BSc

Ecology

Royal Society of Biology Accredited Degree

This course is available through Clearing.
Call free phone: +44 (0) 800 121 40 80

Key Facts

Code C180
  • Typical A-level offer

    BBC-BBB with B in Biology or Human Biology. Candidates taking a science A level with an associated practical skills assessment will also be required to pass the practical component.

  • Course Length

    3 Years

Further details on entry requirements

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Ecology focuses on the interactions between organisms and their environment. Knowledge of these interactions underpins our understanding of how wildlife will respond to current and future environmental threats, including pollution, climate change, invasive species and habitat destruction. Our mission is to train the next generation that will respond to these issues, identifying solutions and conserving biodiversity into the future.   

Aberystwyth is the place to study Ecology because we have:

  • Passionate teaching staff that conduct research in all areas of ecology and in different parts of the world.
  • A focus on field skills and learning by experience.
  • Direct access to some wonderful locations and habitats, including the Dyfi National Nature Reserve, and Snowdonia and Brecon Beacons National Parks
  • International field courses and training opportunities 

Student Satisfaction and Employability Results

Institute of Biological, Environmental and Rural Sciences (IBERS): 92% student satisfaction (NSS 2018)

98% of our graduates were in work or further study within 6 months, 3% more than Biological Science graduates nationally, (HESA 2018*)

Overview

Royal Society of Biology Accredited DegreeWhy study Ecology at Aberystwyth University?

  • Learn and live in an area of outstanding beauty that offers access to local ecology but also an environment and recreational opportunities that suite the outdoor person.
  • You will be taught by award winning ecologists on modules that target knowledge and skills in surveying, identifying and mitigating climate change impacts, habitat restoration, biodiversity assessment and conservation, environmental consultancy. Be a student in a world renowned teaching and research Institute.
  • Unrivalled wildlife and countryside on your doorstep.
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.

Modules

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.

Core

Module Name Module Code Credit Value
Applied Genetics BR13810 10
Biochemistry and the Cellular Basis of Life BR15320 20
Comparative Animal Physiology BR14110 10
Ecology * BR13510 10
Evolution and the Diversity of Life BR14310 10
Study and Communication Skills * BR12410 10
Studying the Dynamic Countryside BR12610 10
The Biosphere BR13210 10
The Development and Management of British Habitats * BR10810 10
The Green Planet * BR13610 10

Options

Module Name Module Code Credit Value
Microbial Diversity * BR12110 10
Soils and their Management BR14910 10

* Also available partially or entirely through the medium of Welsh

Core

Module Name Module Code Credit Value
An Introduction to Landscape Ecology and Geographic Information Systems * BR25520 20
Climate Change: Plants, Animals and Ecosystems BR21120 20
Ecological Surveying * BR21420 20
Research Methods * BR25620 20

Options

Module Name Module Code Credit Value
Advances in Invertebrate Zoology * BR25420 20
Environmental Microbiology and Monitoring * BR26020 20
Vertebrate Organisms BR26820 20

* Also available partially or entirely through the medium of Welsh

Core

Module Name Module Code Credit Value
Biodiversity of Birds BR31320 20
Dissertation * BR32330 30
Population and Community Ecology BR33920 20
Threats to Natural Ecosystems * BR34210 10
Wildlife Conservation BR34520 20

Options

Module Name Module Code Credit Value
Conservation Genetics * BR31810 10
Terrestrial Ecology Field Course BR33110 10
Tropical Rainforest Ecology and Conservation (Trec) Field Course BR30120 20
Communicating Research * BR31710 10

* Also available partially or entirely through the medium of Welsh

Employability

After completion of the degree students can engage in careers in the following areas:

  • Wildlife and Conservation officer
  • Biodiversity assessor and Habitat surveyor
  • Site Manager
  • Education and public engagement
  • Environmental Consultancy
  • Ecological Research –graduate position
  • Ph.D. researcher

How will my degree prepare me for the future?

Employability is embedded in our teaching. Our students leave Aberystwyth University with the skills including:  

• research and data analysis skills
• enhanced mathematical and computational skills
• effective problem-solving and creative thinking skills
• a thorough grounding in information technology skills
• the ability to work independently
• time-management and organisational skills, including the ability to meet deadlines
• the ability to express ideas and communicate information in a clear and structured manner, in both written and oral form
• self-motivation and self-reliance
• team-working, with the ability to discuss concepts in groups, accommodating different ideas and reaching agreement

What work experience opportunities exist whilst studying? 

Click here to find out about the various opportunities that our Aberystwyth University Careers team offer. 

Enhance your employability prospects with GO Wales and YES (Year in Employment Scheme) managed by our Careers department. 

Teaching & Learning

What will I learn?

The breakdown below will provide you with an illustration of what you may study during the three year degree scheme.

Your first year will provide a broad grounding in biology, and training in the skills needed to succeed in your studies. Subject areas covered will include:

  • The Biosphere
  • Ecology
  • Animal Physiology
  • Diversity of Microbial Life
  • Plant Biology
  • Conservation of wildlife
  • The study and management of habitats
  • The study and management of habitats

In your second you will be offered specialist modules including:

  • Climate change impacts on ecosystems
  • Geographic Information Systems
  • Freshwater Biology
  • Bird biodiversity
  • Habitat assessment and organism ID (UK and international)
  • Vertebrates
  • Understanding invertebrates
  • Ecological Monitoring 

In your third year, subject areas offered include:

  • Population and Community ecology
  • Wildlife conservation
  • Habitat assessment and organism ID (International)
  • Environmental Protection and Law
  • Sustainability
  • Ecological Monitoring 
  • Environmental Consultancy
  • Independent research in a topic of your choice

How will I be taught?

The course will be delivered through lectures, workshops, tutorials and practicals. You will be assessed through;

  • Essays
  • Practical exercises
  • Oral presentations
  • Worksheets
  • Reports
  • Statistical exercises
  • Dossiers
  • Posters
  • Portfolios
  • Wikis
  • Reflective diaries
  • Literature reviews
  • Magazine articles
  • Field notebooks
  • Exams

Student Views

Pippa - BSc Ecology

"The Ecology course at Aberystwyth has provided me with a good set of skills which I can utilise and apply to my current role. The field work part of many modules within the Ecology degree scheme has ensured that I have experience of working in outdoor environments, a necessity for many ecological careers."

Alex - BSc Ecology

"I am very pleased I chose the degree scheme. Interesting content throughout, great support from the lecturers, and comprehensive feedback. A great choice, no regrets."

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Typical Entry Requirements

A Levels BBC-BBB with B in Biology or Human Biology. Candidates taking a science A level with an associated practical skills assessment will also be required to pass the practical component.

GCSE requirements (grade C min):
English or Welsh, Mathematics and a Science subject

BTEC National Diploma:
DDM

International Baccalaureate:
30 points overall with 5 points in Biology at Higher Level

European Baccalaureate:
65-70% overall with 75% in specified subject

The University operates an inclusive admissions policy and our offers can vary. Please refer to our country-specific pages for details of the international qualifications we accept. For further information, contact ug-admissions@aber.ac.uk

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