Biological Sciences at the University of Surrey

Why I chose Surrey

The main reason I chose Surrey was because of the campus. I like that the university facilities are all in one place but it’s also only a 10-minute walk from the town centre and train station, where you can get to London in 40 minutes. There is plenty of green space on campus and the lake is a beautiful spot to take a study break. I was really impressed by the facilities such as the biosciences lab and the huge library which are modern and designed to meet the needs of all students. There is a also lot of support available at Surrey, such as the centre for wellbeing, disability and neurodiversity service, academic skills and maths and statistics hub in the library, and a 24-hour security team.

Surrey was the place that I could imagine myself spending the next couple of years and for this reason, it was my top-choice university.

The Lake, Stag Hill campus

Why I chose Biological Sciences

I loved studying A-level biology and I have always had a strong interest in animals and nature, as well as the human body. Because my interest is so broad, I chose biological sciences rather than specialising in a particular area as this gave me the freedom to study a range of topics.

The course

Bioscience students share modules in first year, which means you are able to meet students from other courses such as biomedical science, biochemistry, and veterinary biosciences. From second year, Biological sciences at Surrey offers a diverse range of modules, from microbiology to pathology and medicine to animal diversity, so there really is plenty of freedom to choose areas that interest you.

Teaching style

STEM subjects tend to have more contact hours than other subjects and the timetable for biological sciences is quite full-on. There is a range of teaching methods and usually consists of lectures and on-demand videos, supplemented by lab practicals, field work and trips that help put the content into practice. Some modules, such as environment and sustainability in third year, take an interdisciplinary approach with guest speakers from other faculties delivering lectures to provide more of a broad knowledge basis.


At Surrey, we are lucky enough to have a dedicated biosciences lab in the Innovation for Health building. It is super modern and has huge windows looking over PATS field. When you’re spending 3-4 hours in the lab, having that natural light shining in makes a huge difference. We have opportunities to use the vet school facilities for dissections, and the lake provides a great place to do fieldwork. There is also AX Dot, a new study space and kitchenette specifically for bioscience students. In first year, lectures are based in the biggest lecture theatres but as you begin to choose your own modules in later years, the classes become smaller and more intimate.

Innovation for Health building, Stag Hill campus

Exams and coursework

There is a nice range of assessment methods on the biological sciences course so whether you prefer exams or coursework, there are opportunities to demonstrate your ability in different ways. Exams consist of multiple choice or short answer questions, whereas some are essay-based. Coursework varies from essays and lab reports to posters, videos, and group presentations, helping us to not only work on our scientific research and communication, but also allowing us to express a creative and original flair.

Research project

In the final year, we have the chance to select our research project. This can be lab-based, data analysis or a grant proposal. There are so many topics to choose from and you will get the chance to work with your lecturers on their specialist areas.


I didn’t personally do a placement year, but there is plenty of support if you wish to take that route. Surrey has a dedicated careers and placement service that can offer CV guidance and practice interviews. The biosciences school also have our own placement director who is the main point of contact for arranging placements. There is a vast range available and during this year you will have a placement tutor who will keep in touch with you and offer their support.


Overall, if you are looking for a course that offers you the freedom to choose from a wide range of modules that interest you while studying in state-of-the-art facilities with academics that are top in their field, biological sciences at Surrey is the perfect choice for you!