Biology with a Foundation Year

Swansea University

Degree level: Undergraduate
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Course summary

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Biology is a wide and fascinating subject, involving the scientific study of living organisms from bacteria to the largest mammals, and this course, designed for those who do not have the appropriate qualifications to start the three-year BSc degree, will help you to develop knowledge and skills to open up a range of exciting career opportunities. As a student on the BSc Biology with Integrated Foundation, you will study in our new laboratories within a state-of-the-art £4.2m science lab facility. The £1.3m Visualisation Centre, which displays and manipulates multi-dimensional information from animal tag monitoring, is unique in the world; and we also have a £1.6m purpose-built 18m catamaran-class survey vessel equipped with state-of-the-art survey and research equipment. Biology at Swansea is ranked highly in the UK for student satisfaction, with 90% (National Student Survey 2018), and the course offers an excellent range of laboratory and field-based topics. We are 16th in the UK for graduate prospects (Complete University Guide 2018) and the subject gives you a wide range of specialist and generic skills that can lead to career opportunities around the world in fields such as medicine, veterinary science, environmental management and conservation, and teaching. # You will study in a research-intensive environment - 7th in the UK for Research Excellence (Research Excellence Framework 2014-2021) – and you will learn from academics at the cutting-edge of their fields. Our renowned team includes Professor Rory Wilson, Rolex Laureate and Chief Scientific Consultant behind National Geographic’s Great Migrations, who invented the Daily Diary tag to monitor animal movement and behaviour; and Professor Tariq Butt, who specialises in the bio-control of crops (fungi) and develops products and strategies for pest control. Our experts advised on the Blue Planet II TV series, and our staff also includes Associate Professor Carole Llewellyn, whose innovative algal research is helping provide solutions to global challenges of climate, human health, bioenergy, food security and industrial biotechnology. Teaching excels in such an environment and we are 16th in the UK for teaching quality (Times & Sunday Times University Guide 2020). In your Foundation year you will have the opportunity to build up the scientific and numerical understanding you will need before joining the BSc Biology course, which is accredited by the Royal Society of Biology, and covers themes including animal and marine welfare and conservation, the biological control of invertebrate pests, microbiology, and ocean and climate. Our proximity to a diverse range of contrasting environments plus our own facilities provides a wide scope for customising your learning experience. Local, residential and international field courses will allow you to work in habitats such as the spectacular marine coastal ecosystems, freshwater/wetland environments and terrestrial habitats of Gower. “During my time here, I have developed a fascination with animal behaviour. I have learned so much from the inspirational biosciences staff, about such a broad range of topics. Swansea has provided me with amazing opportunities to do science in the great outdoors and put theory into practice. From spending a summer on the research vessel conducting benthic surveys to hiking around the winelands of South Africa researching baboon behaviour to taking an interdisciplinary approach researching impacts of hydro-electric power plants in the Sikkim Himalayas.”

  • Charlotte Rees Roderick, Biology graduate
We guarantee that you will be made a conditional offer for a course at Swansea University. Subject requirements will apply. Please come along to our next Open Day or get in touch for further information.

Course details


Year 0: You will study a range of content to prepare you for the BSc, typically including: foundation biology; techniques in ecology; dealing with data; laboratory skills; molecular biology and biochemistry; development of key skills for biologists; literature review. Year 1: Areas studied typically include: animal diversity; form and function; cellular and microbial biology; marine and terrestrial ecology and animal behaviour; molecular and evolutionary biology; plants and algae – diversity, form and function and core skills for bioscientists. Year 2: Areas studied typically include: animal physiology; cell and immunobiology; coastal marine ecology; ecological microbiology and the cycles of life; ichthyology; molecular ecology; parasitology; plant ecology; terrestrial vertebrates; field ecology (residential) and animal conservation and welfare. Year 3: Areas studied typically include: biodiversity; biological control of invertebrate pests; epidemiology of infectious diseases; physics for biologists; plant conservation and ecology; sensory ecology; laboratory or field professional skills, phylogeny and macroevolution, hormones and behaviour, international field courses.

Assessment method

You will be taught through a combination of lectures, tutorials, seminars and discussion groups supported by practical classes and field courses. You will be assessed through a variety of methods, including examinations, coursework and a practical research project.

Unistats information

Operated by the Office for Students
Student satisfaction
Employment after 6 months (Most common jobs)
Go onto work and study

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How to apply

Application deadlines

If your application is completed by the following date, it’s guaranteed to be considered:

15 January

*If you apply after this deadline, universities or colleges don’t have to consider your application if they’ve filled their spaces, so the sooner you apply, the better!

Application codes

You will need these codes when you add a choice to your application.

Course codeC101
Institution code S93
Campus nameSingleton Park Campus
Campus code-

Points of entry

The following entry points are available for this course:

  • Year 1

International applicants

Entry requirements

Qualification requirements

QualificationOfferFurther information
A level CCD To include Biology or Human Biology
Pearson BTEC Level 3 National Extended Diploma (first teaching from September 2016) DMM Only science - related BTECs will be considered (Excluding Animal Management and Health Science)
Access to HE Diploma 27 Merits to include Biology
International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme 24 points To include 4 in HL or 7 in SL Biology or Human Biology
Welsh Baccalaureate - Advanced Skills Challenge Certificate (first teaching September 2015) Requirements are as for A levels where you can substitute the same non-subject specific grade for the Welsh Baccalaureate Advanced Level Core Grade
Extended Project We recognise the EPQ as an excellent indicator of success. If you are predicted a Grade B or above in the EPQ, you will receive an offer with a one grade reduction, to include your EPQ with a grade B.

Fees and funding

Tuition fees

No fee information has been provided for this course

Additional fee information

No additional fees or cost information has been supplied for this course, please contact the provider directly.

Provider information

Visit our website

Swansea University
Singleton Park

Clearing contact details

Clearing Helpline

0800 094 9071

Course Clearing information

Additional information

Thursday 15th August - 7am - 8pm Friday 16th August 7am - 7pm Saturday 17th - Friday 23rd August 9am - 6pm Tuesday 27th August onwards 9am - 5pm

Course contact details

Visit our course page
Swansea University Admissions Office

01792 295111

The Admissions Office, Swansea University

01792 295111

01792 295110

Biology with a Foundation Year at Swansea University - UCAS