At a glance
- Have the freedom to study more than one science subject and gain a broad base of scientific knowledge
- Tailor your studies to your own interests and career aspirations, enabling you to acquire the knowledge and skills that employers value
- Spend a semester or full year studying abroad in Australia, Canada, Hong Kong, New Zealand, Singapore or the US
What is Natural Sciences?
The Natural Sciences degrees are multidisciplinary courses which allow you to study more than one science or science-related subject for the duration of your studies. The course aims to encourage an open-minded and creative attitude towards science through a structured yet flexible programme of study. This allows you to gain expertise in a range of disciplines alongside an appreciation of the interdisciplinary nature of science which opens up a wide range of career options. The Natural Sciences degrees will appeal to talented students with an aptitude for science who would like to study a challenging and diverse range of subjects from across the sciences.
How will I study?
A variety of teaching formats are used including lectures, seminars, problem classes, workshops, practical laboratory sessions and fieldwork using state-of-the-art facilities and equipment. The subjects involved in Natural Sciences are Archaeology; Biological Sciences; Chemistry; Environmental Science; Geography; Maths; Physics and Psychology. All subjects use a research-led approach to teaching so that students are learning about the latest developments from staff who are involved in cutting-edge research.
BSc or MSci?
The BSc in Natural Sciences allows you to gain a broad understanding of chosen science subjects over three years studying three subjects in the first year and two in the second and third year. It will prepare you for further training or study in many interdisciplinary areas of science as well as for graduate-level employment both within the science sector and beyond.
The MSci in Natural Sciences is aimed at students who are interested in pursuing a career in research. In the fourth year students focus on a single subject and develop key transferable skills through completion of a major research project as well as taking a mixture of specialist modules from one or two subjects. This provides the grounding required for students to pursue a research degree such as a PhD, as well as for direct entry into graduate-level employment both within the science sector and more generally.
The methods of assessment for Natural Sciences vary from module to module and from school to school. Types of assessment commonly used include written examinations, in-class tests, essays, laboratory reports, field reports, projects, computing assignments and project work.
Natural Sciences graduates are highly regarded by employers because students acquire a broad range of scientific knowledge, as well as transferable skills such as communication, numeracy and problem solving. They are well qualified for a wide variety of careers such as research and development, marketing and management in a wide range of scientific industries including the biomedical and pharmaceutical industries. In addition, they are sought by all sectors of business and manufacturing as well as service industries such as insurance and finance. Natural Sciences graduates are ideally prepared to undertake further study, such as graduate-entry medicine courses or specialist training to qualify as teachers, accountants or actuaries.
For each of the schools within the Natural Sciences, below are the proportions of first-degree graduates from each school that had secured employment or further study within six months of graduation as well as their average salaries.*
- Department of Archaeology - 75%, £19,500
- School of Biosciences - 91%, £20,257
- School of Chemistry - 87%, £21,757
- School of Geography - 89%, £21,810
- School of Mathematical Sciences - 93%, £24,387
- School of Physics and Astronomy - 87%, £23,046
- School of Psychology - 96%, £16,776
- School of Life Sciences (biology, biochemistry, genetics, human genetics, neuroscience and zoology courses) - 88%, £18,649
* Known destinations of full-time home and EU graduates, 2013/14.
Natural Sciences students are able to apply to study either a single semester or a full year overseas through the Universitas 21 scheme. This scheme involves partner universities from around the globe including the USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, Hong Kong, Singapore, South Korea; Sweden and Ireland.
Students should be aware that the combination of subjects they are studying and whether they are taking the BSc or MSci will have an impact on how long a term of study abroad they can undertake as well as when and where they can go.
Nottingham has the highest number of any UK university on outward mobility under Erasmus.*
* Erasmus student and staff numbers by institution, Erasmus+ 2014.
Application and interview
We usually consider candidates on the basis of their UCAS form without interview; in the case of students from non-standard backgrounds, an interview may be required.
Visit days for students offered a place are normally held between January and April. For University-wide open days, please visit the open days page