A combination of hard-work, determination and the right support will see you through. If you’ve got the first two, Christ Church can provide the third.

Marie, current PhD student

Overview

Our Plant Science course is designed to give you an in-depth understanding of the latest concepts in genetics, plant breeding, gene mapping, plant physiology and data analysis.

Plant-based enterprises operate in a regulated environment and need well trained knowledgeable professionals.

You will develop your practical and employment skills in our newly opened, state-of-the-art laboratories, and will be encouraged to broaden your experience by interacting with a range of employers, including biotech companies through the Industry Liaison Lab, in Sandwich, major local growers and advisory companies such as FAST at Brogdale. 

Why study Plant Science?

We are going through a rapid period of climate change and global food security is facing unprecedented threats from changing weather patterns. It is therefore essential that we significantly increase our food production for the growing population on this planet.

To achieve these goals, we not only need to develop high yielding crop plants but also varieties that can remain productive under stressful and variable growing conditions. Plant Scientists are highly in demand because they will play the central role in this endeavour.   

Entry requirements

GCSE English or IELTS equivalent, GCSE Maths, and 88-112 UCAS points, ideally including at least two grade C at A level in two science subjects, preferably Biology and Chemistry.

For more information on the IELTS (International English language Testing System) requirements for this course, please click here to visit our dedicated web page.

More information about entry requirements.

88-112
UCAS Points

All about the course

Over the course duration you will develop the skills to collect and analyse scientific data independently, leading you towards an independent research project in your third year, where you can research a topic of your own choice with specific employment goals in mind. This also encourages close collaboration between you and your lecturers, involving you in their research.

To support you throughout this exciting and challenging degree, you'll receive expert teaching that is informed by research and involves you in the research of a diverse and multi-disciplinary team of experienced academics.

How you’ll learn

You will study the modules listed below. Module descriptors will be added in due course.

Level 4:

  • Biochemistry 1
  • Statistics and Introduction to R Software
  • Cell Biology and Genetics
  • Microbiology
  • Chemistry for Life and Environmental Science
  • Diversity, Evolution and Ecology

Level 5:

  • Molecular Biology and Biotechnology
  • Plant Physiology and Development
  • Plant Genetics
  • Plant Pests and Pathogens
  • Soils, Plants and Environment

Optional modules at Level 5:

  • Bioinformatics and Data Handling
  • Work Placement

Level 6:

  • Honours Project in Plant Science (40 credits)
  • Advanced Plant Physiology and Development
  • Plant Product Chemistry
  • Genetics of Plant Systems

Optional modules at Level 6:

  • Advanced Bioinformatics
  • Plant Conservation Science

You will be taught through a combination of blended learning with workshops, laboratory practicals, field visits and seminars.

Workshops will enable you to discuss and develop your understanding of topics covered in lectures. In addition, you will meet with your Personal Academic Tutor at least once each semester, but you are encouraged to arrange additional meetings as required.

You will use industry-standard software. You will also have access to specialist facilities and equipment throughout your course.

In the final year, you will conduct an independent research project that can cater to your particular interests and skills development. You will be supervised by a member of our academic team and guided in undertaking independent research, data analysis and presentation of your results. Depending on the topic of your project, you may also have the opportunity to collaborate with an industry partner on an industry-relevant research project.

Your actual contact hours depend on the option modules you select.

When not attending workshops, practical sessions or other timetabled activities, you will continue learning through self-study that will be structured for you by the module leader for each module. Typically, this involves reading journal articles and books, engaging with online learning materials (videos, quizzes etc.), undertaking research in the library, working on projects, and preparing for coursework assignments/examinations, workshops and seminars.

Your module tutor will direct you towards specific readings and/or activities to complete before class.

For the Honours Project module in the final year, you will undertake independent research. You will work under the supervision of a member of our academic team, with support of other members of the teaching team where necessary. You will meet with your supervisor regularly.

The team consists of highly qualified academics. They have a range of expertise and experience.

All our team members hold doctoral and teaching qualifications. They are research-active. They have experience in delivering research-informed teaching. You should note members of the teaching team might change.

Postgraduate students sometimes assist in teaching and assessing some modules. However, experienced academics teach the vast majority of lectures and seminars.

Science is all about playful juggling with ideas and trying to find and explain the unknown in our quest to generate new knowledge and ensure the survivability of our future generations. Recent developments in plant genetics research have opened up many new Pandora’s Boxes of pleasurable confusions and possibly new solutions to develop new and resilient crop plants which could withstand harsh environmental conditions to meet our growing food demands.

Dr Naeem SyedPlant Science Lecturer

How you’ll be assessed

The course provides you with opportunities to test your understanding of the subject informally before you complete the formal assessments that count towards your final mark. Practice assessments are developmental and any grades you receive for them do not count towards your module mark.

There is also a formal or 'summative' assessment element for each of the modules. Assessment methods include a range of coursework assessments, such as laboratory reports, literature reviews, skills assessments, presentations and your final year major project. Some modules also have a formally assessed exam. The grades from formal assessments count towards your module mark.

Percentage of the course assessed by coursework

The balance of assessment by examination and assessment by coursework depends to some extent on the optional modules you choose.

Typically, there will be two coursework assessments weighted at 50% and 40% and a practical skills portfolio weighted at 10%. Some modules will have an exam that replaces the 50% piece of coursework.

Feedback

You will receive feedback on all practice assessments and on formal assessments undertaken by coursework. Feedback on examination performance is available upon request from the module leader. Feedback is intended to help you learn and you are encouraged to discuss it with your module leader or personal academic tutor.

We aim to provide you with feedback within 15 working days of hand-in (formal coursework assessment).

100% Coursework

Your future career

Your time at Canterbury Christ Church University will allow you to develop the analytical skills and give you the confidence to embark on one of the many interesting career opportunities that exist in the plant science industry, in plant research as well as in biotechnology companies more generally. Alternatively, you may wish to undertake a Masters or PhD.  

Fees

The 2022/23 annual tuition fees for this course are:

  UK** Overseas***
Full-time £9,250 £14,500
Full-time - placement year £1,850 N/A
Part-time £4,625 £7,250

Tuition fees for all courses are payable on an annual basis, except where stated.

Please read the 2022/23 Tuition Fee Statement for further information regarding 2022/23 tuition fees and year on year fee increases.

**Home (UK) Fees

The fees above are for the 2022/23 academic year but may be subject to change following any announcements by the UK Government (approved by Parliament) regarding maximum Undergraduate tuition fee caps for 2022/23.

In addition, the University reserves the right to increase all full-time and part-time Undergraduate tuition fees mid-course, in line with any further inflationary increase in the Government tuition fee cap which is approved by Parliament. The University will publish information about any changes to tuition fees on its website.

***Overseas Fees (including EU fees):

Undergraduate Overseas tuition fees for International students are not subject to the Government’s regulations on maximum tuition fees.

Students with an Overseas fee status will be eligible for an International student Scholarship fee discount of £1,500, which will be applied to all Full-time Undergraduate courses with a tuition fee of £14,500.

Students with an EU fee status will be eligible for the EEA Transition Scholarship. Further details can be found here: https://www.canterbury.ac.uk/study-here/fees-and-funding/international-student-fees-and-funding

Specialist Facilities

This course is associated with the university’s Industry Liaison Labs at Discovery Park, Sandwich. You will have the opportunity to undertake laboratory work at this site. The location of these specialist facilities within an industrial setting facilitates access to and collaboration with biotechnology and pharmaceutical companies.

Industry Links

The University’s Industry Liaison Lab works with many companies in healthcare research and development, drug discovery and equipment design and manufacture.

"Venomtech have been very impressed with our partners at Canterbury Christ Church University, this partnership has enabled us to progress projects much faster than we could on our own. This includes being able to generate novel data on the use of our products through student projects, advancing research into new antibiotics and cancer therapies from venoms and increasing the understanding of invertebrate welfare. Generation of this proof of concept data has, and continues to have, a positive influence with our potential customers and therefore our business. I also impart my 10+ years industrial drug discovery experience directly to the students as part of the Drug Discovery and Development module.

As a science employer in the area, Venomtech benefit greatly from being directly involved in the curriculum to make sure the new graduates have the skills useful to employers. This includes an understanding of applied drug discovery that will make CCCU graduates stand out from others in job interviews.”

Steve Trim, CEO, Venomtech Ltd

Regulated by the Office for Students

The Office for Students (OfS) regulates Canterbury Christ Church University. The OfS is the independent regulator of higher education in England. It aims to ensure that every student, whatever their background, has a fulfilling experience of higher education that enriches their lives and careers. Further details about its work are available on the OfS website.

Apply now

Duration:

3 years

UCAS code:

C200

Location(s):

Canterbury
Apply via UCAS

Find out more

Sign up to hear the latest from the University, including upcoming events, useful updates, student life and more!