Course specification and structure
Undergraduate Course Structures Postgraduate Course Structures

UDBIOSCI - BSc Biological Science

Course Specification


Validation status Validated
Highest award Bachelor of Science Level Honours
Possible interim awards Bachelor of Science, Diploma of Higher Education, Certificate of Higher Education, Bachelor of Science
Total credits for course 360
Awarding institution London Metropolitan University
Teaching institutions London Metropolitan University
School School of Human Sciences
Subject Area Biosciences
Attendance options
Option Minimum duration Maximum duration
Full-time 3 YEARS  
Part-time 4 YEARS  
Course leader  

About the course and its strategy towards teaching and learning and towards blended learning/e-learning

The BSc course is will promote a broad understanding of the range of subject areas allied to Biological Science. Knowledge and understanding of Biological Science is summatively assessed by time-constrained unseen examinations and by coursework comprising elements such as essays, practical reports, progress tests, poster presentations and seminar presentations completed during the course of the module. Coursework and online tests are also used to provide formative feedback. Formative diagnostic assessment of knowledge and understanding is carried out, particularly during the initial stages of the course. Utilisation of the University’s VLE, WebLearn has become an invaluable tool with which to disseminate information and to support and assess student learning. Online progress tests will be used to provide students with feedback on their progress. Exams in several modules are delivered as online exams. Feedback will be delivered on line and through provision of tutorial questions and answer sessions and other formative exercises.
Practical skills exercises at each level are used to monitor proficiency at experimental work. Assessment of Data handling skills are embedded in practical reports, problem solving exercises, information abstracting and reviewing exercises, poster presentations and seminar presentations. The level 6 Research Project provides the ultimate measure of experimental and other practical skills. The excellent science centre also provides an unrivalled facility in which to carry out the level 6 Research Project module. BSc project assessment will culminate in the presentation of a dissertation and a poster presentation exam, designed to allow the student to demonstrate their depth of knowledge and understanding.
Students have access to the North campus library which has recently been comprehensively refurbished. It provides specific group study areas as well as access to a comprehensive and regularly reviewed range of textbooks, journals and online learning resources. In addition, there are newly fitted ‘all access’ areas on the ground floor of the Tower building and the green lounge at Benwell Road. These areas come with comfortable seating and IT facilities.

Course aims

The BSc (Hons) Biological Science degree has been designed to produce graduates with extensive knowledge and understanding of the scientific basis of health and disease together with skills and competence in the associated technical and transferable skills. Graduates will be equipped for employment in the medical and allied research institutes, health agency laboratories*, in bioanalytical medical genetics and forensic units, in the pharmaceutical industry, and in information services, health and safety and science education. The analytical, numerical and communication skills developed by Biological Science graduates are also in demand in non-science-based careers such as those in the financial services sector, marketing and company administration.
The aims of the single honours Biological Science course are designed to consider the broad scope of Biological Science, its facts, theories, technologies and applications. We will provide students with the requisite subject knowledge, understanding, skills and competencies fit for pursuit of a medical bioscience career at the molecular level through to the higher levels of organisation and integration in health and disease. The course will develop understanding of the research interface, its impact and potential. We will enhance employability awareness, professional performance and transferable evaluative skills, problem solving skills and communication skills.

Course learning outcomes

The course aims to promote a good knowledge-skills balance enhancing the professional practice of the students. These aims are aligned with the qualification descriptors within the Quality Assurance Agency’s Framework for Higher Education Qualifications for Biosciences (2015).

By the end of the course the student is expected to:
1. appreciate/understand all the fundamental concepts and principles of Biological Science
2. understanding the range and complexity of living systems with an emphasis on systems with a role in human health and disease .
3. practice skills of self-evaluation and reflection, and an awareness of the ethical dimension within which contemporary biological issues are explored
4. critically evaluate and integrate information and develop ideas on issues, methodologies and processes within the context of Biological Science
5. devise working hypotheses and test these within specified constraints
6. undertake self-reflection and demonstrate the skills of self-management, self-presentation and decision making
7. communicate concepts, principles and information effectively by oral and written means with clarity and confidence
8. recognise personal responsibility, whether working individually or as a member of a team and respect the ethical standards and professional codes of conduct established within the scientific community
9. identify and work towards targets for personal, academic and career development, and implement strategies for updating, maintaining and enhancing knowledge and skills
10. appreciate/gain the skills necessary to secure and retain employment, including communication, consideration for others, creativity, dedication and self-discipline

Course learning outcomes / Module cross reference

Module Title Module Code
Laboratory Science BC4001
Anatomy and Physiology BC4004
Cell and Molecular Biology BC4003
Chemistry (for Biosciences) BC4051
Biochemistry BC4052
Tissue Science BC5003
Metabolism BE5058
Microbiology BE5059
Molecular Biology BE5060
Human Immunity BE5061
Parasitology BC5052
Ethics for Science BC5K55
Micronutrient Physiology BE5063
Project BC6P01
Biochemical Pathology BE6005
Fundamentals of Biotechnology BE6061
Infection Control BC6060
Systems pathology BC6051
Bioinformatics and Molecular Modelling BE6056
Energy Metabolism and Endocrinology BE6063
Work Placement BC6W54

Learning Outcomes 1 - 10

Principle QAA benchmark statements

Biosciences (2015)

Assessment strategy

Students are assessed through a variety of methods including problem solving exercises, in-class test, data analysis, practical reports, case studies, oral presentations, extended essays, examinations, research project interim report, oral examination and dissertation. The choice of assessment instrument chosen to test the specified learning outcomes and to support students’ different learning styles. These methods are aligned with the School assessment strategy and the assessment is the responsibility of the academic staff delivering the module. Assessment is part of the learning process and confirms the outcomes of the learning process. It also provides formative feedback on curriculum design and delivery and, via the on-going iterative process of module monitoring, makes a significant contribution to the continued development and improvement of the courses that links in with the School learning and teaching strategy. In light of this a variety of assessment methods will be used (see syllabi) including unseen written examinations, individual and group assignments.
Practical skills are summatively assessed through coursework assignments, including those in the project module. Data handling skills are summatively assessed by practical reports, problem solving exercises, oral presentations and examinations.
Formative assessments include group activities in tutorial classes, mini-tests and project workshops. Laboratory and computer based investigations, poster and oral presentations and a level 6 project giving students the opportunity to show the knowledge understanding and skills they have developed.

Organised work experience, work based learning, sandwich year or year abroad

The course includes the option to take either a 15 credit Work Placement module at level 5 or a 30 credit Sandwich Placement module between level 5 and level 6. Students are not allowed to register for both these modules.

Modules required for interim awards

Module Code Module title

CertHE Biosciences

BC4004 Anatomy and Physiology
BC4003 Cell and Molecular Biology
BC4051 Chemistry
BC4052 Biochemistry
BC4001 Laboratory Science

DipHE Biological Science

BE5058 Metabolism
BE5059 Microbiology
BE5060 Molecular Biology
BE5061 Human Immunity
BC5003 Tissue Science
BC5052 Parasitology

BSc Biological Science

BE6005 Biochemical Pathology
BE6061 Fundamentals of Biotechnology
BE6060 Infection Control
BE6063 Energy Metabolism and Endocrinology
BC6P01 Project

Arrangements for promoting reflective learning and personal development

During the induction phase of the programme students will be introduced to structured reflection on their development of Undergraduate Skills which constitute much as the substance of personal development planning. Students will undertake to produce their personal development plan (PDP) during their undergraduate career or in the workplace. PDP can include other activities outside of the academic aspect of university life.
By way of modules: Anatomy and Physiology (Level 4); Microbiology (Level 5); and, Research Project (Level 6) students will progressively develop their PDP which will culminate in a CV and graduation statement. Students will take part in tutorials at all levels designed to facilitate discussion on what has been learnt in order that reflective learning will contribute to identifying objectives, success criteria, and action plans that can be included in PDPs.
PDP is designed to allow students to articulate the skills developed during their undergraduate career and encourages them to critically reflect on their learning experience, to set new personal and academic goals and evaluate progress made in achieving those goals.
The option exists for students to undertake an additional 30 credit module BC6W04 Sandwich Placement module to enhance employability. This would normally be undertaken between level 5 and 6, this would extend the period of study to four years. For part-time students in appropriate employment they can complete the module over an extended period during their degree rather than take a year out. Progress with Undergraduate Skills will be articulated to students as the programme progresses through feedback from tutors and peers enabling them to reflect on their progress based on the evidence available. This process assists students in developing as independent learners, identifying their strengths and weaknesses. This will be of benefit throughout their future career.

Career, employability and opportunities for continuing professional development

Graduates will be equipped for employment in the medical and allied research institutes, health agency laboratories, in bioanalytical medical genetics and forensic units, in the pharmaceutical industry, and in information services, health and safety and science education. The analytical, numerical and communication skills developed by Biological Science graduates are also in demand in non-science-based careers such as those in the financial services sector, marketing and company administration.

Professional Statutory and Regulatory Body (PSRB) accreditations & exemptions

On graduation, you'll be eligible to apply for Graduate or Associate Membership of the Royal Society of Biology, depending on your degree classification.

Career opportunities

You'll complete the course equipped for a career in medical and biological research, in hospital and public health laboratories or in the pharmaceutical, food, water and agricultural industries. Previous graduates have gone on to find work at companies such as the Royal Society of Biology.

You'll also develop analytical, numerical and communication skills that are in demand in other careers such as accountancy, journalism, marketing and teaching.

Entry requirements

In addition to the University's standard entry requirements, you should have:

  • a minimum of grades CCC in three A levels in academic subjects including Biology and Chemistry at grade C (or a minimum of 96 UCAS points from an equivalent Level 3 qualification, eg BTEC Level 3 Extended Diploma/Diploma; or Advanced Diploma; or Progression Diploma; or Access to HE Diploma of 60 credits)
  • English Language and Mathematics GCSE at grade C/grade 4 or above (or equivalent)

Applicants with relevant professional qualifications or extensive professional experience will also be considered on a case by case basis.

Entry from appropriate foundation and access courses will also be considered.

If you don’t have traditional qualifications or can’t meet the entry requirements for this undergraduate degree, you may still be able to gain entry by completing the BSc Biological Sciences Extended Degree.

All applicants must be able to demonstrate proficiency in the English language. Applicants who require a Tier 4 student visa may need to provide a Secure English Language Test (SELT) such as Academic IELTS. For more information about English qualifications please see our English language requirements.

Official use and codes

Approved to run from 2013/14 Specification version 1 Specification status Validated
Original validation date 01 Sep 2013 Last validation date 01 Sep 2013  
Sources of funding HE FUNDING COUNCIL FOR ENGLAND
JACS codes C100 (Biology): 100%
Route code BIOSCI

Course Structure

Stage 1 Level 04 September start Offered

Code Module title Info Type Credits Location Period Day Time
BC4001 Laboratory Science Core 30 NORTH AUT+SPR THU PM
BC4003 Cell & Molecular Biology Core 30 NORTH AUT+SPR MON AM
BC4004 Anatomy & Physiology Core 30 NORTH AUT+SPR MON PM
BC4051 Chemistry (for Biosciences) Core 15 NORTH AUT THU AM
BC4052 Biochemistry Core 15 NORTH SPR THU AM

Stage 2 Level 05 September start Offered

Code Module title Info Type Credits Location Period Day Time
BC5003 Tissue Science Core 30 NORTH AUT+SPR TUE AM
BC5052 Parasitology Core 15 NORTH SPR FRI PM
BE5058 Metabolism Core 15 NORTH AUT WED AM
BE5059 Microbiology Core 15 NORTH SPR WED AM
BE5060 Molecular Biology Core 15 NORTH AUT THU AM
BE5061 Human Immunity Core 15 NORTH SPR THU AM
BC5K55 Ethics for Science Option 15 NORTH SPR THU PM
BE5063 Micronutrient Physiology Option 15 NORTH AUT WED PM

Stage 3 Level 06 September start Offered

Code Module title Info Type Credits Location Period Day Time
BC6060 Infection Control Core 15 NORTH SPR WED PM
BC6P01 Project Core 30 NORTH AUT+SPR WED PM
BE6005 Biochemical Pathology Core 30 NORTH AUT+SPR THU PM
BE6061 Fundamentals of Biotechnology Core 15 NORTH AUT MON AM
BE6063 Energy Metabolism & Endocrinology Core 15 NORTH SPR WED AM
BC6051 Systems Pathology Option 15 NORTH AUT MON PM
BC6W54 Work Placement Option 15 NORTH AUT NA  
          NORTH SPR NA  
BE6056 Bioinformatics & Molecular Modelling Option 15 NORTH AUT FRI PM