Masters degrees in Biological Sciences explore the nature, development and behaviour of living organisms, from plants and animals to microorganisms and fungi. They provide expertise in advanced branches of biology as well as other applied fields.
It’s no cliché to say that this discipline is as diverse as life itself, exploring all aspects of human, animal, plant and micro-biology. Some courses also cross over into other disciplines, with specialisms including Biotechnology, Biophysics and Sport and Exercise Science.
Programmes may be either taught or research-based, with MSc, MRes and MPhil qualifications available, as well as Postgraduate Certificates and Diplomas.
A Masters in Biological Sciences can equip you for a range of academic and professional career paths, with a chance to make a significant difference to the lives of people and animals around the world.
You might take up a career in industry or on behalf of a charity: in fields such as public health, conservation or pharmaceuticals. With the right specialisation you could even find yourself working on biomechanics and physical therapy for a major sports team, or travelling the globe as a marine biologist.
Research careers with a Biosciences Masters degree can be just as exciting. Opportunities exist to pursue a huge range of projects at PhD level, before going on to push boundaries in the treatment of disease, the development of innovative bioengineering solutions and even the discovery of new energy sources.
Information in these tables is based on the 2014/15 publication of the Destination of Leavers from Higher Education Longitudinal Survey, produced by the UK’s Higher Education Statistics Agency. Data is given for graduates of UK Masters degrees and other level 7 postgraduate courses, after 3.5 years. Some figures have been rounded.
Best of all worlds
Biological sciences gives you expertise in a broad range of biological and fundamental sciences.
Find out more about the Master of Science parent structure.
When you study Massey’s Master of Science with a major in biological sciences you don’t have to focus on one particular type of science, but will gain expertise across a range of your interests.
If you are interested in subjects like microbiology, genetics and biochemistry, but don’t have all the prerequisites you need to specialise, or you want to open the door to a broader range of careers, a major in biological sciences gives you a broad-based degree that keeps your options open.
Within the degree you can focus on one particular area of science, or keep your study broad - the choice is yours!
At Massey you have the flexibility to choose from different locations for your study - either Manawatu or the Auckland campuses - as well as other research institutes such as AgResearch, Scion, and Plant & Food Research. This flexibility provides a great deal of project choice, as well as providing important industry linkages that enhance job prospects.
Whether you study on the Auckland or Palmerston North campuses, you will have access to world-class facilities. These include the Manawatu Microscopy and Imaging Centre and the Massey Genome Service (part of New Zealand Genomics Limited), our controlled environment plant growth facilities, the unique and extensive university orchards and state-of-the-art plant physiology and biology equipment. We have large animal units and there are extensive Massey farms that operate as commercial beef, dairy and sheep farms.
Massey has a dedicated tissue culture facility, real-time PCR instruments, specialised fluorescence microscopes and plate readers, as well as a microscopy centre, offering confocal, and scanning, transmission and epifluorescence microscopy services.
Genome sequencing services are also readily accessible with both the Massey Sequencing Service and a New Zealand Genome Limited laboratory housed on the university’s Manawatu campus. This service center is equipped with ABI3730 and Illumina MiSeq instruments and associated expertise. We house a full suite of protein purification, separation and analysis equipment, including DIGE imaging and access to mass spectrometers. There is also an X-ray diffraction laboratory and access to the Australian Synchrotron in Melbourne.
Massey offers a very broad range of research areas in chemistry, biochemistry, genetics, microbiology and all the biological sciences, Genetics ranges from classical through molecular, biomedical, genomic and computational projects. These utilise a wide range of biological systems including microbial, plant, animal and human species.
You will also be able to utilise Massey’s broad range of expertise in the sciences, working with other departments and experts as you need to for your research.
A critical part of the postgraduate experience at Massey is being part of the vibrant, well-established community of fundamental scientists and students. We have active student groups where we work together to share discoveries and research and provide peer support.
Postgraduate study is hard work but hugely rewarding and empowering. The Master of Science will push you to produce your best creative, strategic and theoretical ideas. The workload replicates the high-pressure environment of senior workplace roles. Our experts are there to guide but if you have come from undergraduate study, you will find that postgraduate study demands more in-depth and independent study.
Postgraduate study is not just ‘more of the same’ undergraduate study. It takes you to a new level in knowledge and expertise especially in planning, time management, setting goals and milestones and undertaking research.
Taught at our Parkgate Road Campus in Chester, this is a research-focused Master's training course in Wildlife Behaviour and Conservation.
Robust scientific evidence is a critical tool for conservation scientists responding to the challenges of mitigating biodiversity loss. This course focuses on developing investigative research skills while addressing applied questions in wildlife behaviour and conservation.
The course provides a strong foundation, giving you the opportunity to develop a career in academic or applied wildlife science. Our lecturers work with a diverse range of study species, including mammals, birds, fish, amphibians and invertebrates, both in the wild and ex situ. Members of the team are recognised as conservation specialists by the International Union for Conservation of Nature, and manage two European Endangered Species Programmes.
Our lecturers work with a diverse range of study species, including mammals, birds, fish, amphibians and invertebrates, both in the wild and ex situ. Members of the team are recognised as conservation specialists by the International Union for Conservation of Nature, and manage two European Endangered Species Programmes.
Your project will contribute directly to one of our partnerships with national and international in situ and ex situ conservation programmes.
Your individual supervisor will guide your acquisition of professional skills and facilitate networking and engagement in your specialist field. Our proactive, diverse and expanding research community provides extensive opportunities for peer-learning and collaboration in conservation research.
A compulsory wildlife research methods taught module provides advanced training in core specialisations, including project design, field techniques, statistical analysis and geographical information systems.
You will select a further taught specialist module relevant to your research project, which may include conservation genetics, wildlife behaviour or wildlife health.
The individual research project is undertaken throughout the year and is the primary focus of this course.
Please note these projects will require a student contribution in addition to course fees of a maximum of £3000.
Teaching is delivered through lecturers, laboratory practicals, field trips and seminars supplemented by online materials such as discussion boards and analytical exercises.
You will contribute to research seminars, a journal club and tutorials.
Modules consist of 32 hours of taught activities and 168 hours of self study.
Taught modules are assessed through coursework assignments.
The dissertation projects consists of at least 1,400 hours' study to produce a paper suitable for peer review publication.
Students apply to specific projects which change on an annual basis, but in recent years studies have studied in Ghana, Cambodia, the Philippines, across Europe and in the UK.
If you are interested in this courses we have a number of opportunities to visit us and our campuses. To find out more about these options and to book a visit, please go to: https://www1.chester.ac.uk/study/postgraduate/postgraduate-visit-opportunities
If you would like to know more about the University please request a prospectus at: http://prospectus.chester.ac.uk/form.php