BSc (Hons) Biological Sciences

Recent advances in the field of biological sciences have revolutionised the way we understand and treat disease. Stem cell and novel cell-based therapies and personalised medicine are increasingly in the headlines and Biological Scientists are leading the way in developing these powerful new therapeutic options.

Modern medicine requires an understanding of the key interactions of molecules and cells both internally - within the cell and the body - and externally from the environment. This can include how a cell responds to a specific pathogen, or how a drug targets a specific pathogen or cellular protein. Equally, external stimuli, such as chemicals, toxic waste or carcinogens, can also have an effect on how cells grow and divide, modifying their function with devastating consequences for health.

The Biological Sciences course at Glasgow Caledonian University (GCU) has a strong focus on human disease and aims to help you understand these events, and demonstrate how therapies that may correct or prevent the diseased state are developed.

A degree in Biological Sciences opens the way to an extensive array of career destinations. The following are just a sample of the possible career paths that you may choose:

- Biotech sector
- Research in universities (national and international, government and industry)
- University or college lecturer
- Research scientist in the life sciences industry
- Scientific laboratory technician
- Secondary school teacher
- Science writer

Study Options

  • 2022/23


Mode of study


Start date



BSc (Hons)
Full Time
4 Years
Sep 2022
GCU Glasgow
Award Mode of study Duration Start date Location UCAS  
BSc (Hons) Full Time 4 Years Sep 2022 GCU Glasgow Enquire Apply

Year 1
Scottish Higher: Standard entry requirement: BBBB: Two science subjects (such as Biology, Human Biology, Chemistry, Health and Food Technology, Physics, Maths, Psychology) and one essay-based subject such as English, History or Modern Studies plus Maths/English/Biology or Human Biology at Int. 2/Nat 5 B
Minimum entry requirement: BBCC: Two science subjects (such as Biology/Human Biology, Chemistry, Health and Food Technology, Physics, Maths, Psychology) and one essay-based subject such as English, History or Modern Studies plus Maths/English/Biology or Human Biology at Int. 2/Nat 5 B
A level: BBC (incl Chemistry) GCSE: B/6 (Biology, Double Science, English and Maths)
ILC Higher: H2 H2 H3 H3 (incl Chemistry, English/essay-based subject and one other Science) O2: (Maths and Biology)
IB Diploma: 28 points (incl HL Chemistry) SL: 5 (Biology)
BTEC: DMM Ext Dip (incl Chemistry and Biology) GCSE: BB (Double Science, English and Maths)
SWAP: Science - BBB
College HNC: Relevant subject - graded unit B (incl sufficient coverage of Chemistry)

Year 2
A level: ABB (incl Chemistry, Biology and Maths) GCSE: B/6 English
IB Diploma: 32 points (incl HL Chemistry and Biology) plus SL Maths AT 6 and SL English
College HNC: 15 credit HNC in relevant subject - graded unit B (incl Genetics and DNA Structure/Physiology unit) 

English language IELTS score of 6.0 with no element below 5.5 (or equivalent)

Additional information

Modern Apprenticeships

If you have completed a Modern Apprenticeship at SCQF level 6 in a relevant discipline this would be equivalent to two highers at B.

Relevant experience (RPL)

GCU’s flexible entry policies exist to allow relevant work experience and prior learning to be considered towards standard entry or advanced entry into a course. If you have three to five years of relevant work experience, you can apply for the degree that interests you and get in touch with our admissions team about your application and your eligibility for Recognition of Prior Learning.

Our Biological Sciences course provides flexibility allowing you to choose from a range of optional modules in cell and molecular sciences, microbiology, pharmacology and neuroscience. After completing a common first three trimesters of study you will be able to customise your degree by choosing modules in your area of interest.

This course places emphasis on practical skills and consequently, the Biological Sciences degree course incorporates a substantial element of laboratory work. This is to ensure that our graduates are able to compete successfully for a range of careers.

There is also an option for a placement in the second trimester of year three. Staff at GCU combine their long-term experience of running a successful and well-respected course with the contemporary knowledge derived from active research within the department.

Download the Programme Specification for a detailed breakdown of its structure, what you will learn and other useful information.

Year 1

Cells & Biomolecules; Chemistry; Core Skills in Biosciences 1; Physiology 1; Physiology 2


Year 2

Core Skills in Bioscience 2; Introduction to Microbiology; Mechanisms of Cellular Regulation; Fundamental Cell Biology; Immunology; Practical Skills in Biomolecular Sciences; Pathophysiology


Year 3

Biotechnology; Clinical Microbiology; Fundamentals of Drug Action; Molecular Diagnostics; Systematic & Cellular Pathology; Bioscience Workplace Experience; Experimental Design & Analysis; Food Science; Bioinformatics & Genomics; Nutrition & Public Health; Pharmacology of Chemical Mediators; Molecular Therapeutics


Year 4

Projects & Workshops; Biology of Disease; Translational Medicine; Cell Interactions & Networks; Food Toxicology; Molecular Virology & Microbiology; Neuropharmacology; Emerging and Re-Emerging Infections


*Subject to final approval

The module and assessment information described here is in the final stages of being reviewed by GCU’s Learning Teaching Subcommittee as per the University’s Quality Assurance and Enhancement Process. This ensures that the course offers high quality and relevant education for today’s students. For full details of potential changes to programmes and how they can affect your application please read the Information for students relating to Programme Changes/Cancellation and Withdrawal from Portfolio.

As the University for the Common Good, every student is given a learning experience which will prepare them for developing the four Common Good Attributes; confidence, entrepreneurial mind-set, responsible leadership, and active and global citizenship. 

Within the BSc (Hons) Biological Sciences course, the learning experience will allow you to explore new ideas and engage in exciting activities, whether it be working on projects that will have real impact on future scientific discoveries and developments or contributing to the wider scientific community through research, conference presentations or publication.

We want to ignite the imagination and curiosity of our new scientific generation, making a positive change within the communities they serve on a local, national and global scale.

This course will be assessed by the Royal Society for Biology in 2020.

The tuition fees you pay are mostly determined by your fee status. What is my student fee status?

Annual full-time tuition fees

Home: £1,820*
RUK: £9,250**
International: £13,000

*Scottish student tuition fees are subject to confirmation by the Scottish Government and may change once confirmed.
**Students from the Rest of the UK (RUK) will pay no more than £27,750 towards the total fees of a three or four-year degree.

Fees are subject to change and published here for guidance only.

Additional costs

As a student at the University, there are additional fees and costs which may or may not apply to you, but that you should be aware of.

View additional costs


We provide high-quality education for a fair price; as the University for the Common Good, we are committed to offering accessible higher education for talented students by keeping our tuition fees low and providing a generous scholarship package of over £2 million per year.

View undergraduate scholarships at GCU.