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University

University of Otago
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Bachelor of Science (BSc) Majoring in Microbiology

This course is available

On-Campus

Level of Study

Bachelor's Degree

Duration

3 years

Next start date

Expected Feb 2023

Campus

University of Otago

Summary

The Bachelor of Science (BSc) is a three-year undergraduate degree which enables each student to develop his or her own interests in a science subject (science major) and related subjects. Students have the flexibility to combine their major subject with other science subjects, as well as subjects from other disciplines across the University.

Why study Microbiology and Immunology?

Microorganisms are everywhere – in our bodies, our food, the air, soil, and water. Because they’re everywhere, they’re involved in almost every aspect of our lives.

They are used in producing foods such as cheese, wine, and beer, as well as many pharmaceutical, chemical and agricultural products. They are important for soil fertility and the decomposition of materials but can cause major diseases in humans, animals and plants.

The harmful effects of some microorganisms link microbiology with immunology. Immunologists investigate how we can protect humans and animals from infectious diseases by using vaccines, and the role of the immune system in non-infectious diseases such as cancer.

What will I learn?

In your first year, which covers general biology and chemistry subjects, you will learn about the diversity of microorganisms, microbial virulence and diseases and gain basic knowledge of the immune system and how it functions.

In your second year, specialist microbiology and immunology papers will introduce you to microbes in health and disease, immunology, applied and environmental microbiology, microbial plant and animal interactions, biotechnology, ecology, environmental microbiology, molecular genetics and microbial genetics.

In your third year, the papers offered build on your knowledge from second year. Topics cover food production and safety, microbial disease and antibiotic resistance, the body’s response

to diseases, microbial ecology, molecular microbiology and virology.

Career opportunities

An Otago graduate of Microbiology and Immunology will be limited only by their imagination.

Recent developments in fields such as biotechnology, aquaculture, molecular biology, microbial genetics, immunology and medicine have increased the demand for graduates with a microbiology and immunology major. The range of job opportunities continues to expand. Along with the traditional areas of teaching and research, graduates work in medical or veterinary laboratories and biotechnological and agricultural industries. Graduates are also employed as managers and advisers in government agencies.

Graduates with Microbiology and Immunology qualifications find employment in a wide variety of areas.

Bachelor of Science with Honours (BSc(Hons)) is also available.

A specific aim of the Bachelor of Science with Honours (BSc(Hons)) degree is to develop advanced theoretical and research skills and in so doing to provide a platform for an advanced professional or academic career.

Entry criteria

We recognise many other qualifications as equivalent to the New Zealand qualification for entrance.

We also accept the following international qualifications:

  • International Baccalaureate: IB Diploma with a minimum of 24 points.
  • Cambridge International Examinations (CIE) GCE Advanced Levels: minimum Numerical Score of 8
  • A minimum of CCC across the NCUK IFY
  • Satisfactory completion of one year's study at a recognised tertiary institution.

English language requirements

  • IELTS Academic - IELTS score of 6.0 in the academic module (with no individual band below 5.5). IELTS Online is also accepted.
  • Internet-based TOEFL - Score of 80 (writing 20)
  • Paper-based TOEFL - Score of 550 (TWE 4.5)
  • Cambridge Certificate in Advanced English (CAE) & Cambridge Certificate of Proficiency in English (CPE) - Overall score of 176 (with no individual band below 169)
  • CIE - E grade or higher in any one of AS English Language, AS Literature in English or AS Language & Literature in English; OR meeting the NCEA literacy requirements
  • GCE A or AS English Language, Literature in English, Language and Literature in English & GCE AS level General Paper (English) - Grade C or higher
  • IB - English at Higher or Standard level in Language A: literature, Language A: language and literature, or at Higher Level in Language B
  • Pearson Test of English (PTE) Academic - Overall score of 50 with no communicative skills score below 42.
  • LanguageCert - International ESOL: C1 Expert (LRWS) with a pass overall and no less than a pass in each skill
  • NZCEL - NZCEL 4 Academic endorsement
  • ELA pathway programmes - Successful completion of the English Pathway for Undergraduate Studies (EPUS) with a C Grade
  • FCertEAP - Successful completion of the certificate with a C Grade

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