BSc Biology (with Integrated Foundation) C101

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Course Overview


The BSc Biology with Integrated Foundation degree is suitable for applicants not possessing the necessary background for entry at Year 1. Students will have the opportunity to build up the scientific and numerical understanding essential to the successful completion of a degree in Biosciences.

The BSc Biology with Integrated Foundation covers a broad range of themes, including animal and marine welfare and conservation, the biological control of invertebrate pests, microbiology and ocean and climate. The course will give you the opportunity to explore a diverse and stimulating range of modules such as molecular and evolutionary biology, animal diversity and behaviour and marine and terrestrial ecology.

Our close proximity to a diverse range of contrasting environments plus our own facilities provides a wide scope for customising your learning experience.

Key Features

There are many good reasons to study a Biosciences degree at Swansea University. We are proud to have consistently high student satisfaction scores (Zoology 98%, Biology 97% National Student Survey 2017) and are 16th in the UK for graduate prospects [Complete University Guide 2018]. 

The Biosciences Department has also been recognised for the quality of its research and teaching [Research Excellence Framework 2014, Times & Sunday Times University Guide 2018] and has been recently voted Top in Wales [Times & Sunday Times University Guide 2018].

As a Biosciences student at Swansea, you will benefit from Royal Society of Biology accredited degrees, state-of-the art Science laboratories, a Visualisation Centre which is unique in the world and a purpose-built 18 m catamaran-class survey vessel equipped with state-of-the-art survey and research equipment Spring 2018 launch).

By joining Swansea Biosciences, you will also have access to the expertise of many internationally-renowned academics:

  • Professor Rory Wilson, Rolex Laureate and Chief Scientific Consultant behind National Geographic’s Great Migrations – invented the Daily Diary tag to monitor animal movement/behaviour
  • Professor Tariq Butt, bio-control of crops (fungi) – develops products and strategies for pest control, including plant health, tree health, animal health and human health (mosquitoes, ticks, midges)
  • Dr Richard Unsworth and his team - technical advisor, Blue Planet ll, leading on behavioural and collaborative hunting interactions between Grouper and Octopus
  • Associate Professor Carole Llewellyn – innovative algal research to help provide solutions to global challenges of climate, human health, bioenergy, food security and industrial biotechnology


Disclaimer: Module selection options may change.

Year 0 (Level 3)

Entry Level 3 / Year 0
Compulsory Modules
Module CodeSemesterCreditsModule Name
BIO000Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)15Foundation Biology
BIO002Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)15Techniques in Ecology: An introduction
BIO005Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)15Dealing with data
BIO008Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)15Laboratory Skills
BIO009Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)15Molecular Biology and Biochemistry
BIO010Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)15Development of Key Skills for Biologists
BIO011Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)15Literature Review
CS-001Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)15Fundamental Mathematics Skills for Natural Scientists.

Year 2 (Level 5)

FHEQ 5 Degree / HEDip

Students choose 120 credits from the following:

Compulsory Modules
Module CodeSemesterCreditsModule Name
BIO231Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)15Year 2 Biological Sciences Literature Review
BIO232Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)15Plant Ecology
BIO239Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)15Ecological Microbiology and the Cycles of Life
BIO252Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)15Ecological Data Analysis
Optional Modules

Year 3 (Level 6)

FHEQ 6 Degree / Honours

Students choose 120 credits from the following:

Compulsory Modules
Module CodeSemesterCreditsModule Name
BIO350Semester 1 and Semester 2 (Sep-Jun Taught)30Biosciences Research Project
Optional Modules

Choose Exactly 20 credits from the following Modules:

NOTE : Biologists MUST choose ONE (and only one) of the following.

Module CodeSemesterCreditsModule NameGuidance
BIO327Semester 1 and Semester 2 (Sep-Jun Taught)20Tropical marine ecology field courseBIO327 If you are unsuccessful in securing a place on this module, you MUST select BIO331 or BIO340.
BIO331Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)20Professional Techniques in Ecology, conservation and Resource Management
BIO340Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)20Professional Laboratory Skills
GEB301Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)20Interdisciplinary Field Course to the Indian Himalayas (Sikkim)GEB301 If you are unsuccessful in securing a place on this module, you MUST select BIO331 or BIO340.
Biology Recommended  

Choose Minimum Of 30 credits from the following Modules:

NOTE : No more than 70 credits can be selected from any one semester.

Module CodeSemesterCreditsModule NameGuidance
BIO319Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)10Biological Control of Invertebrate Pests
BIO325Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)10Physics for Biologists
BIO328Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)10Epidemiology of zoonotic diseases
BIO329Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)10Climate Change Biology
BIO337Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)10Biodiversity
BIO341Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)10Plant Conservation and Ecology
BIO343Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)10Natural products that shape our world
BIO345Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)10Macroevolution and Phylogenies


The BSc Biology with Integrated Foundation degree at Swansea University will provide you with an understanding of a wide range of biological and ecology theoretical and practical skills as well as providingopportunities for you to learn and undertake a range of sampling and survey techniques for both plants and animals. We will equip you with the practical, taxonomic, numerical and computational skills that are valued and required by many employers as well as develop your essential transferable skills, such as team working, communication, presentation, problem solving and analytical skills.

Biology graduates have a wide range of specialist and generic skills that can take you around the world.  Our degrees open up career opportunities in medicine, veterinary science, environmental management and conservation, teaching and many, many more including:

  • Bat Conservation Trust
  • Animal Keeper - All Things Wild
  • Taxonomist - Marine Ecological Surveys Limited
  • Wildlife and Education Officer - Ipswich Borough Council
  • Research Assistant - TRP Research
  • NHS Medical Lab Technician
  • Benthic Taxonomist at Ocean Ecology Ltd.
  • Assistant Aquarist, Brighton Sea Life Centre
  • Senior Conservation Officer for CCW
  • Project Officer - Amphibian & Reptile Conservation Trust
  • Lecturer in Marine Biology, Plymouth University

Entry Requirements

  • Our typical offer is CCD from three A levels or equivalent to include Biology. 
  • BTEC Extended Diploma – Grades DMM. Only science-based BTECs will be considered (excluding Animal Management and Health Science).
  • Access to HE (Science): 27 Merits to include Biology.
  • IB: 24 (including 4 HL or 7 SL in Biology or Human Biology).
  • Unfortunately, we are unable to consider applicants with GCSE qualifications alone.
  • General Studies and Key Skills qualifications are normally excluded from our offers.
  • All applications will be considered on an individual basis, and we will look at the whole application when deciding whether to make an offer of a place, including: the balance, nature and quality of A-level, AS and GCSE subjects (or equivalent); personal statement and referee’s comments.

How To Apply

  • All applications for full-time undergraduate degrees must be made through UCAS. Further information is available on the UCAS website.
  • For UK applicants, please apply online at

Tuition Fees

Annual tuition fees for entry in the academic year 2018/19 are as follows:

UK/EU International
BSc (Hons) Full-time £9,000 £16,900

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

  • Lab coat and dissection kit (Level 1 for all degree programmes) – approximately £30
  • Tropical Marine Biology field course in Puerto Rico - (costs ~£1200 - £1700 tbc)
  • Sikkim overseas field trip (Biology and Zoology Level 3 - optional) – student contributes £500 towards travel and accommodation

*We also advise all students to have suitable outdoor clothing and sensible footwear (wellington boots)

Teaching and assessment

You will be taught through a combination of lectures, tutorials, seminars and discussion groups, supported by practical classes and field courses.

You will be assessed through a variety of methods, including examinations, coursework and a practical research project.

Student profiles

“Having achieved a First Class Honours in Biology in 2010, I now work as a Research Assistant in the microbiology lab at Zoobiotic where I am responsible for product testing.  It is a challenging position which I was well prepared for because my dissertation involved culturing maggots and testing their medically important secretions.”

Mark Martin, BSc Biology

Read our student profiles


The Department of Biosciences provides access to an extensive range of specialist facilities for both undergraduate and postgraduate students.  These include: Research and IT laboratories; Constant temperature rooms; Growth rooms; Aquaria; Greenhouses; Zoology Museum; A custom-designed 12.5m coastal research vessel, RV Noctiluca.

Our new Teaching Laboratory is a significantly upgraded facility to teach a higher level of transferable laboratory techniques and skills, with a capacity to hold 150 students; it includes a full range of AV facilities able to transmit to several plasma screens output from a variety of sources including microscopes, PCs, DVD/Video players and visualise/camera units.

Find out more about the facilities used by Biosciences students at Swansea University.


As scientists in training you will be taught a full range of core skills and practises by leading experts that will enable you to successfully pursue a career within biology and ecology.

Every year we survey our recent graduates to ascertain their employment status.  The data is more commonly known as the Graduate Destinations Survey and is reported to HESA (the Higher Education Statistics Authority).  Here are some examples of job titles from the recent survey:

  • Ecologist (Jacobs Engineering & CSA Environmental)
  • Delivery Officer (Biotechnology & Biological Science Research Council)
  • Project Officer (Amphibian & Reptile Conservation Trust)
  • Hydrometry and Telemetry Officer (Natural Resources Wales)
  • Benthic Taxonomist (Oceanology Ltd)
  • Wildlife and Education Officer (Ipswich Borough Council)
  • Crop Technician (Humber Growers)
  • Animal keeper (All Things Wild)
  • Quality Control Associate (Amgen Biovex Ltd)
  • Royal Navy Officer (Britannia Royal Navy College)
  • Research Assistant (TRP Research)

Find out more about employability


All academic staff in Biosciences are active researchers and the department has a thriving research culture. Find out more


All biology students carry out a ten week research project module in Year Three. This can either be laboratory or field-based depending on the interests of the student. Some students carry out their projects abroad.

Our field courses include:

Animal Ecology

Tropical Marine Biology

Sikkim, Himalayas

Terrestrial Ecology

International Students

If you are an international student please find more information about our Foundation Year here.