Full-time: 3 years, Part-time: Up to 6 years
£9,250 per year* (2020/21)
£14,045 per year (2020/21)
120* (September 2020 entry)
Kedleston Road, Derby Campus
What is Joint Honours?
A Joint Honours degree gives you the opportunity to study two subjects as one degree. This type of degree will broaden your skill set and enhance your career prospects.
You can combine any two subjects as long as they’re in different zones, find out what you can combine this subject with.
- Combine Biology with another subject and you will set yourself apart as a versatile, motivated and highly employable graduate.
- Explore traditional topics alongside the very latest developments that are changing the face of biology
- Be inspired by a teaching team which includes world-renowned researchers and which was rated ‘excellent’ by quality inspectors
- Put theory into practice in our well-equipped laboratories and on fascinating fieldtrips
- Hone your skills with project and voluntary work at Derbyshire Wildlife Trust reserves
- Undertake a major research project into an area of your choice
You can also study Biology as a single honours subject.
Our Biology Joint Honours programme has been designed to capture the aspirations of students, reflect the needs of employers and meet high professional standards.
In-depth knowledge, latest insights
The dynamic and exciting nature of biology is reflected throughout this course. Depending on your module selection you will learn about traditional topics such as human biology, genetics, evolution and ecology. As biology is constantly evolving, you may also get the chance to explore current issues such as the human genome and its impact on drug development and cancer therapies.
Overall, we cover three broad themes – whole organism; molecular and cellular; and environmental/ecological biology. For each of these, we reinforce the concepts and skills that the professional biologist needs.
We offer a wide range of optional modules so that you can match your degree to your own interests and career ambitions. The number of options you take will depend on whether you select Biology as a major, joint or minor subject. In your final year, you will also have the opportunity to conduct a major research project into an area of your choice.
You can strengthen your practical skills in our newly-upgraded learning facilities. They include high-specification laboratories with modern instrumentation, a glasshouse with plants from diverse habitats, an aquatic research facility and an insectory housing many different species. We have also opened a student research laboratory which gives you a dedicated space for your independent study project.
Your studies won’t be confined to the laboratory. Fieldtrips are an essential part of the course to enhance your understanding of the natural environment. We are constantly broadening the range of opportunities we offer to our students.
Recent examples include visits to the Royal Botanic Gardens at Kew, Twycross Zoo, and various locations in Derbyshire. We work closely with Derbyshire Wildlife Trust who provide access to their reserves for our students. You can also undertake projects for the Trust as part of your independent study module or on a voluntary basis.
Building on our strong partnerships with employers, we encourage you to go on a work placement as part of your studies. If you choose our dedicated vocational module, you will have the chance to apply your learning in a work setting. Such experience will add a new dimension to your CV and extend your professional networks.
You will be taught by a highly qualified team who are supportive, friendly and approachable – keen to pass their knowledge on to you. They include active international researchers whose work is shaping debates in areas including ecology, entomology and biodiversity. You will also benefit from the expertise of visiting specialists.
Our researchers work with high-profile collaborative partners, publish influential papers, speak at global conferences, serve on the editorial boards of scientific journals and are in demand as media commentators.
What you will study
Example modules are shown below, the modules available as a Joint Honours student will be dependent on the subject that you combine with. In your first year, modules will be defined for you, and will be dependent on your subject combination to ensure you have the best fit. In your second and third years, module availability and the number of modules you are required to take will depend on whether you choose this subject as a major, joint or minor.
Please note that our modules are subject to change - we review the content of our courses regularly, making changes where necessary to improve your experience and graduate prospects.
You will learn through lectures, tutorials, seminars, and e-learning, which are supported by hands-on laboratory practicals. There are also opportunities to go on fieldtrips, such as days out in Derbyshire, Kew Gardens, and Twycross Zoo. We champion a variety of teaching methods to help you discover your individual strengths and enhance your understanding.
How you're assessed
You will be assessed using a range of written assignments, including portfolios, practical and fieldtrip write-ups, and data analysis, but we also use computer-based assessments, poster presentations, and seminar presentations. Your choice of modules and independent research-based study also allows you to specialise further. Biology can be offered as either a minor, joint or major degree programme.
We've recently upgraded our facilities to make sure you have a fantastic learning experience. Our laboratories, insectory, and glasshouse have all been modernised, and we now have a new student research laboratory and aquatic research facility.
Dependent on your module selection, you will have the opportunity to take part in a broad range of fieldtrips throughout this course, such as day trips to the Royal Botanic Gardens at Kew to investigate plant adaptation. We feel that fieldwork is essential to the study of Biology, especially as it enables you to explore natural environments outside of a laboratory.
Placements allow you to develop the skills you learn in University and apply them to real world situations. This is something which potential employers are always looking for. We encourage you to gain experience with potential employers as part of a dedicated vocational module, which you can choose to take.
Our teaching team are active researchers with broad-based and interdisciplinary research interests in areas including ecology, entomology, and biodiversity. Researchers work closely with a wide range of collaborative partners, and their excellent work directly enhances our courses.
Personal academic tutoring
Your personal academic tutor will work with you to help you get the most out of your time at university. Having someone to talk to about your academic progress, your university experience and your professional aspirations is hugely valuable. We want you to feel challenged in your studies, stretched but confident to achieve your academic and professional goals.
Find out more about personal academic tutoring
September 2020 typical entry requirements
|Requirement||What we're looking for|
|UCAS points||120* (up to 16 from AS-levels)|
|Specific requirements at A-level|
At least a C in Biology, Chemistry or Applied Science at A-level, or Science related BTEC/Access Diploma (or equivalent qualification)
|Specific requirements at GCSE||GCSE Maths and English Grade C/Grade 4 (or above) or equivalent qualification|
|Interview / Audition||N/A|
Alternative entry qualifications:
- BTEC - DDM
- Access to HE Diploma 60 credits: 45 at level 3 with a minimum of Dist: 15 Merit: 24 Pass: 6
For joint honours degree entry you will need to choose two subjects. The entry criteria here is for this subject only. Your offer will be based on the higher entry criteria from the two subjects you choose to do. A good application/performance will be taken into account if you do not meet the criteria/offer conditions.
*The UCAS Points required for entry will depend on the subjects you choose to combine. The subject with the higher entry requirements will determine your offer.
Our entry requirements for this course should be read together with the University's general entry requirements, which details subjects we accept, alternative qualifications and what we're looking for at Derby.
£9,250 per year*
£1,155 per module*
£14,045 per year
* The fees stated above are for the 2019/20 academic year; fees for 2020/21 have not yet been confirmed by the UK government. We will update this information as soon as it is available.
Further information about our fees and support you may be entitled to.
Additional costs and optional extras
By studying Biology as a Joint Honours subject, you will open up even more potential career routes once you graduate and will have a strong portfolio of transferable skills to impress potential employers.
Our students have gone on to success in applied research, medical laboratory work, wildlife conservation, scientific sales, the media and management – to name but a few areas.
Others become teachers after completing postgraduate training or progress to further study, including veterinary and medical qualifications. You could also consider our highly regarded masters degree – the MSc Conservation Biology.
If you need any more information from us, eg on courses, accommodation, applying, car parking, fees or funding, please contact us and we will do everything we can to help you.Contact us
Additional information about your studies
You will typically study your two subjects equally at stage one, before choosing whether you want to major in one subject at stages two and three.
Download programme specification
Like most universities, we operate extended teaching hours at the University of Derby, so contact time with your lecturers and tutors could be anytime between 9am and 9pm. Your timetable will usually be available on the website 24 hours after enrolment on to your course.
Additional costs and optional extras
We’re committed to providing you with an outstanding learning experience. Our expert teaching, excellent facilities and great employability prepare you for your future career. As part of our commitment to you we aim to keep any additional study costs to a minimum. However, there are occasions where students may incur some additional costs.
Included in your fees
- You will receive a dissection kit, goggles and a laboratory coat
- All equipment and consumables needed for your experimental/ fieldwork are provided by the University. This is subject to consumables being costed for the Independent Study and approved by your programme leader
- A pathway within this course is accredited by the Chartered Institute of Ecology and Environmental Management (CIEEM). Students following the eligible pathway are entitled to free membership of CIEEM during their studies until they graduate
- Free membership of the Chartered Institute of Ecology and Environmental Management (CIEEM) - membership expires September after graduation
- Mandatory fieldtrips for optional modules - previous destinations have included Kew Gardens, Sea Life Centre, Hardwick Hall Woodlands
Mandatory costs not included in your fees
- If not already owned, appropriate footwear for fieldwork such as Wellington/Walking boots - approximate cost is between £5-£50
- If not already owned, appropriate outdoor clothing such as a waterproof jacket and trousers - approximate cost is between £50-£100
- Two bound copies of your Independent Study - approximate cost is £12
Optional costs not included in your fees
- Additional international fieldtrip costs for optional modules as follows: Field Biology L5 (Majorca) - approximate cost is £480, Tropical Marine Biology L6 (Maldives) - approximate cost is £1,900
- Travel to work experience/placements - cost is dependent on your placement venue of choice
Please note: Our courses are refreshed and updated on a regular basis. If you are thinking about transferring onto this course (into the second year for example), you should contact the programme leader for the relevant course information as modules may vary from those shown on this page.
Biology can be combined with: