BSc Honours Zoology (UCAS Code: C300)
For entrance requirements
T: +44 (0)28 9097 3838
For students whose first language is not English
An IELTS score of 6.5 with a minimum of 5.5 in each test component or an equivalent qualification acceptable to the University. Further information on other acceptable English Language qualifications is available here
If you are an international student and you do not meet the entrance requirements, you should consider a preparation course at INTO Queen's University Belfast, which will prepare you for successful study on these degree courses. INTO Queen's University Belfast is based on the University campus and offers a range of courses including:
International Foundation in Engineering and Science
Animals range from the very simple to the most complex of all living organisms. Consequently, they are challenging to study, with simple animals providing models for understanding more complex forms. The interdependence of animals and other organisms means that zoologists need a broad comprehension of the living world and life processes as well as of the animal kingdom. Exciting developments are being made in animal behaviour, brain function, control of parasitic diseases, management of freshwater fish and animal communities.Back to top
This degree programme aims to provide students with a broad coverage of the biology of animals and how they interact with other living organisms.
Zoology undergraduates study:
Genetics and Molecular Biology
Introductory Skills for Biosciences
and, usually, Biochemistry
This broad base in biological sciences enables students after their Stage 1 year to transfer, should they so wish, to pathways leading to degrees in Biological Sciences, Environmental Biology, Genetics or Marine Biology.
Students take the following modules:
Comparative Animal Physiology
and four other modules, at least two of which are selected from:
Molecular Ecology and Evolutionary Genetics
During the final year, students in Zoology take a two-module research project carried out under the supervision of one or more members of the academic staff and choose four modules from:
Behavioural Ecology and Sociobiology
Farm Animal Health and Welfare
Genetic Manipulation and Bacterial Genetics
The Immune System
The research project generally involves practical work carried out in the field and laboratory or at Queen's University Marine Laboratory in Portaferry, in one of the many active areas of research in the School of Biological Sciences.Back to top
At Queen’s, we aim to deliver a high quality learning environment that embeds intellectual curiosity, innovation and best practice in learning, teaching and student support to enable students to achieve their full academic potential.
On the BSc (Hons) in Zoology we do this by providing a range of learning experiences which enable our students to engage with subject experts, develop attributes and perspectives that will equip them for life and work in a global society and make use of innovative technologies and a world class library that enhances their development as independent, lifelong learners. Examples of the opportunities provided for learning on this course are:
Assessment (general): The way in which you are assessed will vary according to the Learning objectives of each module. Some modules are assessed solely through project work or written assignments. Others are assessed through a combination of coursework and end of semester examinations. Details of how each module is assessed are shown in the Student Handbook which is provided to all students during their first year induction.
Feedback (general): As students progress through their course at Queen’s they will receive general and specific feedback about their work from a variety of sources including lecturers, module co-ordinators, placement supervisors, personal tutors, advisers of study and peers. University students are expected to engage with reflective practice and to use this approach to improve the quality of their work. Feedback may be provided in a variety of forms including:
Once you have reviewed your feedback, you will be encouraged to identify and implement further improvements to the quality of your work.Back to top
Graduates are qualified to take up both scientific and non-scientific careers. These positions encompass areas of innovative research and development of new products, advisory and consultancy work, particularly in companies or organisations concerned with animal and plant health, environmental management, pharmaceutical products and biotechnology.
Graduates pursue careers in teaching, nature conservation and laboratory-based posts in biomedical, industrial, pharmaceutical, academic and government institutions as well as in universities and colleges of higher education. The remainder undertake further training in areas such as computing, administration and management or medicine (human or veterinary), developing their skills from a sound scientific background. Further training also helps them to find employment in a variety of non-biological careers, including public service administration, industrial management, accountancy and computing.
Employers are looking for graduates with generic skills of communication, problem-solving, data analysis, social skills, a range of interests and a record of success. We believe that a degree in Zoology will help our students to develop these skills. For further information on careers see the Institute of Biologywebsite.
The School of Biological Sciences employs a dedicated careers advisor who has developed an extensive portfolio of employers, both nationally and internationally, within the science sector. Advice is also provided on CV preparation, interview techniques and securing summer work or longer placements.
Our past students have also gained work placement with organisations such as:
Many students complete higher degrees, either in the UK or overseas, before
embarking on a career in medical, agricultural and environmental research.
Students can choose from a wide range of Masters programmes at Queen’s, as well as a comprehensive list of research topics. These are shown within the School website.
Other Career-related information: Queen’s is a member of the Russell Group and, therefore, one of the 20 universities most-targeted by leading graduate employers. Queen’s students will be advised and guided about career choice and, through the Degree Plusinitiative, will have an opportunity to seek accreditation for skills development and experience gained through the wide range of extra-curricular activities on offer. See Queen’s University Belfast fullEmployability Statementfor further information.
Degree Plus and other related initiatives: Recognising student diversity, as well as promoting employability enhancements and other interests, is part of the developmental experience at Queen’s. Students are encouraged to plan and build their own, personal skill and experiential profile through a range of activities including; recognised Queen’s Certificates, placements and other work experiences (at home or overseas), Erasmus study options elsewhere in Europe, learning development opportunities and involvement in wider university life through activities, such as clubs, societies, and sports.
Queen’s actively encourages this type of activity by offering students an additional qualification, the Degree Plus Award (and the related Researcher Plus Award for PhD and MPhil students). Degree Plus accredits wider experiential and skill development gained through extra-curricular activities that promote the enhancement of academic, career management, personal and employability skills in a variety of contexts. As part of the Award, students are also trained on how to reflect on the experience(s) and make the link between academic achievement, extracurricular activities, transferable skills and graduate employment. Participating students will also be trained in how to reflect on their skills and experiences and can gain an understanding of how to articulate the significance of these to others, e.g. employers.
Overall, these initiatives, and Degree Plus in particular, reward the energy, drive, determination and enthusiasm shown by students engaging in activities over-and-above the requirements of their academic studies. These qualities are amongst those valued highly by graduate employers.Back to top
The most generally appropriate professional body for graduate biologists is the Society of Biology.Back to top