in health and disease, and is a key component of the scientific basis of medicine. Our approach is integrated, understanding the organs of the body down to the molecular mechanisms within cells.

This course gives you an ideal opportunity to train in a medically-orientated field of world-wide importance, and is ideal if you have an interest the medical industries, research, or practice.

Throughout your degree you’ll consider, through research in academic or clinical settings, what happens when normal physiological mechanisms go wrong, and how conditions such as diabetes, obesity, cardiovascular and neurodegenerative diseases develop.

You'll also get hands-on experience in taking physiological measurements from human subjects in practical classes.

You’ll graduate with an understanding of modern human physiology that guarantees an almost endless array of possibilities for careers in biomedicine, and which can be combined with virtually any other area of biological science.

Our integrated Masters offers you an additional year of specialist training. You’ll study advanced research topics and undertake an extended research project.

What is Physiology?

If you're unsure as to what Physiology is and what it involves, this video by The Physiological Society explains in under 3 minutes.

Course highlights

  • Comprehensive learning: You’ll cover a wide range of areas with our integrative approach, from the whole body to cells.
  • Skills development: You’ll develop key practical, analytical and communication skills to enable you to analyse and present scientific data. You’ll also develop a range of transferable skills such as computing (ICT), communication and problem solving.
  • Flexibility: Common core modules in the first year of many of our courses mean you’ll have the flexibility to transfer onto another related degree course if your interests change.
  • Choice: You can focus your Year 3 studies on your chosen areas of interests, allowing you to tailor your degree to what excites you the most.
  • Expertise: You’ll be taught by active researchers in your field, with opportunities to work in laboratories and participate in research activities.
  • Research experience: As well as plenty of practical time in the labs, you’ll have the chance to carry out your own independent research project in your third year.
  • Employability: On this course you can undertake an industrial placement or study year abroad, a great chance to enhance your university experience and your CV. Plus our wide range of final year projects enable you to develop the skills that are critical for the next step in your career.

Accreditation

Our BSc with Industrial Placement and MBiol courses have been accredited by the Royal Society of Biology. Advanced degree accreditation by the Society recognises academic excellence in the biosciences, and highlights degrees that educate the research and development leaders of the future. The advanced accreditation criteria require evidence that graduates from the programme meet defined sets of learning outcomes, including gaining a substantial period of research experience.

Related courses

Medical Sciences MBiol, BSc
Neuroscience MBiol, BSc
Pharmacology MBiol, BSc





Course content

The first two years of your course provide you with an overview of how the different body systems function.

In Year 1 you’ll enhance your understanding by studying subjects that complement physiology, such as neuroscience, pharmacology and cell biology.

You’ll also use a wide variety of experimental approaches in practical classes, from molecular and cell biology to the recording of blood pressure and electrocardiograms.

It may be possible to transfer to Pharmacology, Neuroscience or Medical Sciences after Year 1 (subject to academic approval).

After Year 1 has introduced you to the foundations of biomedical sciences, Year 2 of your degree will see you focus in more depth on the key areas of human physiology. Studying topics such as Experimental Techniques in Physiology and Exercise Physiology, your knowledge will become more specialised, and your research skills will become more advanced.

The degree offers the opportunity to take an industrial placement or study abroad year at the end of Year 2, subject to academic performance, which will help broaden your experience, enhance your skills and improve your employment prospects.

In Year 3, you’ll have the opportunity to study your chosen areas of interest in more depth through a variety of modules that broadly reflect the research expertise at Leeds. These modules include Advanced Scientific Skills and Advanced Topics in Physiology.

In your third year you have the opportunity to focus on your interests through a variety of modules that reflect the research expertise at Leeds, including modules in systems neurophysiology.

The focal point for Year 3 is an independent research project that you’ll carry out under the supervision of a field-leading academic, further developing the transferable skills that will set you apart in the graduate job market.

Integrated Masters (MBiol)

Years 1 and 2 are the same as for the BSc and provide a foundation in the subject.

In Year 3 you’ll study compulsory and optional modules as well as complete a literature research project and a research preparation module that will underpin your final-year research project.

In Year 4 you’ll undertake an extended research project in an original topic while exploring specialised research topics and skills. This is complimented with Masters level modules that will prepare you for a career in research as well as equipping you with the cutting edge expertise needed in the general graduate job market.

Find out more about choosing between an integrated Masters and a BSc degree

Course structure

Details of typical modules/components for this course will be published on May 1st. These may change from time to time. Read more in our Terms and conditions.

Broadening your academic horizons

At Leeds we want you to benefit from the depth and breadth of the University's expertise, to prepare you for success in an ever-changing and challenging world. On this course you broaden your learning through core and/or optional modules. Find out more on the Broadening webpages.

Learning and teaching

You’ll have access to the very best learning resources and academic support during your studies. We’ve been awarded a Gold rating in the Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF, 2017), demonstrating our commitment to delivering consistently outstanding teaching, learning and outcomes for our students.

You’ll experience a wide range of teaching methods including lectures, tutorials and practicals. Your first and second years will focus on these three teaching methods, building your skills, understanding and knowledge in preparation for your final year research project, which will see you take on independent research and learning with the guidance of leading experts.

Across all years, additional workshop and seminar sessions will complement your lectures and lab practicals, and you will also undertake private study.

As a guide, a typical week in your first year includes nine to twelve hours of lectures, three to six hours of practical sessions in the laboratory, tutorials, workshop and seminar sessions, plus private study.

Independent study and research are also crucial to every year of the course. We have excellent library and computing facilities to support your learning, and the University Library offers training to help you make the most of them.

Assessment

We use a variety of assessment methods to help you develop a broad range of skills. These include practical work, data handling and problem-solving exercises, multiple-choice tests, group work, online and face-to-face discussion groups, computer-based simulations, essays, posters and oral presentations.

Entry requirements, fees and applying

Entry requirements

A-level: AAA - AAB

BSc:

A-level: AAA - AAB

Including Biology/Human Biology or Chemistry, plus another science or science-related subject. Critical Thinking and General Studies excluded. We accept the following science subjects: biology, human biology, chemistry, mathematics and physics. Science- related subjects: geography, PE, psychology, use of maths and statistics.

Applicants taking a Science A-level (in England) will be required to achieve a pass in the practical element in addition to the standard A-level grade requirement.

MBiol:

A-level: AAA

Including Biology/Human Biology or Chemistry, plus another science or science-related subject. Critical Thinking and General Studies excluded.

We accept the following science subjects: biology, human biology, chemistry, mathematics and physics. Science- related subjects: geography, PE, psychology, use of maths and statistics.

Applicants taking a Science A-level (in England) will be required to achieve a pass in the practical element in addition to the standard A-level grade requirement.

GCSE:

Grade 6 (B) or above at GCSE Maths and Grade 4 (C) or above at GCSE English.

Alternative Qualifications

Access to HE Diploma

BSc:

Pass 60 credits overall with 45 credits at Level 3, graded at D45M0P0 to D39M6P0 including distinctions in Biology and Mathematics or Chemistry. Accept Access courses in Applied Science and Science. Will also consider (depending on subject content):

  • Biochemical Sciences
  • Biological and
  • Biological and Health Science
  • Biological Sciences
  • Biosciences
  • Combined Sciences
  • Life and Biological Science
  • Physical Sciences

MBiol:

We do not accept Access to HE.

BTEC

BSc:

Applicants with BTEC qualifications (Diploma or Extended Diploma) are required to have A2 level Biology (Maths, Chemistry and Physics may be acceptable alternatives depending on the BTEC subject). Distinctions in the BTEC subject and an A or B grade (BTEC subject dependent) for the A-level subject are required.

Applicants with BTEC Subsidiary Diploma qualifications must have at least 2 A2 levels and at least one of these must be in Biology.

MBiol:

We do not accept BTEC qualification.

Cambridge Pre-U

BSc:

D3/D3/D3-D3/D3/M1 including D3 in Biology or Chemistry plus one other science or science-related subject.

MBiol:

D3/D3/D3 including D3 in Biology or Chemistry plus one other science or science-related subject.

International Baccalaureate

BSc:

35-34 (with 18-17 at higher level) including 6 in higher level Biology or Chemistry and another science or science-related subject at higher level.

MBiol:

35 (with 18 at higher level) including 6 in higher level Biology or Chemistry, and another science or science-related subject at higher level.

Irish Highers (Leaving Certificate)

BSc:

H2,H2,H2,H2,H2,H2 - H2,H2,H2,H2,H3,H3 including H2 in Biology or Chemistry and another science at higher level.

MBiol:

H2,H2,H2,H2,H2,H2 including H2 in Biology or Chemistry, and another science at higher level.

Scottish Highers / Advanced Highers

BSc:

Advanced Higher: 5 x Highers AABBB, with AA-AB in 2 Advanced Highers including Biology and another science or science-related subject. General Studies and Critical Thinking excluded. We accept the following science subjects: biology, human biology, chemistry, mathematics and physics.Science- related subjects: geography, PE, psychology, use of maths and statistics.

Scottish Higher: Scottish Highers not accepted on their own.

MBiol:

Advanced Higher: 5 x Highers AABBB, with AA in 2 Advanced Highers including Biology and another science or science-related subject. General Studies and Critical Thinking excluded.

We accept the following science subjects: biology, human biology, chemistry, mathematics and physics.

Science- related subjects: geography, PE, psychology, use of maths and statistics.

Scottish Higher: Scottish Highers not accepted on their own.

Welsh Baccalaureate

BSc:

AAA-AAB including Biology/Human Biology, or Chemistry plus another science or science-related subject. Critical Thinking and General Studies excluded.

We accept the following science subjects: biology, human biology, chemistry, mathematics and physics. Science- related subjects: geography, PE, psychology, use of maths and statistics.

MBiol:

AAA including Biology or Human Biology or Chemistry plus another science or science-related subject. Critical Thinking and General Studies excluded.

We accept the following science subjects: biology, human biology, chemistry, mathematics and physics. Science- related subjects: geography, PE, psychology, use of maths and statistics.

Read more about UK and Republic of Ireland accepted qualifications or contact the School’s Undergraduate Admissions Team.

Alternative Entry

We’re committed to identifying the best possible applicants, regardless of personal circumstances or background.

Access to Leeds is an alternative admissions scheme which accepts applications from individuals who might be from low income households, in the first generation of their immediate family to apply to higher education, or have had their studies disrupted.

Find out more about Access to Leeds and alternative admissions.

International

We accept a range of international equivalent qualifications.

English language requirements

IELTS 6.0 overall, with no less than 5.5 in any component.. For other English qualifications, read English language equivalent qualifications.

International students who do not meet the English language requirements for the programme may be able to study an English for Academic Purposes pre-sessional course with a progression route to the degree programme. For information and entry requirements, read Pre-sessional programmes.

How to apply

Apply to this course through UCAS. The institution code for the University of Leeds is L23. Check the deadline for applications on the UCAS website.

International students apply through UCAS in the same way as UK/EU students. Our network of international representatives can help you with your application. If you’re unsure about the application process, contact the admissions team for help.

Read about visas, immigration and other information in International students. We recommend that international students apply as early as possible to ensure that they have time to apply for their visa.

Admissions policy

Faculty of Biological Sciences Undergraduate Admissions Policy

Fees

UK/EU: To be confirmed

International: To be confirmed

For UK and non-UK EU full-time students starting in 2018, the fee for 2018/19 will be £9,250. 

The fee for undergraduate students starting in 2019 will be confirmed in September 2018.

The fee may increase in future years of your course in line with inflation, and as permitted by law. For example, the increase of 2.8% in 2017/18 was based on the government’s forecast for the RPI-X measure of inflation.

The UK government has confirmed that non-UK EU students in 2018-19 will have home fee status and be eligible for UK government student loans. The UK government has not confirmed the situation for future years, so keep checking our website for updates.

If you take a study abroad or work placement year, you’ll pay a reduced tuition fee during this period. For more information, see Study abroad and work placement tuition fees and loans.

Read more about paying fees and charges.

Additional cost information

There may be additional costs related to your course or programme of study, or related to being a student at the University of Leeds. Read more about additional costs

Scholarships and financial support

If you have the talent and drive, we want you to be able to study with us, whatever your financial circumstances. There is help for students in the form of loans and non-repayable grants from the University and from the government. Find out more in our Undergraduate funding overview.

The Faculty of Biological Sciences offer a range of scholarships for UK, EU and International students. Find out more about our scholarships

Career opportunities

As well as providing you with subject-specific knowledge, we aim to equip you with the best possible skills for a variety of future careers. All of our degrees have a strong emphasis on practical based teaching, small group teaching, online learning and problem solving.

Throughout the degree, you’ll gain a wide range of transferable skills which are highly valued by employers. Supported by the Leeds for Life scheme and your academic and personal tutor, you’ll be ideally placed to focus on your personal development and make the most of your time at university.

Typical graduates have entered into medically-related careers through graduate entry medicine or physiotherapy courses and paramedical training. Other graduates continue onto Masters or PhD study, academic research, teaching, or have used their knowledge and skills to enter the commercial scientific industries.

Recent graduate destinations include:

  • Healthcare assistant, York Hospital
  • Trainee cardiac physiologist, NHS Scotland
  • Healthcare assistant, Brocklebank group practice

Careers support

Dedicated employability team

We have a dedicated employability team in the Faculty of Biological Sciences who work closely with the University’s Careers Centre to support your development.

We offer a host of additional opportunities beyond core course content, including volunteering and placements. These include our annual Faculty Graduate Panel, where graduates are invited back to talk about their work and network with our students, and our STEM Careers Fair, which gives you the chance to meet bioscience employers, such as AstraZeneca, Covance, GSK, Nuffield Health, speak to alumni, attend workshops, and get masses of information.

We encourage you to prepare for your career from day one. That’s one of the reasons Leeds graduates are so sought after by employers.

Leeds for Life is our unique approach to helping you make the most of University by supporting your academic and personal development. Find out more at the Leeds for Life website.

The Careers Centre and staff in your faculty provide a range of help and advice to help you plan your career and make well-informed decisions along the way, even after you graduate. Find out more at the Careers website.

Study abroad and work placements

Study abroad

On this course you have the opportunity to apply to spend time abroad, usually as an extra academic year. The University has partnerships with more than 400 universities worldwide and popular destinations for our students include Europe, the USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, Hong Kong, South Africa and Latin America. 

Find out more at the Study Abroad website.

If you choose to undertake a study abroad option, you will spend the third year of your course studying abroad. This will extend your studies by 12 months.

Work placements

Practical work experience can help you decide on your career and improve your employability. On this course you have the option to apply to take a placement year module with organisations across the public, private and voluntary sectors in the UK, or overseas.

Find out more about work experience on the Careers website.

Industrial placements are typically taken after your second year. If you choose to undertake a placement year, this will extend your studies by 12 months. For your work placement in industry, staff at Leeds will help you with your CV and application letters and provide a list of organisations which may offer industrial placements.

Placements abroad are possible. We work together with your industrial supervisors to make sure you get the most out of this year. A year working in industry gives you an excellent opportunity to get used to the demands of the world of work, to develop new skills and to augment your CV.