Overview


Genetics is a vibrant and expanding discipline at the core of biological and medical sciences, playing a vital part in the development of genetic engineering and decoding of the human genome.

On this course you’ll gain a comprehensive understanding of the nature, transmission and expression of genetic information in living organisms.

You’ll also gain an insight into the applications of genetic techniques in fields as diverse as genetic engineering, developmental biology, biotechnology, diagnostics and therapies for human diseases, and conservation biology.

While studying specialist genetics modules such as human genetic disorders and cancer genetics, you’ll also develop a comprehensive knowledge and understanding of related disciplines.

Our integrated Masters offers you an additional year of specialist training. You’ll study advanced topics, such as high-throughput technologies, plant biotechnology and conservation genetics, and undertake an extended research project.

Course highlights

  • Flexibility: The common first year provides you with a broad foundation as a scientist, giving you the flexibility to transfer to a related degree course as your interests develop.
  • Choice: Each year you’ll choose modules from our specialist degrees across the biology area (Biology with Enterprise, Genetics, Ecology and Conservation Biology, and Zoology), allowing you to follow your own biological interests.
  • Specialist topics: We offer specialised genetics modules in the areas of applied genetics, human genetic disorders, epigenetics, population genetics, developmental genetics, cancer genetics and cell cycle control, taught by research leaders.
  • Research experience: You'll have the chance to explore your interests with an independent research project in your third year.
  • Employability: On this course you can undertake an industrial placement or study year abroad. Previous students have had placements at organisations as varied as GlaxoSmithKline and the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.
  • Accreditation: Our MBiol and BSc with Industrial Placement courses have received Advanced Accreditation by the Royal Society of Biology.

Accreditation

Our BSc with Industrial Placement Year 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

Biology MBiol, BSc
Biology with Enterprise MBiol, BSc
Ecology and Conservation Biology MBiol, BSc
Zoology MBiol, BSc





Course content

In Year 1 you will establish your foundation of knowledge and expertise in genetics with a set of core modules including genetics, cell biology and biochemistry, with other modules from biology and microbiology. Core introductory modules will be delivered through a mixture of lectures, tutorials and practicals allowing you to develop the research skills that will be necessary throughout your degree.

At the end of Year 1, there are opportunities to transfer between the Genetics, Biological Sciences and Microbiology degree courses.

In Year 2 the focus is more specifically on genetics, with compulsory modules in genetic engineering, bacterial genetics, bioinformatics, human genetics and developmental biology. The degree offers the opportunity to take an industrial placement or study abroad year at the end of Year 2, which will help broaden your experience, enhance your skills and improve your employment prospects.

In Year 3 you’ll be immersed even deeper into the research-based environment here at Leeds and taught about specialised genetics subject areas. You will undertake your own independent research project under the supervision of one of our research academics as well as studying advanced level modules in areas such as cancer genetics and comparative genomics. Upon graduation you will be equipped with specialised knowledge as well as broader transferable skills ideal for succeeding 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 study compulsory and optional modules, an individual research project and a literature review project.

In Year 4 you will study a range of Masters-level modules (for example, High-throughput Technologies, Plant Biotechnology, Conservation Genetics). You’ll also undertake an extended research project on an original, innovative topic that will further develop the skills that are required for a career in research, as well as helping you stand out in the graduate job market.

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

Course structure

These are typical modules/components studied and may change from time to time. Read more in our Terms and conditions.

Year 1

COMPULSORY MODULES
Biology Practicals and Data Analysis 20 credits
Living Planet 20 credits
Introduction to Genetics 10 credits
Practical Genetics 10 credits
Tutorials for Biology and Genetics 10 credits
The Basis of Life 20 credits

Year 2

COMPULSORY MODULES
The Power of Genomics 10 credits
Genetic Engineering 10 credits
Enhanced Study Skills for Biologists 10 credits
How Plants Work 10 credits
Introduction to Bioinformatics 10 credits
Animal Developmental Biology 10 credits
Human Genetics 10 credits

Year 3

COMPULSORY MODULES
Applied Genetics 20 credits
Advanced Topics in Human Genetics 20 credits
Advanced Research Skills and Experience 20 credits
Research Literature Review 20 credits

Year 4

COMPULSORY MODULES
Extended Research Project 80 credits

For more information on typical modules, read Genetics MBiol, BSc in the course catalogue

For more information on typical modules, read Genetics BSc in the course catalogue

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 and preferably another science or science-related subject. If Biology is the only science subject then an A grade is required. Critical Thinking and General Studies excluded.

We accept the following science subjects: biology, human biology, chemistry, mathematics, physics. Science-related subjects: computing, environmental science, food science, geography, geology, PE, psychology, science in society, statistics, use of mathematics.

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 and another science or science-related subject. General Studies and Critical Thinking excluded.

We accept the following science subjects: biology, human biology, chemistry, mathematics, physics. Science-related subjects: computing, environmental science, food science, geography, geology, PE, psychology, science in society, statistics, use of mathematics.

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 Environmental Science
  • Biological and Health Science
  • Biological Sciences
  • Biosciences
  • Combined Sciences
  • Environmental Science
  • Life and Biological Science
  • Life Science
  • Medical and Health Science Professions
  • Natural Sciences
  • Physical & Natural 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 Physicsmay 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 plus one other science or science-related subject.

MBiol:

D3/D3/D3 including D3 in Biology 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 and another science or science-related subject at higher level.

MBiol:

35 (with 18 at higher level) including 6 in higher level Biology 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 and another science subject at higher level.

MBiol:

H2,H2,H2,H2,H2,H2 including H2 in Biology and another science or science-related subject at higher level.

Scottish Highers / Advanced Highers

BSc:

Advanced Higher: 5 x Highers AABBB, with AA-AB in 2 Advanced Highers including Biology and preferably another science or science-related subject. General Studies and Critical Thinking excluded. If Biology is the only science subject then an A grade is required. Science subjects include: Biology, Human Biology, Chemistry, Maths and Physics. Science- related subjects include: Computing, Environmental Science, Geography, Geology, P.E, Psychology, Science in Society, Statistics, Food Science and use of Maths.

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.

Scottish Higher: Scottish Highers not accepted on their own.

Welsh Baccalaureate

BSc:

AAA - AAB 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, physics. Science-related subjects: computing, environmental science, food science, geography, geology, PE, psychology, science in society, statistics, use of mathematics.

MBiol:

AAA 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, physics. Science-related subjects: computing, environmental science, food science, geography, geology, PE, psychology, science in society, statistics, use of mathematics.

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 welcome students from around the world and consider a range of qualifications. If your qualification or country does not appear on our entry requirements page, please contact our admissions team.

International year one
Taught at the Leeds International Study Centre, this two-semester course is equivalent to the first year of an undergraduate degree. It aims to help you develop the skills you need to join the second year of a Biological Sciences related degree.

If you are applying from an alternative foundation year provider, please contact our admissions team to find out if your qualification is suitable for entry to our courses.

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.


Improve your English

International students who do not meet the English language requirements for this programme may be able to study our undergraduate pre-sessional English course, to help improve your English language level.
 

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

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.

Recent graduates have pursued careers including genetics research, genetic counselling, scientific publishing and science journalism, sakes and management in science-related industries, teaching, scientific administration and science policy development. Many students proceed to Masters or PhD study.

Our degree prepares you for a wide range of opportunities in scientific and non-scientific careers. Graduate prospects have been seen to be high in the area of genetics, leading to a high level of graduate employment from the course.

Recent graduate destinations include:

  • Genetic Counsellor Assistant, NHS
  • Senior Analyst, Loans Specialist Advisory Services
  • Genetics Technologist, Central Manchester Foundation Trust
  • Biomedical Support worker, St. James’s Hospital
  • Health Care assistant, Kings College Hospital.

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, RSPB, Yorkshire Wildlife Trust, 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, 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.