Mode of StudyFull-time with year abroad
Duration4 years full-time with a year abroad
Start dateSeptember 2024
Learn to play a vital role in helping people live longer, healthier lives on this BSc (Hons) Biomedical Science with Human Biosciences dual degree course. You'll discover how to investigate the biology of disease to fight its effects on individuals, families and communities.
You'll learn how to use research to ask and answer key questions about human diseases, and how to identify and monitor diseases in the lab using leading diagnostic techniques.
When you graduate, you'll be ready to pursue a career in hospital-based biomedical science (after further work-based training), or to take on another related career path, such as biomedical research or contributing to clinical trials to find new medical treatments.
Study in Portsmouth and spend a year studying overseas at Edith Cowan University (ECU) in Perth, Australia, gaining two degrees - BSc (Hons) Biomedical Science with Human Biosciences and Bachelor of Biomedical Science (Bioscience). Your global outlook will help you make an impact in the world of biomedical science, disease awareness, detection and prevention.
- Explore the causes, diagnosis and treatment of medical conditions, and get an in-depth understanding of the scientific methods used to investigate human health and disease
- Study the main pathology specialisms, including molecular biology, haematology, microbiology, histology, clinical biochemistry, immunology and blood transfusion
- Broaden your horizons and complement your learning in Portsmouth with a year spent studying biomedical science in Australia, developing your understanding of forensic genetics, development and ageing with an expert team
- Learn how to diagnose and research diseases in our labs and simulation facilities, kitted out with industry-leading microscopes, spectroscopy and chromatography equipment
- Get involved with internationally recognised biomedical research into fields like microbiology, neuro-oncology and precision medicine
- Be taught by an expert team with over 40 years' experience teaching biomedical science, including many HCPC-registered Biomedical Scientists
- Understand the value a scientific education gives a global society, and examine the ethics of biomedical research
Why do a dual degree?
This course is a dual degree (also known as a double degree).
When you complete the course successfully, you'll have 2 degrees – one from the University of Portsmouth and one from Edith Cowan University.
Dual degrees allow you to achieve 2 degrees in 3.5 or 4 years rather than 6 years.
You'll benefit from a global education experience and the high-calibre teaching expertise, latest research and modern facilities at two universities. You'll also develop a more comprehensive knowledge of communication and media than on a single degree and gain an understanding of different cultures, which will help you work more effectively with people from different backgrounds.
All of this will help you stand out in a competitive job market after you graduate.
You'll be based in Portsmouth in years one and two, and for six months or a year at the end of the course. You'll spend year three in Perth, Western Australia at Edith Cowan University.
You'll get support with travel arrangements, visas, finding accommodation and accessing loans and other funding that can help pay for your study and living costs when you're in Australia.
Edith Cowan University is one of the top 100 young universities in the world one of the top 100 universities in the Asia-Pacific regions (Times Higher Education 2019 and 2020). The Good Universities Guide 2021 gives the University 5 out of 5 stars for its learner resources, student support, teaching quality and overall experience.
Like Portsmouth, Perth offers a mix of city and outdoor living. It's a great base for exploring Western Australia and beyond.
What is a dual degree?
Learn about our dual degree programmes with Edith Cowan University in Australia.
Chris Chang: We have a strategic partnership with Edith Cowan University in Australia, particularly for students who have not travelled abroad or lived abroad, that gives them the opportunity to experience a dual degree. The design of our programmes means that we have developed the programme from the ground up, which doesn't require you to study that much more time for a degree programme.
Heather Massey: There's lots of reasons why people might want to come and study this dual award course at the University of Portsmouth. Learning in a different environment from different tutors and the facilities that they have at Edith Cowan are absolutely first-class.
Chris Chang: Students have the opportunity to travel for a year and the question that some students will have is "how will I be able to afford this?" Now the UK Government has launched the Turing programme and what this programme does is fund them to do study abroad, internships, placements. It makes it accessible to all students from different groups, whether they are international students or students from the UK.
Dr Sarah Reynolds: Experiencing life in a different country. You would mature and develop your confidence during that time and definitely walk out of the degree, I think standing up a bit taller than if you hadn't.
Chris Chang: Now the benefits of this is that you can actually show to employers that you have two degrees from two different universities in two different countries. Jobs these days have changed quite substantially. Your future job may not be in the UK and employers are looking for the kind of employees that are able to work in different contexts, different cultures be able to work in multidisciplinary and multinational teams.
One of the other benefits of this programme is that you can actually travel around, not just, Australia but around the ASEAN region because from Perth it's a very short flight to Hong Kong; to Singapore; to Malaysia.
Heather Massey: It's an amazing opportunity to learn both from experts in their field, but also learn about how different people in a different culture operate.
Chris Chang: There are inter-semester breaks of two-three months and you should use that opportunity to see the world. The other thing that you have is having studied a year abroad, you will make friends who could in the future be your supporters, be your allies, and be your collaborators of the future.
Dr Leah Fox: Even though they're geographically away. They'll still be able to get access to that same level of support as they were getting in Portsmouth. They'll have access to wellbeing, they'll have access to financial services, they'll have access to personal tutoring.
Chris Chang: These courses that we have delivered so far: Global Sport Management, Cybersecurity, Intelligence and Counter Terrorism, Environmental Science and Management are all in very specialist and niche areas. Means that wherever you end up working or living, you're prepared for it. The demand for these courses are high, so we want highly motivated students who will benefit from this programme and benefit from a year abroad.
Dr Leah Fox: We're looking for an applicant who wants to make a change, who is open minded and prepared to be confronted with a number of challenges. But overall, someone who is curious and wants to learn.
BSc (Hons) Biomedical Science with Human Biosciences entry requirements
- A levels - ABB-BBB
- UCAS points - 120-128 points to include a minimum of 2 A levels, or equivalent, with 40 points from Biology plus 40 points from a second Science subject or Mathematics. For A levels which include a separate science practical component, a pass is desirable and may strengthen an application. (calculate your UCAS points)
- BTECs (Extended Diplomas) - DDM
- International Baccalaureate - 25
You may need to have studied specific subjects – find full entry requirements and other qualifications we accept at UCAS.
English language requirements
- English language proficiency at a minimum of IELTS band 6.0 with no component score below 5.5.
We also accept other standard English tests and qualifications, as long as they meet the minimum requirements of your course.
If you don't meet the English language requirements yet, you can achieve the level you need by successfully completing a pre-sessional English programme before you start your course.
We look at more than just your grades
While we consider your grades when making an offer, we also carefully look at your circumstances and other factors to assess your potential. These include whether you live and work in the region and your personal and family circumstances which we assess using established data.
Pharmacy and Biomedical Science Teaching Centre
Institute of Biomedical and Biomolecular Sciences
Use professional-standard equipment to explore how the structures and functions of molecules change under different conditions.
Centre for Simulation in Health and Care
Learn practical healthcare skills and apply your anatomical and physiological knowledge in a safe, contextual space using current clinical equipment.
Careers and opportunities
Biomedical science is crucial to public health the world over - it's how most patients' conditions are identified and how we can keep improving the effectiveness of the treatments that fight them. Here in the UK, over 70% of NHS diagnoses are based on lab findings by biomedical scientists.
With the two degrees and international scientific study experience you'll earn on this BSc (Hons) Biomedical Science with Human Biosciences dual degree, you'll complete the course as a globally-competitive graduate ready to contribute to this vital field.
Once you graduate, you'll be able to take further training to apply for registration with the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) and work as a Biomedical Scientist in the NHS, or in private or international settings. You could also apply for work or postgraduate study in Australia using your links at Edith Cowan University.
Possible postgraduate study options include a Master's in Medical Biotechnology or Biomedical Engineering. You could also choose to become a researcher, or work in clinical trials, medical sales or biotechnology.
The Biomedical Science and Pharmacology Careers Conference
During your second year at Portsmouth, you'll have the chance to attend our Biomedical Science and Pharmacology Careers Conference, where you can hear directly from Biomedical Science graduates about their career pathways and what their roles involve. At previous conferences, graduate careers represented include biomedical science, clinical trials, medical sales, biomedical research, teaching, Physician Associates and medicine.
As a student on this course, you'll be eligible to apply for membership of the following societies:
Previous Biomedical Science graduates have gone on to work in roles in areas such as:
- NHS and private healthcare
- STEM teaching
- clinical trials
- medical sales
Roles our graduates have taken on include:
- biomedical scientist (following completion of the IBMS Registration Portfolio)
- clinical scientist (via Scientist Training Programme)
- physician associate (following MSc qualification)
- doctor or dentist (following appropriate degree)
- clinical trials assistant
- research associate or PhD to become a professional researcher
- teacher (following appropriate postgraduate qualification)
Ongoing careers support
To give you the best chance of securing the ideal job when you graduate, our Careers and Employability Service can help you find relevant short-term work experience during your course.
We'll also be available to help, advise and support you for up to 5 years as you advance in your career.
What you'll study
Each module on this course is worth 15, 20 or 40 credits.
In each year, you need to study modules worth a total of 120 credits. For example, 4 modules worth 20 credits and 1 module worth 40 credits.
In your final year, you'll complete your dissertation worth 40 credits, alongside taught modules worth 80 credits.
You'll study at Portsmouth in year 1.
Core modules in this year include:
- Case Discussions in Biomedical Science – 20 credits
- Cells to Systems – 20 credits
- Introduction to Neuroscience and Pharmacology – 20 credits
- Key Skills For Biomedical Scientists – 40 credits
- Pathological Sciences 1 – 20 credits
There are no optional modules in this year.
You'll study at Portsmouth in year 2.
Core modules in this year include:
- Applied Human Physiology – 20 credits
- Barriers to Disease, Immunity and Immune Dysfunction – 20 credits
- Biomedical Toolbox – 20 credits
- Pathological Sciences 2 – 20 credits
- Research Methods – 20 credits
Optional modules in this year include:
- Business For Biosciences – 20 credits
- Modern Foreign Language (Institute-Wide Language Programme) – 20 credits
- Nutrition and Exercise For Health – 20 credits
You'll study at Edith Cowan University in year 3.
- Advanced Biomedical Techniques – 15 credits
- Biomedical Ethics – 15 credits
- Developmental Biology – 15 credits
- Evolutionary Perspectives on Health and Disease – 15 credits
- Forensic Genetics – 15 credits
- Human Reproduction, Development and Ageing – 15 credits
- Human Molecular Genetics – 15 credits
- The Biology of Human Disease – 15 credits
There are no optional modules in this year.
You'll study at Portsmouth in year 4.
Core modules in this year include:
- Genetic Basis of Disease – 20 credits
- Integrated Pathology – 20 credits
- Pathological Sciences 3 – 20 credits
- Project – 40 credits
Optional modules in this year include:
- Biomedical Research – 20 credits
- Clinical Case Studies – 20 credits
Changes to course content
We use the best and most current research and professional practice alongside feedback from our students to make sure course content is relevant to your future career or further studies.
Therefore, course content is revised and regularly reviewed. This may result in changes being made in order to reflect developments in research, learning from practice and changes in policy at both national and local levels.
How you're assessed
You'll be assessed through:
- laboratory and scientific reports
- computer based exercises
- practical assessments
- essays and portfolios
- PowerPoint presentations and posters
- oral presentations (individual and group)
- collaborative case books
- videos, Tweetorials, websites and apps
You’ll be able to test your skills and knowledge informally before you do assessments that count towards your final mark.
You can get feedback on all practice and formal assessments so you can improve in the future.
Teaching methods on this course include:
- practical lab work
- collaborative and peer-assisted learning
You can access all teaching resources on Moodle, our virtual learning environment, from anywhere with a web connection.
Academic staff have expertise in clinical practice and research. Our HCPC registered Biomedical Scientists work closely with the Institute of Biomedical Science (IBMS) advisory panels to ensure what you learn reflects new development and technology in the field.
Two of our HCPC registered staff are also members of the Institute of Biomedical Science Specialist Advisory Panel for their disciplines, as well as deputy chief examiners for professional exams. Many of the course team are Fellows or Senior Fellows of the Higher Education Academy, and some have won student-led awards for their approaches to teaching and student support.
The complementary curriculum at Edith Cowan University is taught by experts in the fields of precision medicine, genetics, forensic genetics, development, reproduction and ageing.
How you'll spend your time
One of the main differences between school or college and university is how much control you have over your learning.
At university, as well as spending time in timetabled teaching activities such as lectures, seminars and tutorials, you’ll do lots of independent study with support from our staff when you need it.
A typical week
We recommend you spend at least 35 hours a week studying for your dual degree.
In your first year, you'll be in timetabled teaching activities such as lectures, seminars, tutorials, practical classes and workshops for about 12–20 hours a week. The rest of the time you’ll do independent study such as research, reading, coursework and project work, alone or in a group with others from your course. You'll probably do more independent study and have less scheduled teaching in years 2, 3 and 4 but this depends which modules you choose.
Most timetabled teaching takes place during the day, Monday to Friday. You may occasionally need to go to University and course events in the evenings and at weekends.
University of Portsmouth (years 1, 2 and 4)
The academic year at University of Portsmouth runs from September to early June with breaks at Christmas and Easter. It's divided into 2 teaching blocks and 2 assessment periods:
- September to December – teaching block 1
- January – assessment period 1
- January to May – teaching block 2 (includes Easter break)
- May to June – assessment period 2
Edith Cowan University (year 3)
The academic year at Edith Cowan University runs from February to November with breaks at Easter and in June. It's divided into 2 semesters and 2 exam periods:
- February to May – semester 1 (includes Easter break)
- June – exam period 1
- July to October – semester 2
- November – exam period 2
You'll start year 3 at Edith Cowan University in July. This follows the end of the second academic year in Portsmouth. You’ll finish your year studying abroad in May the following year.
Where you'll study (year 3)
You'll study at Edith Cowan University's Joondalup Campus during your third year and student accommodation is available on the Mount Lawley Campus, although other options are available. Both campuses offer a library, computer labs, cafes, bars, a fitness centre, student support and counselling services.
Supporting your learning
The amount of timetabled teaching you'll get on your degree might be less than what you're used to at school or college, but you'll also get face-to-face support from teaching and support staff when you need it. These include the following people and services.
You'll also have full access to all of these Portsmouth University support services while you're in Australia.
Types of support
You'll have a personal tutor from the University of Portsmouth and a country link tutor from Edith Cowan University when you're studying in Perth in year 3.
Your personal tutors help you make the transition to independent study and give you academic and personal support throughout your time at university.
You’ll have regular contact with them in learning activities or scheduled meetings. You can also make an appointment with them if you need extra support. They'll be available virtually in year 3 when you're in Australia.
You'll have help from a team of faculty learning support tutors. They can help you improve and develop your academic skills and support you in any area of your study.
They can help with:
- Improving your academic writing (for example, essays, reports, dissertations)
- Delivering presentations (including observing and filming presentations)
- Understanding and using assignment feedback
- Managing your time and workload
- Revision and exam techniques
As well as support from faculty staff and your personal tutor, you can use the University's Academic Skills Unit (ASK).
ASK provides one-to-one support in areas such as:
- academic writing
- note taking
- time management
- critical thinking
- presentation skills
- working in groups
- revision, memory and exam techniques
Our online Learning Well mini-course will help you plan for managing the challenges of learning and student life, so you can fulfil your potential and have a great student experience.
You can get personal, emotional and mental health support from our Student Wellbeing Service, in person and online. This includes 1–2–1 support as well as courses and workshops that help you better manage stress, anxiety or depression.
If you require extra support because of a disability or additional learning need our specialist team can help you.
They'll help you to
- discuss and agree on reasonable adjustments
- liaise with other University services and facilities, such as the library
- access specialist study skills and strategies tutors, and assistive technology tutors, on a 1-to-1 basis or in groups
- liaise with external services
Library staff are available in person or by email, phone, or online chat to help you make the most of the University’s library resources. You can also request one-to-one appointments and get support from a librarian who specialises in your subject area.
The library is open 24 hours a day, every day, in term time.
Course costs and funding
Fees may be subject to annual increase.
UK/Channel Islands and Isle of Man students
- Year 1, 2 and 4 – £9,250 a year
- Year 3 – £1,385
- Year 1, 2 and 4 – £9,250 a year
- Year 3 – £1,385
Includes Transition Scholarship.
- Year 1, 2 and 4 – £20,200 a year
- Year 3 – £2,000
Additional course costs
These course-related costs aren’t included in the tuition fees. So you’ll need to budget for them when you plan your spending.
Our accommodation section shows your accommodation options and highlights how much it costs to live in Portsmouth.
You’ll study up to 6 modules a year. You may have to read several recommended books or textbooks for each module.
You can borrow most of these from the Library. If you buy these, they may cost up to £60 each.
We recommend that you budget £75 a year for photocopying, memory sticks, DVDs and CDs, printing charges, binding and specialist printing.
If your final year includes a major project, there could be cost for transport or accommodation related to your research activities. The amount will depend on the project you choose.
You'll need to pay for meal and other living costs while completing compulsory fieldwork, amounting to £50-£1000. Travel and accommodation costs are covered by your course fee.
You'll also need to contribute towards the cost of any optional fieldwork programmes, which usually come to £50 -£1000.
You'll need to cover your living costs and pay additional costs of £3,000–£4,000 to cover travel to and from Australia in year 3. You can cover these costs using a UK Government student loan.
How to apply
To start this course in 2024, apply through UCAS. You'll need:
- the UCAS course code – B930
- our institution code – P80
If you'd prefer to apply directly, use our online application form.
You can also sign up to an Open Day to:
- Tour our campus, facilities and halls of residence
- Speak with lecturers and chat with our students
- Get information about where to live, how to fund your studies and which clubs and societies to join
If you're new to the application process, read our guide on applying for an undergraduate course.
Applying from outside the UK
As an international student you'll apply using the same process as UK students, but you’ll need to consider a few extra things.
You can get an agent to help with your application. Check your country page for details of agents in your region.
Find out what additional information you need in our international students section.
If you don't meet the English language requirements for this course yet, you can achieve the level you need by successfully completing a pre-sessional English programme before you start your course.
Admissions terms and conditions
When you accept an offer to study at the University of Portsmouth, you also agree to abide by our Student Contract (which includes the University's relevant policies, rules and regulations). You should read and consider these before you apply.