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Choosing a university course

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Choosing the right course
Finding information
Making the decision
Making applications
Entrance Requirements


Choosing the right course
There is a huge choice of microbiology based BSc degree courses. Some are general but others may focus on specific areas of microbiology such as molecular techniques or medical microbiology.

If you are not sure if you want to specialise in microbiology, you could choose a broad-based course, such as biological sciences or applied biology, which has a common first year covering a variety of relevant subjects. This will allow you to delay your decision about your final degree pathway.

If you plan to work in a hospital medical microbiology laboratory it is a good idea to take an accredited biomedical sciences degree. Information about these degrees is available from the Institute of Biomedical Science.

A "Sandwich" degree course alternates study with periods of work and provides valuable experience giving you an advantage in the competitive graduate job market.

Finding information
Individual courses can be found by using the search facility on the UCAS website. A list of microbiology degree courses is available here. Most university prospectuses are available online or you can send for one by post. You can locate websites using the University of Wolverhampton touch sensitive map. Many individual university departments also provide extra information for university applicants on their web pages.

Making the decision
Study university prospectuses carefully to find out about course content, methods of assessment, subject options, course structure, not forgetting the place itself and the general feel of the institution. Open days offer an ideal opportunity to check out the laboratory facilities and talk to existing students about their experiences.

Making applications
Applications for entry to a course must be made through UCAS.

Entrance Requirements
The usual minimum entrance requirement is 5 GCSE (grades A-C) or SQA standard grade passes (at grade or above) and 2 'A' level (or 3 SQA higher grade) science passes. In practice most institutions will require 3 'A' levels or the equivalent combination of 'AS' and 'A2' levels. A relevant BTEC or SQA National Diploma or Certificate, or suitable advanced VCEs, may also be acceptable. Anyone who is not sure about the eligibility of their qualifications should seek advice from the departmental admissions tutor directly. This applies particularly to mature students, who may need guidance about access courses.

Consult individual prospectuses for general entrance requirements; English and mathematics at GCSE grades A-C (or equivalent) are usually essential. For entry to a microbiology or allied course 'A' level chemistry may not be a requirement, but in practice you will find studying a bioscience at degree level hard-going without it. Other preferred subjects at 'A' level are biology, maths, physics, although other subjects are acceptable.

Some universities use the UCAS entry tariff whilst others prefer to make offers based on grades. However each application is judged on its merits and when an offer is made, many factors are taken into account.

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