MSc Animal Science

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The Animal Science Master's Degree within the Institute of Biological, Environmental and Rural Sciences, Aberystwyth, UK, offers you the opportunity of biological, scientific and professional training in the field of Animal Science. The Masters Degree in Animal Science will provide you with the knowledge and skills required to pursue leading careers in animal research, development, academia, training, public and private commercial enterprise, advisory work, government agencies and other non-government organisations throughout the world.

Why study your Masters Degree in Animal Science at Aberystwyth?

The Institute of Biological, Environmental and Rural Sciences (IBERS), Aberystwyth, UK, has over 30 years of experience in teaching at masters level in areas related to Animal Science. The Institute also has an internationally renowned reputation for research in the field of Animal Science. This puts IBERS in a unique position to provide you with the research led high quality post graduate training needed to produce post graduates with the competence to pursue leading careers in a wide range of Animal Science related fields throughout the world.

Key Facts

Duration:

Both full-time (1 year) and part-time (2 year) routes available.

Assessment:

Assessment will be by course work such as essays, seminar presentations, case studies, poster presentations and final examinations in January and May.

Course Structure: 

The first part of the course is 120 credits of taught material, delivered in 2 semesters running from Sept to June. Part 2 is the dissertation. This is your opportunity to specialise and investigate in depth an area that excites you. Your dissertation can be done in our state of the art laboratories or possibly at another University. Assessment will be by course work such as essays, seminar presentations, case studies, poster presentations and final examinations in January and May.

Entry Requirements:

Good Undergraduate degree 2.2 (UK) (or above) equating to a mark of 56.5 or above in Animal Science, Biological Sciences and Agricultural Science  or closely related discipline. European and International applicants can find their grade equivalence on our comparability page. Those who are not graduates must satisfy the University that they are of the required academic standard to pursue postgraduate study.

English Language Requirements: 

If you have a Bachelor's degree from a UK University, you do not need to take an English proficiency test.

Non-native English speakers who do not meet this requirement must take a University-recognised test of academic English language proficiency. For further information please see our English Language requirements page.

Course Fees: 

Please see the tuition fee pages for current tuition fees. Please note that all fees are subject to an annual increase.

Funding:

Funding opportunities may be available, please check our funding calculator for details.

More Information

Download the Masters in Animal Science Candidates Guide

Overview

The Animal Science Masters Degree within the Institute of Biological, Environmental and Rural Sciences, Aberystwyth, UK, offers you the opportunity of a biological, scientific and professional training in the field of Animal Science.

The Masters Degree in Animal Science will provide you with the knowledge and skills required to pursue leading careers in animal research, development, academia, training, public and private commercial enterprise, advisory work, government agencies, non-government organisations etc throughout the world.

Why study Animal Science?

Appropriate management is essential in order to optimise animal welfare. Ensuring good animal welfare is an increasing concern to all those involved in managing and training animals. However, this needs to be balanced against the demands of production (meat, milk), athletic performance (equine sport, racing) or leisure. Through the study of animal biology and its application to nutrition, breeding and animal management, the post graduate in Animal Science will be ideally placed to ensure that these demands of production and welfare are appropriately balanced through the development and implementation of innovative management practices and dissemination of knowledge and advice to practitioners. 

  • Our students have won the “Biology Student of the Year” award at the European Science, Engineering, and Technology (SET) Awards, and the Welsh Ornithologists’ Union Student Prize!
  • Our Institute of Biological, Environmental and Rural Sciences (IBERS) received the ''Outstanding Contribution to Innovation and Technology'' award at the 2013 Times Higher Education Awards. 
  • Our Institute of Biological, Environmental and Rural Sciences (IBERS) in conjunction with Bangor University had the 5th strongest submission in the UK for the Research Excellence Framework assessment (2014).

What subject material will the course cover?

A range of biological science modules will be taught in the first semester which will cover animal immunology, parasitology, bacteriology, endocrinology, growth and development, animal breeding, genetics, molecular genetics and principles of nutrition. This will provide you with an advanced biological science knowledge which will then be applied in semester 2. In semester 2 you will study statistical methodology in preparation for your Dissertation research, advances in bio and veterinary sciences  and be given the choice of modules from a suite of livestock and equine science modules covering subjects such as: livestock or equine reproductive physiology and technology, grassland science, livestock or equine nutrition, equine anatomy, equine behaviour. Throughout the course, especially in the second semester, you will have an opportunity to explore specific areas of your own interest culminating in your research dissertation. In addition to gaining specialised knowledge in Animal Science the course aims to develop your more general skills such as written and oral communication, research skills, data handling and statistics, team work, information technology, problem solving etc.

Please download the Masters in Animal Sciences Candidate Guide for more information on this course.

Our Staff

The majority of teaching staff at the Institute of Biological, Environmental and Rural Sciences are qualified to PhD level and are research active. Vocational courses also have staff whose background lies within industry.  The Institute has a large number of research only staff with whom students may have contact.

Course Content

Welsh medium modules available

Please note: The modules listed below are those currently intended for delivery during the next academic year and may be subject to change. They are included here to give an indication of how the course is structured.

Year 1 Core (60 Credits) You must take the following modules

Semester 1

Infection And Immunity BRM1620

Research Methodology And Advances In Biosciences BRM5500

Animal Breeding And Genetics BRM5820

Semester 2

Research Methodology And Advances In Biosciences BRM5520

Year 1 Options (60 credits) Livestock Options: Choose 20 or 40 credits from the modules below (Equine Nutrition and Livestock Nutrition modules are mutually exclusive)

Semester 1

Livestock Nutrition BRM0300

Semester 2

Livestock Nutrition BRM0320

Grassland Science BRM5120

Livestock Production BRM5420

Year 1 Options (60 credits) Equine Options: Choose 20 or 40 credits from the modules below (Equine Nutrition and Livestock Nutrition modules are mutually exclusive)

Semester 1

Equine Nutrition BRM5300

Semester 2

Equine Reproductive Physiology And Breeding Technology BRM5220

Equine Nutrition BRM5320

Understanding Equine Action: From Anatomy To Behaviour BRM6220

Year 1 Core (60 Credits) You must take the dissertation

Semester 3

Dissertation BRM3560

Employability

Qualification: MSc Animal Science

Recently the Institute was awarded the Queen's Anniversary Prize for Higher and Further Education, and in 2013, for the sixth year running, was among the top 10 universities in the UK in the Student Satisfaction Survey. This puts IBERS in a unique position to provide you with the research-led, high quality postgraduate training needed to produce post graduates with the competence to pursue leading careers in a wide range of fields related to the Animal Sciences.

This degree will suit you:

  • If you wish to study a research-led MSc specialising in the science of the management of livestock and horses.
  • If you want to have the choice of a wide range of career opportunities, including in scientific research, consultancy services, in the livestock and equine industries as well as in education.
  • If you want to use a multidisciplinary approach to explore collaborations with veterinarians, scientists and industrial partners.
  • If you want to learn about the latest biotechnologies and their application to livestock and horses

Employability
Every course at Aberystwyth University is designed to enhance your vocational and general employability.  The MSc in Animal Science has been designed to meet the increasing demand for suitably qualified personal to work in animal research, development, lecturing, training, public and private commercial enterprise, advisory work, government agencies, as well as non-government organizations throughout the world.

Key Skills and Competencies

Study Skills

You will develop an in-depth knowledge and critical understanding of the key contemporary topics affecting the Animal Sciences. You will master the research process and contribute to the knowledge base of the subject through your dissertation.  Throughout this you will encounter many opportunities to develop as a reflective, autonomous researcher, with a wide and expert understanding of the impact these technologies can have.

Self-Motivation and discipline

Studying at MSc level requires discipline and self-motivation from every candidate. Though you will have access to the expertise and helpful guidance of staff from IBERS, you are ultimately responsible for devising and completing a sustained programme of scholarly research in pursuit of your Master’s degree. This process will strengthen your skills as a self-sufficient worker, a trait prized by all employers.

Transferable Skills

The MSc programme is designed to give you a range of transferable skills that you can apply in a variety of employment contexts.  The course is made up of a number of taught modules plus guided independent student centred study. This provides you with a framework which allows you to develop your subject knowledge, through pursuing specific areas of interest and develop your skills of original thought, analysis, interpretation and reasoning. Regular assessment through reports, essays, seminar presentations, précis and case studies will prepare you for the many demands of the modern workplace.

How to Apply

Postgraduate applicants can submit their application either on-line or off-line. Please see our How to Apply page for further information.

Departmental contact details 

Tel: (01970) 622315
Fax: (01970) 622350
Email: myd@aber.ac.uk

Institute of Biological, Environmental and Rural Sciences
Edward Llwyd Building
Penglais Campus
Aberystwyth University
SY23 3DA

For an informal discussion about this course and for more specific information, you are very welcome to contact:


Dr Mina Davies Morel 
Email: mid@aber.ac.uk 
MSc Animal Science Course Coordinator 

If you'd like to see how we assess your application please click and watch our Application videos.

Further Information

As a Postgraduate Student you will be inducted to the University and join one of the top Graduate Schools in the world (Igraduate2012).

It is important you feel at home in the Department, University and Town. Here are some links for you to explore these areas further:

Student Views

Name: Jenna Thompson

Course: MSc Animal Science

Progression: PhD

'I graduated from Aberystwyth in 2001 with a BSc Animal Science degree and after a few years working within the agricultural industry I decided to return to Aberystwyth in 2012 to do MSc Animal Science. I wanted to add to my experience in the industry by developing my scientific knowledge further. My previous experience at Aberystwyth and knowing that they were active in research areas that interested me were key reasons why I chose to return there.

The MSc was very challenging and hard work, but I really enjoyed the course and it gave me the opportunity to get back into an academic situation and this has led to me now doing a PhD through the University of Bristol at North Wyke Rothamsted Research, Devon. My PhD is considering the environmental and productivity impacts of different types of grassland management systems on pasture based beef production. North Wyke has a unique facility called the Farm Platform which I am using to measure inputs and outputs of these systems'. 

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Name: Ruth Clamp

Course: MSc Animal Science

Progression: PhD at Aberystwyth University

'After completing a BSc in Equine and Human Sport Science at Aberystwyth, I decided to develop my scientific knowledge of a wider range of animals by undertaking the Animal Science MSc course. The MSc was a challenge which I enjoyed. I liked the course design, giving core subjects that gave a good broad biological knowledge of the subject areas and also option modules which develop the core modules further in either equine or livestock areas. Lecturers on the course were very helpful and willing to help when needed.

Throughout the MSc I developed an interest in immunology and endocrinology. I completed my dissertation looking at the innate immune response within bovine mammary epithelial cells. This and many other skills that I learnt on the MSc course helped me to obtain Aberystwyth Doctoral Career Development Scheme funding to study for a PhD in bovine endometrial endocrinology and immunology'.

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Name: Laurie Freedman

Course: MSc Animal Science

Progression: Veterinary Medicine at University College Dublin, Ireland

'After completing my BSc in Animal Biology and a Veterinary Technician diploma in Ontario, Canada, I wanted to further my education in order to open the door on new opportunities for myself and my future career. Studying for a MSc in Animal Science at Aberystwyth University certainly did just that. By completing my MSc in a different country from my home environment, I welcomed the challenge of new learning experiences and exposure to innovative research that is emerging in animal sciences in the UK.

I was initially drawn to the MSc Animal Science programme at Aberystwyth University because it gave me the opportunity to learn about both livestock and equine sciences without having to focus solely on one specie. I also enjoyed learning about a wide range of topics within the modules that were offered. The dissertation provided me with the opportunity to complete an in depth study of my specific interest whilst creating my own research. Throughout the twelve months of this programme I always found the lecturers to be very supportive and approachable. Whilst at Aberystwyth University I found the academic work to be very challenging. But in looking back on my year of study, I realize what a good foundation I received that along with my previous educational endeavours has helped me prepare for my current studies in Veterinary Medicine. Presently, I have completed the first of four years for my MVB at University College Dublin in Ireland. I thoroughly enjoyed my year at Aberystwyth University and I will always cherish the friends and great memories I made along the way '.

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Name: Lauren Spinks

Course: MSc Animal Science

Progression: Veterinary medicine and science BVMSci, University of Surry

‘The MSc created the perfect platform for me to be successful in my future aspiration of becoming a veterinary surgeon and gave me a great advantage on application and at interview for vet school. Not only does the MSc allow for independent academic development but it also provides many opportunities such as going to scientific conferences; for instance we were able to attend the BSAS conference in Chester, helping to keep up to date with new scientific research in the area of your choice. The lecturers were extremely supportive along the way and I was fully satisfied with the quality of teaching throughout the course.

I was very lucky to have had the opportunity to study in the most beautiful part of the country, deep in the Welsh countryside. Aberystwyth may be just a small town in the middle of “nowhere” but amongst all of the “nothing” I was able to find myself and I can truly say that I have loved every moment of the whole experience.’