Exploring the science of life

There has never been a more exciting time to study the science of biology, whether your interest is in human, animal or plant life. As one of the University’s largest departments, we’re renowned for our high levels of student satisfaction on both undergraduate and postgraduate courses. 

At Essex you can study a wide and exciting range of subjects including biomedical science, marine biology, biochemistry, biological sciencesgenetics or genomics, environmental biology, and global sustainability.

We address problems ranging from how to exploit enzymes as new industrial catalysts and how they evolve to drive antibiotic resistance, to use microbes as agents to clean up pollution and keep us healthy, to stop cancer cells forming. We are working to develop better crops to feed us, understand the effects of climate change on ecosystems from the tropics to the arctic and how modern life affects the workings of the human genome.

Like our students, our staff are passionate about science and have travelled from all over the world to be at Essex. Our founding principle of research-led teaching is central to our ethos, giving you the opportunity to develop an enquiring research mind set while you gain practical laboratory skills and field techniques in our first class facilities.

Our curriculum is constantly evolving, so you have the freedom to explore what interests you most from our diverse selection of modules. Whatever you choose, we equip you with everything you need to build a successful and satisfying career.

Our work with business

Through our research and teaching and our external Advisory Board we have developed strong links with companies, government bodies and charities. Our Advisory Board brings together representatives from external organisations, key employers, regulators and professional bodies to help inform our curriculum, employability and research outputs.


Explore our courses in Clearing View our Masters courses Browse our research degrees
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Our life sciences courses are now in Clearing!

Find out which courses we're accepting Clearing applications for, browse the modules you can learn during your degree, and apply online with our quick, easy form!

Find our courses in Clearing

Why choose us?

2nd for anatomy, physiology and pathology for overall positivity score (National Student Survey 2023)
89% of our School of Life Sciences UG graduates are in employment or further study (Graduate Outcomes 2023)
23rd in the UK for Biology in The Guardian University Guide 2024
State-of-the-art laboratories
Athena Swan Silver Award
Top 400 for Life Sciences in THE World University Rankings by Subject 2024
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A pipette held over a row of test tubes that have red, yellow and blue liquid in them.
A pipette held over a row of test tubes that have red, yellow and blue liquid in them.
A pair of hands wearing green disposable gloves holding a bottle with some red liquid in it.
A female academic, wearing a white lab coat and plastic goggles, holds a piece of scientific equipment in her hands
students working in a lab
A man in glasses smiling in the field wearing a short-sleeved shirt
“The goal of our friendly and supportive School is to make a healthier, fairer and more sustainable world. You will learn from inspirational lecturers, performing cutting-edge research across the spectrum of biology, from genes to ecosystems, to improve human and planetary health. We will share the skills, knowledge and understanding needed to help you to shape the future.”
Professor Terence McGenity Head of School
A top-down photo of a group of four people wearing black graduation robes trimmed with red and white, and mortarboards on their heads.
What can you do with a life sciences degree?

A degree in life sciences can open a host of doors and career paths. Read our alumni stories, learn more about the skills you will develop, and find out how our School will help you build experience for your CV.

More about life sciences careers
Latest news
Class of 2024: Isabella Ciuta
11 Jul 2024
Class of 2024: Thomas Jefferson
08 Jul 2024
Class of 2024: Maria Batllo Simo
08 Jul 2024
Contact our School of Life Sciences
Kerry Alban General Enquiries
Maz Brook General Enquiries