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Full time September MRes 1 year FT

About the course

Plants are central to the global ecosystem. In Sheffield, we study them from every angle: from the molecular level up to whole organisms, in the context of ecosystems, industry and major global challenges.

As an MRes Plant and Microbial Biology student, you can examine the effects of past, present and future climates on plants and the wider environment. You’ll develop key research skills in our taught modules, while your extensive individual research project will give you practical experience of the roles that plants can play in solving pressing societal problems such as food security.

Read our student stories.

Linking your research interests with our research excellence

Our MRes Plant and Microbial Biology programme is uniquely research-focused. You’ll be assigned to a research supervisor

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Entry Requirements

At least a 2:1 honours degree or equivalent in biology or a closely related quantitative subject as well as demonstrable evidence of aptitude and enthusiasm for research (eg an undergraduate research project).

We also accept qualifications from other countries. Find out which qualifications we accept from your country on our webpages for international students: View Website

If you have not already studied in a country where English is the majority language, it is likely that you will need to have an English language qualification. We usually ask for IELTS: Overall grade of 6.5 with 6 in each component.


Up-to-date fees can be found on the University of Sheffield's webpages for postgraduate students: Please see the university website for further information on fees for this course.

Course Content

Where is University of Sheffield

Student Profile(s)

Emily Shone

“Sheffield as a city has always attracted me, there is always something going on and the close proximity to the Peak District is a bonus! When I began to look at masters courses, I soon realised that MRes courses suited me better than the courses with more taught aspects. Sheffield offers an MRes course that can easily be adapted to your own interests, as well as the opportunity to complete the research aspect of the course in industry.

I am currently undergoing my research project at Rothamsted Research, one of the oldest agricultural research institutions in the world. The placement has allowed me to gain experience in working in an industrial setting rather than the academic setting I experienced during my undergraduate studies. I have been able to work independently in the laboratory, whilst drawing upon the knowledge of others around me to develop my work. The placement has given me an insight into alternative careers within research, as well as allowing me to network within the sector. My time studying in Sheffield allowed me to prepare for my placement. Assignments allowed me to explore my area of interest and develop my understanding of the topic. The skills I learnt through the R course have helped in the analysis of my results.”

Gabriel Robinson

"I had wanted a course with a large research component and so the nature of the MRes with half of the entire course being an individual research project attracted me. The possibility of working on my research project with Enza Zaden, a plant breeding company in the Netherlands was also really attractive to me as I wanted experience working in industry and thought it would be interesting to live abroad for six months.

I have learnt many skills as part of the course, from science communication and data analysis skills in the first half of the course whilst at Sheffield, to the practical skills such as Polymerase chain reaction (PCR) techniques and insect bioassays that I have developed being on placement.”

Alexandros Phokas

Doing my own research project is a fascinating experience. I feel like I have developed massively during my course by working in the lab every day. I love the whole procedure of making transgenic plants, growing them and then analysing their phenotype using different methods like fluorescence microscopy.

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