What are the effects of climate change on sea life? How does a disease like cancer arise? What happens in the brain when you are asleep?

The field of Biology is concerned with how plants, animals, and humans are made up and how they function. The difference with biology at secondary school is that this degree programme involves more science: you will study more mathematics, physics, and chemistry.

Scientists are expanding their horizons more and more. As a biologist, you will increasingly work together with scientists of other disciplines. This interaction will provide you with useful knowledge.

Choose the specialization that suits you best

Many universities offer Biology degree programmes. The big advantage of studying in Groningen is that you can choose exactly the specialization that suits you best. After the first semester, you will choose a specialization: Biology, Biomedical Sciences, Ecology and Evolution, Behavioural and Neuroscience, or Molecular Life Sciences. You will specialize in one area and carry out your own research.

All your lecturers are involved in research in some way. Their research will help you become acquainted with the many new developments in the field of life sciences.

You find the degree programme brochure below. There will be some changes in the curriculum; new information will be published on this page.

Programme options

  • General Biology (major)

    For students with a broad interest in biology.

    The content of this course can be mostly defined by yourself.

  • Ecology and Evolution (major)

    This specialization considers the interactions within living nature and the way they came into existence.

    The focus is on educating the student to become an ecology scientist. But this specialization also provides a good starting point for working in government, consultancy and other companies in nature and preservation sector.

  • Behavior and Neurosciences (major)

    This specialization is ideal for students who are interested in the workings of the brain and the behavior of humans and animals.

    The programme gives insight into what effect different factors have on (the development) of behavior.

  • Molecular Life Sciences (major)

    This specialization is ideal for students who are interested in, for example, the functioning of prokaryotic and eukaryotic cells in their environment.

    But it also attracts student interested in cellular functions and many other related fields. Students can choose to focus on developing new molecular techniques for use in medicine. But they can also focus on the field of biotechnology, in which scientist of various disciplines work together.

  • Biomedical Sciences (major)

    Within this specialization, you will learn everything about the human as a biological organism.

    The goal of medical biology is to better understand the biological basis of how diseases start, how it progresses into perceivable symptoms and how to find better ways to make diagnoses.

    Study abroad

    • Study abroad is optional
    • Maximum of 30 EC

    (Binding) study advice

    • A minimum of 45 EC in the first 12 months (binding)

    You will be offered study advice after the first year of study. You can expect a positive result if you have earned at least 45 ECTS credit points (out of a total of 60 ECTS; most course units are 5 ECTS). If you have earned fewer than 45 ECTS and are issued a negative result, you will not be allowed to continue with your degree programme.

    You will receive preliminary study advice in December to make sure that you know where you stand. Please contact your study advisor as soon as possible if you have any questions about the BSA system.

    Admission requirements

    additional subject

    Mathematics, Biology, Chemistry, Physics

    This is merely an indication of required background knowledge. The admissions board determines whether the specific contents of this/these course(s) meet the admission requirements of the bachelor programme for which you applied.

    language test

    Proof of English proficiency is required: TOEFL IBT score of 92, a TOEFL CBT score of 237, a TOEFL PBT score of 580, an IELTS score of 6.5, a CAE or CPE certificate.

    previous education

    Secondary education equivalent to Dutch pre-university education is required.

    This is merely an indication of the required general level of applicants' previous education.

    other admission requirements


    Make sure to visit 'BSc Application Procedure' at: http://www.rug.nl/(...)amme/admissions/bsc/ for all the necessary information about the procedure and admission requirements.

    Tuition fees

    Nationality Year Fee Programme form
    EU/EEA 2019-2020 € 2083 full-time
    non-EU/EEA 2019-2020 € 12500 full-time

    Application deadlines

    EU/EEA students 01 May 2019 01 September 2019
    non-EU/EEA students 01 May 2019 01 September 2019

    Job prospects

    In Biology, you will develop a scientific way of thinking that will help you to solve biology-related questions and problems. This analytical perspective is useful in all kinds of lines of work, so you will have plenty of career options after graduating.

    Want to become a researcher?

    A lot of biologists work as researchers, either for a short while or as a long-term career. The type of research will depend on the discipline you specialize in and the themes that play a role in your working environment. There are various types of research. For example, you could study the brain at the University Medical Center Groningen, or help to unravel the structure of genes in a laboratory. You could study the effects of gas drilling on the marine environment for the NAM, or coordinate research on the influence of large grazers on vulnerable ecosystems for a conservation organization. Or you could gather information about forgotten crops that can thrive without pesticides, or with very little pesticide, in our changing climate. These are all examples of research. What you achieve with this research will depend on yourself and the world around you. It's up to you!

    Other Possibilities

    But there are lots of other excellent job opportunities open to you. Some biologists become policy advisors in an organization or company or find a job as a press officer, teacher, educational consultant or scientific journalist. A small number of biologists working in the corporate sector, for example as clinical research associates. Here too, there are jobs to be had with all manner of organizations.

    Job examples

    • Researcher
    • Environmental advisor
    • Health advisor
    • Ecologist
    • Microbiologist
    • Policy advisor
    • Science communication or journalism
    • Teacher/lecturer

Program taught in:
  • English

See 23 more programs offered by University of Groningen »

Last updated October 16, 2018
This course is Campus based
Start Date
Sep 1, 2019
2,083 EUR
per year, EU/EEA students. € 12500 per year non-EU/EEA students.
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