Zoology

Available with a foundation yearAvailable with a modern languageAvailable with a industrial/professional experience

A Costa Rican treefrog photographed on a Faculty field course

Zoology, the study of animal life, aims to understand the behaviour, structure and evolution of animals, using a wide range of approaches, from genes, to molecular and cellular biology, through physiological processes and anatomy, to whole animals, populations and their ecology.You will study fundamental concepts in the Life Sciences in the first year before going on to study more specialised Zoology topics in your second and final years.

Field studies form an important part of our teaching and you will attend four field courses (two in the first year, two in the second year), including the possibility of visiting South Africa and Ecuador.

Course units

Click on the year you are interested in to view the combination of modules available for Zoology. (Please note that sometimes we can refer to modules as course units or units.)

Second year [click to expand/contract]
Final year [click to expand/contract]

Disclaimer: Our modules teach the current trends in life sciences. Consequently, details of our modules may vary over time. The University therefore reserves the right to make such alterations to modules as are found to be necessary. Before accepting your offer of a course, it is essential that you are aware of the current terms on which the offer is based. This includes the modules available to you. If in doubt, please contact us.

Course units

Click on the year you are interested in to view the combination of modules available for Zoology. (Please note that sometimes we can refer to modules as course units or units.)

Second year [click to expand/contract]
Final year [click to expand/contract]

Disclaimer: Our modules teach the current trends in life sciences. Consequently, details of our modules may vary over time. The University therefore reserves the right to make such alterations to modules as are found to be necessary. Before accepting your offer of a course, it is essential that you are aware of the current terms on which the offer is based. This includes the modules available to you. If in doubt, please contact us.

Students say...

Ed Thomson

“Being a zoologist I was able to go on two field courses this year. They were both definite highlights of my first year at the university of Manchester. The first to South Africa was amazing, seeing loads of large mammals up close and even got to play with lion cubs! The second was in Scotland and was still great fun, plus I got to know my course mates really well! I am definitely looking forward to more field courses in the future and also being able to specialise more as we get further into the degree, especially choosing our final project.”

Ed Thomson

Karlina Ozolina

“Zoology is amazing! The teaching we receive at the FLS is excellent, I loved the field courses to Millport in 1st year and to Belize in 2nd year, because they allowed me to experience hands on science and allowed the students to get to know the university staff on a much more personal level. Also Manchester has some of the best animal scientists in the world so attending their lectures is a real treat. For my placement year I was in Aarhus, Denmark studying the effects of acclimation on the aerobic scope in cane toads. It was a brilliant opportunity to work and network with excellent animal physiologists and made me realise what I want to do after I graduate.”

Karlina Ozolina (with Industrial Experience)

Sarah Griffiths

“Zoologists have the opportunity to go on a variety of field courses, both in the UK and abroad - this, along with the choice of units and lab work, makes the course a flexible, fun and diverse choice. Field courses in Scotland, Greece and Belize have definitely been a highlight of my University experience so far. I'm also really excited to start on my final year project, which will let me put all the lab and writing skills I've developed into practice. ”

Sarah Griffiths

Careers

Many of our graduates secure jobs as researchers working in universities, pharmaceutical and bioscience companies and institutes. The transferable skills you will develop will also leave you well equipped for a wide range of careers outside the lab. Many zoology students go on to work in conservation projects around the world. A number of graduates are now involved in such programmes in the UK and South Africa. Other popular career choices include working in zoos and museums.

Life Science roles included:

  • Animal Care Technician for a laboratory
  • Volunteer Project Worker in an animal conservation project in South Africa
  • Field Assistant in a conservation project in Botswana
  • Medical Information Officer for a communications company
  • Environmental Educator for a charity

Non Life Science roles included:

  • Veterinary Science
  • Graduate Management Trainee for a utilities company
  • Trainee Army Officer

Zoology Graduate Profile: Mountain gorilla researcher

Zoology Graduate Profile: Assistant manager of shark research facility

For information on the range of career options available please see the Faculty of Life Sciences Careers page .

Course director

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Jonathan Codd

Jonathan Codd, Zoology Course Director

Zoology is a thriving, multidisciplinary science that is central to our understanding of the world. As zoologists we seek to determine the fundamental principles that underpin animal life, both past and present, from their morphology, function, physiology, behaviour and evolution.

“Underpinned by the scientific method, zoology is a fascinating branch of science that enables us to better understand animals, the environment and ultimately ourselves.”

My own research focusses on the respiratory and locomotor biology of vertebrates in particular the bats and birds. I am interested in how constraints have shaped these systems and use a range of techniques to answer the questions that stem from my research. You can find more about the research conducted by my group in my staff profile: Dr Jonathan Codd.

As course director for Zoology I ensure that Zoology students get access to the best of modern zoology teaching and can work with leading scientists here at Manchester on a wide range of animals. The programme is tailored to ensure our students get unique opportunities, including field courses, teaching based on the latest peer-reviewed research and an emphasis on making zoology relevant to the whole animal in both the laboratory and the field.

Field courses

Zebras photographed on the South African field course

Courses are currently held in several European locations, South Africa, and South and Central America. They offer you the chance to study organisms in a range of environments, from marine to freshwater, temperate to tropical. Field courses last from one to three weeks and take place in the Easter or summer holidays. Find out more on our field courses page.