Course Overview

Biochemistry is the study of the chemical processes that occur within living organisms. It is also referred to as chemical biology, molecular cell biology, and the biology of the living cell. Biochemists develop new ideas and products that are applied to the biggest challenges we face today. Biochemists help us to understand the process of life itself.

Key Features

This degree will:

  • train you to work in areas such as drug development, and the development of new crops and agrochemicals
  • prepare you for further study that enables you to take up research positions in industry
  • equip you with the skills and knowledge to work in the pharmaceutical, biotechnology, agrochemical and food industries
  • provide you with transferable skills, including team working, communication, presentation, problem-solving, and analytical skills
  • provide specialist training in a broad range of laboratory techniques

In the final year, you will complete an advanced research project under the guidance of a professional research scientist. By working as an independent researcher, you will develop effective project management skills and will be trained to design experiments and plan work programmes.

For more information, view the BSc Biochemistry Programmes e-brochure

Modules

Disclaimer: Module selection options may change.

Year 1 (Level 4)

FHEQ 4 Degree / HECert

Students choose 120 credits from the following:

Compulsory Modules
Module CodeSemesterCreditsModule Name
PM-127Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)10Energy and Metabolism: The Reactions of Life
PM-131Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)10Chemistry of Life
PM-132Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)10Eukaryotic Cell Biology
PM-134Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)10Microbiology
PM-139Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)10Human Physiology I
PMC100Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)10Atoms and Molecules, Chemical Bonding and Structure; an Introduction for Life Sciences.
PMC101Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)10Organic Chemistry: Structure, Transformation, and Energetics; an Introduction for Life Sciences.
PMC102Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)10Chemical Analysis: from Composition to Structure Elucidation; an Introduction for Life Sciences.
PMC103Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)10Organic Chemistry of Functional Groups: Structure, Reactivity and Mechanism; an Introduction for Life Sciences
Optional Modules
Rule 1 

Choose Exactly 10 credits from the following Modules:

NOTE : You must select ONE of the following optional modules.

Module CodeSemesterCreditsModule NameGuidance
PM-130Semester 1 and 2 (Sep-Jun Taught)10Biochemistry Skills DevelopmentThis is the English Language version of PM-130 and should be selected if you do not wish to study a minimum of 5 credits of the module through the medium of Welsh.
PM-130CSemester 1 and 2 (Sep-Jun Taught)10Datblygu Sgiliau Biocemeg.Mae hon fersiwn cyfrwng Cymraeg o fodiwl PM-130, a ddylai gael ei ddewis os ydych yn dymuno astudio lleiafswm o 5 credyd o’r modiwl hon drwy gyfrwng y Gymraeg.
AND
Rule 2 

Choose Exactly 20 credits from the following Modules:

NOTE : You must choose ONE of the following optional modules

Module CodeSemesterCreditsModule NameGuidance
PM-133Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)20Evolutionary and Molecular GeneticsThis is the English Language version of PM-133 and should be selected if you do not wish to study a minimum of 5 credits of the module through the medium of Welsh.
PM-133CSemester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)20Geneteg Esblygiadol a MolecwlaiddMae hon fersiwn cyfrwng Cymraeg o fodiwl PM-133, a ddylai gael ei ddewis os ydych yn dymuno astudio lleiafswm o 5 credyd o’r modiwl hon drwy gyfrwng y Gymraeg.

Year 2 (Level 5)

FHEQ 5 Degree / HEDip

Students choose 120 credits from the following:

Compulsory Modules
Module CodeSemesterCreditsModule Name
PM-238Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)10Biostatistics
PM-240Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)10Carbohydrate Metabolism and Glycobiology
PM-245Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)10Metabolic Regulation: Enzymes & Signal Transduction
PM-246Semester 1 and 2 (Sep-Jun Taught)10Biochemistry Skills Development II
PM-248Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)10Amino acids, lipids and steroids
Optional Modules
L2 Biochemistry Optional Modules 

Choose Exactly 40 credits from the following Modules:

NOTE : You must choose 40 credits from the following optional modules.

Module CodeSemesterCreditsModule NameGuidance
PM-226Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)10Human and Medical Genetics
PM-243Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)10Clinical Biochemistry & Physiology
PM-249Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)10Human Immunology
PM-250Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)10Infectious Disease and ParasitologyThis module has PM-249 as a pre-requisite so you can only select PM-250 if you are also taking PM-249.
PM-251Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)20Microbial Molecular Genetics
AND
Rule 2 

Choose Exactly 30 credits from the following Modules:

NOTE : You must choose ONE of the following options

Module CodeSemesterCreditsModule NameGuidance
PM-253Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)30Techniques in Molecular BiologyThis is the English Language version of PM-253 and should be selected if you do not wish to study a minimum of 5 credits of the module through the medium of Welsh.
PM-253CSemester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)30Technegau Bioleg FoleciwlaiddMae hon fersiwn cyfrwng Cymraeg o fodiwl PM-253, a ddylai gael ei ddewis os ydych yn dymuno astudio lleiafswm o 5 credyd o’r modiwl hon drwy gyfrwng y Gymraeg.

Year 3 (Level 6)

FHEQ 6 Degree / Honours

Students choose 120 credits from the following:

Compulsory Modules
Module CodeSemesterCreditsModule Name
PM-319Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)10Membranes and Energy Transduction
PM-330Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)10Nucleic acids: components, metabolism and modification
PM-331Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)10Membrane Trafficking
PM-336Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)20Biomedical Laboratory Techniques
Optional Modules
Rule 1 

Choose Exactly 50 credits from the following Modules:

NOTE : You must choose FIVE of the following optional modules.

Module CodeSemesterCreditsModule NameGuidance
PM-308Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)10Animal Development
PM-314Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)10Biotechnology & Protein Engineering
PM-316Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)10Genetic Toxicology
PM-317Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)10Genetics of Cancer
PM-333Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)10Aspects of Human Sensory and Metabolic Biochemistry
PM-345Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)10Bioinformatics: From sequence to FunctionIf you select PM-345 then you MUST also take PM-314 which is a pre-requisite.
AND
Rule 2 

Choose Exactly 20 credits from the following Modules:

NOTE : You must select ONE of the following options.

Module CodeSemesterCreditsModule NameGuidance
PM-334Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)20Biochemistry Literature Review and CommunicationThis is the English Language version of PM-334 and should be selected if you do not wish to study a
PM-334CSemester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)20Adolygiad Llenyddiaeth Biocemeg a ChyfathrebuMae hon fersiwn cyfrwng Cymraeg o fodiwl PM-334, a ddylai gael ei ddewis os ydych yn dymuno astudio

Description

During each year of your degree, you will be required to study 120 credits, made up of compulsory and optional modules.  The Medical School offers undergraduate degree programmes in Biochemistry, Medical Biochemistry, Genetics, Medical Genetics and a combined honours in Biochemistry & Genetics.  To compare what you could study in these five pathways, click on Modules available 17-18 to find a spreadsheet showing the modules available.

(If you download this Excel spreadsheet and save it on your PC, then click on the title of each module in the second column whilst connected to the internet, you should see further details from the module catalogue. These links from the spreadsheet may not work with some browser settings, nor iPad, iPhone, Android, etc.)



Below is a sample of some of the modules that you could study at each level:

Year 1

Biochemistry Skills Development
Macromolecules: Form and Function
Energy and Metabolism: The Reactions of Life
Metabolic Regulation and Molecular Physiology
Chemistry of Life
Introductory Organic Chemistry
Organic Chemistry of Functional Groups
Instrumental and Analytical Chemistry
Atomic Structure and Chemical Periodicity
Genetics and Evolutionary Processes
Cellular and Microbial Biology

Year 2

Biochemistry Skills Development II
Biomolecular Mass Spectrometry and Proteomic Analysis
Carbohydrate Metabolism and Glycobiology
Amino Acids, Lipid and Steroids
Biomolecular Techniques
Metabolic Regulation: Enzymes and Signal Transduction
Clinical Biochemistry and Physiology
Microbial Genetics
Gene Expression
Molecular Mechanisms of Disease and Diagnostics
Cell and Immunobiology

Year 3

Biomolecular Research Project
Biochemistry of Natural Products
Nucleic Acids: Components, Metabolism and Modification
Membrane Trafficking
Membranes and Energy Transduction
Biotechnology and Protein Engineering
Aspects of Human Sensory and Metabolic Biochemistry
Biochemistry Literature Review and Communication
Gene Manipulation

Level 4

Advanced Biomolecular Research Project 
Communicating Ideas and Public Understanding of Science
Entrepreneurship in Life Sciences

Entry Requirements

A typical offer is AAB at A-Level [or equivalent for other qualifications: 136 UCAS tariff points].

You must have good grades in Chemistry and Biology.

IB: 34 (including good HL grades in Chemistry and Biology).

We make individual offers for your circumstances after reading your UCAS personal statements and references.

Find out the entry requirements for an International Student.

Tuition Fees

Annual tuition fees for entry in the academic year 2017/18 are as follows:

UK/EU International
MSci (Hons) Full-time £9,000 £16,500

Fees for full time Undergraduate UK/EU students may be increased in subsequent years of study by an inflationary amount determined by Welsh Government.

Fees for full time Undergraduate International students will increase by 3% for each subsequent year of study.

You can find further information on fees and how to pay on our tuition fees page.

You may be eligible for funding to help support your study. To find out about scholarships, bursaries and other funding opportunities that are available please visit the University's scholarships and bursaries page.

Current students: You can find further information of your fee costs on our tuition fees page.

Additional Costs

The tuition fees do not cover the costs of purchasing books or stationery, printing, thesis binding or photocopying costs.

You will need to purchase a white lab coat and safety goggles prior to any practical classes.  These can be purchased on arrival at the University.  

MSci and BSc - what is the difference?

The new four-year MSci is an advanced undergraduate degree, adding a further research-focused year to our current three-year BSc degrees. Most of the first three years will be in common for these schemes, but the MSci offers specialist training in a broad range of laboratory techniques during the third year as preparation for an intensive year-long advanced research project during the fourth year.

Welsh Language Provision

The College of Medicine is working toward enhancing and developing their Welsh language provision.

Students Studying Medical Genetics will be given the opportunity to have a Welsh speaking personal tutor, as well as being able to register for the Welsh version of Biochemistry Skills Development (PM-130) in the first year of their studies.

For more information, please contact Dr. Heledd Iago - h.f.iago@swansea.ac.uk - 01792 602402

Funding opportunities

Click here to learn more about fees and funding

Return to medical school

Click here to return to medical school

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