School of Biological Sciences

Zoology with Herpetology BSc (Hons)

Course facts

  • UCAS code: C304
  • Bangor code: BSc/ZH
  • Course length: 3 years

Connect with Bangor

Contact us

The Admissions Administrator
School of Biological Sciences
Tel: 01248 382527
E-mail: ucas.enquiries@sbs.bangor.ac.uk
www.bangor.ac.uk/biology

Course Overview

Reptiles and amphibians are increasingly appreciated as model organisms in many fields of zoology, and are the focus of growing conservation concern due to the alarming decline of many species. This means that we now require a new generation of trained professional scientists with specialised knowledge and skills relating to these animals in addition to a broad zoological background. This Zoology with Herpetology course combines traditional zoology with an emphasis upon amphibian and reptile biology and diversity, and is delivered along with aspects of conservation management and practices. Students have the opportunity to undertake a herpetology field trip to Arizona at the beginning of the second year. Our aim is to provide you with a combination of a sound and broad zoological training that covers both pure and applied aspects of animal life, and specialist herpetological knowledge and skills. The provision of a diversity of laboratory and field zoology experience is an important component of the course, as is the acquisition of transferable skills (data analysis, group work, presentational and writing skills, IT skills).

Bangor is a UK centre of research excellence in herpetology, with three full-time faculty staff specialising in amphibians and reptiles. You will not only enjoy the resources expected of a modern centre of animal biology but will also benefit from the proximity of an exceptional range of natural habitats where field work, an integral part of the degree, is conducted. We are unusual among British universities in having our own substantial zoology museum, and being part of the Environment Centre Wales which is a partnership venture between Bangor University and the Natural Environment Research Council’s Centre for Ecology & Hydrology (CEH).

Why choose Bangor for this course?

  • UK centre of research excellence in herpetology with three full-time faculty staff specialising in amphibians and reptiles.
  • Cutting-edge science is integral to our research programmes, and feeds through into the teaching environment. Our expertise covers animal biogeography and evolution, population genetics, molecular ecology and wildlife conservation.
  • Bangor is the home of the Countryside Council for Wales (now part of Natural REsources Wales), as well as the divisional offices of the Centre for Ecology and Hydrology, and the Environment Agency, all of which have close links to the University and to staff running this degree. 
  • Our excellent teaching facilities include a Natural History Museum containing a comprehensive collection of invertebrate and vertebrate material, marine and freshwater aquaria and facilities for holding reptiles.
  • Bangor’s location makes it an ideal place to study biology as we have an extensive range of local terrestrial and aquatic habitats for field trips.
  • A 4 year Master in Zoology (Herpetology) is available.

Course Content

Students are required to take 120 credits each year made up of lectures, practicals and interactive exercises, as well as field trips and tutorials in years 1 and 2. The final year includes an Integrated Research project, supervised by a staff member on a subject of your interest. Modules become more specialised as the degree progresses and the number of compulsory modules varies between years. Assessment is by a mixture of formal examination and continuous assessment. Welsh medium modules are also available.

What will I study?

Year 1

The first year is a general year for all of our zoology related degrees, which will introduce students to several important aspects of modern biology. Students are required to take two compulsory lecture modules, one module in key skills and one  practical module. Students can choose to take 30 credits of optional modules. In addition there are tutorials with individual members of staff.

Organismal Diversity (20): The module will present an overview of basic classification, form and function of the major groups of living organisms.

Ecology and Evolution (20): Ecology is about understanding the dynamic changes in individuals, populations, communities and ecosystems in relation to each other and the physical environment, and understanding their evolutionary processes.

Biology Practical Module (20): Students will undertake a range of practicals from molecular and cell biology, through to animal function and ecology. Field work is included. The practicals will coincide with the appropriate subject area in the lecture modules.

Research Skills (20): The module is aimed at developing a range of skills commonly used by natural scientists, including basic mathematical manipulation, data interpretation, and presentation, experimental design and statistical analysis, IT skills and effective use of the literature.

Tutorials (degree specific) (10): Tutorials will be held by individual members of staff to groups of 6-7 students and involve discussions that are degree specific. Tutorials will develop communication skills.

Optional modules:

Choose 30 credits from:

  • Cellular & Molecular Biology (20)
  • Introduction to Microbiology (10)
  • Parasites & Pathogens (10)
  • Animal Science (10)

Year 2

In the second year you will extend and deepen your understanding of zoology by specialising in animal diversity, function and evolution. There are four compulsory modules incorporating lectures and practicals. The module called Bioscience Skills will focus on studentdirected learning and development. You can choose 40 credits of optional modules. You can also take part in overseas field Trips including herpetological studies in the Sonoran Desert of Arizona, USA.

Compulsory modules:

  • Bioscience Skills (20)
  • Evolution & Genetics (20)
  • Vertebrate Biology (20)
  • Invertebrates (20)

Optional modules:

Choose 40 credits from:

  • Animal Behaviour (20)
  • Principles of Conservation (20)
  • Field Course (20)
  • Conservation Practice (20)

Year 3

The third year includes a major project that may be experimental or take the form of a Literature Review, supervised by a member of staff on a subject to suit your interests. Students have more choice in the third year, and take 60 credits of optional, more specialised modules.

Compulsory modules:

  • Herpetology
  • Integrated Research Project

Optional modules:

Choose 60 credits from:

  • Wildlife Ecology and Conservation (20)
  • Systematics & Diversity (20)
  • Advances in Behaviour (20)
  • Molecular Ecology & Evolution (20)
  • Animal Survival Strategies (20)
  • Tenerife Field Course (20)
  • Bio Enterprise & Employability (20)
  • Practical Development Biology (20)
  • Animal Ethics & Welfare (20)

Further information on each module can be found on our website.

Modules for the current academic year

Module listings are for guide purposes only and are subject to change annually. Find out what our students are currently studying on the Zoology with Herpetology Modules page.

Programme Specification

Careers & Employability

Herpetologists work mostly in government or non-governmental organisations, ecological consultancy and zoological institutes as well as Universities. A range of career paths is available within these organisations, including research, conservation breeding, wildlife monitoring and assessment, implementation of conservation management plans and evolutionary biology.

Employability and the School of Biological Sciences

As a graduate with a good degree from the School of Biological Sciences, a variety of careers will be open to you. There are careers for which a Biological Sciences degree is essential, and careers for which Biological Sciences provides a useful base.

In addition, there are careers open to graduates and postgraduates from any discipline. These include, for example, careers in management training, accountancy, teaching, nursing, social work, the police and the armed forces. However, employers are usually looking for general or transferable skills, and a Biological Sciences degree arguably provides a unique combination of these.

Find out more on the School's 'Careers for our graduates' pages.

 

Work Experience and Volunteering

The University’s Careers and Employability Service provides a wide range of resources to help you achieve your graduate ambitions. Developing your personal skills and enhancing your employability while at university is becoming increasingly important in today’s job market.

Amongst the experiences offered by the Careers and Employability Service to help both your personal and career development are work placements, work taster schemes, part-time work, and volunteering and mentoring opportunities.

Bangor Employability Award

The Bangor Employability Award is designed to enhance the immediate and longer-term career prospects of our students. It offers free opportunities to gain the skills and experiences employers need, based on up-to-date research.

BEA graduates get a certificate, a transcript and formal verification of their extracurricular activities from Bangor University. The Award also offers free training courses, interview preparation, access to online careers software and helps develop a skills portfolio of evidence for employers.

Find out more about how the BEA can help you...

Entry requirements for this course

  • 260-320 points including Biology and usually one other science subject at A2 level.(Please note, we do not consider Psychology as a science subject for the purposes of study in the field of Biological Sciences.)
  • Irish Leaving Certificate including Biology at Higher level.
  • Scottish Highers including Biology at Advanced Higher Level.
  • Access and BTEC qualifications.
  • Mature age students with relevant experience.
  • Students will be assessed for transition onto the Masters at the end of Year 2.

General entry requirements

Here at Bangor we accept students with a wide range of qualifications and backgrounds. We consider each application individually.

All students need to have good basic skills and the University also values IT and communication skills.

As part of the University’s policy we consider applications from prospective disabled students on the same grounds as all other students.

To study a degree, diploma or certificate course you’ll be asked for a minimum of UCAS Tariff points . Normally, all GCE A and AS levels VCEs and Key Skills can be used to calculate your overall points.

For a fuller explanation of the UCAS Tariff Points, please see www.ucas.com/candq/tariff/index.html

Qualifications currently not in the Tariff Framework:

  • International Baccalaureate:
    You will usually need to have been awarded the full diploma and offers may vary according to the course you are applying for.
  • Welsh Baccalaureate:
    We accept a Pass in the Welsh Baccalaureate Qualification Advanced Diploma that is equivalent to 120 UCAS Tariff points.
  • Access courses and mature entry:
    We welcome your application if you’re taking a recognised Access course. We also consider applications from other older students who can demonstrate the motivation and commitment to study a university programme. Each year we enrol a significant number of mature students.

International Students

If you are an international student please see our International Student pages for application information. If you want advice or a general chat about what’s available contact the International Office on 01248 382028 or email international@bangor.ac.uk

IELTS Courses and Accreditation

Bangor University also has an IELTS Test Centre and we can help you put together a package of study in which you can:

We can also help you arrange further English Language development programmes in parallel with your academic courses of studies.

More information

  • E-mail for General Admissions: admissions@bangor.ac.uk
  • Or write to:
    Admissions Office
    Bangor University
    Gwynedd
    LL57 2DG
  • Tel: 01248 382017

How to apply through UCAS

Apply online via UCAS

UCAS stands for Universities and Colleges Admissions Service. All university applications are processed through UCAS and then passed on to the universities listed.

Students may apply for a maximum of five courses. For Medicine, Dentistry and Veterinary courses students are only allowed to apply for four courses.

The application form is found on the UCAS website, under ‘Apply’.

The early closing date is October 15 for all Oxbridge, Medicine, Dentistry and Veterinary students. The main closing date for all applications is January 15.

Your Personal Statement

Writing your Personal Statement is the part of the application form that requires most work. You are only allowed 47 lines or 500–550 words to explain why you wish to study the course and the skills you have that are essential for university study.

To write a successful personal statement for your UCAS application you must have a good understanding about the course and its content. Remember that you write only one personal statement for your five choices. Make sure that the courses are similar, if not the same, and make sure that you do not mention a specific course or university.

Read our advice on how to draft a winning personal statement or watch our video guide.

After you’ve applied

You can keep an eye on your application on UCAS ‘Track’. Offers from universities will appear on track and you will be able to accept or decline offers.

You can only reply when you have received all your decisions. The types of reply you can make are firm acceptance and insurance acceptance. Usually students reply in early May.

International Student?

If you are an international student please see our International Student pages for further information on applications.

Confused about how to apply?

If you’re not quite sure how to proceed and would like to find out a little more then perhaps our Going to University site will help.

Why study with the School of Biological Sciences?

  • Bangor has a long tradition in teaching and research in the Biological Sciences.
  • We were awarded a "4A" rating in the UK wide Research Assessment Exercise, demonstrating the national and international calibre of both teaching and research.
  • Our students enjoy being here and expressed their praise for the quality of the teaching and pastoral care provided by the School of Biological Sciences
  • The staff have a strong commitment to providing excellent teaching and care for their students.
  • We have excellent facilities for the study of both flora and fauna - these include snake, lizard and fish collections a Botanic Garden and a Natural History Museum.
  • We offer a wide range of degrees in the Biological Sciences encompassing "traditional" disciplines such as Zoology and Biology to Biomedical Science, Medical Biology and Biology with Biotechnology.
  • We offer the opportunity to study at a university in the U.S. for all or part of the second year.
  • Bangor is an ancient, historic Cathedral and University city, and our unique location provides access to a wide range of superb natural environments from the beaches of Anglesey to the mountain ranges of Snowdonia.
  • Many of our students enthusiastically participate in outdoor activities, and sailing, hillwalking, rock climbing, paragliding, canoeing, scuba diving and surfing are extremely popular.
  • We have a sports centre with excellent indoor sports facilities of all sorts, including a climbing wall.

Studying at Bangor

A top 10 university

The National Student Survey (NSS) results place Bangor amongst the UK’s top 10 universities (excluding specialist institutions) and top in Wales for student satisfaction. This reflects the University’s focus on overall student experience.

Enjoy a university experience that’s amongst the best in the UK

The guaranteed accommodation, student support, low cost of living and stunning location all contribute towards this.

Take advantage of the Bangor Student Experience (ranked in the top 20 in the Times Higher Education Student Experience Survey) with free membership of student clubs and societies, a new international experience programme and employability award scheme.

Unrivalled location

Choose to study in one of the best places in the UK to be a student. Bangor’s location – close to the mountains and the sea -has been described as ‘the best university setting in the UK’.

Investment in facilities

Benefit from continued investment in facilities and services – with an exciting new Arts and Innovation Centre, new halls of residence, and improved sports facilities amongst recent developments.

Guaranteed accommodation

We guarantee accommodation for first year students – in university accommodation that’s rated within the top 10 in the UK (What Uni Student Choice Awards).

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