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Human Biosciences BSc (Hons) 2017/18 entry

Clearing 2017

Clearing places available on this course

We have limited places available on this course through Clearing. Contact us to discuss your options:

Know your results? See if we could offer you a place

Waiting for results day? Sign up for updates

EU Students. Find out how to apply

Reasons to make us your clearing choice

  • No. 12 UK University - The Guardian University Guide 2018
  • Awarded Gold in the Teaching and Excellence Framework (TEF)
  • 1st for overseas student experiences in 2015/16 - HESA 2017
  • UK’s top new university - The Guardian and the Complete University Guides 2018
Course code:


Study options:

3 years full-time
4 years sandwich


Coventry University


September 2017



Get in touch

For questions regarding study and admissions please contact us:

+44 (0) 24 7765 2222


Biology doesn’t get closer to home than when you study a human biology degree. This progressive field is always evolving and changing.

Human Biosciences embraces some of the most rapidly changing and dynamic areas of modern science, in recent years responsible for an array of ground-breaking scientific discoveries in human health and disease.

This exciting degree can potentially lead to a range of research and health related careers in biomedicine and health. The broad range of subjects covered, such as microbiology, molecular biology and medical genetics, together with immunology, physiology and psychology, cell biology and neuroscience, are of increasing importance in medical research and underpin the biotechnology and pharmaceutical industries. 

Why Coventry University?

An award-winning university, we are committed to providing our students with the best possible experience. We continue to invest in both our facilities and our innovative approach to education. Our students benefit from industry-relevant teaching, and resources and support designed to help them succeed. These range from our modern library and computing facilities to dedicated careers advice and our impressive Students’ Union activities.

Global ready

An international outlook, with global opportunities


Career-ready graduates, with the skills to succeed

Teaching Excellence

Taught by lecturers who are experts in their field

Course essentials

A degree which offers you more, at no extra cost

Accreditation and Professional Recognition

This course is accredited and recognised by the following bodies:

Royal Society of Biology

Students are eligible to become Associate Members of the Royal Society of Biology.

What our students say

The course gave me the theoretical knowledge and invaluable laboratory skills that has enabled me to progress onto a PhD programme and focus on research.”

James Dayus, BSc (Hons) Human Biosciences, graduated in 2013, now a PhD student

Course information

Recognised by the Royal Society of Biology (RSB), enabling you to join as an associate member (AMSB) during your studies, our degree aims to enhance your understanding of how the human body functions in health and disease at the tissue, cell and molecular level, throughout the lifespan.

We place great emphasis on the acquisition of broad human biosciences knowledge and practical expertise, which is most likely to be useful in your future career related to Human Biosciences. In later years, you will also be able to choose from a wide range of specialist modules, such as medical microbiology, clinical physiology, cancer biology, applied human genetics and clinical biochemistry, providing the opportunity to specialise your degree programme.


of graduates employed or in further study

DLHE 2014/15



The first year of the programme lays the foundation for the study of human biosciences. You will cover key areas and acquire laboratory skills in physiology in health and disease, human development, cell and molecular biology, biochemistry and microbiology.


  • Skills for Biomolecular Science

  • Skills for Biomolecular Science 2

  • Human Physiology in Health and Disease  

  • Biochemistry and Microbiology

  • Cell and Molecular Biology

  • Human Development


The focus on preparing students for successful futures sets Coventry apart as a university.

The Add+vantage modules teach a range of work experience and extra-curricular activities that are taken each year, and broaden students knowledge and skills within a work focused environment. There is a very wide range of Add+vantage free-choice subject areas, and they are arranged in themes.


In the second year, you will further develop your knowledge and laboratory skills in cell biology, molecular genetics and immunology, with a choice of either systemic physiology or biomedical biochemistry. Simultaneous progression through the ‘Professional Skills’ modules will have the opportunity to develop your knowledge and skills in areas like scientific communication, self-directed study, research methods, information retrieval, IT, data processing and presentation and career development.


  • Contemporary Skills for Biomolecular Sciences 1

  • Contemporary Skills for Biomolecular Sciences 2

  • Molecular Genetics

  • Cell Biology

  • Infection and Immunity

  • Optional modules

    1 from the following:

    • Systemic Physiology
    • Biomedical Biochemistry 



The focus on preparing students for successful futures sets Coventry apart as a university.

The Add+vantage modules teach a range of work experience and extra-curricular activities that are taken each year, and broaden students knowledge and skills within a work focused environment. There is a very wide range of Add+vantage free-choice subject areas, and they are arranged in themes.


After your second year, you have the option of taking a sandwich year either studying abroad or on a professional placement.

We will provide support in finding a suitable placement and, in the past, students have worked as a Protein Detection Scientist at Glaxo Smith Kline, Clinical Operations at Roche, Commercial Junior Strategy Manager at Pfizer, Laboratory Technician (Musculoskeletal Science) at the University of East Anglia, Medical Intervention Research Assistant at Freshwinds, Research Assistant at the Centre for Liver Research, Birmingham University, Junior Scientist at Nemaura Pharma Ltd, Assay Development Technician at Binding Site and as a Research Assistant at Biocote.


  • Professional Training

  • Study Abroad


The final year of your course gives you the opportunity to carry out an independent research project linked to one of the areas of your interest. You will also study human biosciences throughout the lifespan, which focuses on the biology of aging. You will then have a choice of three subjects from human genetics, cancer biology, clinical biochemistry, clinical physiology or medical microbiology.


  • Research Design for the Biomolecular Sciences

  • Independent Project in Biomolecular Sciences


The focus on preparing students for successful futures sets Coventry apart as a university.

The Add+vantage modules teach a range of work experience and extra-curricular activities that are taken each year, and broaden students knowledge and skills within a work focused environment. There is a very wide range of Add+vantage free-choice subject areas, and they are arranged in themes.


overall satisfaction in the National Student Survey 2016

In more detail...

  • Strong portfolio of research with 61% rated 4* or 3* in the Research Excellence Framework (REF) 2014.
  • Recognised by the Royal Society of Biology, fulfilling the educational requirements for Associate Membership (AMSB) of the Society.
  • Support applying for short and long-term placements in laboratory and industrial settings to gain the experience employers desire.
  • Based in new £37 million state-of-the-art Science and Health Building provides facilities for teaching and research, featuring a state-of-the-art super lab
  • Course team benefits from extensive links with employers, such as the NHS, university research labs, public health laboratories and biotech companies, such as Binding Site, to help find employment after you graduate.
  • Hands-on experience of a wide range of laboratory technique techniques such as gene amplification using PCR, gene sequencing, cell culture, flow cytometry, tissue staining, protein detection and bacterial growth, in modern, well-equipped laboratories
  • Research-inspired teaching with input from experts in our Applied Biological and Exercise Sciences research centre, which focuses on the themes of: cellular and molecular biosciences; biological Systems, health and disease; and physical activity, exercise and obesity.
  • Regular guest lecturers from current practitioners in the pharmaceutical industry, laboratory research and other jobs in science to inform your experience and help you identify potential careers. In the last three years, speakers have included medical geneticists, research scientists and physicians’ associates.

Our main study themes are:

  • Human physiology: You will explore the structure and functions of the human body and the ways in which these adapt to our environment. We will examine cause-and-effect mechanisms, comparing healthy and disease states. You will be introduced to the concept of metabolic and development control, as well as laboratory techniques for the measurement of physiological variables, such as metabolic rate, heart rate, blood pressure and spirometry.

  • Human development: Examines human development from both an individual and a population perspective. We will cover embryonic development from fertilisation to birth, considering mechanisms that control cell differentiation and morphogenesis. You will be introduced to basic neurosciences, examining circadian rhythms, both in the brain and in peripheral tissues, and the link with processes such as sleep and cell cycle. We will consider some of the global challenges to human population development, including causes of mortality and morbidity such as malaria, helminth infection, HIV, TB, heart disease and cancer, including prevalence, incidence and factors which contribute towards these diseases.

  • Biochemistry: We will consider the structure of biological molecules and their functional properties within the cell, together with the action of enzymes, including the basic principles of enzyme kinetics. You will explore the molecular aspects of human nutrition, digestion and metabolism. The mechanisms of control and integration of metabolism of carbohydrates and fatty acids at different organisational levels are discussed, together with alterations in metabolism due to genetic predispositions. You will understand the important role that biochemical investigations play in the diagnosis and treatment of disease, together with the rationale behind routine tests such as electrolyte measurements, metabolite and enzyme assays, with the emphasis on both the underlying pathophysiology and the contribution that these tests make to the diagnosis and to the management of the patient.

  • Microbiology: You will be introduced to the microbiological world, including aspects of bacterial cell structure and growth, as well as antibiotic action and resistance. We will focus on the biology of medically important micro-organisms and the role they play in health and disease, exploring the structure and function of the defence mechanisms of hosts, specifically the immune responses that are targeted against pathogens. You will learn about the pathogenicity and epidemiology of selected viruses (eg. Hepatitis, Influenza, HIV) and infections, the resulting responses, as well as the control and eradication of viral diseases. 

  • Cell and molecular biology: Provides an understanding of the structure and functions of mammalian cells and the metabolic processes that occur within them. You will cover cell division mechanisms, energy metabolism, cell communication and cell defence. You will learn about genetic inheritance patterns linked to the understanding of DNA replication, transcription and translation, investigating complex genetic disorders such as heart disease and dementia. You will explore cancer from a clinical, biological and epidemiological perspective, examining the cellular and genetic changes that occur during transformation and discussing how inherited susceptibilities can predispose individuals to develop certain cancers.  We will learn about molecular methods for the early detection, monitoring and treatment of various cancers as well as preventative measures.

  • Genetics: You will study human genetic disorders, both chromosomal and single gene disorders and complex diseases. We will look at the techniques and theoretical knowledge which has made the recent great strides forward in our understanding of our genes and genome, together with their applications and implications. Genetic predisposition to diseases such diabetes and Alzheimer’s disease will be investigated. You will become familiar with the latest genetic techniques such as gene editing.

  • Immunology: We will look at aspects of various infectious and non-infectious diseases and health conditions facing the population. We place a particular emphasis on the diagnosis, investigation and treatment of disease, focusing on aspects of clinical immunology including inappropriate or deficient immune responses.

The BSc (Hons) Human Biosciences course is available as a full-time three-year or optional four-year sandwich course. The optional sandwich year can be taken either on placement or studying abroad in a related field. 

You will be allocated a dedicated Personal Academic Tutor for the duration of your course, who will schedule regular 1:1 meetings with you and with whom you can make an appointment whenever you need to; you can also arrange to see other members of staff in ‘drop in’ sessions for any additional help you may need. The outstanding academic support offered to students is often one of the main highlights of our students’ experience – in the National Student Survey (NSS) 2016, 100% of students felt they received sufficient advice and support with their studies, had been able to contact staff when needed and were given good advice.

Throughout your studies, you will have the opportunity to develop a good knowledge of a range of disciplines and how they apply to human health and disease, including both theory and lab-based classes.

You will have the opportunity to undertake challenging lab and non-lab based independent research projects, dealing with important life science research questions, which in the past have tackled, for example, the antimicrobial activity of essential oils, cinnamon and ginger against drug resistant clinical pathogens or the optimisation of the ‘PCR-RFLP technique’, which detects variations in DNA sequences, when analysing leukaemia and liver cancer cell lines.

Regular research seminars, by our staff, PhD students and visiting lecturers, bring you the latest issues on a wide range of research topics. Recent topical sessions, for example, have covered the relationship between physical activity levels and body fat of children aged between eight and nine from UK schools in low socioeconomic areas, responding to the huge ongoing debate about child obesity. We have also considered the importance of Nobel Prize-winning molecular analysis – specifically ‘3’ end mRNA modification –  which has demonstrated that all extant forms of life on Earth share common structural and sequence features of the ribosomal RNA, reflecting a common ancestry. 

Teaching methods include:
lectures, seminars, tutorials, presentations, projects, workshops and practical laboratory sessions, supported by an extensive suite of analytical and biological laboratories staffed by experienced technicians.

Meetour staff

Dr. Ashok Patel - Senior Lecturer in Biomedical Sciences

Ashok has a BSc and MPhil in physiology and a PhD in genetic susceptibility to diabetic nephropathy. His research interests include genetic factors that predispose to complex diseases. Ashok is a Trustee for a medical charity called Kidney Research UK.

Read full profile

The learning outcomes of modules, assignments and projects will be clearly stated. Your work will be marked according to how well you achieve these learning outcomes and your final feedback will refer to each outcome, as well as providing an overall percentage grade. You need to achieve an average of 40% or above to pass each module; marks of 70% or above are classified as ‘First Class’.

Assessment methods vary and include written practical reports, course work, problem-solving, project reports, presentations, essays, workshops, laboratory reports, phase tests, seminars, examinations and portfolios.

An estimated percentage breakdown of your final grade assessment is as follows:

  • Coursework, tests, essays: 45%
  • Formal examinations: 25%
  • Practical or project work: 20% 
  • Group work 5%
  • Presentations and posters 5%

In order to achieve the award of Bachelor of Science (Honours), a student must satisfy the University requirements of 360 credits. A student who does not wish to progress to a subsequent year of study may apply for an intermediate award of Diploma of Higher Education if they pass a minimum of 240 credits. A Certificate of Higher Education may be awarded to a student with minimum of 120 credits.

25% assessed by exams

On successful completion, you will be equipped with the skills to:

  • Safely carry out laboratory procedures with the generic and specialised skills required in experimental biology, including experimentation and measurements on humans, safety and ethical considerations.
  • Undertake effective practical work using a skilled, accurate and precise approach.
  • Apply scientific methods to critical analysis of literature, reflection, information searching, and experimental design in the biological sciences.
  • Collect, analyse and present data when problem solving, including appropriate statistical methods, demonstrating numerical and data manipulation skills at an advanced level.  
  • Interpret data derived from laboratory observations and measurements in terms of their significance.
  • Produce well-structured and logical arguments and operate independently to solve problems.
  • Work independently or as an effective team member to solve problems of a technical and practical nature and to provide appropriate solutions.

In a typical teaching week, you will have up to 17 ‘contact’ hours of teaching. This generally breaks down as:

  • Personal tutorial/small group teaching: 6 hours of workshops each week.
  • Medium group teaching: 5 hours of laboratory work each week
  • Large group teaching: 6 hours of lectures each week.

In addition, you will be expected to undertake a further 20 hours of self-directed study each week eg. working on coursework assignments.

By its very nature, the course adopts an international perspective – as science knows no borders. We also attract students from many different countries – from Europe, Asia and South America – providing a more varied, multicultural and fulfilling environment in which to learn. We encourage students to mix on group work and projects, which in the past, for example, have included an examination of the knowledge and attitudes of home and international students towards tuberculosis in a cross-cultural context.

Our sandwich degree option allows a year’s work placement or study, which can be taken abroad. Some former students have studied at the University of Leiden in Holland. The University also offers a number of grants to enable international visits and a number of our students have been successful in securing places, for example, in Spain, France, Canada and the US. Some have undertaken fieldtrips to Malawi where they have educational engagement with groups of children participating in diverse community projects at local primary and nursery schools, assisted in monitoring the state of boreholes in rural villages, made sun dried bricks for building projects and climbing the challenging mount Mulanje.

Global ready

Did you know we help more students travel internationally than any other UK university according to data from the experts in higher education data and analysis, HESA?

In 2015/16, we were able to provide a total of 2101 experiences abroad that lasted at least five days, 76% of which were our own organised trips for undergraduates and 23% from postgraduate travel.

Much of this travel is made possible through our Global Leaders Programme, which enables students to prepare for the challenges of the global employment market, as well as strengthening and developing their broader personal and professional skills.

Explore our international experiences

1st for

international experiences

Sending more students overseas than any other UK uni (HESA)


Student experiences

The number of student trips abroad for at least 5 days in 2015/16


and counting

The number of students we’ve helped travel internationally so far


global programmes

As well as trips, we offer other opportunities like language courses

What our students say

The course gave me the theoretical knowledge and invaluable laboratory skills that has enabled me to progress onto a PhD programme and focus on research.”

James Dayus, BSc (Hons) Human Biosciences, graduated in 2013, now a PhD student

Clearing places available on this course

During Clearing, the tariff points for this course may change. Clearing tariff points will be published 14th August.

Know your results? See if we could offer you a place

Waiting for results day? Visit our Clearing pages for advice

What our students say

The course gave me the theoretical knowledge and invaluable laboratory skills that has enabled me to progress onto a PhD programme and focus on research.”

James Dayus, BSc (Hons) Human Biosciences, graduated in 2013, now a PhD student

Tuition Fees

We pride ourselves on offering competitive tuition fees which we review on an annual basis and offer a wide range of scholarships to support students with their studies. Course fees are calculated on the basis of what it costs to teach each course and we aim for total financial transparency.

For more information, please visit our Finance pages.



September 2017

£9,250 (per year)


If you're a truly outstanding undergraduate candidate we may be able to offer you a Coventry University Scholarship.

Coventry University Scholarships are awarded to recognise truly exceptional sports achievement and academic excellence.



September 2017

£9,250 (per year)


For the September 2017 and January 2018 intakes, we're investing £1 million into scholarships for high achieving and enterprising students.

Our scholarships are worth up to £10,000 and every student that applies will be considered. Fulfil your potential this academic year with Coventry University!



September 2017

£13,015 (per year)

Course essentials at no extra cost

We're committed to communicating study costs clearly to make sure you're not faced with having to make any unexpected payments.

This is why our ‘Flying Start’ package provides you with a few course essentials. Your full-time fee for an undergraduate degree will cover the following:

UK field trips

Any mandatory site visits and trips within the United Kingdom.

Key material

This can include core textbooks, software and equipment.

Laser prints

1,000 A4 sides of black and white laser printing credits per year.

Optional year

Pay no tuition fees for optional work placements or study abroad trips.

As well as covering UK field trips, key materials and laser print, the fees for this course also include:

  • Laboratory coat and safety spectacles provided for use
  • Costs of any mandatory UK day visits
  • Disclosure and Barring Service (formally CRB Disclosure) for those undertaking placements with children
  • Free copy of SPSS statistics software

The following are additional costs not included in the fees:

  • Refundable deposit for turning point handset
  • Any optional overseas field trips or visits

What our students say

The course gave me the theoretical knowledge and invaluable laboratory skills that has enabled me to progress onto a PhD programme and focus on research.”

James Dayus, BSc (Hons) Human Biosciences, graduated in 2013, now a PhD student

Career prospects

Over 1.2 million people work in primary science-based roles in the UK, with the boundaries between biosciences, chemical sciences and physical sciences becoming increasingly blurred.

There is a growing demand for highly skilled staff with the ability to work in multidisciplinary teams, right across industry, in the health service, government establishments, research and educational institutions.
Our degree is designed to help you develop a wide range of skills that will be attractive to many different types of employers. Our designated Employability Unit will help you find placements, internships and job opportunities, by advertising jobs, holding an annual jobs fair, helping with CV writing and job interview technique. 

Coventry University is committed to preparing you for your future career and giving you a competitive edge in the graduate job market. The University’s Careers and Employability team provide a wide range of support services to help you plan and prepare for your career.

Where our graduates work

Recent graduates have gone on to careers in clinical trials for drug companies, as research assistants in laboratories in universities and various roles within industry, such as marketing assistants and medical and scientific representatives for companies. Others have used their qualifications to progress into teaching careers, as well as postgraduate study to obtain MSc, MPhil and PhD qualifications.

What our students say

The course gave me the theoretical knowledge and invaluable laboratory skills that has enabled me to progress onto a PhD programme and focus on research.”

James Dayus, BSc (Hons) Human Biosciences, graduated in 2013, now a PhD student

By accepting your offer of a place with us, a Student Contract (“the Contract”) will be formed between you and the University. The Contract will detail all of your rights and also the obligations you will be bound by during your time as a student and will also contain all of the obligations that the University owes to you.  We would encourage you to read the Student Contract before you accept any offer of a place at the University. A copy of the Contract can be found here.