The UNIQ Biology course will give you an insight into what being an undergrad Biologist at Oxford is like. Each day has a certain theme, reflecting the options on offer in the degree course. In the mornings you will have introductory lectures given by academics which usually teach. This will be followed by a practical session. For the animal behavior day, you get a day trip to the field station just outside of Oxford. Here you get to see various evolutionary biology research projects current graduates are working on. You have to think about the communication aspect of Scientific research, in groups you are given time to prepare and perform an interpretation of certain evolutionary theories. For the plant themed days you work both in the Botanic garden and in the labs – using the amazing microscopes to do cell imaging. The academic programme gives you small snippets of what to expect from different parts of the course, and being taught by the same academics that teach at undergrad level is great.
In addition to this, you will be split into groups of 3 or 4 and given a question to discuss in a tutorial with a lecturer at the end of the week. The question could be on any topic, you will be given some pointers for what to read, or how to go about thinking the question. The tutorial system is one of the great things about Oxford, and on the UNIQ course you get a taster of how inspiring tutors can be (without actually having to write the essay for the tutorial, like you do at undergrad!). If the prospect of being questioned by an academic in a group of just 3 or 4 seems daunting, don’t worry – the academic mentors will help and guide you through the work.
The undergraduate course is designed to offer flexibility in the combination of molecular and whole-organism biology and includes opportunities to specialise in a particular area.