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Medical Genetics

C431 BSc (Hons) 3 years


Building on our highly-rated BSc Genetics programme and our close links with the College's world-renowned medical school, Barts and the London School of Medicine and Dentistry, our Medical Genetics programme offers students a unique opportunity to study medically related topics such as tissue biology, human molecular biology and cancer biology within the context of classical, chromosomal, population and molecular genetics.

Students will learn about the genetic and molecular basis of human health, development and disease, and explore the evolution of diseases within human populations. You will also gain a valuable introduction to medical research, genetic counselling and bioethics.

Studying Genetics at Queen Mary has been nothing but enjoyable; the School is well resourced, personal advisers guide you through your degree, and most importantly, the lecturers are passionate about their subjects, which is evident from their lectures.
Kenan Direk, Genetics student

Research and teaching

By choosing to study at a Russell Group university, you will have access to excellent teaching and top class research. You will be taught by staff who are actively involved in research, who are enthusiastic about their subjects and sharing their knowledge with you.

You can find out more about our research interests on the cell and molecular biology department page.

Queen Mary is a tremendous place to study. The lecturers are some of the best in their field, and take incredible pains to impart some of their knowledge and sheer enthusiasm onto their students.
Shanaz Akthar, Genetics student

Entry requirements

  • A-levels: Typically ABB and above at A2 level from three subjects including Biology, however, we consider applications with BBB in Biology and two other subjects of Chemistry, Maths, Further Maths, Physics or Geography
  • International Baccalaureate: 34 points overall including grade 5 in Biology (Higher Level)
  • BTEC: We do not accept BTEC qualifications
  • Access to HE Diploma: We will consider applications from students with the Access to HE Diploma (60 credit in a Science discipline e.g. Biology, Chemistry, Maths, Physics). We take all aspects of your UCAS application into careful consideration; we look at the merits of your personal statement, academic reference, predicted grades and actual grades, and, due to the high volume of applications, we do not make offers purely on the basis of meeting the grade requirements. The minimum academic requirement is to achieve an overall Pass, with 45 credits at Level 3, of which 30 credits must be at Distinction and 15 credits at Merit or higher.

All applications are considered by our admissions tutors on a case-by-case basis, and this may mean we would request an interview.

Visit our frequently asked questions page for answers to our commonly received queries about entry requirements.

Non-UK students

Students from outside the United Kingdom must give evidence of their English language ability by producing an English language test score. The university provides guidelines for English requirements for all degree programmes.

Foundation programme

Students may enter this degree programme via admission to the QMUL Science and Engineering Foundation Programme. Students must complete the foundation year and meet the required progression criteria.

Other qualifications

If you have qualifications, which are not listed above, please contact us to check your eligibility: 
Tel: +44(0) 207 882 5511

Learning and teaching

All our programmes involve a mixture of classroom activities and laboratory work. A variety of teaching styles are employed, which vary slightly among modules and programmes. Most material is delivered via lectures. These last around 50 minutes each and, typically, you would have two lectures per day. Lectures are backed up with small-group tutorials and workshops, where you have the opportunity to ask, in a relatively relaxed and small group setting, about material in lectures that you did not understand, to go through problems and practise past exam papers. In general, lectures, tutorials and workshops take place in the mornings and laboratory classes in the afternoons.

A typical weekly workload would be:

  • 6-8 one-hour lectures
  • 4-5 hours of practical laboratories or workshops
  • 20-25 hours of private study/coursework.

Independent study:

For every hour spent at University you will be expected to complete additional hours of independent study. Your individual study time could be spent preparing for, or following up on formal study sessions; reading; assessing data from experiments; completing lab reports; and revising for examinations.

The direction of your individual study will be guided by the formal study and laboratory sessions you attend, along with your reading and assignments. However, we expect you to demonstrate an active role in your own learning by reading widely and expanding your own knowledge, understanding and critical ability.

Independent study will foster in you the ability to identify your own learning needs and determine which areas you need to focus on to become proficient in your subject area. This is an important transferable skill and will help to prepare you for the transition to working life.


For all programmes you must take 120 credits (normally eight modules) in each academic year. Each module is assessed through theory examinations (typically accounting for 75-80 per cent of the final mark) and coursework (for example, practical reports, field course reports, essays, problem sheets, online exercises and tests). Examinations normally last two and a half hours for first and second years and three hours for final-year papers.

Final-year students undertake a research project/investigative project worth 15 or 30 credits; these are assessed with a detailed written report, oral presentation, poster and an interview. The main examination period is in May/June, with deferred exams and resits in August for first- and second-year students. The format of undergraduate examinations varies among programmes and may include multiple choice questions (MCQ), extended matching questions (EMQ), short answer questions, problem solving or case-based exercises, and essays.

Fees and finance

Tuition fees

Fees are charged at a Home/EU rate for UK and EU nationals, and an overseas rate for International students - find out more about how your tuition fee status is assessed.

You can either take out a Tuition Fee Loan (see Funding section below) to pay your fees or, if you are paying them yourself, you can pay in instalments.

Tuition fees for a year abroad or placement year on a full time undergraduate course will be a proportion of the full fee for the year in which you commence your time abroad or placement.

For information on field trip and other course related costs which are not included in your tuition fee, please contact the relevant Department/School.

See more general information about fees.

Tel: +44 (0)20 7882 7676


Queen Mary has a substantial package of scholarships and bursaries which will benefit around 50 per cent of our undergraduate student body.

Scholarships and Bursaries available at Queen Mary for Home/EU Students

There are a number of scholarships and bursaries available each year for home students. Visit our Bursaries and Scholarships page for more information.

Visit our Advice and Counselling website for more information about financial support.

Scholarships available at Queen Mary for International Students

There are a number of Scholarships available each year for International Students including bursaries and scholarships in a range of subject areas.

Find out more about international scholarships.

Some International students may also be eligible for a fee reduction.

Loans and Grants available to help with tuition fees and living costs

Student Finance England administers all grant and loans for your studies if you normally live in England.

If you live in WalesScotland or Northern Ireland you have an equivalent Student Finance department for your region.

Through Student Finance England, you can apply for (figures relate to programmes starting from September 2016):

  • A Tuition Fee Loan of up to £9,000 to pay all or part of your fees
  • A Maintenance Loan of up to £10,702 to help pay your living costs like rent, food and travel
  • Extra grants if you have a disability or you have children or an adult dependant
  • You might get a grant to cover some travel expenses if you normally live in England but study away from home. If you’re a medical or dental student you might also qualify for help with the costs of attending clinical placements in the UK.

Visit Student Finance Information to find out more about:

  • How to apply for student finance
  • What eligibility rules apply, including if you already have a degree or previous higher education study
  • What the income thresholds are and how much you might personally get for each element of Student Finance
  • What to do if you have problems getting your Student Finance

Other financial help on offer at Queen Mary

We offer one to one specialist support on all financial and welfare issues through our Advice and Counselling Service, which you can access as soon as you have applied for a place at Queen Mary.

Our Advice and Counselling Service also has lots of Student Advice Guides on all aspects of finance including:

  • Additional sources of funding
  • Planning your budget and cutting costs
  • Part-time and vacation work
  • Money for lone parents

For more information visit the Advice and Counselling service website, or call +44 (0)20 7882 8717.

Graduate Employment

Employers specifically target Russell Group universities because of the calibre of these institutions' graduates and, as a result, nearly 90% of our 2013 graduates are employed or in further study.

Our graduates go on to work in a wide variety of careers:

  • Some will apply their knowledge directly and pursue a career in the biotechnology industry, healthcare, teaching, or forensic services.
  • Some will continue with their studies and research and opt for postgraduate study at either Masters or PhD level.
  • Others will transfer the skills they have gained into sectors such as the media, technology or finance.

The broad range of skills gained through SBCS courses, coupled with multiple opportunities for extra-curricular activities and work experience, have enabled students to move into roles, such as:

  • Medical Lab Assistant - Charing Cross Hospital
  • Finance Analyst - Deutsche Bank
  • Clinical Assistant - Great Ormond Street
  • Health Care Scientist Support Team - Health Protection Agency
  • Research Scientist - Royal Veterinary College
  • Radiographer’s Assistant - Southend Hospital
  • Journalism/Editorial Assistant - Biochemical Society
  • Orthodontic Nurse - Weybridge Orthodontics
  • Biochemist - National Blood Service
  • Ophthalmic Technician - Barking Hospital

Queen Mary’s specialist career service is on hand to offer you advice throughout and after your university studies. We are committed to helping our students achieve their career goals and were placed top 10 in the UK for student employability, according to the Sunday Times Good University Guide 2012.


Hazel Hewitt

Medical genetics
  • Why did you choose to study at Queen Mary? 

"Queen Mary accepted me onto their Science and Engineering Foundation programme after I left school. Completing this gave me the chance to complete a degree even though my A-levels did not go well.

I chose my course due to a love of genetics and how we inherit traits from our families. Medical Genetics gave me the opportunity to combine a love of heritability with a desire to help others in the search for cures for debilitating genetic disorders. "

  • How did you find your academic and social experience at QMUL?

"Queen Mary lecturers are happy to answer questions and go out of their way to make our lives that little bit easier. My personal tutor was a great lecturer, and was also there to guide and support me when needed. I enjoy aspects of my course that I never thought I would, including in-depth study into the functions that our cells go through from the moment we begin life to the effects that the modern world is having on our bodies.

At university those who work hard and ask for help when needed are those who succeed. It wasn’t easy at first – I found time management difficult, and I still have to keep a diary of all my deadlines to ensure that I get everything done on time."

Student societies

Being at university is not just about studying (but let’s be honest that is a pretty important part of your time with us!) there are lots of other opportunities available to you as a Queen Mary student. One of the most popular ways to meet new friends, get involved in causes you care about and share knowledge is by joining a student society.


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