BSC Genetics

C400 Course Image

Genetics is the study of genes and their inheritance. It is an exciting and rapidly developing science which underpins much of our understanding of biological processes. It also has a huge influence on our society, as we grapple with important issues such as the genetic modification of organisms and the genetic prediction of human disease. The skills of the graduate geneticist are highly prized in the workplace, giving opportunities for careers in higher education, biomedical research, biotechnology and pharmaceutical industries.

So what makes Genetics at Aberystwyth special?

  • We place great emphasis upon practical skills, so that our graduates become practitioners from the word go
  • We ensure that our graduates have the skills to communicate their science effectively, so that they can join the often controversial genetics debates
  • We have extensive research and teaching labs equipped with the latest state-of-the-art equipment, including bioimaging facilities, high-throughput DNA sequencing, proteomics, metabolomics and spectroscopic platforms

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Overview

If you are fascinated by genetics, and want to tackle important scientific issues like the genetic modification of organisms, or genetic prediction of human disease, then this is the scheme for you! Here’s why we think Aberystwyth is the very best place to make your journey of discovery… 

Passionate teaching staff who are expert in their field 

Genetics teaching staff conduct research in all areas of genetics, from molecules to populations. We have also won teaching awards. 

A prize-winning institute 

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 students have won the “Biology Student of the Year” award at the European Science, Engineering, and Technology (SET) Awards. 

International opportunities 

If you’re feeling adventurous, why not take the chance to study abroad during your degree? We have exchange agreements with universities in Europe, USA, Canada, and elsewhere, so you can apply to spend all or part of your 2nd year studying genetics overseas. You’ll miss Aberystwyth, but you’ll love the new perspectives international study can bring.

Want to study in Welsh? Students can choose to study a number of IBERS modules through the medium of Welsh. Ask the department for further details 

Course Content

Welsh medium modules available

Year 1 Core (70 Credits) You must take the following modules

Semester 1

Biology Of The Cell BR10310

Genetics BR11310

Animal Diversity BR11500

Biological Molecules And Methods BR11710

Semester 2

Animal Diversity BR11520

Metabolism BR12010

Molecular Laboratory Skills BR12210

Year 1 Options This CORE MODULE is offered bilingually: choose your preferred language

Semester 1

Sgiliau Astudio A Chyfathrebu BG12410

Study And Communication Skills BR12410

Year 1 Options This CORE MODULE is offered bilingually: choose your preferred language

Semester 2

Llystyfiant Ac Ecosystemau BG12920

Vegetation And Ecosystems BR12920

Year 1 Options This CORE MODULE is offered bilingually: choose your preferred language

Semester 2

Amrywiaeth Microbau BG12110

Microbial Diversity BR12110

Year 1 Options Choose 10 credits

Semester 1

Biological Thought And Discovery BR12510

The Biosphere BR13210

Year 2 Core (60 Credits) You must take the following modules

Semester 1

Applied Molecular Biology And Bioinformatics BR20620

Semester 2

Evolution And Molecular Systematics BR21720

Chromosome Dynamics BR21820

Year 2 Options This CORE MODULE is offered bilingually: choose your preferred language

Semester 1

Profiad Gwaith BG24200

Work Experience BR24200

Semester 2

Profiad Gwaith BG24210

Work Experience BR24210

Year 2 Options This CORE MODULE is offered bilingually: choose your preferred language

Semester 1

Dulliau Ymchwil BG23400

Research Methods BR23400

Semester 2

Dulliau Ymchwil BG23420

Research Methods BR23420

Year 2 Options Choose 30 credits

Semester 1

Molecular Cell And Cancer Biology BR22720

Proteins And Enzymes BR23210

Semester 2

Immunology BR22220

Biochemistry In Practice BR24510

Final Year Core (80 Credits) You must take the following modules

Semester 1

Bioinformatics And Functional Genomics BR31420

Conservation Genetics BR31810

Evolution Field Course BR32810

Semester 2

Biochemistry And Pharmacology BR31220

Gene Expression And Developmental Genetics BR33320

Final Year Options This CORE MODULE is offered bilingually and in EITHER semester: choose your preferred language and semester

Both Semesters

Cyfathrebu Ymchwil BG31710

Communicating Research BR31710

Final Year Options This CORE MODULE is offered bilingually: choose your preferred language

Semester 1

Traethawd Estynedig BG32300

Dissertation BR32300

Semester 2

Traethawd Estynedig BG32330

Dissertation BR32330

Employability

80% of students are in work or further study 6 months after finishing

You will be fully supported with developing your employability skills throughout the degree scheme. The degree will allow you to develop specialist skills such as using bioinformatics tools to analyse and interpret DNA and protein sequences and to discern their function as well as developing a range of transferable skills highly valued by employers. You will join a department that has excellent facilities to support your studies; £55 million pounds has been invested over the last five years in IBERS infrastructure. Many students as part of their supervised final year project have access to highly specialised facilities for example The Genomics Facility which has the largest DNA sequencing capacity in Wales. These facilities enable students to develop their specialist skills and knowledge preparing them for a successful transition into the workplace. You will have the opportunity to undertake fieldwork in the local vicinity or as part of a week-long residential field course away from Aberystwyth, working on field-based exercises to collect, examine and report on organisms and their genetics. IBERS staff have close links with many learned societies such as the Genetics Society which provide a route for students to network with others in their discipline and explore funding opportunities and recognition of their work. Guest lecturers and expert external teachers also contribute to the curriculum to pass on their expertise and knowledge.

The department has resources on the virtual learning environment, Aberlearn Blackboard to support your development and has a dedicated Twitter feed to keep students informed of developmental opportunities and work experience. Students have participated in a work experience module to help them identify and reflect on their employability skills they are developing through their work experience.

The department has a close working relationship with the Careers Service and has an IBERS link careers adviser to support students with their career development. Employer events are organised to allow students to gain an insight into different graduate employers and develop their networking skills. The IBERS Employer Advisory Group invites a variety of employers to advise on curriculum and employability development to ensure students are acquiring the right skills needed by graduate employers. The Careers Service can also help and support you sourcing work experience opportunities locally and nationally. You will be eligible to take part in the GO Wales scheme which offers opportunities for work tasters and paid placements to develop your experience in the workplace. Students from the department have participated in work taster opportunities in local secondary schools to gain experience of teaching science and the local hospital to gain experience of a healthcare setting. You can also participate in the Year in Employment Scheme (YES) to gain graduate level work experience and IBERS students have successfully gained placements with a number of employers including GlaxoSmithKline and AstraZeneca.

The course will help you hone your scientific skills and prepare you for your future career or research specialism.

Teaching, Learning and Assessment

This course will nurture both your intellectual curiosity and your general scientific practice. You will investigate subjects including cellular biology, proteins and enzymes, chromosome dynamics, gene expression and developmental genetics, and many more. As you study, you will receive expert tuition in scientific protocol and hands-on lab work, such as the correct experimental methodology for recording, interpreting and reporting data. On this course, you will develop an impressive cache of subject expertise and scientific skills which will be of enormous benefit in any biological or other scientific profession. The course will also prepare you for more general graduate employment, as your expertise in research, analysis, data handling, reporting and intellectual curiosity will be an enormous asset in any career path you choose.

This course will be delivered through a balanced programme of lectures, seminars and lab work. You will receive thorough training in biological concepts and practical methods. You will explore this learning in laboratory research and experimentation, in individual and group tasks. 

Among many skills, you will learn to: synthesize information from scientific literature; understand and explain the implications of developments like genome sequencing; scrutinise data in terms of quality and quantity; and respond to new data through laboratory investigation.

You will be assessed through essays, practical exercises, oral presentations and exams. You will also be required to complete additional assignments and work with others on particular tasks. In all these areas you will need to demonstrate scientific rigour and apply a systematic approach to the problems with which you are presented.

You will be assigned a personal tutor throughout your degree course, who will help you with any problems or queries, whether these are academic-related or personal issues. You should feel free to contact them at any time for help and advice.

You will also have the opportunity to complete a Personal Development Plan (PDP) at Aberystwyth. This is a structured process of self-appraisal, reflection, and planning, which will enable you to chart your personal, academic and professional development throughout your time at university. By recording your academic performance, and highlighting the skills you already have and those you will need for future employability, the PDP portfolio will equip you with the necessary tools to plan effectively, develop successful approaches to study, and consider your future career options and aspirations.

The lectures, seminars and the Department's supportive staff will greatly assist you in your biological training. You will also benefit from the many opportunities within the department and the university to develop your academic rigour and professionalism so that, upon graduation, you are perfectly positioned for the next stage of your career.

Student Views

Genetics is at the cutting edge of the biological sciences. In the post-genomic era, we are able to truly examine our biological programming at a molecular level. What I really enjoy about the course, C400, is that you have the ability to tailor it to your areas of interest, choosing your own combinations of modules which reflect the areas you want to explore most, all the while gaining valuable knowledge and practical experience to help shape your career path. Richard Cleverley

For me, the appeal of genetics is rooted in its universal and diverse nature; it is captivating to consider the fact that every variety of living organism is constructed from a blueprint, written within molecules of DNA. My delight in genetics is intensified by the positive impact its application can have on people’s lives, and with so much still to be discovered, surely the best is yet to come. Studying at Aberystwyth University has facilitated my enjoyment of genetics and has provided the resources that make it possible for me to continue to take pleasure in genetics. Nathan Luke Greenaway

My course at Aberystwyth University prepared me for my PhD by challenging me to understand the core cellular and molecular principles integral to cellular function. What I’ve learned from interacting with other graduates is that the scope of teaching at IBERS is much broader, giving a much better understanding of the fundamentals of biology than other courses
Phil – Studying for PhD at the University of York

My degree in Genetics and Biochemistry gave me a good grounding that prepared me very well for my PhD. In fact, one of the courses, Gene Expression and Developmental Genetics inspired me to work in the area of Developmental Biology, which is what I work at today. I will be eternally grateful for the chance I was given and the teaching I received
Roger – Professor of Neuroscience, University of Copenhagen

Key Information Set

Key Facts

UCAS Code: C400

Tariff Required: 280 - 320

Entry Requirements: B in A level Biology/Human Biology, or C in Biology/Human Biology plus C in another relevant Science. GCSE: Grade C in English or Welsh and Mathematics and a Science subject.

Course Length: 3 Years

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