In the first year, all students study core biology modules, giving you a strong foundation in the subject.
In later Stages, you will study specialist zoology topics, such as:
- animal behaviour
- animal physiology
- ecology and conservation
- vertebrate biology
Through lab and field-based teaching you learn key laboratory skills required by professional zoologists.
You will enjoy a bird and insect identification field course, as well as a week-long project-based residential field course.
The first year is shared with other degrees in the School, providing all students with a thorough foundation in the essentials of the subject.
This shared first year provides you with a thorough knowledge of the fundamentals of biology, through topics such as the diversity of form and function in animals, plants and micro-organisms.
You can transfer to one of our other degrees before the second year should your interests change (subject to achieving the appropriate grades).
Please rest assured we make all reasonable efforts to provide you with the courses, services and facilities described. However, it may be necessary to make changes due to significant disruption, for example in response to COVID-19.
See our terms and conditions for more information
View our Frequently Asked Questions
Your course during COVID-19
Whilst things will not be the same when you join us in September, this course page is intended to give you insight into what to expect from your course and your learning experience for the duration of your degree.
We have updated all course information where there are specific changes in the first semester.
Most of our student services are now available online. As COVID-19 restrictions lift, we'll be opening up our on-campus facilities as soon as it is safe to do so, so that you can get the best out of your studies.
Your learning experience
Your teaching will be a mixture of online and in-person on-campus teaching. In semester one, as a result of physical distancing requirements, all lecture materials will be delivered online along with many tutorials, workshops and labs.
Our aim, if Government guidance allows us, is to deliver up to three hours of labs, seminars and tutorial teaching in-person on campus where this is possible and safe to do so. We'll review this regularly and plan to return to full in-person, on-campus teaching in semester two if restrictions allow.
In semester one, we will not be running face-to-face, on-campus examinations. We will instead use different approaches to assessment. These will test and support your learning.
We will be running some but not all of our planned field trips. Some of those that do run, will be run virtually. For those that do not run, we will be offering alternative learning activities. These learning activities will give you the opportunity to achieve the same learning.
Terms and conditions and student complaints
The University has terms and conditions which create a positive environment for learning and academic achievement.
Our COVID-19 Study page gives more information about your Newcastle University 2020 study experience.
Given the changing nature of the COVID-19 pandemic, the commitments outlined are subject to the guidelines that may be in place at the time.
Quality and ranking
We have a long tradition of excellence in teaching, recognised in many external surveys and assessments, but also by our own students.
Our commitment to teaching quality and an excellent student experience is reflected through our results in national and international student satisfaction surveys.
Modules and learning
The information below is intended to provide an example of what you will study.
Most degrees are divided into stages. Each stage lasts for one academic year, and you'll complete modules totalling 120 credits by the end of each stage.
Our teaching is informed by research. Course content may change periodically to reflect developments in the discipline, the requirements of external bodies and partners, and student feedback.
Optional module availability
Student demand for optional modules may affect availability.
Full details of the modules on offer will be published through the Programme Regulations and Specifications ahead of each academic year. This usually happens in May.
To find out more please see our terms and conditions.
The first year of this degree is shared with other biology and zoology degrees in the School. You can transfer to one of our other Biology and Zoology degrees before the second year should your interests change (subject to achieving the appropriate grades).
|Genetics and Evolution||20|
|Diversity of Life: Form and Function||20|
|Ecology and Conservation||20|
|Cells and Biomolecules||20|
|Academic and Professional Skills for the Biosciences||20|
Your study of animals becomes specialised, with topics such as: animal behaviour; animal physiology; entomology; vertebrate biology; and biodiversity, ecology and conservation. Optional modules are also available in more specialised topics.
In Stage 2, you take a field course on identification of insects and birds.
|Field Identification Skills||10|
|Experimental Design and Statistics||10|
|Residential Field Course||10|
|Animal Function (Physiology and Development)||20|
You study advanced specialist topics, many of which are linked to our research expertise. To enhance your skills you will have the opportunity to select a module that focuses on the development of ideas for business.
You further develop your fieldwork skills through field courses at Stages 2 and 3. These include a project-based residential field course (locations include Kielder in Northumberland, Millport in Scotland, and Crete), an optional mammal surveying skills module in the UK, or a tropical conservation research module in Thailand.
Teaching and assessment
Throughout the programme, you'll be taught via a combination of methods, including:
- lab work
- field work
- tutor group sessions
You'll be assessed through a combination of:
Assignments – written or fieldwork
Dissertation or research project
Examinations – practical or online
Skills and experience
In your third year, you have the option of completing a biological research project, which allows you to undertake each stage of the research process. You will be responsible for planning, executing, analysing, interpreting and presenting the results of your project.
Between Stage 2 and 3, you'll have the opportunity to gain first-hand experience in the sector on a work placement. Alternatively, you can choose to go and explore a different country with our Study Abroad scheme.
This is a practical course and you'll spend time in labs and off campus on field trips. You'll develop practical skills by observing and experimenting in the lab and the field, using scientific apparatus.
Experience life in another country by choosing to study abroad as part of your degree. You’ll be encouraged to embrace fun and challenging experiences, make connections with new communities and graduate as a globally aware professional, ready for your future.
You can choose to spend up to a year studying at a partner institution overseas.
If you choose to study abroad, it will extend your degree by a year.
Get career ready with a work placement and leave as a confident professional in your field. You can apply to spend 9 to 12 months working in any organisation in the world, and receive University support from our dedicated team to secure your dream placement. Work placements take place between stages 2 and 3.
You'll gain first-hand experience of working in the sector, putting your learning into practice and developing your professional expertise.
If you choose to take a work placement, it will extend your degree by a year. Placements are subject to availability.
Facilities and environment
As a Biology and Zoology student, you'll be based in the School of Natural and Environmental Sciences at our city-centre campus.
During your studies, you'll have access to two commercial farms near Newcastle. These are used as demonstration facilities as well as a field station with glasshouse and dedicated teaching facilities.
You'll have the opportunity to access purpose-built laboratories. You can also visit the Great North Museum, where there's a range of important biological collections. We also have our controlled-environment aquaria situated in the Ridley 2 Building.
As a new student, you'll receive a tablet, so you can download online learning resources, helping to make our campus more sustainable.
You'll have the support of an academic member of staff as a personal tutor throughout your degree to help with academic and personal issues.
Our zoology degree equips you with a wide range of skills to ensure you have many career opportunities available to you.
92% of zoology graduates were in work or further study within six months of completing this degree*, and many have found work in commercial or medical laboratory positions, conservation work and animal care as well as choosing to study in more specialist areas such as:
- biomedical science
- animal behaviour
- environmental consultancy
*Destinations of (undergraduate, UK and EU) Leavers from Higher Education Survey 2016/17
Our Enterprise Challenge gives students the opportunity to work with industry on a project that tackles real-world issues. Watch the above video to find out more.
Our award-winning Careers Service is one of the largest and best in the country, and we have strong links with employers. We provide an extensive range of opportunities to all students through our ncl+ initiative.
All candidates are considered on an individual basis and we accept a broad range of qualifications. The entrance requirements below apply to 2020 entry.
Other UK qualifications (and PARTNERS)
Qualifications from outside the UK
English Language requirements
Through our PARTNERS programme, you could receive an offer up to three grades lower than the typical requirements, and get support throughout the application process. To apply through PARTNERS, you must be based in the UK and meet our eligibility criteria.
Entrance courses (INTO)
International Pathway Courses are specialist programmes designed for international students who want to study in the UK. We provide a range of study options for international students in partnership with INTO.
This policy applies to all undergraduate and postgraduate admissions at Newcastle University, including Newcastle University London. It is intended to provide information about our admissions policies and procedures to applicants and potential applicants, to their advisors and family members, and to staff of the University.
Tuition fees and scholarships
Tuition fees for 2020 entry (per year)
Home Fee Students
International Fee Students
The maximum fee that we are permitted to charge for UK students is set by the UK government.
As a general principle, you should expect the tuition fee to increase in each subsequent academic year of your course, subject to government regulations on fee increases and in line with inflation.
You will be charged tuition fees for each year of your degree programme (unless you are on a shorter exchange programme).
The tuition fee amount you will pay may increase slightly year on year as a result of inflation.
Year abroad and additional costs
For programmes where you can spend a year on a work placement or studying abroad, you will receive a significant fee reduction for that year.
Some of our degrees involve additional costs which are not covered by your tuition fees.
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Open days and events
The situation with Covid-19 means that we're unable to hold Open Days on campus. However, you don’t have to visit in person to experience Newcastle.
From the comfort of your sofa you'll be able to:
• explore our beautiful campus
• find out about our vibrant city
• discover what students think about studying at Newcastle
You'll also have the opportunity to speak to academic staff and find out more about the subjects you're interested in.
How to apply
Apply through UCAS
To apply for undergraduate study at Newcastle University, you must use the online application system managed by the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS). All UK schools and colleges, and a small number of EU and international establishments, are registered with UCAS. You will need:
- the UCAS name and institution codes for Newcastle University (NEWC/N21)
- the UCAS code for the course you want to apply for
- the UCAS 'buzzword' for your school or college
If you are applying independently, or are applying from a school or college which is not registered to manage applications, you will still use the Apply system. You will not need a buzzword.Apply through UCAS
Apply through an agent
International students often apply to us through an agent. Have a look at our recommended agents and get in touch with them.