The BSc in Biological Sciences (Wildlife Health Science) is an undergraduate degree, the aim of which is to give you a thorough foundation in biosciences, with further specialisation into aspects of biology required by wild animal professionals.

The overall aim of this course is to produce graduates with high levels of understanding about animal health that are able to apply that to wildlife health situations. This degree is delivered together with the Zoological Society of London.

Course overview

In the first year, you will learn about normal animal physiology including all major body systems and biological processes. In the second year, you will explore disease processes, pathogen biology and an introduction to wild animal biology, as well as carrying out a short wild animal biology focused research project.

In the third year, in addition to two core wildlife related modules, you will be able to tailor the direction of your course, choosing from a programme of advanced study chosen from a range of optional modules. You will also carry out a longer wildlife health research project, supervised by a member of academic staff, during which you will continue to develop your practical, analytical and reasoning skills as well as communication, teamwork and professional development skills. 

The compulsory third year modules will give you in-depth teaching about the health and welfare of wild animals, as well as providing experience in wildlife research. The projects in your second, and third years are relevant to wild animal biology and this focus aims to make sure that you are ‘work ready’ for a career in a wildlife setting, either in an academic role or in industry.

Work Placements and Research Projects

It is possible to undertake a work placement between the second and third year of study (Certificate in Work- Based Learning and Research). This gives you an insight into the working environment and could be wildlife health related. It is important to note that you will be responsible for finding and securing a placement, although you will be given guidance and support before and during the placement.


“Whether your interest is in emerging infectious diseases that could cause the next pandemic, protecting livestock health for food security, or in conserving endangered species, a good understanding of wildlife health is essential.

"Wildlife health professionals need both advanced knowledge and skills in the health sciences, and a contextual understanding of how these are applied in wild settings. We have created this course to give anyone interested in a career in wildlife health, be that applied or research the best possible student."

Stuart Patterson, Course Leader and Lecturer in Wild Animal Health


Our biosciences courses follow a ‘pathway’ approach. This means that in your first year, you study a broad range of modules providing you with a fundamental understanding of biosciences.

As you progress through your course, additional study options become available to you, culminating in a final year research project that provides you with the opportunity to choose, with a supervisor, the subject of your choice for further study.

Please note that these are indicative modules and may be subject to change.

Year 1

Compulsory modules

  • Biology of Cells (15 credits)
    Gain understanding of cellular structure and function, placing particular emphasis on cellular architecture, cell communication and the processing of signals received by each individual cell, and how cells are affected by the structure and function of the specialised extracellular matrix environment. This will be combined with an introduction to homeostasis at the cellular, extracellular, tissue and organ levels of the body.
  • Inheritance, Genetics and Evolution (15)
    Appreciate how different characteristics are inherited leading to a fuller understanding of the mechanisms underlying all biological processes in health and disease. This module will provide a comprehensive overview of genetics from molecules to populations, and how genetics can be applied to increase our understanding of diseases and in the design of new therapies to treat them.
  • Developmental Biology (15)
    An introduction to the principles of developmental biology in humans and other vertebrates. By the end of the module, you will understand the concepts of how a single cell forms an embryo and how genes control this process.
  • The Moving Animal (15)
    Locomotion is one of the primary behaviours of daily living in humans and animals, and healthy locomotor function is essential to well-being. The aim of this module is to introduce you to the principles of movement across the range of organisational levels: from the whole organism interacting with its environment, to integrated systems, tissues, and cells. This module will provide a framework to recognise healthy and impaired locomotor function, and highlight interactions among different body systems in the whole organism. You will explore how many fundamental structures and mechanisms are shared between different body systems, and how the different systems interact and influence one another.
  • Integrated Physiology I (15)
    Explore the reproductive physiology in humans and other mammals from fertilisation to an adult capable of reproduction, and study the basic concepts in immunology by defining the components of the immune system, and how they work in concert to eradicate pathogens.
  • Integrated Physiology II (15)
    A comprehensive introduction to the fundamentals of physiology using a systems-based approach. Units on fundamentals of cellular biochemistry and metabolic processes, digestive physiology, cardiovascular and respiratory systems, neurology and renal physiology, will provide a good overview of how biological processes at the cellular, tissue and organ level contribute to function of the organism as a whole.
  • Problem Definition and Investigation (30)
    Develop your critical and analytical thinking whilst consolidating the biological principles learned in Year One. You will work in small groups to answer scientific questions in different areas of current research strength within the various departments of the RVC. Then, you will undertake an in-depth independent library-based project focused on an active area of research, under the supervision of an academic member of staff. Through independent analysis of the scientific literature, you will review why the scientific question that you are focusing on is important, describe the methods by which it is being investigated, and provide an analysis, with appropriate conclusions, drawn from published data.

Year 2

Optional modules

  • Basis of Disease (15 credits)
    This module is divided into three units: Genetics, Protein Malfunction, Cell Cycle.
  • Ageing and Degeneration (15)
    This module is divided into three units: Ageing, Degeneration, Immunopathology.
  • Principles of Infectious Diseases (15)
    Students will gain insight into how pathogens enter the host and establish infectious. Students will study examples of bacterial, viral and parasitic infections and will focus on principles and general concepts, with some illustrative examples.
  • Control of Infectious Diseases (15)
    This module will provide an introduction epidemiology. Students will analyse various strategies that can be used to prevent spread of the different pathogens (including prions). You will appreciate how the understanding of the epidemiology of pathogens leads to better control strategies.
  • Wild Animal Biology (15)
    Explore the important topics in conservation as well as reviewing the basic anatomy and physiology of the non-captive animals. Topics will include anatomy and physiology of non-domestic animals, principles of decision making in conservation, and assessment of currently running conservation projects.
  • Research Project (30)
    Undertake a pathway-specific research project. These projects involve a topic selected by an RVC supervisor in light of the areas of expertise and cutting-edge research found within the college. However, you are welcome to propose specific topics for investigation to a supervisor in that area of expertise.

Optional modules

  • Imaging of Disease (15)
    An overview of the different ways in which disease processes can be visualised at the molecular, cellular, tissue and whole animal level. It is organised into three week-long blocks covering the principles of pathology, the imaging techniques used in vitro to study cells and tissues, and the techniques used in vivo to study whole animals. The module will be of interest if you plan to develop a career in biomedical or comparative research using whole animal models and/or in vitro modelling systems.
  • Introduction to Animal Behaviour, Welfare and Ethics (15)
    An introduction to the concepts of animal behaviour, welfare science and ethics. You will learn how to scientifically measure behaviour and welfare, how ethical frameworks can help you decide how animals should be treated, why animals behave as they do, the physiology of stress and pain, and more. Practical sessions will include quantifying animal behaviour, applied farm animal behaviour (stockmanship), and husbandry of common livestock species.
  • Introduction to One Health (15)
    An introduction to One Health principles and current disease challenges, and the application of a One Health perspective to disease prevention and control. You will explore the relationships between animal, human and ecosystem health using examples of infectious and non-communicable diseases to illustrate One Health principles within an evolutionary and ecological context.

Year 3

Compulsory modules

  • Biodiversity Action Plan Dissertation (30 credits)
  • Wildlife Health Research Project (30)
    Undertake an investigative hypothesis driven project or dissertation that covers your own research interests in wild animal health, and at the end of the year present the results in the form of a written report and as an oral presentation. These projects involve a topic selected by an RVC supervisor in light of the areas of expertise and cutting-edge research found within the college. However, you are welcome to propose specific topics for investigation to a supervisor in that area of expertise
  • Interventions in Wild Animal Health (15)
    Where anthropogenic threats endanger free-living populations of animals, people increasingly see a need to intervene for the conservation or welfare of these populations. However, given the need to understand complex ecological systems, the disease risks of manipulating them and the potential stress of intervention methods, such activities require detailed planning, highly skilled input and scientific evaluation to ensure lessons are learned. Using real examples this module will help you to develop a conceptual understanding of intervention methods.
  • Detection, surveillance, and emerging diseases (15)
    Morbidity and mortality in free-living populations of wild animals are difficult to detect and monitor given ecosystem processes and the bias of convenience sampling strategies. In this module, you will learn about the complex methods required to detect and monitor changes in endemic diseases, detect emergent diseases, and interpret the findings in a scientific manner.

Optional modules

  • Advanced Concepts in Reproduction (15)
    Build upon the knowledge you have gained in the first year in Reproduction. You will concentrate on the veterinary applications of research and highlight how it makes a real impact on animal health and welfare. You will learn cellular and molecular aspects of reproductive biology from gonadal development and function to ovulation, fertilization and embryo and germ cells development, and establishment and maintenance of pregnancy and placental immunology in animals.
  • Applied Molecular Microbiology (15)
    In addition to their importance as pathogens, microbes have many beneficial uses. This module will give students the opportunity to explore the beneficial biotechnological use of microbes in the food industry, and in human and animal health. The module will explore the use of microbes as factories, microbes and food, microbes in research and microbes and health. The module will highlight the historical and state of the art applications of microbes as useful organisms, and you will have hands-on opportunities to explore how microbes can be used for the production of biopharmaceuticals.
  • Advanced Skeletal Pathobiology (15)
    Failures in the skeletal system, such as osteoporosis and osteoarthritis, provide one of the major challenges to human and animal welfare. Research activities in skeletal pathobiology are commonly directed at understanding the development, growth, ageing and functional maintenance of the skeletal system as well as the evolution of bone and joint pathologies. This module will introduce you to a broad range of skeletal tissues, and explore the anatomy, physiology and functional failure and on occasion include comparative aspects of the skeletal system across species.
  • Animal Behaviour and Cognition (15)
    Conduct theoretical and applied training in animal behaviour science and animal cognition. You will focus on wild animals, but relevance to domesticated animals will be made clear and examples will be given. You will cover mammals and birds in depth, but will also build your understanding of reptiles, amphibians, fish and invertebrates. This module includes a dog training demonstration and a visit to a professional animal behaviour conference.
  • Comparative Animal Locomotion (30)
    An exciting, hands-on introduction to the field of comparative animal locomotion at all levels. If we can understand how brains, muscles, and skeletons work together to produce locomotion, in the full context of other animals and the natural environment, then we will not only have solved one of the great mysteries of the natural world, but we stand to improve the lives of all animals, including humans, through treatment of neurological and musculoskeletal disease.
    Animal locomotion is an integrative, dynamic field of study and it is currently at an extraordinary juncture. You will need a willingness to think conceptually about how animals move, and examples will be drawn across the animal kingdom so you can appreciate the breath-taking diversity of movement strategies.
  • Development and Disease (15)
    The nervous system is by far the most complex tissue in any animal. By understanding the molecular and cellular basis of nervous system development, we aim to understand how changes in these processes result in developmental defects – both morphological and function. For example, significant change in the morphology of the brain can be seen in conditions such as holoprosencephaly whereas functional changes are seen in autism and schizophrenia. This module will give insight into the latest research in nervous system development, and will give you the opportunity to develop your understanding of how researchers employ animal models in this research and inform you of the latest applications of developmental biology research, including the use of stem cells and molecular editing techniques.
  • Endocrine and Metabolic Syndromes (15)
    The increasing problem of obesity in the human and pet population has resulted in a dramatic increase in research efforts to understand and influence metabolism, and treat associated side effects. We will seek to integrate the basic science of endocrinology into more translational topics relating to the diseases and syndromes associated with disorders of endocrinology and metabolism. The module will focus specifically on clinical abnormalities affecting blood glucose regulation and feeding, growth and metabolism, endocrine-related cancers, and reproductive disorders including those affecting sex differentiation and intersex.
  • Parasitology of Human and Veterinary Tropical Diseases (15)
    Study major human and veterinary parasitic tropical diseases from the viewpoints of immunology, epidemiology, pathology, treatment and control. This module will cover major human tropical diseases caused by protozoan and helminth parasites. Major veterinary tropical parasitic diseases that cause significant production losses and/or are significant zoonoses will be covered. For each disease, interesting aspects of research conducted on these organisms will be highlighted.
  • Science of Animal Welfare (15)
    Undertake theoretical and methodological training in animal welfare science, which is broadly equivalent to the biology of sensations, motivation and emotions. This module will cover a range of behavioural, physiological and other indicators of diverse welfare states, illustrated with examples including wild, farm, companion, and laboratory animals. As part of this module, you will take small group tours of appropriate animals in the Queen Mother Hospital for Animals to observe behavioural indicators of pain and sickness and the efforts made to alleviate suffering.

You can also choose from several optional modules at King’s College London during your third year.

Teaching

You will be exposed to a wide range of learning experiences in all four years of the course that include lectures, seminars, workshops, and a variety of directed and self-directed learning activities that will include practical exercises and self-assessment tools.

Problem solving exercises, case studies, reflection and role modelling will improve your reasoning skills whilst your practical skills will be developed through demonstration, observation, prosecution, feedback, and experimentation. Other key employability skills will be taught through group work, structured learning, practical work, presentations (oral and written) and problem-solving exercises. Regular tutorials will encourage you to reflect on your learning and provide opportunities for feedback on your progress.

Teaching staff

The RVC has renowned researchers and scientists delivering each module. Our staff are passionate about their field, and they are highly qualified. All RVC students are assured teaching of the highest standard.

Teaching contact hours

In a typical week, you will have between 15 - 20 contact hours of teaching. These contact hours are usually made up from:

  • Personal tutorial, small group and practical teaching: 8 – 10 hours per week
  • Large-group teaching: 8 – 10 hours per week
  • Self-direct learning: 5 hours per week

Assessment and feedback

You will be continuously assessed throughout your course, followed by final examinations. You will also be assessed on in-course work, such as completing tests, analysing data and samples, delivering presentations, and writing essays. A major part of your biological sciences courses is the undertaking of a research project.

The estimated breakdown of assessment for your final grade is:

  • Written (coursework, which may include essays, presentations, journal clubs) - 20%
  • Examination (practical, written) – 33%
  • Projects (individual and group work, research) - 47%

The standard academic requirements for entry to the BSc Biological Sciences (Wildlife Health Sciences) are outlined below.

Lower offers may be made to students who meet our Widening Participation criteria.

Academic qualifications

Click on the links below for details of the standard academic requirements for this course.

A Levels

EITHER:

ABB* in three A Level subjects including:

  • Biology or Chemistry at grade A

OR:

BBB* in three A Level subjects including:

  • Biology or Chemistry
  • Another science subject from Biology, Chemistry, Physics or Maths. 
  • A third subject of your choice

*We also require a 'pass' in the science practical for each subject, where taking the English curriculum.

Contextual Offers

Offers of a grade below in each subject will be made to those meeting certain Widening Participation (WP) criteria, i.e. a BBB offer would become CCC for WP students, an ABB offer would become BCC for WP students. No separate application is required but care leavers should submit proof from the relevant local authority once they have applied.

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For further information on our policy on reformed UK qualifications, please click here.

We support the opportunity to take additional subjects at AS Level, but do not prescribe or prefer any particular subject choices or combinations.

The non-prescribed A Level subject(s) should not overlap with Biology or Chemistry, and cannot be General Studies.  

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See additional GCSE requirements.

Welsh, Scottish, Irish applicants

Welsh Baccalaureate

Applicants who have achieved the Advanced Skills Challenge Certificate with grade B will be accepted with two A Levels, including:

EITHER:

  • Biology or Chemistry at grade A
  • Another subject of your choice (excl. General Studies) at grade B

OR:

  • Biology or Chemistry at grade B
  • Another science subject from Biology, Chemistry, Physics or Maths at grade B

We support the opportunity to take additional subjects at AS Level, but do not prescribe or prefer any particular subject choices or combinations.

See additional GCSE requirements.

Contextual Offers

Offers of a grade below in each subject will be made to those meeting certain Widening Participation (WP) criteria, i.e. a BB + B in Welsh Bacc. offer would become CC + C in Welsh Bacc. for WP students, an AB + B in Welsh Bacc. offer would become BC + C in Welsh Bacc. for WP students. No separate application is required but care leavers should submit proof from the relevant local authority once they have applied.

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Scottish Highers/Advanced Highers

EITHER:

Advanced Highers in:

  • Chemistry or Biology at grade A
  • Another subject of your choice at grade B

OR:

Advanced Highers in:

  • Biology or Chemistry at grade B
  • Another science subject from Biology, Chemistry, Physics and Maths at grade B

In addition to:

5 Highers at grade B or above

and at least National 5* grade B in:

  • English
  • Mathematics
  • Biology, Chemistry or Physics

* If you have bypassed one or more of these subjects at National 5, you will need this subject/grade at Higher level. 

Contextual Offers

Offers of a grade below in each subject will be made to those meeting certain Widening Participation (WP) criteria, i.e. a BB offer would become CC for WP students, an AB offer would become BC for WP students. No separate application is required but care leavers should submit proof from the relevant local authority once they have applied.

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Irish Leaving Certificate

H2,H2,H3,H3,H3,H3 including:

  • Biology or Chemistry
  • Another science subject from Biology, Chemistry, Physics and Maths.

If not included in the above, O3 is required in:

  • A second natural science (i.e. Biology, Chemistry or Physics)
  • English
  • Mathematics

International Baccalaureate

EITHER:

655 at Higher Level including:

  • Biology or Chemistry at grade 6

OR:

555 at Higher Level including:

  • Biology or Chemistry
  • Another science subject from Biology, Chemistry, Physics and Maths
  • One other subject of your choice

Our standard offer is based on specific subject-grade requirements, rather than a total points score.

See additional GCSE requirements below. 

Where candidates have not taken GCSEs or an equivalent qualification prior to the IB Diploma, they will need a minimum of grade 5 in:

  • EITHER MYP Mathematics (standard or extended) OR SL Mathematics Analysis and approaches OR SL Mathematics Applications and interpretation.
  • SL English A (or grade 6 in English B)

Mathematical Studies cannot be accepted in lieu of Mathematics.

Diplomas and Further Certificates (including Access and L3 Extended Diploma)

All qualifications below are considered on top of existing Level 2 requirements (e.g. GCSEs, National 5s, O Levels, etc). If you are not sure you have equivalent qualifications, please contact us at admissions@rvc.ac.uk 

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Access to HE Diploma (England and Wales)

Diplomas must be Science based and include a minimum of:

15 Level 3 credits in Chemistry at Distinction or 15 Level 3 credits in Biology at Distinction, and with Merits achieved in all other Level 3 modules.

See the Access to Higher Education website to search for possible courses in your area. We do not accept on-line versions of the course. 

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Birkbeck College's CertHE in Life Sciences for Subjects Allied to Medicine

Merits must be achieved in the Chemistry and Biology modules.

See the Birkbeck website for further details.

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Level 3 Extended Diploma

Applied Generals

BTEC Level 3 National Extended Diploma in Applied Science or Applied Science (Biomedical Science)

DDD overall with Distinctions in:        

  • Principles and Applications of Science I (90)       
  • Principles and Applications of Science II (120)       
  • Science Investigation Skills (120)       
  • Contemporary Issues in Science (120)

In addition:

For Applied Science: at least three units from Group A must be taken.

For Applied Science (Biomedical Science): at least four units from Group A must be taken.

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Tech Levels

City & Guilds Advanced Technical Extended Diploma in Animal Management (Science): DDD overall with Distinctions in:         

  • Biological Systems of Animals
  • Synoptic Assessment (1) or (2)
  • Theory Exam (2)
  • Undertake Investigative Project in the Land-Based Industries

Pearson BTEC Level 3 National Extended Diploma in Animal Management (1080): DDD overall with Distinctions in:         

  • Animal Biology (120)   
  • Animal Breeding and Genetics (120)         
  • Animal Welfare and Ethics (120)        
  • Practical Skills in Animal Science** (60)       
  • Animal Metabolism** (60)

The following units are relevant to the course, but will not disadvantage your application if not taken:

  • Exotic Animal Husbandry
  • Zoological Animal Health & Husbandry and/or Wildlife Ecology and Conservation Management

**Please note, not all colleges will offer all units so do check beforehand to ensure eligibility. 

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Level 3 Extended Diploma (unreformed syllabus)

Applied Science (2010 syllabus) QCF

DDD overall required, including Distinctions in the following units:

  • Genetics and Genetics Engineering
  • Physiology of Human Body Systems or Physiology of Human Regulation and Reproduction
  • Using Statistics in Science or Informatics in Science

Plus two of: 

  • Biomedical Science Techniques; Chemical Laboratory Techniques; Chemistry for Biology Technicians

Animal Management (2010 syllabus) QCF

DDD overall required, including Distinctions in the following units:

  • Understand the Principles of Animal Nutrition 
  • Understand the Principles and Carry Out the Practice of Biochemistry and Microbiology
  • Understand the Principles of Inheritance and Genetic Manipulation 
  • Fundamentals of Science 
  • Chemistry for Biology Technicians or Understand the Principles of Chemistry for Biological and Medical Science

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Cambridge Pre-U

EITHER:

M1, M2, M2 in three Principal Subjects including:

  • Biology or Chemistry at grade M1

OR:

M2, M2, M2 in three Principal subjects including:

  • Biology or Chemistry
  • Another science subject from Biology, Chemistry, Physics or Maths
  • One other subject of your choice

Applications are welcome from those who meet our science requirements and are taking a combination of A Levels and the Cambridge Pre-U. Offers will be made on an individual basis, depending on the combinations.

GCSEs (only in addition to other qualifications)

  • 6-6 in Combined Science or BB in Science (Double Award) or B in both Science & Additional Science or 6/B in two of Biology, Chemistry and Physics. 

And at least grade 6 (B) in:

  • English Language
  • Mathematics

For further information on our policy on reformed UK qualifications, please click here.

Welsh applicants

Please note, GCSE Mathematics-Numeracy will not be accepted instead of a B in GCSE Mathematics but is welcomed alongside it, and as part of the Welsh Baccalaureate.

International and EU applicants

The standard international entry requirements below are in line with our double-science 'BBB' offer at A Level. Those taking a single science should contact us for details of the standard offer for their qualification. 

For advice on the acceptability of your qualifications please send details, referring to each of the relevant subjects (Biology, Chemistry, Physics, Maths, and English) to admissions@rvc.ac.uk.

For more information useful to international applicants, please go to the International students section.

North America

USA

High school graduation:

We will accept any of the following combinations:

  • Graduate High School with at least four full-year Advanced Placement examinations at grade 4443 including two science subjects* both at grade 4.
  • Graduate High School with at least four full-year Advanced Placement examinations at grade 4443 including one science subject* at grade 4 and a SAT subject test in a different science subject* at 650+

ACT Test:

We will accept any of the following combinations:

  • ACT score of 26 (including Writing test) plus APs in 2 science subjects* at grade 4;
  • ACT score of 26 (including Writing test) plus IB Higher Level certificates in 2 science subjects * at Grade 5.
  • ACT score of 26 (including Writing test) plus SAT subject tests in 2 science subjects* at 650+ and one other subject at 650+

SAT Test:

We will accept any of the following combinations:

  • SAT score of 570 in each of 'Evidence-Based Reading and Writing' and 'Math', and an Essay score of 5,5,5 (in any order), plus APs in 2 science subjects* at grade 4;
  • SAT score of 570 in each of 'Evidence-Based Reading and Writing' and 'Math', and an Essay score of 5,5,5 (in any order), plus IB Higher Level certificates in two science subjects* at Grade 5.
  • SAT score of 570 in each of 'Evidence-Based Reading and Writing' and 'Math', and an Essay score of 5,5,5 (in any order) plus SAT subject tests in two science subjects* at 650+ and one other subject at 650+

*Science subjects: Where “science subjects” is specified above, applicants are required to fulfil the requirements by offering either Biology or Chemistry plus one further science, which can be any of the following: Biology, Chemistry, Physics, Calculus or Mathematics. If you are only taking once science subject, please contact the Admissions Office.

The RVC's institution code for College Board to be used when sending your results is 7970

Canada

As there are regional differences, please contact Admissions for province-specific requirements. BC and ON are shown below as a guide:  

British Columbia

Pass the British Columbia Certificate of Graduation with five grade 12 courses. An 86% average across grade 12 courses, with 86% in Biology or Anatomy & Physiology or Chemistry, and a second science (Biology*, Anatomy & Physiology*, Chemistry, Physics or Maths). A minimum of 73% is required in grade 11 English and Mathematics if not achieved as part of the above. *The second science cannot be Anatomy & Physiology 12 if Biology 12 has already been taken. 

Ontario

Pass the Ontario Secondary School Diploma with six grade 12 'U' courses. An 86% average is required across grade 12 courses, with 86% in Biology or Chemistry, and a second science (Biology, Chemistry, Physics or Maths). A minimum of 73% is required in grade 11 English and Mathematics if not achieved as part of the above.  

Caribbean

Obtain Caribbean Advanced Proficiency Examination (CAPE) unit 2 grades of II, II, II (two, two, two) in Biology or Chemistry, and a second science (Biology, Chemistry, Physics or Maths) plus a third subject of your choice in addition to Caribbean Secondary Education Certificate (CSEC) grade II (two) in English A, Mathematics and two individual sciences from Biology, Chemistry and Physics.

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Europe

Where an English grade is not specified, applicants will also need to meet one of our accepted English Language qualifications

European Baccalaureate

Pass the Baccalaureate with 75% overall, and 7.5 in elective Biology or Chemistry and Maths 5/Advanced Maths. 7 in L1 English is an accepted English language requirement.

Denmark

Pass the Bevis for Studentereksamen with grades 10,10,7,7 in four Level A subjects including Biology or Chemistry, and Maths. English required at Level B grade 10 or Level A grade 7.

Finland

Successfully complete the Ylioppilastutkinto/Studentexamen (Matriculation Certificate) with grades EMMC, including M in Biology or Chemistry, and Maths

France

Pass the Baccalauréat 'S' stream with 12 (mention assez bien) overall and individual grades of 13 in two out of: Biology, Physics-Chemistry or Maths. If not achieved at grade 13 as part of this requirement, Maths is required at grade 12. [OIB Anglais: if 14 is achieved in English, no further English language qualification is required].

For those graduating with the Baccalauréat général from 2021: one's enseignements de spécialité through to terminale will need to be two of Earth & Life Sciences, Physics-Chemistry and Mathematics. If SVT/Physics-Chemistry are continued, one's Maths grade will be taken from the penultimate year. 

Germany

Pass the Abitur with 1.8 overall, with 13 in Biology or Chemistry as one of the Kurse mit erhöhtem Anforderungsniveau/Leistungskurse. Applicants should demonstrate successful completion of grade 10 having achieved at least 3 in Maths. [If 12 is achieved in English as Kurse mit erhöhtem Anforderungsniveau/LK, no further English language qualification is required]. 

Hungary

Pass the Matura with 70% in two Advanced subjects including Biology or Chemistry. 75% must be achieved in three Intermediate subjects including Maths if not one of your Advanced subjects. 

Iceland

Pass the Stúdentspróf (natural science specialisation) with 7 in Biology or Chemistry and 7 in Maths. 9 is required in English. 

Italy

Pass the Diploma di Esame di Stato from a Liceo Scientifico with 80 overall and individual grades of 8 in Science and Maths

Malta

Pass University of Malta Matriculation Certificate with BB at Advanced Level in Biology or Chemistry, and a second science (Biology, Chemistry, Physics or Maths), and BBB in three Intermediate Level subjects. If not included as an Intermediate subject, grade 3 must be achieved in Maths as part of the Secondary Education Certificate. Alternatively, IGCSE/O Levels in Maths and a science at grade B are accepted. English may be accepted if taken as a first language; please contact admissions. 

Netherlands

Pass the VWO (Natuur profiel) with 7 overall and the following individual grades: 7 and 8 in two sciences to include Maths and either Biology or Chemistry; 9 in English

Norway

Pass the Vitnemal - videregaende opplaering (Natural sciences and mathematics stream) with 4 overall and 4 in Biology or Chemistry, and 4 in Maths and English. 

Poland

Pass the Polish Świadectwo Dojrzałości (Matura) with 70% average and 75% in Advanced Level Biology or Chemistry, and a second science (Biology, Chemistry, Physics or Maths), plus 75% in Standard/Basic Level Maths where not taken at Advanced Level. 

Portugal

Pass the Diploma Nível Secundário de Educação with 16 overall and 17 in Biology or Physics-Chemistry, and a second science (Biology, Physics-Chemistry or Maths). 15 must be achieved in Maths if not used as the second science. 

Romania

Pass the Diplomă de Bacalaureat (science stream) with 8 overall and individual grades of 8.5 in Biology or Chemistry, and 8.5 in Maths. 

Serbia

Pass the Diploma o položenom završnom ispitu/Matura with 4 overall and 4 in Biology or Chemistry, and 4 in Maths. 

Slovakia

Pass the Vysvedčenie o maturitnej skúške with 2,2,2,2 including 2 in Biology or Chemistry, and 2 in Maths.

Slovenia

Pass the Maturitetno spričevalo (Matura) with 20 overall and 4 in Biology or Chemistry, and 4 in Maths.

Spain

Pass the Bachillerato with 8 overall and individual grades of 8 in Biology/Biology-Geology or Chemistry/Physics-Chemistry, and 8 in Maths. 

Sweden

Pass the Avgångsbetyg / Slutbetyg från Gymnasieskola (Naturvetenskapsprogrammet) with BCC in Biology or Chemistry, a second science (Biology, Chemistry, Maths or Physics) and a third subject. A minimum of grade C should be achieved in Mathematics, Physics and English C.

Switzerland

Pass a Federal Maturity Certificate or Federally Recognised Cantonal Maturity Certificate with an overall average of 4.6 (on the 6-point scale) including 4.5 in Biology and Chemistry as the Schwerpunktfach/Option Spécifique. A minimum of 4.0 in Maths.

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Asia

Hong Kong

Obtain the Hong Kong Diploma of Secondary Education (HKDSE) with grades 544 in Biology, Chemistry and one other elective subject, plus grade 4 in Maths and grade 5 in English core subjects. We will consider Maths as an elective subject in place of either Biology or Chemistry, provided both the compulsory and the extended modules are taken with grades 5* (compulsory part) and 5 (extended part).

Malaysia

Obtain the Sijil Tinggi Persekolahan Malaysia (STPM) with grades BBB in three Principal level subjects including Biology or Chemistry, and a second science (Biology, Chemistry, Physics or Maths). In addition, grade 4/B is required in the SPM in Maths and two of Biology, Chemistry and Physics. Grade B must be achieved in English (first language) at either O Level (1119), or as part of the STPM.

Singapore

Obtain grades BBB at H2 level in three Singapore A Level subjects including Biology or Chemistry, and a second science (Biology, Chemistry, Physics or Maths). In addition, O Level grade B is required in Maths, English (first language) and two out of Biology, Chemistry and Physics.

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Oceania

All references to English below are to first-language English only. If you are studying English as a second language, please see our accepted English Language qualifications.

Australia

Excluding Queensland, an ATAR score of 75 or higher is required. As there are significant regional differences, please contact Admissions for state-specific requirements if yours is not shown below:  

New South Wales

Pass the Higher School Certificate (HSC) with the following 2-unit Category-A Board Developed Courses: Biology or Chemistry, and a second science (Biology, Chemistry, Physics or Maths) plus one other at band 4; English and Maths must be achieved to at least band 3 if not part of the above

Queensland

Pass the QCE including the following core subjects: Biology or Chemistry at HA, and a second science (Biology, Chemistry, Physics or Maths) at SA; English and Maths must be achieved to at least SA. Your OP score should be in bands 1-10.

Victoria

Pass the VCE with the following: 3/4 Biology or Chemistry, and a second science (Biology, Chemistry, Physics or Maths) at grade B (average), with English and Maths at grade C+ (average).

Western Australia

Pass the WACE with the following: Year 12 Biology or Chemistry, and a second science (Biology, Chemistry, Physics or Maths) plus one other at grade B. Year 11 English and Maths at grade B. 

New Zealand

Obtain the University Entrance Certificate with National Certificate in Educational Achievement Level 3 with Merit overall including in Biology or Chemistry, and a second science (Biology, Chemistry, Physics or Maths). Minimum of NCEA Level 2 Merit grades required in English and Maths.

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Some countries' education systems are not equivalent to A Levels in the UK. The programmes below are designed to give you that equivalent level of study so you can apply for our programmes:

University of London Foundation programmes for International Students (UK-based)

UCL University Preparatory Certificate for Science & Engineering (UPCSE) for International Students

You must take Chemistry and a second Science subject as Core Units. Achieve 65% overall in the Certificate, and 65% in Chemistry and the second Science Unit.

View website for more information on the programme. 

These requirements assume that you have met the standard entry requirements for UPCSE: if you have entered that course with special circumstances or through a different route, please see advice for International and EU applicants, above.

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Other qualifications

For advice on the eligibility of other qualifications, please contact Admissions at admissions@rvc.ac.uk. Please note, we do not typically accept Foundation years unless otherwise advertised.

Email: admissions@rvc.ac.uk
Tel: +44 (0) 20 7468 5147

English language requirements

  • IELTS (Academic) score of 7.0 or above with minimum 6.5 in each component

All applicants must have an acceptable English Language qualification, many of which are listed under 'Academic qualifications' above. Please see our English Language Requirements page for a list of qualifications we accept as alternatives.

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FAQs

Does it count against me if I re-sit a qualification?

No, we accept re-taken grades or modules at GCSE and A-Level or equivalent without penalty for this programme. 

Can I re-apply if I've been unsuccessful previously?

We accept repeat applications for this course and new applications will be treated separately from any previous one. 

Our BSc Biological Sciences (WHS) gives our students groundings in both basic health sciences, and their application in the field of wildlife health. Career options are therefore reflective of these skills. We expect graduates from this course to be pursuing careers in wildlife management (government agencies in both developing and developed countries), wildlife rehabilitation, wildlife related research (universities, zoological collections) or zoo management. Some will continue to study towards a PhD.

Additionally, some of our graduates may choose to use their animal health science training and apply it to domestic animals – so many of the skills are transferable. There is also the opportunity to apply to our Graduate Accelerated BVetMed programme if you aspire to become a veterinary surgeon.

Tuition Fees

The tuition fees for students commencing the course in 2021/22 are as follows:

UK Tuition FeesEU Tuition FeesInternational Fees

Island Fees (Channel Islands & Isle of Man)

£9,250 £20,090 £20,090 £10,500

 

Tuition fee amounts are subject to increase each academic year, please be aware of this when making your calculations and planning how much money you will require.

  • For Sandwich/ Placement year fees for UK, EU and international students see link 
  • Students from countries outside the European Union (EU) who wish to undertake full-time study at the RVC are required to pay the international fee for their programme of study (please see Fee status section).
  • Information on Fees & Funding for existing students can be found here

The following course-related costs are included in the fees:

  • Student affiliate membership of Royal Society of Biology for course duration
  • Access to books and journals essential to your course (print and digital)
  • Open access and bookable IT equipment such as PCs and laptops
  • Largely paperless curriculum plus £10 p.a. printing allowance
  • Annual membership of College gym (both campuses)

The following course-related costs are not included in the fees:

  • £16 Howie laboratory coat

Accommodation and living costs are not included in the fees. Our Housing Advice pages provide further information on College and private housing. 

Funding Options

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