This programme is currently under development and may be subject to change
Population growth, global industrialisation, natural hazards, food and resource security and climate change are among the greatest challenges faced in the 21st century, putting life on our planet under unprecedented strain.
BSc Molecular Biology and Environmental Change is a new degree designed to develop a strong scientific understanding of the core concepts of molecular biology and how these can be applied to develop new technologies to tackle the problems caused by environmental change.
Our flexible degree structure will develop your understanding of how biological principles can help develop sustainable solutions to 21st century challenges. Your degree will include core modules that are essential for the degree, plus a wide choice of optional modules to provide opportunities for you to specialise and tailor your degree to your study interests.
You’ll be taught by international research leaders across a broad range of topics, learning to apply and integrate molecular and environmental approaches to address societal challenges related to climate change, including food sustainability, energy production and organism resilience. You’ll also experience the thrill and challenge of an individual research project, designing your own experiments and driving your research forwards in well-equipped laboratories, guided by our expert academics.
Over the course of three years you will develop your technical ability and research skills alongside problem-solving and quantitative analysis, as you learn how to be a bioscientist, from performing experiments, through evaluation of data, to presentation of results in both verbal and written formats.
You will graduate equipped with the specialist knowledge of ground-breaking latest advances and practical skills to tackle the scientific challenges of a rapidly changing world, ideally prepared for a career in your chosen field, or ready to progress into postgraduate study.
You can further enrich your degree by taking an integrated year in industry to gain professional experience. Our year in industry degrees are highly valued by employers and they give you the chance to gain first-hand experience of the world of work and to apply your learning to real-world scenarios. Your year in industry will start at the end of year 2.
- Gain practical skills in molecular biology and molecular genetics to address the problems arising from environmental change
- Choose from a range of optional modules to tailor your degree to your interests
- Develop your technical ability and research skills alongside problem-solving and quantitative analysis, to equip you for a career in industry or research
- Develop practical laboratory and data handling skills.
- Examine the life cycle of flowering plants, their evolution, developmental and functional biology.
- Learn how biological and ecological principles can help develop sustainable solutions to 21st-century problems.
- Join a close-knit and supportive learning community with a high staff-to-student ratio.
Teaching & assessment
You will take 120 credits of modules each year, including those that are mandatory and provide the core for the subject of molecular biology and environmental change and also electives that allow you to diversify your interests around related topics.
Your teaching will be a mixture of lectures, practicals, problem-solving classes and online activities. Laboratory classes form a major part of the first and second year and you will conduct experiments that are integral to molecular biology and applied molecular genetics, developing the technical and analytical skills that are fundamental to being able to develop scientific solutions to the global challenges facing the planet. In your final year you will conduct a research project that will enable you to hone your skills in critical analysis, research planning and development, project and time management, all highly valued, transferable skills.
All students are assigned a personal tutor for advice and support through the duration of their degree programme, with regular small group and individual meetings. Coursework activities spread across the year make up 25-30% of your marks, and include a range of assessments such as online worksheets, reports, quizzes, essays, mock grant applications, creation of leaflets, posters and presentations, and using online data analysis software. Most modules include a written exam assessment, and some include an assessment of practical skills. The final year project is entirely coursework based.
The second and third year outcomes contribute one third and two-thirds of the final degree classification.
A Levels: ABB-BBB
- Including Biology plus another science from either Chemistry, Maths or Physics. A Pass is required in the practical element of all Science A-levels taken.
- At least five GCSEs at grade A*-C or 9-4 including English and Mathematics.
Where an applicant is taking the EPQ alongside A-levels, the EPQ will be taken into consideration and result in lower A-level grades being required. For students who are from backgrounds or personal circumstances that mean they are generally less likely to go to university you may be eligible for an alternative lower offer. Follow the link to learn more about our contextual offers.
English language requirements
All teaching at Royal Holloway is in English. You will therefore need to have good enough written and spoken English to cope with your studies right from the start.
The scores we require
- IELTS: 6.5 overall, with no subscore lower than 5.5.
- Pearson Test of English: 61 overall. No subscore lower than 51.
- Trinity College London Integrated Skills in English (ISE): ISE III.
- Cambridge English: Advanced (CAE) grade C.
For more information about country-specific entry requirements for your country please visit here.
For international students who do not meet the direct entry requirements, the International Study Centre offers the following pathway programmes:
● International Foundation Year - for progression to the first year of an undergraduate degree.
● International Year One - for progression to the second year of an undergraduate degree. You can join the International Year One in January 2021 and progress to degree study in September 2021.
Your future career
You will graduate equipped with the specialist knowledge and practical skills to tackle the scientific challenges of a rapidly changing world, ideally prepared for a scientific or technical career in your chosen field. You will develop a range of transferable skills that are highly attractive to future employers, including project management, time management, team working, and resilience.
Fees & funding
Home (UK) students tuition fee per year*: £9,250
EU and International students tuition fee per year**: £22,600
Other essential costs***: TBC
How do I pay for it? Find out more about funding options, including loans, scholarships and bursaries. UK students who have already taken out a tuition fee loan for undergraduate study should check their eligibility for additional funding directly with the relevant awards body.
*The tuition fee for UK undergraduates is controlled by Government regulations. For students starting a degree in the academic year 2020/21, the fee will be £9,250 for that year. The fee for UK undergraduates starting in 2021/22 has not yet been confirmed.
**The Government has confirmed that EU nationals starting a degree in 2020/21 will pay the same fee as UK students for the duration of their course. For EU nationals starting a degree in 2021/22, the UK Government has recently confirmed that you will not be eligible to pay the same fees as UK students, nor be eligible for funding from the Student Loans Company. This means you will be classified as an international student. At Royal Holloway, we wish to support those students affected by this change in status through this transition. For eligible EU students starting their course with us in September 2021, we will award an automatic fee reduction which brings your fee into line with the fee paid by UK students. This will apply for the duration of your course.
Fees for international students may increase year-on-year in line with the rate of inflation. The policy at Royal Holloway is that any increases in fees will not exceed 5% for continuing students. For further information see fees and funding and our terms and conditions. Fees shown above are for 2020/21 and are displayed for indicative purposes only.
***These estimated costs relate to studying this particular degree programme at Royal Holloway. Costs, such as accommodation, food, books and other learning materials and printing etc., have not been included.