Key contributors to modern healthcare, biomedical scientists play a vital role in the diagnosis, prevention and treatment of disease, monitoring and inventing new treatments and cures by developing advanced diagnostic tools or novel therapeutic strategies.
Accredited by the Institute of Biomedical Science (IBMS), which is required for practice within the National Health Service (NHS), this broad-based science degree integrates a wide range of subjects to promote the understanding of how the human body works and the biology of disease. You will also have the opportunity to develop essential skills and knowledge in laboratory management.
Our state-of-the-art Alison Gingell Building features a suite of analytical and biological laboratories where you can gain hands-on experience in cutting-edge industry techniques.
The course explores the science and functioning of the human body in health and disease down to a cellular and molecular level, providing specialist knowledge about the cause of major diseases and how they can be treated.
Our extensive links with leading healthcare and research laboratories enable us to ensure course content is kept up-to-date. Particular emphasis is placed on the specialist areas of biomedical science: clinical biochemistry, medical microbiology, cellular pathology, haematology, immunology and genetics.
Laboratory sessions are a substantial component of the course, enabling you to learn the experimental techniques and develop the key experimental, data handling and reporting skills required in biological careers. Simultaneous progression through the ‘Professional Skills’ modules will develop your knowledge and skills in areas like scientific communication, self-directed study, research methods, information retrieval, IT, data processing and presentation and career development.
Why choose this course?
This professionally accredited degree aims to equip you with the appropriate knowledge and advanced laboratory skills to pursue laboratory careers in the pharmaceutical and biotechnology industries or become a Health Care Professional Council (HCPC) registered practitioner.
You’ll be taught by experienced academic staff who have hospital laboratory experience and will bring their professional and research expertise into their teaching through contemporary clinical case studies as the basis for problem based learning activities.
We benefit from extensive links with employers, such as the NHS, university research labs, public health laboratories and biotech companies, such as Binding Site, which can help you to find employment after you graduate. We also focus on student-centred teaching in which you devise and carry out your own laboratory experiments so that you can demonstrate your ability to work independently and solve problems to future employers.
Our practical approach has led to outstanding levels of satisfaction – 100% overall in the latest National Student Survey (NSS). We prioritise your development of laboratory and other scientific skills, enabling you to learn key experimental techniques and develop essential experimental, data handling and reporting skills required in biological and other careers.
You will have the opportunity to use diagnostic equipment in haematology and biochemistry, working with instruments you would see in a real clinical laboratory setting. These instruments offer ‘hands on’ experience of techniques such as gene amplification using PCR, gene sequencing, cell culture, flow cytometry, tissue staining, protein detection and bacterial growth.
International experience opportunities
By its very nature, the course adopts an international perspective – as science knows no borders. We also attract students from many different countries – from Europe, Asia and South America – providing a more varied, multicultural and fulfilling environment in which to learn.
Our sandwich degree option allows a year’s work placement or study, which can be taken abroad. Some former students have studied at the University of Leiden in Holland. The University also offers a number of grants to enable international visits and a number of our students have been successful in securing places, for example, in Spain, France, Canada and the US. Some have undertaken fieldtrips to Malawi where they have educational engagement with groups of children participating in diverse community projects at local primary and nursery schools, assisted in monitoring the state of boreholes in rural villages, made sun dried bricks for building projects and climbing the challenging mount Mulanje.
The course aims to prepare you for professional practice within the National Health Service (NHS) as registered Biomedical Scientists. It is also possible to use your qualifications to help you further your studies and progress into teaching in schools, colleges or universities.
You will receive guidance during your studies on the professional routes available to you and the expectations of health professionals. We have excellent links with local employers and are actively involved in liaison with laboratory managers, training officers and other universities via the West Midlands Biomedical Science Training and Workforce Planning Group and the West Midlands regional training committee (South).
On successful completion, you can apply for entry into NHS Health Care Scientist registration training programmes, for which you will typically undergo one to two years of further training to obtain an IBMS certificate of competence so that you can apply for HCPC registration, a legal requirement for anyone who wishes to practice using a title protected by the HCPC. Successful completion of Applied Biomedical Science course provides eligibility to apply for registration with the HCPC.
The scientific knowledge and skills you acquire during the course can be a useful basis for a career in: teaching; technical and scientific writing (such as medical writing or writing for the media); clinical trials; drug registration, patenting or monitoring; medical publishing or other information services; regulatory affairs or sales and marketing. The course is also an excellent foundation for further postgraduate studies leading to a Master’s or PhD.