Medical Sciences (Final Year Entry)

BSc (Hons)

UCAS code: B290

Start dates: September 2024 / September 2025

Full time: 1 Year

Location: Headington

Department(s): Department of Biological and Medical Sciences

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It’s our belief that if you’re smart enough and curious enough, you should have the opportunity to study on our BSc (Hons) Medical Sciences degree. If you love solving problems and want to understand all kinds of illnesses, then Medical Sciences is for you.

This final-year entry route is designed for students with a BTEC National diploma Level 5 in Science. The diploma is equivalent to 2 years of degree study. You’ll join our department in the third year, ready to graduate with the same degree as students who came via the A-level route.

On the course, you’ll develop detailed practical and scientific knowledge. You’ll gain a good understanding of the human body in health and disease.

Through a mix of academic and practical learning, you’ll gain the skills employers look for. These include lab techniques, data handling, computing, report writing, oral presentations, and teamwork.

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Students in a lab

Why Oxford Brookes University?

  • Expert teaching

    On most of your modules, you will learn from professionals such as bioscience researchers, practising clinical scientists and physiologists, who work with us to co-deliver your module learning, helping you build insights into how your growing  knowledge and skills are used every day by professionals in a range of career paths.

  • Excellent grounding

    The degree provides a great foundation for applying to graduate-entry Medicine and Physicians’s Associate courses. It builds on core medical science subjects.

  • Strong industry links

    Our links with industry are positive. Students go on to work for local hospitals and research institutions. We also regularly welcome guest lecturers from industry.

  • Research experience

    You’ll work with our academics, who are active in research groups, and you may join one of them to explore a novel question for your project.

Course details

Course structure

This course will ground you in various medical aspects of the human body. You’ll be taught by a team of dedicated teaching staff who are committed to your success.

Your course options include Evidence Based Medicine, Pathophysiology and Genomic Medicine, which are key in current areas of medical science and newly developing areas of medical science. There are also modules where you can focus some of your learning on subjects that suit your own interests. Other options include a professional skills module and an independent study module.

You’ll learn from lecturers who are at the cutting edge of medical research. Other academics are highly experienced physicians in respiratory and cardiovascular diseases.

Your research project will enable you to use your acquired knowledge and expertise. You’ll work on a novel question, guided and supported by one of the experienced lecturers in the department. Future employers like to hear about the wide and often quite specialised skills that you’ve developed in the process of doing your own research.

Group of students studying

Learning and teaching

Teaching and learning methods include: 

  • lectures
  • practicals
  • tutorials
  • seminars

You will have the opportunity to attend seminars given by visiting speakers from around the world.

As well as delivering this course in partnership with scientists working in local hospitals, we are able to invite colleagues and collaborators who are at the forefront of research to join us in exploring the scientific themes of medical science with you. This includes work on:

  • DNA repair
  • disease biofilms
  • clinically important immunohistochemistry tests
  • deep brain stimulation for symptom relief.

Our research in these areas underpins this course.

Medical science is a practical subject and we have a very good range of equipment. This includes:

  • high-performance liquid chromatography equipment
  • confocal and electron microscopes
  • specialised laboratories for tissue culture
  • microbiology
  • physiology
  • microscopy.


The course includes a variety of teaching, learning and assessment methods.

Assessment methods include:

  • essays
  • reviews
  • examinations
  • laboratory notebooks
  • scientific reports
  • posters
  • oral presentations.

Reflective learning is encouraged through the use of:

  • self reflection following feedback
  • peer or staff formative feedback
  • group work
  • project work
  • reflective diaries.

Study modules

Final Year

Compulsory modules

  • Research Project

    A Research Project is your chance to do brand new research and find out what it’s really like to be a professional scientist – gathering, considering and evaluating data, then communicating it clearly and critically to others. This is the pinnacle of your degree, working with a supervisor (and possibly others) to collect novel scientific data about a specific topic. You are likely to use a range of theoretical, experimental and/or bioinformatics methods or you may use tools such as data mining, patient or volunteer surveys, questionnaires and other forms of investigative research.

    Projects allow you to make the transition from student to professional, building on all you have learned to develop and practice a range of superior skills and abilities. Working largely independently you will gather, analyse and present your findings, and argue your conclusions to others in a clear and well-written formal report.

Optional modules


Neuroscience examines the brain, which is responsible for our entire nervous system; including how we process formation which influences how we feel, behave and remember things. This module will give you a fascinating insight into the latest major research fields in neuroscience. At the beginning of the course, you’ll review the structure and function of the neurone, explore human neuroanatomy and the development of the vertebrate nervous system.

As you delve deeper, you’ll then focus on the development of the brain, and how neural systems give rise to sensory perception, learning and memory, speech and language, motor control, vision, sleep-wake cycling and circadian rhythm. You will have the opportunity to develop and carry out your own in-depth study on a particular interest in neuroscience research, which will be assessed by a series of case studies and a reflective journal based on a visit to Oxford University / OUH clinical neuropathology. 

Evidence Based Medicine

Evidence Based Medicine (EBM), also known as Evidence Based Practice, refers to the deliberate, careful and thorough use of clinical research, review and appraisal to ensure patients receive the best possible clinical care. This module will explore many aspects of evidence-based medicine, introducing public health and policy, drug design, diagnostic screening and epidemiology. The module will also include the wide range of diagnostic tools which are available and used within the health system in the UK.

Genomic Medicine

The aim of this module is to reflect on the growth of genetic analysis  as part of healthcare diagnostics, treatment and monitoring. As technologies advance, the ability to use whole genome data offers clinicians more information on the pathology of diseases, but at a cost of being much more complex. This module sets out to inform the key areas in this field, and how it can be used in practise in healthcare.

Independent Study in Life Sciences

This module involves an extended study (normally library-based) of a topic of the student's choosing that is relevant to their degree but not formally taught. The topic will normally focus on a specific area of interest. Students will work independently, with support given by a supervising member of staff in the form of tutorials where progress is reviewed and discussed. Much of the student's effort will typically involve library-searching, reading, reviewing, assimilation and synthesis of material for preparing an extended essay reviewing and critiquing the chosen topic.

Molecular Biology of Cancer

The module will explore our current understanding of the molecular mechanisms that underlie human cancer and explore some of the possible therapeutic targets and treatments. Understanding the molecular and cellular basis of disease is vital for dissecting the mechanisms of disease pathogenesis and for designing appropriate and effective treatments.


The module explores the physiological mechanisms of disease states that disrupt the normal functioning of the respiratory, cardiovascular, endocrine, renal and neural systems. You will learn from lecturers who are actively engaged in cutting edge research or are highly experienced practicing physicians in the fields of respiratory and cardiovascular diseases. In addition the content will include a review of dyspnoea (breathlessness) and angina (chest pain) as the cardinal symptoms of cardiopulmonary disease and recent advances in our knowledge of the neurophysiological mechanisms of these symptoms that has led to an exploration of new therapeutic approaches.

Professional Skills and Techniques

This module focuses on the development of the professional skills, personalised to your career ambitions. You will select three ‘podules’ from a selection of podules, which draw upon our research expertise and links with external partners. Podules will cover a wide range topics relevant to your degree, such as advanced microscopy, protein biochemistry, species identification, geographic information systems, entrepreneurship or science communication. Each podule consists of an introductory lecture, plenty of hands-on experience, and a seminar in which you will learn more about the application of ‘your’ skill in different contexts.

Science and Humanity

The module draws students to consider the impact that science has had on all aspects of our lives, aiming to set that influence in its social and historical context. We will address alternative views of the world, how they have been developed or replaced in the context of science and have a clear look at the strengths and weaknesses of a scientific world view. Ideas about the value of other life forms will be explored and environmental philosophy will be discussed. In this light we will discuss some of the modern contentious ideas and possibilities, such as Genetic Modification, organic farming, fracking, stem cell research, manipulation of the human genome and designer babies. The political, economic and moral context of the current environmental crisis will be discussed.

Please note: As our courses are reviewed regularly as part of our quality assurance framework, the modules you can choose from may vary from those shown here. The structure of the course may also mean some modules are not available to you.


The BSc Hons Medical Sciences (final-year entry) degree will open up many wonderful doors for our graduates. Students on our similar final-year courses have gone on to work in diagnostic clinics, diagnostic labs, biomedical companies, or to complete Master’s or PhD studentships.

Popular roles include:

  • biochemist
  • biotechnologist
  • medical research scientist
  • lab technician
  • forensic scientist
  • clinical research associate
  • microbiologist.

Medical science is a practical subject and employers value our graduates for their understanding and experience of important scientific equipment.

We’re fortunate to be in Oxford. The city and its surrounding areas provide an excellent network of relevant bioscience companies and institutions for professional work opportunities.

Entry requirements

Further offer details

Students will usually have achieved a Diploma of Higher Education with at least 55% or a Higher National Diploma with a Merit profile in a relevant discipline such as Applied Sciences (Biology) or Biomedical Science, or an equivalent relevant Level 5 qualification of 240 CATS subject to individual credit rating by Oxford Brookes University.

Tuition fees

Please see the fees note
Home (UK) full time

International full time

Home (UK) full time

International full time

Questions about fees?

Contact Student Finance on:

Tuition fees

2023 / 24
Home (UK) full time

International full time

2024 / 25
Home (UK) full time

International full time

Questions about fees?

Contact Student Finance on:

+44 (0)1865 534400

Please note, tuition fees for Home students may increase in subsequent years both for new and continuing students in line with an inflationary amount determined by government. Oxford Brookes University intends to maintain its fees for new and returning Home students at the maximum permitted level.

Tuition fees for International students may increase in subsequent years both for new and continuing students. 

The following factors will be taken into account by the University when it is setting the annual fees: inflationary measures such as the retail price indices, projected increases in University costs, changes in the level of funding received from Government sources, admissions statistics and access considerations including the availability of student support. 

How and when to pay

Tuition fee instalments for the semester are due by the Monday of week 1 of each semester. Students are not liable for full fees for that semester if they leave before week 4. If the leaving date is after week 4, full fees for the semester are payable.

  • For information on payment methods please see our Make a Payment page.
  • For information about refunds please visit our Refund policy page

Financial support and scholarships

For general sources of financial support, see our Fees and funding pages.

Additional costs

Please be aware that some courses will involve some additional costs that are not covered by your fees. Specific additional costs for this course are detailed below.

Programme changes:
On rare occasions we may need to make changes to our course programmes after they have been published on the website. For more information, please visit our changes to programmes page.