Our MSc trains you for a career in research or management around the world. Throughout your course, you'll learn about fundamental concepts and key skills required within the discipline before applying what you've learnt in your literature review and Independent Research Project.
You can choose to explore the breadth of organismal biological sciences or specialise in an area that most interests you within three pathways:
Evolutionary biology: This is a rapidly moving field, thanks to revolutionary advances in sequencing technologies. Students on this pathway will learn about patterns of life-history variation seen in nature and the theories behind them, as well as exploring bioinformatic techniques that help to identify when genes have evolved adaptively.
Plant and crop science: Training is led by the experts behind the Institute for Sustainable Food. You'll understand the key issues in global food security and explore how plants can truly influence global change.
Biodiversity and conservation: Students will develop fundamental knowledge about today's major conservation issues and the human and environmental drivers including marine plastics, urbanisation, tropical logging and the balance between sustainable food production and biodiversity.
Whichever path you choose, you'll be learning about the latest research in the field, from experts who are making the discoveries first-hand.
You'll conduct your own fieldwork in the Peak District and receive training in experimental design and data collection, giving you the key skills to plan and manage your own projects.
The biggest part of the course is the Individual Research Project. Here you'll spend three months researching an area within the biological sciences that matches your future career aspirations, under the supervision of one of our world-leading researchers.
You could be field-based, lab-based or complete a computational data driven project which will give you an opportunity to apply the subject-specific knowledge and analytical skills that you've developed throughout your degree as well as developing new skills in the use of cutting-edge research methods.