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Next steps: your options

There are many career and education opportunities available to bioscience and pharmacology graduates.

Postgraduate Study

After completing your degree you could go onto study one of the following:

Masters degree

  • MSc or MA : describes any scientific Master’s course. This generally takes one year to complete and is mainly a taught course with some research elements.

  • MRes: usually used to describe courses that include a large or multiple research projects

  • MPhil: awarded to candidates who have completed a substantial research project for longer than 2 years, that is insufficient to be awarded a PhD 

Medicine, dentistry and veterinary medicine

  • Medical course are 5-6 years 

  • Biosciences graduates also have access “fast-track” conversion course (usually 4 years)

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD or DPhil)

  • 3-4 years developing a substantial piece of original research
  • The work is written up in a thesis, and examined during a viva
  • A PhD is essential for a career in academic research and preferable for research in industry
  • For more information, see the Choosing a PhD page

Other options

Physician Associate (PgDip)

Physician Associates work alongside doctors, with patients. They offer support at various stages of the clinical pathway. It usually takes about 2 years to obtain a PgDip, if studying full-time. 

Laboratory Technician

If you are interested in working in a laboratory environment, you may wish to apply for technician jobs. Technicians support research scientists in their role. They ensure the lab runs smoothly and run routine experiments.

Technician jobs can give you valuable lab experience if you are thinking of applying for further study, such as a PhD. However, you can also remain on the technician career pathway. This can lead to more senior posts, such as senior technicians and lab managers. The national careers service has further information.

Careers fairs

Careers fairs are an excellent opportunity to explore your options. You can talk with employers and find out what they are looking for. At many careers fairs you may find that universities promote the courses they offer.

Careers fairs can be organised by your university, learned societies or individual employers. Look out for posters and emails or ask your careers service about upcoming events. You can also check our events listing.