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Researcher looking down a microscope.

Developmental Biology MSc

This course will provide you with opportunities to undertake research placements with leading researchers working on a range of model organisms and diverse areas of developmental biology.

Developmental Biology Overview

Year of entry: 2017

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Why is this course for me?

  • You want to study a research focused master’s course where you will spend the majority of your time working on original research projects.
  • You want to gain extensive research experience and professional skills in the field of biosciences.
  • You are considering moving on to doctoral and research degree programmes or developing a future career in the bioscience industry.
  • We ranked fourth in the UK for biological sciences (REF 2014).
Degree awarded
Master of Science
12 Months. [Full-Time]
Entry requirements

A First or Upper Second class honours degree in the United Kingdom, or the overseas equivalent, in a biological or medical sciences discipline with sufficient evidence in relevant modules taken. Exceptional applicants with a 2:2 with some research experience or equivalence would also be considered.  

Full entry requirements

Contact email
Contact telephone
+44 (0)161 306 5439
How to apply

Apply online

Please note we require the following documents before we can consider your application:

Transcript of your studies to date, translated into English

Two academic references on letter headed paper. These can be scanned and uploaded when you apply or emailed to . We do not request references on an applicant's behalf and it is your responsibility to ensure your referees know how to provide your reference to us.

Degree certificate (if you have already graduated)

Personal statement or statement of purpose

Curriculum vitae (CV)

If English is not your first language, we require proof of your English language ability. If you have already taken an English language qualification, please include your certificate with your application. We may be willing to consider your application without this document, but if we choose to make you an offer, the conditions will include IELTS (or equivalent qualification).

“My biggest challenge was completing a series of experiments to send off DNA constructs. This meant working late nights and weekends for over a month. My passion for biology has given me the motivation to overcome this challenge and the ones to come.”

Franziska Paul / Developmental Biology MSc

Course options

Full-timePart-timeFull-time distance learningPart-time distance learning

Course description

Developmental biology is aimed at understanding how a fertilised egg gives rise to a complex multicellular organism.  The Developmental Biology MSc will give a thorough training in this subject area with opportunities to undertake research placements in the labs of leading researchers working on a range of model organisms and diverse areas of developmental biology.  Some of the major areas of research undertaken at The University of Manchester are as follows:

  • Studies of gene expression and cell signalling in model organisms, such as Drosophila, Xenopus, and mouse are illuminating the mechanisms by which different cell types and tissues arise during development.  Findings obtained from these studies serve as general principles relating to human development. 
  • The ways in which misregulation of developmental mechanisms leads to human diseases, e.g. cancer, are being explored using various models. 
  • The mechanisms regulating stem cell maintenance and differentiation are being investigated, in order to harness the therapeutic potential of stem cells. 
  • The healing process is being studied to improve wound repair and in the longer term regeneration of organs.

This is a research focused master's course. We do not teach Developmental Biology using a traditional lecture-based format; instead we use an interactive approach where you learn through seminars, workshops, small group tutorials and during your research placements.


For entry in the academic year beginning September 2017, the tuition fees are as follows:

  • MSc (full-time)
    UK/EU students (per annum): £13,000
    International students (per annum): £23,000

The fees quoted above will be fully inclusive for the course tuition, administration and computational costs during your studies.

All fees for entry will be subject to yearly review and incremental rises per annum are also likely over the duration of courses lasting more than a year for UK/EU students (fees are typically fixed for International students, for the course duration at the year of entry). For general fees information please visit: postgraduate fees . Always contact the department if you are unsure which fee applies to your qualification award and method of attendance.

Self-funded international applicants for this course will be required to pay a deposit of £1000 towards their tuition fees before a confirmation of acceptance for studies (CAS) is issued. This deposit will only be refunded if immigration permission is refused. We will notify you about how and when to make this payment.