A butterfly on a flower

Biological Sciences

The biological sciences degree course at Oxford is jointly run by the Department of Zoology and Department of Plant Sciences. It covers all aspects of biology ranging from molecular and cell biology through to disease, ecology, evolution and behaviour.

In the first year, students follow a general curriculum focusing on organisms (plant, animal, microbial biology), cells and genes (molecular biology) and ecology and evolution. In the second and third year, students follow more specialized options. Further details on the course are available here: www.biology.ox.ac.uk


At the department level, the curriculum is taught through lectures and practicals. Each module within the Biological Sciences degree has a compulsory practical component and high emphasis is placed on developing practical skills. In years 2-3, students undertake a research project that allows specialisation and focus on a specific topic. In college, tutorial teaching is organised to compliment the departmental teaching. In year 1, these tutorials start broad before focusing on specific topics.

The course at St Peter's

Biological Science is a core subject at St Peters. We offer (on average) 4 places each year. Historically, Malcolm Coe was the tutor for biology for almost 30 years, and we have a distinguished set of biology alumni and honorary fellows, including Kurt Jackson (renowned landscape artist), Graham Bell (Professor of Evolutionary Biology at McGill University in Montreal) and Sir Charles Godfray (Director of the Martin School, here in Oxford).