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World-class science across the whole spectrum of modern biology, from ecology to biomedicine

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York ranks second in the UK for Research Environment (RAE2008)

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One of the top in the UK for student satisfaction and 4th overall in the Complete University Guide 2014

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Ranked Top 2 in the UK for excellence in teaching (Guardian University Guide 2014)

Welcome from the Head of Department

‌Biology at York welcomes staff and students from around the world. We celebrate excellence, breadth and diversity across the spectrum of modern biology, from ecology to biomedicine. We are proud of our status as one of the UK’s leading university biological sciences departments as measured by our high rankings for both research and teaching.

We invite you to explore the exciting research that our staff and students are carrying out and the undergraduate and postgraduate courses that we teach. Please contact us if you are interested in joining our vibrant and friendly Department.

Professor Ian A Graham

League Table Success

Biological Sciences at York has once again demonstrated its excellence in University League Tables for 2014.  Averaged over the three tables listed below, York ranks equal second with Oxford, with only Cambridge scoring higher.

Supporting Women in science

Athena Swan logo (new)‌‎The Department of Biology holds an Athena SWAN silver award for our commitment to women in Science.

Studying Biosciences at York‎

Undergraduate admissions video



Spotlight on Postgraduate Studies

Postgraduate student Clare

MSc by Research

Our MSc by Research is an excellent opportunity to develop your independent research skills in one year.

Research Video

Surviving climate change: Butterflies head north

Professor Chris Thomas and Professor Jane Hill from the Department of Biology at the University of York are tracking the progress of native butterflies as they head for cooler climes.

Surviving climate change: Butterflies head north - Jane Hill Chris Thomas research highlight video link

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Mining microbial genomes for new natural products and biosynthetic pathways

12.00PM, Dianna Bowles lecture theatre

Professor Greg Challis, University of Warwick


Thermal safety, environmental variability and geographic distributions

1.00PM, Dianna Bowles lecture theatre

Dr Amanda Bates, National Oceanography Centre, Southampton

Next Open Lecture


How purple photosynthetic bacteria harvest solar energy

Professor Codgell will present his research