Biochemistry

Bristol's School of Biochemistry has an excellent reputation for the quality of its teaching and its research, making it one of the best places to study biochemistry in the UK.

Each of our three-year biochemistry BSc courses includes the option of transferring to our research-intensive four-year MSci. We also offer you the opportunity of spending a year in an industrial or research placement as a component of your BSc degree. Our courses offer a great deal of flexibility and choice, allowing you to explore a wide range of subjects and to tailor your degree to your own interests.

Why study Biochemistry at Bristol?

Biochemistry is a scientific discipline with the ultimate aim of understanding life's processes at a molecular level. Broadly, it encompasses:

  • the chemical nature and structure of biological molecules and how they interact with each other;
  • complex cellular reactions and the generation of energy to power cellular activity;
  • communication and co-ordination within and between cells;
  • the replication, expression and repair of genetic material.

Our teaching at Bristol is informed by a wealth of wide-ranging and cutting-edge research ensuring our undergraduate students receive rigorous and relevant tuition.

The school's research groups investigate some of the major challenges in modern biochemistry using problem solving approaches ranging from a detailed examination of biological processes at the level of single molecules, to exploring the complex organisation of cells and whole organisms.

International students who are offered a place on courses within the School of Biochemistry can apply for an Undergraduate International Scholarship.

What kind of student would this course suit?

Our biochemistry courses are ideally suited to you if you have a strong interest in experimental work and biomedical research. You need to be a motivated, independent learner, and good numeracy skills are essential.

Every day my inbox is flooded with opportunities – internships, research projects, extra-curricular activities – all of which are the University getting students involved. The University is constantly updating its facilities, which reinforces its friendly and inclusive environment.

Alexandra, Second year, LLB Law

How is this course taught and assessed?

We provide an excellent teaching framework to support your learning through lectures, practicals, workshops and small-group tutorials. You will receive thorough training in experimental techniques in our modern teaching laboratories.

You will be allocated a personal tutor who will provide support throughout your degree and our courses are supported by the eBiolabs online tool.

Your research training culminates in a final-year practical project, which may be undertaken in one of our research labs. There are a range of options, including computer-based (bioinformatics) practical projects.

You will also undertake a final-year literature project in which you review current scientific literature and write a report on a specialist area of biochemistry.

Assessment is usually via unseen exams, which may include essays, multiple choice questions and calculation questions, and coursework.

What are my career prospects?

Our graduates forge careers in a broad range of scientific and related disciplines. You may be employed in the pharmaceutical or biotechnology industries, or in a medical or agricultural research establishment. Biochemists are also employed in the scientific and medical publishing sector, and as patent examiners.

More than a third of our graduates undertake further training and gain a higher degree in biochemistry or a related science, or go on to study in areas such as medicine.

We provide dedicated transferable and employability skills training on all our biochemistry courses and our graduates also enter professions such as teaching, law, finance or other non-scientific careers.

Read more about what students from Biochemistry go on to do after graduation.

Did you know?

  • Students from more than 180 countries study with us, and we share more than 150 exchange links with institutions worldwide.
  • Our Students' Union has over 200 student-run societies, and the Richmond Building, home to the Students' Union, is undergoing a £30-million renovation.
  • 11 Bristol graduates and members of staff have been awarded Nobel prizes.

Subject leaflet

Download the Biochemistry leaflet 2017 (PDF, 262kB)

Disclaimer

Important disclaimer information about our courses.

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