fish

Undergraduate

BSc Zoology

Explore all aspects of animal life, from sub-cellular level to ecosystems, in a course designed for 21st-century scientists.

Key information

Study mode

Full-time

Course length

3 years

Typical offer

120 points

A Level grades: BBB

UCAS code

C300

Choose an option

Start date

Course overview

Zoology is all about animals, whether you just want to understand them better or work to protect the amazing biodiversity of this planet.

This course focuses on a blend of laboratory and field-based practical teaching, as we recognise the need to work across disciplinary boundaries to solve global issues.

You’ll control the emphasis of your studies with opportunities to focus on species that interest you across a range of contexts including conservation, ecology, behaviour, evolution, environmental management, physiology, cell biology and genetics – allowing you to build a course to suit your passions and ambitions.

Our research has global impact on the planet and the people on it, which makes for a wide choice of final-year projects, with particular specialisms in the evolution of behaviour and the monitoring, management, and conservation of wildlife.

Learning in the field is an integral part of the course and there are lots of opportunities for residential field trips in the UK and abroad. Recent overseas trips have included Mallorca, Malaysia and Brazil.

Excellent teaching is highly valued here. Our academics include three winners of the Royal Society of Biology’s Higher Education Bioscience Teacher of the Year Award. You’ll learn in a friendly, supportive learning environment, where our lecturers love what they do. You’ll be allocated an academic tutor who’ll support your progress towards your aspirations.

Our degrees are built around skills requested by bioscience employers, including genomic technologies, field survey techniques, GIS, and science communication skills. You can also learn to dive as part of your degree. Choose our Dive Training module and become a PADI-certified Advanced Open Water Diver (extra fee may be payable).

Learn more about your course in our subject sessions

On-demand session

Biological and Marine Sciences

biology-marine-biology-zoology-subject-session

Six reasons to study Zoology at Hull

  1. Focus on the species that interest you
  2. Fieldwork opportunities overseas and in the UK *
  3. Staff include three RSB Teachers of the Year
  4. Learn to scuba dive to as part of your degree §
  5. Wide choice of final-year projects
  6. Develop the skills employers need

What you'll study

The course consists of 120 credits per year. Most modules are 20 credits, meaning you’ll study six modules each year. Some longer modules, such as a dissertation, are worth more (e.g. 40 credits). In these cases, you’ll study fewer modules - but the number of credits will always add up to 120.

First year modules

  • Compulsory

    Cells and Organelles

    Explore the fascinating inner workings of cells, giving you a foundation in areas such as cell biology, molecular biology and biochemistry. 

    Diversity of Life

    ​Through practical workshops, this module introduces you to the diversity of life and the fascinating adaptations that enable organisms to inhabit nearly all conceivable ecological niches.

    Marine Biology: An Introduction

    From space, the planet is blue. Marine life has evolved into a myriad of forms living in some of the most extreme habitats on the planet; from great depths to battered coasts. This introduction to marine biology explores the marine environment, the diversity of life within it and how to conserve it.

    Evolution

    Why did sex evolve? Why do we die? What is a species? How can evolutionary medicine help us? This module will provide you with an understanding of how life on earth came to be what it is, from genes to species. Without evolution, nothing in Biology makes sense.

    Ecology (with optional Dive Training)

    Ecology is the study of interactions among living organisms and their environment, and is the basis for nature conservation and understanding human impact on the planet. Gain an understanding of ecological theory, applied ecology, and the collection and analysis of ecological data. You can choose to complete integrated PADI Advanced Open Water training, with an opportunity to develop specialist diving skills relevant to ecological science.

  • Optional

    Principles of Genetics

    Explore core genetic concepts leading to an understanding of how genetics underlies the biological and molecular traits observed in organisms. 

    Introduction to Environmental Science

    You'll be introduced to fundamental principles of environmental systems and the interconnectedness of humankind with the environment.

Second year modules

  • Compulsory

    Vertebrate Zoology

    This module provides an integrated view of vertebrate biology by showing how changes over time and geography drive morphology, physiology, behaviour, and ecology in different vertebrates. Structure-function relationships are presented to appreciate how different animals evolve similar solutions and adaptations to the same ecological challenge while closely-related animals diversify in response to different environmental challenges.

    Behavioural Ecology

    Develop your understanding of why wild animals behave the way they do. You’ll study the proximate and ultimate causes of behaviour, and the interactions between animals and their environment.

  • Optional

    Genetic Analysis

    You'll take a  problem-based approach to understanding modern molecular genetics and genomics of eukaryotes. 

    Conservation Biology

    Have we entered a new era of mass extinctions? Examine current threats to biodiversity and the characteristics that make some species more vulnerable than others. Learn to use scientific evidence to support biological conservation strategies.

    Geographical Information Systems

    Develop your understanding of the principles and processes behind GIS, the nature and use of spatial data and the application of GIS on this practical module.

    Environmental Change

    Investigate how the environment, especially the climate, changes in the past, present and future through a combination of lectures and practical activities. 

    Cellular Regulation and Biotechnology

    This module will explore the inner workings of the cell, and how our understanding of cell biology can be used in biotechnology. We will consider a range of human, animal, microbial and plant based signalling systems, as well as core techniques.

    50% of the module will be based around a lab based project using fluorescent reporter proteins (e.g. GFP). The module will also support you in reading and critically evaluating research papers.

    Molecular Evolution and Genomics

    This module will focus on the big topics in molecular evolution. What do genomes contain and why? How do we build trees from DNA sequences? How can recombination or gene duplication or transposons lead to adaptation? How do we detect selection in the human genome? We’ll cover these in theory and in practice with some fascinating examples from nature.

    Ecological Monitoring

    You'll monitor species, habitats and environmental factors. Choose from mammals, birds, herpetofauna, insects, terrestrial vegetation, freshwater and marine communities.​

    Marine Interactions

    This module will explore the interactions between marine species, from individual species to marine communities. We will look at individual adaptations, the interactions that structure communities and how species live together.

Final year modules

  • Choose one

    Aquatic Resource Management

    Learn key elements of aquatic resource management, including status of aquatic resources, exploitation methods, management processes and sustainability.

    Global Challenge: Living in the Anthropocene

    You'll consider profound questions about the scale of the impact of human activities on our planet and the prospects for sustainable global environmental stewardship. 

    Invertebrate Zoology

    Invertebrates are among the most diverse and awesome creatures on the planet, bursting with weirdness, colour and intrigue. They are also among the most important animals - vital to ecosystems we depend on for survival. On this module you'll meet world-leading experts in their fields and have the chance to get hands-on with live invertebrates (where possible) in practical sessions and field trips.

  • Core (select one)

    Final Year Projects

    Show off what you have learned across your degree! Undertake traditional research-based projects with experts in subjects like climate change, or try something a bit different like creating a documentary on shark attacks. Whatever you choose, it will be something that takes pride of place on your CV.

     

    Biology in Education

    Thinking about teaching as a career? Undertake placements in local schools and deliver your own science lesson.

    Microbial Genomics Project

  • Optional

    Sensory Physiology of Animals

    Discover the fascinating world of animal communication to learn how sensory systems control behaviour, and how this is applied to and affected by human activity, including climate change.

    Field Studies (Biology)

    Recent students have selected from destinations including a dive-based trip in Malaysia and an exploration of the Atlantic rainforest in Brazil (financial contribution required).

    Wildlife Ecology and Management

    Explore issues surrounding wildlife resources with a focus on resolving disagreement between different groups with their own valid objectives (e.g. agriculture, conservation and government). You'll have the opportunity to engage with industry experts and practice industry standard procedures.

    Sex and Social Behaviour

    You'll develop a deeper understanding of fascinating topics such as the evolution of sex, cryptic female choice, sperm competition, sexual conflict, parental care, brood parasitism, co-operative breeding and much more.

    Practical Conservation

    Work in partnership with local environmentally orientated organisations to learn about the day-to-day practicalities of species and habitat management.

    Environmental Impact Assessment and Monitoring

    Examine the need for and context of field-based environmental monitoring strategies for both habitats and species. By taking part in fieldwork and research, you'll monitor a range of species, habitats and environmental factors. Choose from mammals, birds, herpetofauna, insects, terrestrial vegetation, freshwater monitoring and monitoring of marine communities.

All modules are subject to availability and this list may change at any time.

How you'll study

Throughout your degree, you’re expected to study for 1,200 hours per year. That’s based on 200 hours per 20 credit module. And it includes scheduled hours, time spent on placement and independent study. How this time’s divided among each of these varies each year and depends on the course and modules you study.

Overall workload

264 hours

Scheduled study Scheduled hours typically include lectures, seminars, tutorials, workshops, and supervised laboratory and studio sessions.

936 hours

Independent study Independent study is the time outside your scheduled timetable, where you’ll be expected to study independently.

Indicative assessment proportions

52%
23%
25%
  • Examination

    Written assessment typically includes exams and multiple choice tests.

  • Practical

    Practical is an assessment of your skills and competencies. This could include presentations, school experience, work experience or laboratory work.

  • Coursework

    Coursework typically includes essays, written assignments, dissertations, research projects or producing a portfolio of your work.

Overall workload

228 hours

Scheduled study Scheduled hours typically include lectures, seminars, tutorials, workshops, and supervised laboratory and studio sessions.

972 hours

Independent study Independent study is the time outside your scheduled timetable, where you’ll be expected to study independently.

Indicative assessment proportions

43%
13%
44%
  • Examination

    Written assessment typically includes exams and multiple choice tests.

  • Practical

    Practical is an assessment of your skills and competencies. This could include presentations, school experience, work experience or laboratory work.

  • Coursework

    Coursework typically includes essays, written assignments, dissertations, research projects or producing a portfolio of your work.

Overall workload

120 hours

Scheduled study Scheduled hours typically include lectures, seminars, tutorials, workshops, and supervised laboratory and studio sessions.

1,080 hours

Independent study Independent study is the time outside your scheduled timetable, where you’ll be expected to study independently.

Indicative assessment proportions

17%
9%
73%
  • Examination

    Written assessment typically includes exams and multiple choice tests.

  • Practical

    Practical is an assessment of your skills and competencies. This could include presentations, school experience, work experience or laboratory work.

  • Coursework

    Coursework typically includes essays, written assignments, dissertations, research projects or producing a portfolio of your work.

Zoology
Course Close-Up BSc Zoology

Zoology doesn’t just happen in the lecture theatre. Watch our Zoology students as they visit a local animal education centre.

Watch video

Entry requirements

Typical offer

  • A level grades BBB

  • BTEC grades DDM

  • Points required 120

Work out your estimated points

Don't meet our requirements?

We offer a Foundation Year to boost your skills and knowledge – it’s a great way to make your way into higher education.

Switch to the foundation year

Points can be from any qualification on the UCAS tariff, but must include at least 80 points from

  • A levels
  • BTEC Subsidiary Diploma, Diploma or Extended Diploma
  • OCR Cambridge Technical Introductory Diploma, Diploma or Extended Diploma
  • CACHE Diploma or Extended Diploma
  • Irish Leaving Certificate
  • Scottish Highers
  • Welsh Baccalaureate Advanced Diploma
  • or a combination of appropriate Level 3 qualifications

  • Applicants should have A level Biology/Applied Science at Grade C or above (or merit from relevant BTEC). Applicants taking the reformed A-level must also Pass the practical element.

Alternative qualifications

  • IB Diploma: 30 points including 5 in HL Biology
  • Access to HE Diploma: Pass Access to HE Diploma (Science) including 18 credits in Biology at merit or higher

Worried you don’t quite meet our entry requirements?

We consider experience and qualifications from the UK and worldwide which may not exactly match the combinations above.

But it’s not just about the grades – we’ll look at your whole application. We want to know what makes you tick, and about your previous experience, so make sure that you complete your personal statement.

If you have any questions, our admissions team will be happy to help.

Don't meet our requirements?

We offer a Foundation Year to boost your skills and knowledge – it’s a great way to make your way into higher education.

Switch to the foundation year

If you require a student visa to study or if your first language is not English you will be required to provide acceptable evidence of your English language proficiency level.

This course requires academic IELTS 6.0 overall, with no less than 5.5 in each skill. See other English language proficiency qualifications accepted by this University.

If your English currently does not reach the University's required standard for this programme, you may be interested in one of our English language courses.

Visit your country page to find out more about our entry requirements.

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Take a tour of the facilities

Check out our zoology facilities, including 33,000 litres of tropical aquariums.

Fees and funding

UK

£9,250 per year*

EU/International

£18,300 per year

International applicants may need to pay a tuition fee deposit before the start of the course. Visit our tuition fee deposit page for more information.

*The amount you pay may increase each year, in line with inflation - but capped to the Retail Price Index (RPI).

The fees shown are for 2022 entry. The fees for 2023 have not yet been confirmed and may increase.

UK students can take out a tuition fee loan to cover the cost of their course and a maintenance loan of up to £9,488 to cover living costs.

Substantial discounts are available for International students.  

More information on fees can be found in the Money section of our website.

Your tuition fees will cover most costs associated with your programme (including registration, tuition, supervision, assessment and examination).

There are some extra costs that you might have to pay, or choose to pay, depending on your programme of study and the decisions you make. The list below has some examples, and any extra costs will vary.

  • Books (you’ll have access to books from your module reading lists in the library, but you may want to buy your own copies)
  • Optional field trips
  • Study abroad (including travel costs, accommodation, visas, immunisation)
  • Placement costs (including travel costs and accommodation)
  • Student visas (international students)
  • Laptop (you’ll have access to laptops and PC’s on campus, but you may want to buy your own)
  • Printing and photocopying
  • Professional-body membership
  • Graduation (gown hire and photography)

Remember, you’ll still need to take into account your living costs. This could include accommodation, travel and food – to name just a few. 

An affordable city for students

From bills, to meals, to pints – you’ll find that your money goes a lot further in Hull.

Your future prospects

  • Zoologist
  • Conservation advisor
  • Wildlife management
  • Ecological consultant
  • Animal husbandry and welfare
  • Research scientist
  • Lecturer

Graduates from this course go on to a wide-range of careers including professional biologists, laboratory officers, environmental consultants and microbiologists working for employers such as RB, the Environment Agency, Natural England, wildlife trusts, and conservation agencies.

Students also go into postgraduate study across the world, including enrolling on our taught Environmental Monitoring and Pollution Monitoring MSc, research Masters programmes, or PhDs.

Graduate Q&A

Want to know what our students do after they graduate?

Read Tim's story about his life as a Hull graduate.

Read Thomas's story about where his studies lead him.

Open Day at University of Hull

Ready to apply?

You can apply for this course through UCAS. As well as providing your academic qualifications, you’ll be able to showcase your skills, qualities and passion for the subject.

APPLY NOW VIA UCAS HOW TO APPLY
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A place where we stand up to kings, do deals with the world and take a wrecking ball to the slave trade. A place where culture stands out and the phone boxes are a different colour. A place where we're free-thinking, independent and proud of it.

* Previous destinations include Brazil, Malaysia and Majorca (extra fees may be payable)

§ Options include PADI-certified Advanced Open Water Diver training (extra fee may be payable)

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