Animal Breeding and Genetics at The University of Edinburgh - UCAS

Course options

There are other course options available which may have a different vacancy status or entry requirements – view the full list of options

Course summary

We offer a suite of programmes to deliver the knowledge and skills required to:

  • apply quantitative genetic theory to practical problems in both the biomedical and animal science industries
  • undertake research in a wide range of fields such as evolutionary genetics, animal breeding, human genetics and genome analysis
All our programmes offer the same core content, but you can tailor your degree to reflect your interests. This programme is specifically for those interested in the application of quantitative genetics to animal breeding. If you are interested in other applications you could consider our alternative programmes in:
  • Quantitative Genetics and Genome Analysis
  • Evolutionary Genetics
  • Human Complex Trait Genetics
Why study animal breeding and genetics? This degree could be for you if you are interested in:
  • food security
  • the health of companion animals
  • the conservation of animals in the wild
We will provide you with the theory and knowledge of analytical tools so that you can tackle a wide range of problems. This programme provides essential skills in:
  • quantitative genetics
  • population genetics
  • data analysis
  • statistical methods
  • genome analysis
As an Animal Breeding and Genetics student, you will focus on the application of quantitative genetics to animal breeding. You will learn about the:
  • structure of breeding programmes for the improvement of production and health-related traits
  • genetic evaluation of livestock and the role of genomic information
  • use of new technologies, such as metagenomics and gene editing
The core course of this specialism is Animal Genetic Improvement, which is taught by colleagues from Scotland’s Rural Colleges (SRUC) and the Roslin Institute as well as having industry input. Additional courses can be selected from any offered within the suite to build a degree to suit your interests. Why study here? Our programme offers a small course experience taught by active members of the quantitative genetic research community. We are based in the Institute of Ecology and Evolution, part of the School of Biological Sciences, and for this programme we bring together expertise from across the University and SRUC. We will cover applications to various livestock and aquaculture and look at health and production traits. In addition, this programme will emphasise the conceptual underpinnings of the field, with rigorous training in statistical genetics and exposure to other applications of quantitative genetics. You will study alongside students with a broad spectrum of interests using quantitative genetic tools, including human genetics and evolutionary biology. Likewise, the staff involved in teaching will come from different disciplines. The University has an international reputation as a leader in quantitative genetics. The first genetic department was set up in the University of Edinburgh in 1919, and the postgraduate Diploma in Genetics was offered to students beginning in 1949, with a substantial component of quantitative genetics. The MSc in Animal Breeding started in 1975 through a collaboration with the Agriculture Department. Edinburgh continues to be at the forefront of research in the genetics of animal breeding, evolution, and human health. Many past students hold positions within the animal breeding industry.


See our website for detailed programme information.

Entry requirements

Entry requirements for individual programmes vary, so please check the details for the specific programme you wish to apply for on our website. You will also need to meet the University’s language requirements.

Fees and funding

Tuition fees

No fee information has been provided for this course

Tuition fee status depends on a number of criteria and varies according to where in the UK you will study. For further guidance on the criteria for home or overseas tuition fees, please refer to the UKCISA website .

Additional fee information

Tuition fees vary between degree programmes. Find the specific fees for your chosen programme on our website.
Animal Breeding and Genetics at The University of Edinburgh - UCAS