Why choose Bristol?

Excellent teaching

Our exceptional teaching standards have been rated as 'excellent' by the Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFC).

You will be taught by lecturers who are all engaged in projects at the forefront of their research specialisms. You will benefit from the expertise of researchers who actively shape our degree courses, which progress from building a solid foundation in biology to covering the latest cutting-edge topics in the life sciences.

Our courses are flexible, allowing students to complete field courses or laboratory workshops alongside independent research projects chosen from a wide range of options. Final year project work is frequently published in the world's leading scientific journals.

World class research

We have an international reputation for the outstanding quality of our research, all of which underpins our teaching approach. Many of our staff are world leaders in their fields, giving you the opportunity to learn about the most up to date perspectives from those involved in shaping the latest advances in biology.

You will be taught molecular biology by one of the leaders of the multi-million pound UK wheat genome project; while behavioural ecology is taught by international-award-winning professors. The list goes on.

Diverse degree programmes

Our degree programmes are based around highly reputable and traditional strengths in whole organism biology (e.g. behaviour, ecology), as well as excellence in cell and molecular biology.

Our passionate belief is that the big advances in biology come from interdisciplinarity and addressing problems from multiple levels. That breadth and ambition is reflected in our teaching.

Ideal location

Bristol is the ideal place to study the life sciences - as well as being home to one of the leading biology departments in the UK, it is the base for other areas of biological expertise, such as the BBC Natural History Unit, the At-Bristol centre of science, art and nature, Bristol Zoological Gardens and the University of Bristol Botanic Garden.

It is even possible to walk from the School of Biological Sciences to a National Nature Reserve, Leigh Woods, and the spectacular Avon Gorge, a protected Site of Special Scientific Interest on account of its unique range of endemic species.

Quality of life

Bristol is a historical, cultural and well-connected city that is large enough to be vibrant, yet small enough to be friendly. It is a 'green capital', leading the way on environmental issues and sustainability, with excellent public transport (although you can cycle or walk to most places of interest).

Bristol is also a technology hub, second only to Silicon Valley in microchip design. It is easy to travel to London, while also having access to the amazing countryside of South West England (the Mendips, Devon, Cornwall), the Cotswolds, South Wales and the Wye Valley.


The University has invested £56 million in an iconic new building that forms a research hub for interdisciplinary research, facilitating major advances across the sciences. The Life Sciences building has regenerated 13,500 square metres of space; located at the heart of the University campus, adjacent to other core science and medical schools, it couples central positioning with the best in sustainable design and energy efficiency.

The imaginatively-designed building features multiple break-out spaces and a five-storey laboratory wing which will enhance the student experience by facilitating research-led study and staff-student interaction. Coupled with six outstanding new academic appointments, this flagship project underscores the University's belief that many of the 21st century's most exciting discoveries will emerge from biology, and that the next generation of biology graduates will have opportunities unparalleled anywhere else.

It’s pretty much the perfect course for me! I didn’t like practical work that much until I came here but I really enjoy the labs and field trips.

Laura, BSc Biology

What our undergraduates say

Teaching and assessment

The study of Biological Sciences encompasses a huge range of concepts and techniques and our teaching programme reflects the diversity of the subject

Our degree programmes are flexible, and all students complete field courses or laboratory workshops and independent research projects chosen from a wide range of options.

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