Year 1 is a fantastic introduction to Zoology. Core modules will introduce you to how zoological research can address global challenges such as food security, invasive species and biodiversity conservation, using approaches from genetics and whole-organism biology to ecology and fieldwork.
You’ll experience the exciting world of scientific research right from the start, with a strong emphasis on the application of fundamental research through short research projects and field work.
In Year 2 you’ll continue to develop your laboratory skills and zoological understanding. You’ll begin to specialise in the core topics of zoology, including animal behaviour, development, evolution and physiology.
You’ll also have a marine zoology field course, and optional field courses in Mediterranean ecology, and in UK ecology and behaviour, each including research projects.
This degree offers the opportunity to take an industrial placement or a study abroad year at the end of Year 2, which is a great way to broaden your skills, enhance your university experience and boost your employment prospects.
A highlight of Year 3 is the chance to carry out your own independent research.
This will give you the chance to use the skills and knowledge you’ve gained so far to carry out a project focusing on a topic that interests you under the supervision of one of our field-leading experts.
Diverse projects reflect the expertise of our staff, with study systems involving birds, whales, invasive species, parasites, crop pests and farm animals. Projects can be field, lab, literature or computer based and our best students have published their projects as scientific papers.
Examples of previous final year research projects include:
Coral reef conservation
Satellite telemetry to study habitat use in seals, and the effect of wind farms on sea bird foraging
Sexual selection and sleep behaviour in fruit flies
Animal welfare and sustainable agriculture
Pollinator declines and ecosystem services
Slowing the spread of invasive species
Public attitudes to wildlife and conservation.
You’ll study topics at the cutting edge of zoological research, including the evolution of animal culture, behavioural ecology, conservation, animal science and bird behaviour. You'll also have the chance to go on our popular optional field course in South Africa.
Integrated Masters (MBiol)
Years 1 and 2 are the same as for the BSc and provide a foundation in the subject.
In Year 3 you’ll prepare for Masters-level by studying compulsory and optional modules and undertaking an independent research project. You’ll also conduct a literature review in preparation for your extended project in your final year.
Key to Year 4 is your independent project during which you’ll join a lab at the cutting edge of research. This helps to develop the high-level research and professional skills that will serve you well in your future career. You’ll also choose Masters-level modules such as Population Dynamics, Infectious Diseases, and Conservation Genetics.
Year 4 will also give you the chance to take an optional field course to Africa. The African field course is based at Mpala Research Centre, Laikipia, Kenya. It will provide you with a first-hand appreciation of the ecology and conservation concerns of an African savannah community, both for the wildlife and the people who live in the area.
Find out more about choosing between an integrated Masters and a BSc degree
Part time study
This course is also available to study part-time over 6 years. If you choose this option you'll study alongside our full-time students and the course content will be the same, but delivered at 50% of the intensity. As these courses are delivered primarily for full-time students you may need to attend the University on several occasions each week. Times are likely to vary with each new semester and will depend on the scheduling of compulsory modules and your choice of optional and elective modules.
Details of typical modules/components for this course will be published on May 1st. These may change from time to time. Read more in our Terms and conditions.
Broadening your academic horizons
At Leeds we want you to benefit from the depth and breadth of the University's expertise, to prepare you for success in an ever-changing and challenging world. On this course you broaden your learning through core and/or optional modules. Find out more on the Broadening webpages.
Learning and teaching
You’ll have access to the very best learning resources and academic support during your studies. We’ve been awarded a Gold rating in the Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF, 2017), demonstrating our commitment to delivering consistently outstanding teaching, learning and outcomes for our students.
You’ll experience a wide range of teaching methods including lectures, tutorials, practicals and field research. Your first and second years will focus on these teaching methods, building your skills, understanding and knowledge in preparation for your final year research project, which will see you take on independent research and learning with the guidance of leading experts.
Across all years, additional workshop and seminar sessions will complement your lectures and lab practicals, and you will also undertake private study.
Residential field courses provide an opportunity to study animals in their natural environment, with small group teaching and projects in animal development, behaviour, ecology and conservation.
As a guide, a typical week in your first year includes nine to twelve hours of lectures, three to six hours of practical sessions in the laboratory, tutorials, workshop and seminar sessions, plus private study.
Independent study and research are also crucial to every year of the course. We have excellent library and computing facilities to support your learning, and the University Library offers training to help you make the most of them.
We use a variety of assessment methods to help you develop a broad range of skills. These include practical work, data handling and problem-solving exercises, multiple-choice tests, group work, online and face-to-face discussion groups, computer-based simulations, essays, posters and oral presentations.