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Biology MRes

The MRes in Biology is an advanced postgraduate degree which can either be taken as a stand-alone qualification or as progression route into doctoral research.

The Programme aims to prepare students:
• for doctoral level study.
• to engage in a career in biological research in a HE or industrial context.
• to meet the global need for highly trained individuals who can make informed decisions on future research directions.
• to think for themselves in the development

Our MRes in Biology programme offers you:

Academic rigor: Gain a deeper understanding of your chosen subject area with a challenging combination of taught modules, research training and supervised research.
Wide variety of research interests: We have a strong mix of academics with a high degree of professional and personal experience enabling you to get the most out of both the taught and research element of your programme.
Excellent supervision: Benefit from a professional and challenging relationship with your supervisory team, drawn from experienced academics working at the forefront of their disciplines.
Resources: Access to the University of Worcester’s virtual resources and to the state of the art Hive library facilities. The institute of Science and the Environment has a number of laboratories and other specialist facilities available for the delivery of your course. In addition to the large laboratory in the Darwin building, there are five other laboratories. The National Pollen and Aerobiology Research Unit (NPARU) also has several laboratories where molecular biology, microbiology, immunology, forensic science and product testing have been carried out.

Postgraduate Loans

Postgraduate Loans of up to £10,609 are now available for UK students. For more information visit our postgraduate loans page


How to apply

For more information about the programme, please email

Apply for September 2018 enrolment

Apply full-time
Apply part-time


All applicants must apply online at least 8 weeks before the start of the Semester (September or January, please contact the Research School for more information).

All applications are passed to the relevant course leader for consideration. If the application has potential, an interview is scheduled by a panel comprising at least two members of academic staff.


An offer of a place on the MRes will be made when the following conditions are satisfied:

  • Applicant meets the specified entry requirements.
  • The Institute has the supervisory capacity and expertise to support the research project outlined in the application form.
  • The proposal outlined has the potential to become a viable research project at Masters level.


Entry qualifications

Applicants are expected to have a First or Second Class Honours Degree or equivalent award in an appropriate discipline or have appropriate research or professional experience which has resulted in appropriate evidence of achievement. For example experience in a research environment such as private research and development or public research laboratories.

International applicants will also be required to demonstrate that they have the appropriate level of written and spoken English (normally IELTS score of 6.5 with a minimum score of 6 in written English). Entry qualifications for international students are guided by the National Academic Recognition Information Centre’s (NARIC) advice on international qualifications.



For information on current fees, please visit our course fees page.

Note that there is a charge for retaking modules.

Course content

Module summary

Processes and skills, management and methods

This module is aimed at providing research students with the generic skills they will need to progress with and to complete their research degree. The module focuses on providing students with the skills to plan and manage their research project, to collect and manage their research data and to structure and write their thesis.

Research methods in Biology

The purpose of this module is to prepare students to gain experience in practical laboratory skills necessary to investigate Biology. Techniques include DNA isolation, gene cloning, DNA sequencing, PCR amplification of DNA, ELISA tests using antibody, pollen identification, computer based analysis such as exploring genomic databases, in silico molecular techniques such as primer design for PCR, recombinant protein expression, purification and analysis by SDS-PAGE and western blotting.

Research thesis preparation

This module prepares students for their specific MRes Research Thesis by the production of a PDP and training needs analysis in consultation with the research supervisor. A programme of student development and outcomes will be agreed during the module.

Course content

The MRes in Biology commences with a taught programme. You will be expected to take and pass three taught modules (below) before proceeding to the research stage of your programme which will culminate in the production of a thesis that will be examined by viva.

The Institute of Science and Environment’s educational and research expertise within Biology extends across Molecular Biology, Cell Biology, Plant Sciences, Microbiology, Parasitology, Human Physiology, Biochemistry, Plant Pathology, Genetics, Human Genetics and Animal Biology.

Meet the team

Meet the team

Dr Chris Brown
Physiological Ecology of Mammals and Birds. Ostrich Biology

Dr Allain Bueno
Membrane Phospholipids in Health, Disease & Oxidative stress. Obesity, diabetes and inflammation.

Ian Callow
Forensic DNA analysis. 

Dr Rob Herbert
Head of Applied Sciences, Plant Cell Biology, Plant Mitotic Cell Cycle, Flowering. 

Dr Wayne Heaselgrave
Microbiology & Parasitology 

Dr Debbie Holmes
Human Genetics, Research Statistics 

Professor John Newbury
Head of ISE, Plant Molecular Biology and Biochemistry

Dr Susanne Prankel
Animal Welfare and Ethics

Dr Jo Smith
Amphibian Conservation and Biomechanics

Dr Mahmut Tor
Molecular Plant Pathology 

Dr Laurence Trueman
Molecular Biology, Human Nutritional Biochemistry 

Kate Unwin
Forensic Biology of blood and body fluids. Forensic DNA analysis 

Lorraine Weaver
Plant Field Biology, Biology of Bryophytes 

Dr Mike Wheeler
Plant Molecular Genetics, Development al Biology