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Psychology and Biology BSc Joint Honours

  • UCAS code: C8C1
  • Full time
  • 3 years

This three-year, accredited degree will allow you to combine the study of behaviour and biology.

You are currently viewing course information for entry year: 2024-25

Next start date:

  • September 2024

Fees (per year)

  • Home: £9250
  • International: £25800

Entry requirements and offers

  • A-Level: AAA
  • IB: 36 points

UCAS Institution name and code:

  • NEWC / N21

Course overview

This three-year Psychology and Biology BSc joint honours degree will equip you with a broad base of knowledge in both psychology and biologyYou'll learn why humans and animals think and behave the way they do, and build an in-depth understanding of the science behind all forms of life.
You will also have the opportunity to complete a placement or study abroad year, which you can apply for after you have completed your first year.
Your teaching will be informed by internationally recognised research, much of which is delivered in the purpose-built, state-of-the-art Dame Margaret Barbour building.
Emerging as a well-rounded psychology graduate with a biology specialism, you'll study fascinating topics including ecology and biodiversity, evolution and genetics, cognitive psychology, and evolutionary psychology and medicine. 

Your course and study experience - disclaimers and terms and conditions  
Please rest assured we make all reasonable efforts to provide you with the programmes, services and facilities described. However, it may be necessary to make changes due to significant disruption, for example in response to Covid-19.

View our Academic experience page, which gives information about your Newcastle University study experience for the academic year 2023-24.

See our terms and conditions and student complaints information, which gives details of circumstances that may lead to changes to programmes, modules or University services.

Quality and ranking

Professional accreditation and recognition

All professional accreditations are reviewed regularly by their professional body.

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.

To find out more please see our terms and conditions.

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.

In Stage 1, you'll explore the fundamentals of both psychology and biology. 

You'll cover topics such as cognitive psychology, sensation and perception, and psychology for joint honours students, as well as genetics and evolution, cells and biomolecules, the diversity of life, and ecology and conservation.


Compulsory Modules Credits
Genetics and Evolution 20
Cells and Biomolecules 20
Cognitive Psychology 10
Sensation and Perception 10
Introduction to Psychology for Joint Honours 10
Research Methods and Data Analysis B 20
Principles of Evolution, Genetics and Behavioural Development 10
Optional Modules Credits
Diversity of Life: Form and Function 20
Ecology and Conservation 20

In Stage 2, you'll broaden your depth of understanding across both disciplines.

You'll study modules including Animal Physiology, Developmental Psychology, Individual Differences, Biological Psychology, and Molecular Biology and Development. 


Compulsory Modules Credits
Animal Function (Physiology and Development) 20
Developmental Psychology 10
Social Psychology 10
Individual Differences 10
Biological Psychology: Sex, Drugs, Rhythms and Blues 10
Research Methods in Psychology 2a 10
Research Methods in Psychology 2b 10
Optional Modules Credits
Biodiversity, Ecology and Conservation 20
Biotechnology: Principles and Practice 20
Evolutionary Biology 20
Vertebrate Biology 20

In Stage 3, you'll be able to focus in more on your chosen areas of specialism.

You'll design and carry out your own empirical study in an area of psychology that particularly interests you.

You'll also have the opportunity to explore specific areas of interest in psychology including evolution and behaviour, consumer psychology, the psychology of religion, and the psychobiology of drug addiction, as well as topics in biology, such as companion animal behaviour, genomics, cellular systems, applied ecology, and biodiversity. 


Compulsory Modules Credits
Psychological Enquiry 3: Psychological Literacy and Professional Skills 10
Empirical Project 30
Optional Modules Credits
Animal Welfare and Behaviour 20
Biodiversity Science and Management 20
Current Research in Ecology 20
Biotechnology: Applications 20
Physiological Zoology 20
Microbial Genomics 20
Consumer Psychology 20
Art, Mind and Brain 10
To Cheat or not to Cheat: The Evolution of Cooperative Behaviour 10
The Damaged Brain: Case Studies in Neuropsychology 10
Psychology of Religion and Spirituality 20
Foundations in Forensic and Criminal Psychology 20
The Psychology of Teaching and Learning 20
Clinical Sport & Exercise Psychology 20
Psychobiology of Drug Addiction 10
Cultural and Technical Intelligence: Developmental and Comparative Perspectives 10
Psychology for Sport Performance 20
Advanced Statistics for Empirical Psychology 10
Evolution of Brain and Behaviour 20
Making Sense of Forgotten Senses: Investigating Olfaction and Gustation 20
The Science behind our choices: decision-making across species and societies 10
Neurodiversity of Development 20

Teaching and assessment

Teaching methods

You'll learn through a combination of:

  • lectures
  • seminars
  • workshops
  • lab and field practical classes
  • computer based lab sessions
  • field trips

Assessment methods

You'll be assessed through a combination of:

  • Case studies

  • Dissertation or research project

  • Essays

  • Examinations – practical or online

  • Group work

  • Presentations

  • Reflective report/journal

  • Reports

  • Seminar tasks/exercises

Skills and experience

In addition to the key concepts and principles of Psychology, our programme provides you with a broad range of graduate skills that you will come to know as Psychological Literacy.  You will be able to transfer these skills to a variety of professional, societal and personal settings 

Psychological Literacy 

You'll learn research-related skills including how to formulate hypotheses and research questions, carry out psychological, research, the management and visualisation of data sets, use appropriate data analysis methods, and write up research reports. 

Through our School’s work on humanising our psychology curriculum, you will develop your ethical understanding and intercultural competence, both as a scientist and as a citizen.  You will learn how to apply critical thinking and problem-solving skills, and develop the capacity to self reflect. 

In your Biology modules, you'll gain hands-on experience of studying cells and biomolecules, developing the skills needed to work effectively in a lab and perform relevant calculations. Methods in Biotechnology will introduce you to the technology that is currently used in the sector. 

Chat with a Psychology student



Professional Placements

Subject to eligibility, students can apply to take a professional placement between Stage 2 and Stage 3 of their programme. The School of Psychology placement team secure and advertise a wide range of placements, for example in the NHS Foundation Trust, Northumbria Police, University research institutes and local mental health support charities. National placement opportunities are also advertised, for example at Great Ormond Street Hospital. If successful in being offered a placement, then students are supported by the placement team whilst preparing for and undertaking their placement. Placements are an excellent opportunity for students to apply the knowledge and skills they have learned in a practical context and are an opportunity to gain an important advantage in a competitive job market.

Study Abroad

As part of your psychology degree, you have the opportunity to study abroad for a year at a University in a different country. Currently, we have partnership agreements with Universities in North America, Canada and Sweden and we are continually expanding our global study opportunities. The international study year takes place between Stage 2 and 3. To join the international study you need to apply for a place and numbers are limited.

Find out general information on studying abroad. Further information will be provided during the course.

Careers Placements

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. Your degree title will show you have achieved the placement year. Placements are subject to availability.

Facilities and environment


As a psychology student at Newcastle University, you'll be based in the School of Psychology's Dame Margaret Barbour Building, in the University's city-centre campus.

As well as having great access to University facilities like its libraries, student's union and sports centre, the School of Psychology is less than 10 minutes' walk from Newcastle city centre.

You'll also have access to our excellent practical facilities in the School, such as:

  • a forensic interviewing suite
  • a nutrition and food preference unit
  • a media and behaviour lab
  • medical consultation rooms
  • psychological testing cubicles


To support you in your studies, all new students entering year 1 or year 2 will receive a tablet. You can download the online learning resources you'll need for your course (helping us to make our campus more sustainable).

You will have an academic member of staff as a personal tutor throughout your degree. They can help with academic and personal issues.

All first-year psychology students join a study group of approximately 10 students, led by an experienced and trained final-year student who will also act as your mentor for your first year.

Your future

As a joint honours graduate, you'll develop a range of skills that are sought by employers. By studying two disciplines, you're well prepared for the multidisciplinary challenges of everyday work, such as:

  • time management
  • organisation
  • self-motivation

Recent graduates have secured employment in companies such as the NHS and the British Association of Dermatologists. 

Many of our graduates embark on further study, including master's degrees and PHDs in areas of psychology and related disciplines. 

As a psychology and sciences graduate, you'll also be incredibly versatile, with plenty of transferable skills, including analytical thinking, research skills, strategy development, problem-solving, and content writing skills. Many graduates go on to careers in teaching, marketing, and financial services.

Industry links

During your studies, you'll benefit from our significant links with industry, including valuable relationships with the NHS, Police, Newcastle FC, England Athletics, the Prison Service, and the United Nations.

Through these links, you'll have opportunities to take part in guest lectures, placements, and networking with potential employers and industry experts.

Make a difference

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Careers support

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.

Visit our Careers Service website

Recognition of professional qualifications outside of the UK

From 1 January 2021 there is an update to the way professional qualifications are recognised by countries outside of the UK

Entry requirements

All candidates are considered on an individual basis and we accept a broad range of qualifications. The entrance requirements and offers below apply to 2024 entry.

International Baccalaureate

Other UK and the Republic of Ireland qualifications

Contextual Offers

Through one of our contextual routes, you could receive an offer of up to three grades lower than the typical requirements.

What is a contextual offer? Find out more and if you’re eligible for this or our PARTNERS Programme supported entry route.

Qualifications from outside the UK

English Language requirements

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. 

Find out more about International Pathway Courses

Admissions policy

This policy applies to all undergraduate and postgraduate admissions at Newcastle University. 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.

Credit transfer and Recognition of Prior Learning

Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) can allow you to convert existing relevant university-level knowledge, skills and experience into credits towards a qualification. Find out more about the RPL policy which may apply to this course.

Tuition fees and scholarships

Tuition fees for 2024 entry (per year)

Qualification: BSc Joint Honours

Home students

full time 3 years

Tuition fees (per year)


International students

full time 3 years

Tuition fees (per year)


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.


Find out more about:

Open days and events

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.

Visit our International pages

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