BSc/BSc (Hons) Human Biology

What is human biology?

Human Biology is a fundamental understanding of how the body works and how it responds to changes in health and disease, such as growth, ageing, obesity and heart disease.

About the Course

This course will provide you with the skills to work in a variety of areas related to the science of human biology.

In the first two years, you will gain a grounding in the core areas of the biological sciences. During this time you will study a range of modules and there is a significant practical element where you will develop basic research and laboratory skills such as using a pipette, microscopy and statistics.

In Year Three, you will begin to focus on a range of specific areas related to the function of the body in health and disease. You can also select from a range of modules which allow you to determine the focus of your future career.

In Year Four, the majority of your time will be spent on your honours project which will involve you carrying out an individual research project. This will help to develop and enhance the skills and knowledge that will be required in the workplace.

In addition to this, further modules will enhance your understanding and critical evaluation of human biology, with optional modules to tailor your own programme of study.

Most modules involve student-centred learning, as well as tutor-led lectures, tutorials, labs and workshops.


Course Structure

You can opt to study for an honours degree over four years or an ordinary degree over three years. You will complete a range of modules, as outlined, each year.

Entry Requirements

Scottish Higher: BBB

A Level: BB

Irish Leaving Certificate: H2 H2 H3

International Baccalaureate: 26 points

Required Subjects: Chem or Biol and preferably one other science (may include Maths or Home Economics) at Higher/A Level or equivalent AND Chem, Biol, Maths and Eng at S/Int2/N5/GCSE level.

Mature/Access: SWAP Access to Science or Biological Sciences. We welcome applications from mature students with relevant qualifications in biology and chemistry and /or experience.

Advanced Entry:

Year 2

  • HNC Biological Sciences/ HNC Applied Science with B in the graded unit

Year 3 

  • HND Applied Biological Sciences with CB in the graded units.

Other: You may be requested to be immunised against Hepatitis B.

International: IELTS of 6.0 with no element lower than 5.5.



Year One

Biochemistry/ Developmental Biology and Ageing/ Genetics/ Health and Society/ Cell Biology & Human Physiology/ Integrating Module 1/ Introduction to Neuroscience/ Introduction to Nutrition/ Key Investigative Skills 1/ Microbiology

Year Two

Immunology/ Integrating Module 2/ Key Investigative Skills 2/ Laboratory Investigative Procedures/ Medical Microbiology/ Molecular Biology/ Nutrition: Energy and Macronutrients/ Pharmacology/ Professional Development in Scientific Analysis/ Systems Biology

Year Three

Clinical Sciences/ Determinants of Health/ Dissertation (choice of topic)/ Epidemiology and Health/ Integrating Module 3/ Advanced Neuroscience/ Professional Module/ Scientific Enquiry and Evaluation/ Plus one from the following optional modules: Drug Abuse and Addiction/ Public Health Practice/ Techniques for Nutrition Research

Year Four

Advanced Medical Microbiology and Immunology/ Current Issues in Cancer/ Current Issues in Cardiovascular and Cerebrovascular Disease/ Current Issues in Health/ Epidemiology/ Honours Project (research)/ Research Communication / Research Process/ Plus one from the following optional modules: Current Issues in Sport and Exercise/ Health Education and Promotion/ International Health and Nutrition

NB The modules listed here are correct at time of the printing of our Undergraduate Prospectus 2018 (Feb 2017) but may differ slightly to those offered in 2018. Please check the website for any updates.



Graduates can enter a variety of scientific and health-related careers in the public and private sectors, such as: laboratory and research scientists; research co-ordinators; clinical audit and clinical data analysts; scientific information managers and writers; healthcare management and administration; health promotion; health education; science teaching; product development (eg pharmaceuticals, medical products); marketing of health and scientific products; and studies for higher degrees by research or specialist postgraduate courses. As a multi-skilled and multidisciplinary graduate, you have many other opportunities and careers open in wider areas of employment.

Quick Facts

  • Human Biology scored 100% for overall satisfaction in the most recent National Student Survey. It also ranked top in Scotland and joint top in the UK for that subject area.
  • Significant elements of Years One and Two are shared with our BSc/ BSc (Hons) Applied Pharmacology, BSc/ BSc (Hons) Nutrition, and BSc/ BSc (Hons) Nutrition and Food Sciences courses, meaning you can change course any time up to the end of Year Two.
  • The course provides a firm foundation in all the sciences associated with the body in health and disease, including metabolism, nutrition and drug therapy.
  • Optional modules in Years Three and Four allow you to tailor the course to suit your own interests and career aspirations.

Learning and Teaching

In Year One, you will attend QMU approximately 11-15 hours per week to participate in a mixture of lectures, tutorials and laboratory practical classes. The attendance will reduce slightly in later years where there is more independent learning.

>>Click for more information on 'Learning, Teaching and Assessment'

Study Abroad

It is possible to study for a period of time at a university overseas.

Associate Student Places

You can study this course as an associate student completing the first year at West Lothian College.

Please Note:

The delivery of this course is subject to the terms and conditions set out in our 2018/19 Entry - Terms and Conditions (Undergraduate).

Special Information for EU Applicants: The Scottish Government has confirmed that undergraduate EU students enrolling in the 2017/8 and 2018/9 academic years will be entitled to free tuition fees in Scotland for the duration of their course. Those assessed as eligible will remain so for the duration of their course. You must apply to the Student Awards Agency for Scotland (SAAS) for funding. For guidance on eligibility and funding please visit the SAAS website.

Course Overview

3/4 years
Start Date
September 2018
Study Abroad
School of Health Sciences
Subject Area
Fees & Funding
C100 BSc/HB