Animal Biology (BSc Hons)

Samantha Howlett with african cat

Study mode



3 Years (Full-Time)
4 Years (Placement)


Francis Close Hall, Cheltenham

Learning in the field and lab, focusing on local and global biological issues, you’ll develop the skills needed to move into a rewarding animal biology career. You will explore the form and function of animals, their adaptions to the environment, interaction, physiology and evolution. You’ll examine animal behaviour from ants to primates and learn how to conduct surveys  for a variety of animal populations.

You’ll have the opportunity to progress from field training in the UK to field research overseas, studying animal behaviour and conservation in South Africa or the ecology of alpine settings in Switzerland. In your second year you’ll also have the option to take our internship module, which not only provides critical workplace experience but also awards academic credit towards your degree.

Throughout, you'll be guided by lecturers awarded for their teaching excellence and media work, and internationally-recognised for their frontline research in bioscience. These include Professor Adam Hart who has presented BBC2’s Hive Alive, BBC4’s Planet Ant: Life Inside the Colony and BBC Radio 4’s Big Game Theory

Get Animal Biology course updates and hear more about studying with us.

Study style

You'll learn through fieldwork, laboratory analysis, seminars, debates and lectures. Around 75% of assessment is by coursework, through consultancy reports, presentations, essays, scientific reports and practical tests with an emphasis on active research areas.

Course modules

You'll study a variety of modules from 'Animal Behaviour' to 'Climate Change'.

Take a look at the course content for full details of all the modules you'll study on this course.

Entry requirements

Tariff information for 2020 entry

112 tariff points

Typical offers

BBC at A levels, BTEC DMM or use a combination of your qualifications to achieve the required tariff total.

Mature Applicants: We welcome applications from mature students (aged 21 and over) and do not necessarily require the same academic qualifications as school leaving applicants.

International Students: Please see the full details of entry requirements in your country.

Grade 4/C in GCSE English and Mathematics (or equivalent) are normally required. If you don't meet your tariff points total we may still consider your application. Please contact our admissions team if you have a question.


See the further details of fees and potential extra costs when studying a course at the University of Gloucestershire.

UCAS codes

UCAS codes available for this subject
BSc (Hons) - 3 years full-timeC190
BSc (Hons) - 4 years placementC19P


  • Biologist
  • Ecologist
  • Wildlife journalist
  • Laboratory technician
  • Conservation biologist
  • Wildlife Manager
  • Teaching / Research
  • Ecological Consultant 

Tolga Aktas student profile

Student Focus

Tolga Aktas

I've always been curious about endangered species and the university endeavour to develop my curiousity, they're always there to help you.

It's not just the hours that you have during lectures, outside the lectures they're there to help you. They're really passionate and enthusiastic. After my first year I volunteered with Wildlife Act, who protect endangered species such as the African wild dog. It was really good hands on, practical field work experience.

Placement information

Andrew Shelton, Graduate.

"The vast number of placements was simply outstanding." Andrew Shelton, Graduate

Placement type:

12-Month, Optional


12 months, full-time (minimum 35 hours per week)


Placements can be carried out in the UK or overseas; popular overseas placement destinations include the USA, China and Europe. You may even wish to source your own placement in other countries.

Visa requirements:

If carrying out a placement abroad, there may be a visa requirement.

Financial arrangements:

On your placement year you will pay a reduced tuition fee and are still eligible to apply for a maintenance loan. Financial support is also available from the Student Finance Team by contacting

Placement support:

You will have access to guidance from the Placements Team throughout your placement search, and for the duration of your placement year. You can contact the Placements Team on

Industry links

In your second year you’ll have the option to take our internship module, which not only provides a critical edge of workplace experience but also awards academic credit towards your degree. Recently, students have interned with zoos, conservation groups and wildlife rangers. Others have been gaining teaching experience in schools, critical to their teacher training applications.  And some have joined us in our research into hedgehog conservation, the microbiology of dormice nest-boxes, and seabird surveys using thermal imaging.
Associated professional accreditations
Owing to their applied content, our biology courses are recognised by the Royal Society of Biology - a worldwide community of cross-disciplinary scientists. 

Profile photo of Anne Goodenough

Staff Profile

Anne Goodenough

“I am extremely proud to have been awarded a National Teaching Fellowship as I feel that this is a reflection of the passion and expertise that I bring to my subject. For me, teaching and research go hand-in-hand: my particular passions are ornithology and conservation (anything connected with birds and how to conserve both birds and other species fascinates me) and the 20+ articles I have published underpin my Avian Biology and Conservation Ecology modules on the course. I also frequently invite the students to work with me on my research projects: I have now published 18 papers jointly with students and I am always delighted with the level of commitment and skill that they demonstrate.”

Professor Adam Hart

Learn from staff who are experts in their field

Our entomologist Professor Adam Hart and ornithologist Dr Anne Goodenough regularly make national media appearances, in particular the annual Flying Ant and Starling Murmuration surveys that are led jointly by the University of Gloucestershire and the Royal Society of Biology.

Rhino conservation

Overseas field research opportunities

Residential field trip options include South Africa to study animal behavior and conservation, and the Swiss Alps to analyse the ecology of alpine environments. Recent dissertation projects have included examining turtles in Mexico, bats in Ghana and marine ecology in Abu Dhabi.

Student using a microscope

Consistently excellent levels of student satisfaction

Learn in a supportive and personal environment. We scored 94% for overall student satisfaction in the National Student Survey 2018.

School of Natural and Social Sciences

Our School of Natural and Social Sciences provides the best possible student experience with cutting-edge technology and strong practical elements to each course. You will work closely with lecturers and other students in the seminar room, the laboratory and the field.

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Royal society of biology