Wildlife biology is the study of organisms, their behaviour, ecology, environment and management. On USW's unique International Wildlife Biology degree you will study and interpret the biological processes and interactions that determine species diversity and distribution, their responses to biotic and abiotic factors, and apply current scientific thinking and practices to wildlife biology research and management in globally changing landscapes.
There is a strong practical field element to this International Wildlife Biology course, providing opportunities for immersive learning on three continents. You will study the wildlife and habitats of diﬀerent landscapes in South Africa, which is a compulsory component of the course.
You will also develop your scientific skills on UK field trips, and have the option to apply research techniques in the tropical forests and coral reefs of Asia or Central America.
Typical study subjects include big game tracking, conservation genetics, wildlife management, ecology, vertebrate zoology, marine and freshwater biology.
Optional (one of two):
Optional (two of three):
The International Wildlife Biology degree is taught through a combination of lectures, tutorials, laboratory sessions, computer exercises, practical classes, and UK and overseas fieldwork.
The number of hours of direct teaching you will receive per week will vary depending on the modules studied and year of study. Generally, you will have 48 hours of direct contact per (20-credit) module over an academic year, equating to around 12-15 contact hours per term week. Outside of this time, you will be expected to commit around 80 hours to study guided by your lecturers and self-directed learning on each module (but more for your third year project). A further 70+ hours are normally required for students to prepare and complete assessments for each module. Residential field courses have more contact hours, supporting our hands-on approach to field learning.
Throughout your wildlife biology course we invite guest lecturers from the ecological and conservation sector to help support your knowledge and understanding of contemporary wildlife biology scenarios. This is also a great opportunity to meet with potential employers, along with field trips and collaborations on third year projects.
You will be assessed using a combination of different assessment types, to support all facets of your learning and development. These include scientific reports and papers, oral presentations, critical reviews, digital outputs, problem solving and data analysis tasks, in-class and online tests, laboratory exercises, practical competencies, field reports and written examination.
Assessment methods vary depending on the module and year of study. A number of modules are assessed through coursework and written examination, while other modules are continuously assessed with coursework only.
The breakdown of assessment methods for this course is: 9-27% practical assessment, 19-59% coursework, and 32-54% written examination.
The BSc (Hons) International Wildlife Biology degree is accredited by the Royal Society of Biology for the purpose of meeting in part the academic and experience requirement for Membership and Chartered Biologist (CBiol).
Our International Wildlife Biology degree is practically oriented and you will have opportunities to further develop your practical skills, understanding and application by participating in our residential field courses. Current field course destinations include South Africa (4 weeks), which is a compulsory element of our degree program, and our tropical ecology field course in Mexico (2 weeks, optional). Additional costs apply to both these field courses.
Our South Africa field course takes place in private nature reserves located in different ecological biomes – grasslands and savannahs – and is designed to provide an immersive experience of the biodiversity of Southern Africa. You will study the wildlife and ecology of these regions using a range of field and research skills and techniques, including interpretation of tracks and signs (game tracking) and species identification, behavioural studies, and biodiversity and habitat assessments, and apply these to scientific studies and wildlife conservation management scenarios.
A similar philosophy is applied to our Mexico field course, but here the focus is on tropical forests and marine systems, e.g. coral reefs, where you will have the opportunity to apply your scientific knowledge to mini research projects alongside local practitioners. Please note, the exact locations of our overseas field trips may vary each year, and are based on an area’s ongoing suitability for teaching and learning, and the overall cost of the trip.
The International Wildlife Biology course includes modules with significant fieldwork elements, which come with certain physical demands. If you have a disability that is likely to be affected by physical demands, please get in touch with the course leader Dr Elke Scheibler as soon as possible. All applicants are encouraged to attend a University Applicant Day to discuss the field courses with our staff, including current additional costs and the nature of the activities that are undertaken.
By studying International Wildlife Biology, you will benefit from the huge investment in scientific teaching and learning facilities that has taken place at our Glyntaff Campus. Most of your campus-based teaching will take place here, and includes our fully-equipped purpose-built laboratories, computer rooms with specialist software to support your learning.
You will have the opportunity to gain additional qualifications that will enhance your career opportunities, such as the industry-standard ESRI certificate Learning ArcGIS Desktop, and a PADI Open Water diving qualification.
The entry criteria below shows the qualification range within which the University will make offers. Most offers we make are at the top of the range, but we take all aspects of an application into consideration and applicants receive a personalised offer. Combinations of qualifications are acceptable and other qualifications not listed here may also be acceptable.
BCC - CDD to include a C in Biology and one other Science subject but to exclude General Studies.
Grade C and BC at A Level to include B grade Biology and one other Science subject but to exclude General Studies
Pass the Advanced Welsh Baccalaureate Diploma with Grade C/D in the Skills Challenge Certificate and BC - CD at A Level to include B grade Biology and one other Science subject but to exclude General Studies (this is equivalent to 104-80 UCAS tariff points).
Applicants taking Science A levels in England will need to pass the practical element alongside achieving the requested grade(s)
BTEC Extended Diploma Distinction Merit Merit - Merit Merit Pass in a relevant subject which must include Biology modules (this is equivalent to 112-80 UCAS tariff points).
Pass the International Baccalaureate Diploma with a minimum score of 29 overall including a score of 5 in Biology and one other Science subject at Higher Level. You will also need to obtain a score of 5 or above in English at standard level.
Pass an Access to HE Diploma in Science and obtain a minimum of 80 UCAS tariff points
GCSEs: The University normally requires a minimum 5 GCSEs including Mathematics/Numeracy and English at Grade C or Grade 4 or above, or their equivalent, but consideration is given to individual circumstances.
We also welcome international applications with equivalent qualifications. Please visit the country specific pages on our international website for exact details.
In general, international applicants will need to have achieved an overall IELTS grade of 6.0 with a minimum score of 5.5 in each component.
However, if you have previously studied through the medium of English IELTS might not be required, but please visit the country specific page on our international website for exact details. If your country is not featured please contact us.
Full-time fees are per year. Part-time fees are per 20 credits. Once enrolled, the fee will remain at the same rate throughout the duration of your study on this course.
Find out how to pay your tuition fees in full or by payment plan.
This course is eligible under the Enhanced Learning Credits scheme for Ex-Armed Forces personnel.
International Scholarships are available for self-funding international students.
Students have access to a wide range of resources including textbooks, publications, and computers in the University’s library and via online resources. In most cases they are more than sufficient to complete a course of study. Where there are additional costs, either obligatory or optional, these are detailed below. Of course students may choose to purchase their own additional personal resources/tools over and above those listed to support their studies at their own expense. All stationery and printing costs are at a student’s own expense.
|Field Trip *||£1100 - £1300||
This module includes fieldwork presently conducted in S. Africa and represents 2 modules of study which run consecutively over the summer vacation period in between your 1st and 2nd year. The School subsidises the cost of the trip by £600 per student per module. Additional costs to the student are presently approximately £1,100 to £1,300 plus flights but depend on accommodation used and exchange rates at the time.
Students undertaking courses that contain elements of outdoor fieldwork must wear appropriate outdoor clothing, which includes suitable wet weather gear, rugged boots/shoes and hat/gloves. The location and weather will determine the nature of clothing/footwear worn, and therefore the cost, and students will be informed of these requirements at the start of their studies. Please note that inappropriate clothing/footwear may prevent students from participating in an activity. The School of Applied Sciences subsidises the cost of compulsory fieldwork in the UK and overseas. Although kept to a minimum, some overseas compulsory fieldwork may have additional costs applied. Optional fieldwork modules are typically at the cost to the student. Generally, students will be expected to pay for their food unless specifically included within the field course. Students will need to supply suitable field notebooks in order to take observations/notes during field courses. Please note that some fieldwork may require visas and vaccinations, which are at the cost to the student and will vary depending on individual circumstances.
|Field Trip||£2200 - £2500||
Up to two and a half weeks in a tropical location including marine and terrestrial study sites. Recent study centres have included Mexico, Honduras and Borneo. Additional £350 for scuba diving qualification if not already held.
Please note that students who successfully secure a placement in industry or abroad to complete their projects would be expected to pay their own travelling costs to and from the venue during the period of placement. The cost of this will of course vary and some students have also paid for accommodation close to their place of work for the duration of their placement.
Apply via UCAS if you are a UK/EU residing applicant, applying for year one of a full-time undergraduate degree, Foundation Year, Foundation Degree or HND and you have not applied through UCAS before. If you are applying to study part-time, to top up your Foundation Degree or HND, or to transfer to USW from another institution, please apply directly.
Apply directly to the University if you live outside the UK/EU.
On our BSc (Hons) International Wildlife Biology degree you will gain a range of traditional and contemporary scientific laboratory, field, analytical and research skills that are applicable to working in ecological consultancy, wildlife conservation organisations, education, or postgraduate study. Our International Wildlife Biology course equips you with transferable skills for a range of other career options too.
As a USW International Wildlife Biology student, you will have access to advice from the Careers and Employability Service throughout your studies and after you graduate.
This includes: one-to-one appointments from faculty based Career Advisers, in person, over the phone or even on Skype and through email via the "Ask a Question" service. We also have extensive online resources for help with considering your career options and presenting yourself well to employers. Resources include psychometric tests, career assessments, a CV builder, interview simulator and application help. Our employer database has over 2,000 registered employers targeting USW students, you can receive weekly email alerts for jobs.
Our Careers service has dedicated teams: A central work experience team to help you find relevant placements; an employability development team which includes an employability programme called Grad Edge; and an Enterprise team focused on new business ideas and entrepreneurship.