Mathematics is changing our approach to biological and environmental problems. Apply your passion for mathematics to the pressing ecological and environmental issues of our times.
You'll build highly sought-after technical skills and use quantatative methods to understand the dynamics of the natural world, with a focus on ecology, conservation and the environment. You'll engage with global problems from natural resource management and shrinking biodiversity, to climate change, contamination risks and urban pollution and its impact on health and wellbeing.
You'll benefit from the established interdisciplinary connections between the Departments of Biology and Mathematics. Our teaching is informed by highly-regarded international research, such as our £3.5m study to measure the pollution levels in our cities with high-tech tools, including miniaturised sensing devices, robotics and mobile phones.
Studying this course to Masters level will expand your independent study and allow you to explore this area in greater depth.
All our Natural Sciences MSci degrees have the same course code for your UCAS application. To select the Natural Sciences specialising in Mathematical Bioscience pathway, enter the subject option code "MatBio". We will ask you to confirm your pathway if you are invited to interview.
"Studying Mathematical Bioscience at York was the best decision I ever made. The lecturers in both departments provide interesting content, teaching is in lots of different formats (from seminars, practicals and tutorials, to learning about animal behaviour by feeding ducks!) and even in the first year information studied in Biology will cross over to Maths lectures and vice versa."Hannah, Mathematical Bioscience (Year 1)
Natural Sciences specialising in Biological Modeling will give you a grounding in core topics from across the natural sciences and mathematics alongside a range of advanced topics. You'll take modules totalling 480 credits across four years, covering:
You will also gain experience with computer packages for symbolic manipulation of mathematical expressions, implementation of algorithms, numerical evaluation of mathematical and statistical functions and processes, and representation and manipulation of large ecological and environmental datasets.
As a MSci student you'll also engage with further independent reserach in your fourth year, deepening your understanding in this exciting area.
There are opportunities for you to spend time abroad during your course:
Year 1 emphasises core material in biology and mathematics to prepare you for more advanced study.
In addition to the above you will also need to complete our online Academic Integrity module.
This module covers some of the essential skills and knowledge which will help you to study independently and produce work of a high academic standard which is vital for success at York.
This module will:
In your second year you will explore your specialised subjects in greater depth.
In your third year you will choose between the Statistics route and the Applied route to refine the focus of your specialisation.
Choose two modules from:
Choose 40 credits of Mathematics modules from:
Chose two Biology modules from:
In your fourth year the majority of your work devoted to your research project. The remainder of your modules will be determined by whether you have taken the Applied route or the Statistics route.
Choose modules totalling 40 credits from:
Choose modules totalling 40 credits from:
Please note, modules may change to reflect the latest academic thinking and expertise of our staff.
Every course at York has been designed to provide clear and ambitious learning outcomes. These learning outcomes give you an understanding of what you will be able to do at the end of the course. We develop each course by designing modules that grow your abilities towards the learning outcomes and help you to explain what you can offer to employers. Find out more about our approach to teaching and learning.
Natural Sciences offers a range of well-structured pathways built upon the natural synergies that exist across scientific disciplines.
Our weekly Natural Sciences Hour brings students together to hear from researchers and employers and to build transferable skills.
Study in world-leading research institutes and hi-tech learning spaces dedicated to interdisciplinary science.
The fees and funding figures below are for 2021/22 entry. If you take a year abroad or year in industry you'll pay a reduced rate of fees for that year
|UK (home)||International and EU|
UK (home) or international fees? The level of fee that you will be asked to pay depends on whether you're classed as a UK (home) or international student. Check your fee status
For more information about tuition fees, any reduced fees for study abroad and work placement years, scholarships, tuition fee loans, maintenance loans and living costs see undergraduate fees and funding.
You may be asked to provide your own lab coat, they usually cost around £20. Text books and course books are all available in the library or online. We do recommend books you might find useful, but it is not compulsory for you to buy them. Your first year textbooks for Biology will be provided to you at no additional cost.
We'll confirm more funding opportunities for students joining us in 2021/22 throughout the year.
You can use our living costs guide to help plan your budget. It covers additional costs that are not included in your tuition fee such as expenses for accommodation and study materials.
“Students from all backgrounds achieve consistently outstanding outcomes”
The TEF Panel, Office for Students, June 2018
Our Gold Teaching Excellence Framework award demonstrates our commitment to the delivery of consistently outstanding teaching and learning for our students.
You’ll study and learn with academics who are active researchers, experts in their field and have a passion for their subjects. Our approach to teaching will provide you with the knowledge, opportunities, and support you need to grow and succeed in a global workplace. Find out more about our approach to teaching and learning.
The interdisciplinary nature of the Natural Sciences programme means that you will experience a wide variety of approaches to teaching, from formal lectures and practical experiments in the lab to small group tutorials and close, supportive mentoring, as well as Virtual Learning Environments. This course will have strong element of experimental and practical studies.
You'll receive lectures from leading figures in the field, along with smaller group sessions. In tutorials and seminars you will be encouraged to debate and discuss the lecture material, drawing out important principles, highlighting connections between ideas and applying methods to example problems.
You will share lectures and seminars with students from other departments, but your tutorials and some smaller seminar groups will be with other Natural Sciences students only, and these will help you understand the material in an interdisciplinary context.
For the natural scientist, conducting rigorous experiments and understanding the experimental method underpins the very nature of scientific inquiry and discovery.
Laborarory work may be done in groups or pairs, or sometimes individually, but always with the support of experienced mentors. Sometimes laboratory work will be interwoven with lectures and tutorials, sometimes it may be a stand-alone module. The importance of experimentation to the learning process is recognised by the fact that Projects form the pinnacle of every Natural Scientist’s time at York: every Natural Sciences programme includes a major project during the final year.
By studying to MSci level you'll have the opportunity to integrate project work with research at a higher level.
In your first year, you can expect:
|Lectures||7-11 hours per week|
|Seminars||1 hours per week|
|Workshops||0-2 hour per week|
|Practicals||0-7 hours per week|
|Field trips||0-1 week|
These figures are based on an average student in an average week. Your contact hours will vary throughout the year due to your module choices, non-compulsory classes, exam periods and changes to scheduled activities.
Outside your timetabled hours, you'll study independently. This may include preparation for classes, follow-up work, wider reading, practise completion of assessment tasks, or revision.
In the UK, full-time students are expected to spend 1,200 hours a year learning. That's about 40 hours of classes and independent study each week during term time. Everyone learns at a different rate, so the number of hours you spend on independent study will be different to other students on your course.
You will be based in the Natural Sciences Learning Studio on Campus West, but your teaching will be spread across our departments and locations will vary. Teaching locations for this course include: Alcuin, Derwent, James and Vanbrugh College; the Department of Biology; the Physics and Electronic Engineering building; and the Spring Lane building.
Our beautiful green campus offers a student-friendly setting in which to live and study, within easy reach of the action in the city centre. It's easy to get around campus - everything is within walking or pedalling distance, or you can always use the fast and frequent bus service.
A variety of assessment techniques will be used for different elements of the course and at different times during your degree. These include:
Assessment of your final year project includes a short oral examination, known as a viva, in which you will talk about your project with a panel of examiners.
|Year 1||Year 2||Year 3||Year 4|
The figures above are based on data from 2016/17.
"We have all really benefitted as well from the small NatSci cohort and everyone becomes really close over the first year. I am really excited for my second year modules!"Hannah, Mathematical Bioscience (Year 1)
A Natural Sciences degree is a versatile course that will provide you with the skills and experience to succeed in a wide range of careers.
A*AA including Mathematics and either Biology or Further Mathematics
|International Baccalaureate||37 points, including grade 6 in Biology and Mathematics at Higher Level.|
|Other international qualifications||Equivalent qualifications from your country|
Meeting the following additional criteria may qualify you for an alternative offer.
|Widening participation||If you successfully complete one of the following programmes, you may be eligible for an alternative offer up to three A level grades (or equivalent) below our typical offer: Next Step York, Realising Opportunities. More about widening participation.|
|Contextual offers||If you have experience of local authority care or live in an area with low progression to university, you may be eligible for an alternative offer up to two A level grades (or equivalent) below our typical offer. More about contextual offers.|
|EPQ||If you achieve A or higher at EPQ, you may be eligible for an alternative offer up to one A level grade (or equivalent) below our typical offer.|
If English isn't your first language you may need to provide evidence of your English language ability. We accept the following qualifications:
|IELTS||6.5, with a minimum of 6.0 in each component|
|PTE Academic||61, with a minimum of 55 in each component|
|GCSE/IGCSE/O level English Language (as a first or second language)||Grade C|
|C1 Advanced and C2 Proficiency||176, with a minimum of 169 in each component|
|TOEFL||87 overall, with a minimum of 21 in each component|
|Trinity ISE III||Merit in all components|
|Duolingo||110 overall, with a minimum of 100 in each component|
|LanguageCert International ESOL SELT||B2 Communicator High Pass with a minimum score of 33/50 in each component|
For more information see our undergraduate English language requirements.
You may be eligible for one of our pre-sessional English language courses. These courses will provide you with the level of English needed to meet the conditions of your offer.
The length of course you need to take depends on your current English language test scores and how much you need to improve to reach our English language requirements.
After you've accepted your offer to study at York, we'll confirm which pre-sessional course you should apply to via You@York.
Get in touch if you have any questions
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