Marine Biology with Foundation Year
School of Science, Engineering and Environment
In a nutshell
This course will provide you with a strong foundation in biology and environmental issues, allowing you to progress onto a BSc (Hons) Marine Biology degree course.
During the foundation year you will study modules which will increase your knowledge and understanding of basic biology and other aspects of environmental studies. There is an emphasis on both understanding and problem solving in addition to practical and communication skills.
- Gain a broad, basic knowledge of biological principles to prepare you for more advanced study
- Develop problem solving, practical and communication skills
This if for you if...
You want an excellent route into science for those from a non-scientific background
You are returning to education or seeking to develop your career in a new direction
You didn't meet the entry requirements for BSc (Hons) Marine Biology
All about the course
The new BSc (Hons) Marine Biology is the first of its kind in the north-west, managing to strike a fine balance between theoretical knowledge and practical skill learning. Thanks to the supportive learning environment, you will gain a systematic understanding of key aspects of the marine environment, as well as a detailed insight into the industry that relies on it. The curriculum is contemporary and will enhance employability through the University’s industry collaboration initiative.
Practical training is particularly relevant and will be delivered during two residential field trips. The first one, in the second year of study, will be carried out in Scotland, at the renowned FSC Millport Field Station. The second trip will be organised at the beginning on the third year, in Kavala, Greece, in collaboration with the national Fisheries Research Institute.
Explore the characteristics of plant and animal cells which are the building blocks of all life forms; their interactions with micro and macro environments, and learn about the diversity of animal and plant life in a range of ecosystems.
Take a hands-on approach to develop biological and chemical laboratory skills, practise environmental and fieldwork techniques, and apply scientific knowledge in the interpretation of results of experiments and surveys.
Develop skills for application of statistical and mathematical methods and practise using Information Technology for effective presentation and communication of data and ideas.
Develop life-long learning skills including techniques for self-assessment and reflection, written and verbal communication skills for meetings, debates and presentations.
Choose two options from
You'll start to understand the significance of the structure of atoms, their classification in the periodic table, chemical reactions and bonding to form organic and inorganic molecules and the importance of pH.
Explore the interactions of earth processes, geological structures and environmental functions, the use of resources e.g. fossil fuels including fracking and consider the differential impacts of a range of geological hazards – earthquakes, volcanic activity and rising sea levels.
Understand key ecological concepts, explore biogeography, appraise conservation techniques and consider priorities and issues in management of habitats and wildlife.
Science for Health
Evaluate a range of environmental and scientific factors that interact to influence health – e.g. pollution, nutrition, drug development and consider examples of environmental interventions and clinical trials.
This module focuses on the origins and diversity of living organisms (including humans), the environmental processes and their role in the generation of biodiversity.
Molecules to Microbes
This module focuses on the basic principles involved in the build-up of molecules from atoms: the formation, properties and importance of bio-organic molecules, the diverse nature of micro-organisms and their structure, function and importance.
Study Skills for Marine Biology
A combination of lectures, tutorials and laboratory or field based workshops relevant to the wider field of Marine Biology, with associated explanatory feedback. Tutorials will involve in-class assessment and more detailed assignments. Use of blackboard to provide learning support material and formative self-assessment tests.
Global Distribution of Wildlife
The module provides you an overview of the world’s major biomes. You learn about the importance of biogeography and the principal factors that drive the distribution of species and communities and how wildlife adapts to these factors.
This module will help you develop practical laboratory skills relevant to cell, organismal, micro and molecular biology which will form a basis for competence in biological and biochemical experimental work.
Genes to Ecosystems
The aim of this module is to develop an understanding of basic genetics, evolution and population genetics and how these disciplines are relevant to wildlife studies. You will also look at how wildlife species interact with the ecosystems in which they live.
Introduction to Marine Biology
This module will equip you with knowledge of marine ecosystems and marine organisms. A comprehensive series of lecture sessions, delivered by marine biologists and an invited seminar speaker, will present an overview of the biodiversity of marine organisms, their evolution, behaviours, intra- and inter-specific interactions and adaptations to their environments. The module provides the you with the opportunity to work under lab conditions to recognise morphological adaptations to different environments.
Marine Biology Research Skills
The module will involve a combination of lectures, small group tutorials and computer lab/workshop sessions focused on different aspects of undertaking scientific research. Students will compile a scientific report involving a literature review on a topic relevant to marine biological research, experimental design and data analysis. Formative assessment will comprise short exercises in information retrieval/utilisation, scientific writing and statistical analyses. A seminar presentation will accompany the scientific report.
In this module you will learn about the challenges faced by the marine ecosystems and marine organisms. The module provides the you with the opportunity to engage in actual data collection and data analysis during a residential course (compulsory to the module). You will also look at contemporary environmental issues in marine biology. The module encourages you to adopt an investigative approach to ecological studies.
Choose one option from
Ecology in Action
You will study the fundamental principles of population and community ecology, including the impact that factors such as competition, predation and parasitism may have on population size and community structure. This module also has a residential field course where students put theory into practice and conduct their own ecological studies.
This module will introduce you to the modern concepts of conservation biology at the level of species and populations, the existing tensions between theory and practice in species conservation planning, and an overview of the interdisciplinary toolbox used by conservation biologists (for example IT packages and DNA fingerprints). You will also be given the chance to design an appropriate conservation programme for a species or population, including the projection of future survival under varying scenarios.
This module provides a structured approach to evolution and covers the evolution of animal body plans with a focus on vertebrates as well as covering the mechanisms that drive evolution.
Choose one option for trimester 2 from the follwing
Applied Freshwater Biology
This module aims to enable you to gain a knowledge and critical understanding of the biology and ecology of freshwater systems relevant to the water industry and related organisations which regulate and control pollution of the aquatic environment.
It also provides you with the necessary skills and techniques to undertake biological and chemical evaluation of water quality ecology, fish population and condition to apply these in novel situations to generate data for interpretation. In particular, you will be provided with the necessary laboratory skills to test water quality to the standards of the Water Framework Directive UK.
Wildlife Behavioural Ecology
This module focuses on the principles of wildlife ecology and animal behaviour with particular reference to mammal and bird species. It also introduces scientific methods in the study of ecology and behaviour.
University Wide Language
Courses are available in: Arabic, German, French, Italian, Japanese, Mandarin Chinese and Spanish.
This module will engage you in some of the most challenging marine management problems currently faced as well as highlighting the complexity and controversy around the way we use the sea. You will grapple the uncomfortable realities of the trade-off faced by marine managers and policy developers, moving beyond that traditional ecological issues to consider socio-economics, governance and representation, power, equality, and ethics. The module will encourage you to consider multiple perspectives, whilst reflecting on your own views.
This module will give you a broad understanding of the world’s fisheries, their usefulness, their drivers, their controversies; and the ability to assess the conflicts of interests among stakeholders.
This module will equip you with knowledge and skills of cutting-edge biotechnologies applied to the marine ecosystem. This module provides you with the opportunity to engage in bioinformatic data analysis during computer-based sessions.
Plus one option for trimester 1 from
Final Year Project and Professional Skills
This dissertation module allows you to develop independent, experimental, investigative and analytical research skills as you conduct a substantial research project based around a specific aspect/topic in your relevant bioscience discipline area.
Final Year Project with Science Communication and Professional Skills
This dissertation module allows you to develop independent, investigative and analytical research skills while conducting research on topic in an area relevant to your programme of study. It further allows you to learn about science communication and the variety of ways in which science can be disseminated and communicated.
Plus one option from
Environmental Geographical Information Systems
The aim of this module is to develop your knowledge and understanding of the factors controlling the design and implementation of GIS solutions to map, monitor and model terrestrial environments. You will also examine the major issues and impacts of GIS evolution and diffusion on society.
Diving for Marine Conservation
The aims of this module are to provide students with the opportunity to gain a critical understanding and experience of underwater surveying techniques in a field setting. In addition students will receive a structured series of lectures to provide an appreciation of the different diving techniques and how to critically analyse marine underwater data.
Please note that it may not be possible to deliver the full list of options every year as this will depend on factors such as how many students choose a particular option. Exact modules may also vary in order to keep content current. When accepting your offer of a place to study on this programme, you should be aware that not all optional modules will be running each year. Your tutor will be able to advise you as to the available options on or before the start of the programme. Whilst the University tries to ensure that you are able to undertake your preferred options, it cannot guarantee this.
What will I be doing?
Teaching methods include lectures, tutorials, practical classes, fieldwork and a research project.
Assessment throughout is by a combination of coursework and examination, with coursework accounting for around one third of the marks in years one and two and up to half in year three. Continuous assessment includes the research project, laboratory reports, essays, data analysis and presentations.
SCHOOL OF SCIENCE, ENGINEERING AND ENVIRONMENT
From cyber security to biomedicine to architecture, our expanding suite of multidisciplinary courses shapes the next generation of scientists, engineers, consultants and conservationists. Through advanced research, we’re pioneering robotics and AI, smart environments and the appliance of data. With a team of over 200 dedicated academic, technical and administrative staff, you’ll experience a supportive, professional environment where you can realise your potential.
We have recently invested in the development of a new, state-of-the-art, integrated teaching laboratory known as the Bodmer Lab. The Bodmer Lab is a specialist, purpose built facility and ensures our students benefit from the latest technologies to support their learning and remain on the cutting edge of innovation and discovery.
The university hosts industry standard instrumentation including cell culture facilities, FACS, MALDI-TOF, LC and GC mass spectrometry, FTIR and FTNMR spectroscopy, fluorescence spectroscopy and microscopy and scanning electron microscopy. Having access to industry standard technology means that upon graduation, our students are fully prepared and equipped to enter the workplace.
What about after uni?
Marine biology graduates can enter a wide range of career paths. These include careers related to the wider sciences training such as science communication and publishing, science administration, to marine life conservation and management. Other graduates may go on to work in the environmental consultancy industry, marine biotechnology as well as research institutes and government agencies.
Between years two and three of this course we encourage students to complete a placement year, which is arranged with our support. The position is often salaried, with a major company linked to the environmental sector or wildlife trust, or a research organisation. In our experience, final degree results and employability are enhanced for students who undertake a placement year. The placement also counts towards the final degree classification as part of the year two mark.
What you need to know
You should be interested in the study of the marine environment and processes, its biodiversity, challenges faced and management.
English language requirements
International applicants will be required to show a proficiency in English. An IELTS score of 6.0 (no element below 5.5) is proof of this.
Please note: The entry criteria below are related to entry onto this course in the 2020/2021 academic year. If you’re interested in a future intake year, please check the course entry on UCAS.
English language and mathematics at grade C or 4 or above
You must fulfil our GCSE entry requirements as well as one of the requirements listed below.
UCAS tariff points
64 UCAS points
GCE A level
64 UCAS points
BTEC National Diploma
64 UCAS points from Higher Level
Irish Leaving Certificate
64 UCAS points from Higher Level
Completion of two full years study and an awarded qualification
Access to Higher Education
64 UCAS points
Salford Alternative Entry System (SAES)
We welcome applications from students who may not meet the stated entry criteria but who can demonstrate their ability to pursue the course successfully. Once we have received your application we will assess it and recommend it for SAES if you are an eligible candidate.
There are two different routes through the Salford Alternative Entry Scheme and applicants will be directed to the one appropriate for their course. Assessment will either be through a review of prior learning or through a formal test.
|Type of study||Year||Fees|
|Full-time home/EU||2020/21||£8,250 for Foundation Year and £9,250 for subsequent years.|
All field trips are funded by the school but you may need to consider additional costs such as food and spending money.
International field trips that are part of core modules are also funded by the school but you will need to pay towards international field trips that are part of optional modules (although these are subsidised by the school) and you will be made aware of these costs before selecting the module.
You should also consider further costs which may include books, stationery, printing, binding and general subsistence on trips and visits.
All set? Let's apply
Course ID C163
Start this course in September. Call 0300 555 5030 to apply through Clearing.
Our phone lines are open during the following hours:
- 13 August: 07:30 – 19:00
- 14 August: 08:00 – 18:00
- 15 August: 10:00 – 16:00