BSc (Hons) Biological Sciences (GCU Pathways)

GCU Pathways

Pathways students enrol on the undergraduate BSc Hons Biological Sciences at Glasgow Caledonian University (GCU). In the first two years, you'll study an HND Applied Biological Sciences at Glasgow Kelvin College while preparing for year three and four (for Honours) of the degree at GCU.

This course is for you if you want flexibility in your science degree where a number of science subjects; cell and molecular biology, pharmacology and microbiology will be covered.

The degree allows you to focus on one of these particular areas by offering module choices in years three and four of the degree. A student studying Biological Sciences will graduate with a solid knowledge of key topics in this field.

You will also undertake a comprehensive lab programme that will allow you to develop practical skills ensuring that you are in a strong position in terms of employability.

The Biological Sciences course at 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.

Graduate opportunities

Graduates with a Biological Sciences degree have a wide variety of options available to them upon graduation. Postgraduate study and teaching (secondary school level) are just two of the options available.

The life sciences industry is booming in the west of Scotland and across the Central Belt and many of our graduates gain employment in any one of the research and development companies, working in labs or in project management.

A sales career in pharmaceuticals or equipment/instrumentation can be a lucrative career.
Although you are a student enrolled on the BSc (Hons) Biological Sciences course at GCU, years one and two of the course will take place at Glasgow Kelvin College.

The first two years will involve you working towards achieving an HND in Applied Biological Sciences and the subjects you study will underpin the teaching at GCU in Year Three and Year Four of the degree.  

Year Three

Core modules:
  • Molecular Diagnostics
  • Experimental Design and Analysis 
  • Pharmacology of Chemical Mediators
Optional modules:
  • Biotechnology  
  • Clinical Microbiology  
  • Fundamentals of drug action 
  • Systematic and Cellular Pathology
  • Cell Signalling and Trafficking Therapies
  • Food Science
  • Genomics and Bioinformatics
  • Nutrition and Public Health
  • Bioscience Placement
Year Four

Core modules:
  • Project and Workshop
  • Biology of Disease
  • Translational Medicine
Optional modules:
  • Concepts in Infectious Disease
  • Food Toxicology 
  • Molecular Mechanisms of Microbial Pathogenicity
  • Neuropharmacology
  • Tissue Networks and Disease

Study Options

  • 2022/23


Mode of study


Start date



BSc (Hons)
Full Time
4 Years
Aug 2022
Multiple Locations
Award Mode of study Duration Start date Location UCAS  
BSc (Hons) Full Time 4 Years Aug 2022 Multiple Locations Enquire Apply

Year 1
Scottish Higher: Standard entry requirement: BB or equivalent Nat 5: B (Chemistry, Biology, English and Maths) 

Progression criteria Progress to year three with HND Applied Biological Sciences - graded units AB

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

All entry requirements listed here should be used as a guide and represent the minimum required to be considered for entry. Applicants who are made a conditional offer of a place may be asked to achieve more than is stated.

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.

International pathways

If you do not meet the English language requirements, you may be eligible for our pre-sessional English programme which is taught at our Glasgow campus.

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

Tuition fees 2021/22

College-based: This information will be available from the college itself
GCU-based: £1,820*

*Scottish student tuition fees are subject to confirmation by the Scottish Government and may change once confirmed.

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.

Students progressing to Year Three of the course receive an induction package that prepares them for a seamless transition onto the GCU campus.

Comprehensive lab programmes are in place with extended lab work in both Year Three (Experimental Design and Analysis) and Year Four (Molecular Biology Workshop and Honours Project).
The department runs a Career Tracks initiative which supports students in their search for employment and offers support workshops alongside the careers department.

Industry experts are also invited into the department which provides networking opportunities for students.

In Year Four, GEL (Glasgow Economic Leadership) masterclasses are provided where life science companies, both local and global, provide insight into their operations and outline careers available within their industry.

In Year Three there is also the possibility of a trimester-long placement; this is a student–led initiative with academic staff providing support throughout.

In addition, many of the lecturers on our modules are external subject-specific experts working at the forefront in their field.
You will be assessed using different formats:
  • Unseen exams 
  • Open book exams 
  • Multiple choice questions
  • Short/long essays 
  • Presentations 
  • Posters 
  • Wiki/blog 
  • Lab report 
  • Project 
  • Dissertation
This course is accredited by the Royal Society of Biology (RSB).