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Biosciences MRes

Course Description

This MRes in Biosciences will provide you with research training in one or more of our Research Pathways and you will benefit from training in our Specialist Research Facilities. Research staff will share their expertise and assist you in developing the skills necessary to do independent research, leading to a dissertation written as a scientific paper.

All research students in Biosciences undertake taught modules followed by a major research project under the guidance of academic staff in one or more of our Research Pathways, and benefitting from training in our specialist research facilities.

The MRes Biosciences is a one-year programme. All research students undertake taught modules followed by a major research project under the guidance of academic staff in one or more of our Research Pathways , and benefiting from training in our Specialist Research Facilities.

Biosciences at Swansea has a good relationship with a wide range of external partners, including SMEs, Government Agencies, Local Government, UK and overseas research institutes and universities.

Research Pathways available:

1) Behavioural and Movement Ecology
Studying adaptations, and the selective pressures in the social and ecological environment that bring them about. We specialise in the movement ecology of individuals and collectives and can provide specialist research training to understand the role of the environment in structuring the properties of animal movement and behaviour.
Staff: Dr Luca Borger; Dr Dan Forman; Dr Carlos Garcia de Leaniz; Dr Andrew King; Dr Emily Shepard; Prof Rory Wilson;

2) Evolutionary and Molecular Biology
Understanding the diversity of life from a molecular perspective. We use the latest genetic and genomics techniques to address key questions in ecology, behaviour and conservation from an evolutionary perspective in a range of non-model organisms, from fungi to plants and animals.
Staff: Prof Tariq Butt; Dr Jim Bull; Dr Sofia Consuegra Del Olmo; Dr Dan Eastwood; Dr Carlos Garcia de Leaniz;

3) Marine Biology, Fisheries and Aquaculture
From developing new techniques in fish husbandry and rearing of commercially important aquaculture species, to research in food and fuel security, low carbon technologies, biogeochemical cycles and climate change. Specialist research training can be provided on a diverse range of temperate to tropical aquatic organisms, from microplankton to invertebrates to fish, inhabiting marine to freshwater environments.
Staff: Dr Sofia Consuegra Del Olmo; Prof Kevin Flynn; Dr Carlos Garcia de Leaniz; Dr John Griffin; Dr Ian Horsfall; Dr Andrew King; Dr Ed Pope; Prof Kam Tang; Dr Laura Roberts; Prof Andrew Rowley; Dr Gethin Thomas

4) Mathematical and Statistical Ecology
Research that complements the full range of our academic expertise, from theoretical investigations of ecosystem complexity, stoichiometric ecology, pattern formation and animal movement, to practical agricultural applications and the operation of micro-algal biotechnology.
Staff: Dr Jim Bull; Dr Luca Borger; Prof Kevin Flynn; Dr Mike Fowler

5) Population and Community Ecology
Combining experimental and theoretical approaches to develop our understanding of how species interactions with their environment (including other species) generate the spatial-temporal biodiversity patterns we observe in nature. Study systems include plankton ecosystems, coastal ecosystem functioning, disease control, conservation, and the impact of spatial-temporal environmental variation on community dynamics.
Staff: Dr Luca Borger; Dr Jim Bull; Prof Kevin Flynn; Dr Dan Forman; Dr Mike Fowler; Dr John Griffin; Dr Penny Neyland; Dr Laura Roberts; Prof Kam Tang

6) Whole Organism Biology
Our staff comprises world-leading experts on a range of organisms studied around the world, and welcome students who want to develop projects around such species.
Staff: Dr Luca Borger (deer), Prof Tariq Butt (insects), Dr Sofia Consuegra Del Olmo (mangrove killifish), Dr Dan Eastwood (fungi), Prof Kevin Flynn (plankton), Dr Dan Forman (mustelids), Dr Carlos Garcia de Leaniz (salmon), Dr Andrew King (baboons), Dr Emily Shepard (condors), Prof Kam Tang (zooplankton), Prof Rory Wilson (penguins).

7) Wildlife Diseases and Pest Control
Research focused on developing natural agents and solutions for the control of wildlife diseases and invertebrate pests that impact on food security and human and animal health. Research training provided in disease detection methods, disease management, and the socioeconomic benefits of pest control.
Staff: ) Dr Dan Eastwood; Prof Tariq Butt; Dr Jim Bull; Dr Dan Eastwood; Prof Andrew Rowley; Dr Gethin Thomas

Modules typically include:

Core Science Skills and Research Methods:

The scientific method
Experiment design and presentation skills
Library and internet resource searching

Literature Review in Biosciences

Focus on an aspect related to your intended research pathway

Selected module

Chosen from a range on offer from the College of Science

Terms 2 and 3

Research Project

An independent piece of research leading to a dissertation written as a scientific research paper


As a student on the MRes Biosciences programme, you will benefit from a range of facilities such as:

A custom-designed £12.5 million coastal research vessel and the £2 million unique Centre for Sustainable Aquatic Research (CSAR) with a 750 m2 controlled environment building, plus separate primary quarantine facilities, ozone-sterilised water intake and discharge, centralised 12-27oC programmable air and mixed fresh/salt water supply, light intensity and photoperiod regimes.

The newly built £1.35 million Swansea Lab for Animal Movement (SLAM), incorporates an electronic wall (3x4 m) linked to a high-speed computer cluster for processing and visualising spatiotemporal movement and population data. SLAM also designs and produces state-of-the-art animal tags to study organism movement and environmental interactions.

Theoretical/mathematical research uses advanced university computing facilities that includes high-end graphics workstations, high-speed network links and the Blue Ice supercomputer located at the Mike Barnsley Centre for Climatic Change Research.

Several dedicated Bioscience labs housed within our grade 2 listed Wallace Building recently benefitted from a £4.2 million renovation programme, providing world-class research facilities that includes a specialist molecular ecology lab and a dedicated arthropod facility.

Visit the Biosciences MRes page on the Swansea University website for more details!

Student Profiles

100 Swansea University Master's Scholarships - 20+ Awards

Swansea University is offering 100 Master’s Scholarships, each worth £3000 towards tuition fees for UK/EU students starting eligible master’s courses in September 2017.Eligible courses include:All LLM programmes (including LLM by Research)All MA programmes (including MA by Research)All MRes programmesAll MSc programmes (including MSc by Research)Please note that MPhil, GDL/CPE and LPC programmes are not eligible for the Swansea University Master’s Scholarship scheme.

Value of Scholarship(s)



You must have, or expect to achieve, a minimum 2:1 honours degree (or equivalent).You must hold an offer to study on an eligible master’s course at Swansea University from September 2017. Programmes commencing in January, April and July 2017 are not eligible.

Application Procedure

Please visit our website for more details on how to apply.

Further Information


Entry Requirements

The entry requirements for the MRes Biosciences is a first or upper second class honours degree in Bioscience or related subject. English Language requirement IELTS test (with a score of at least 6.5 and a minimum of 6.0 in each component).

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Recipient: Swansea University

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