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Postgraduate Study

Honours in the Department of Biological Sciences

BSc Honours in Biological Sciences or Marine Biology

This one-year course aims to introduce students to research and, through advanced coursework, develop an enhanced understanding of scientific theory and practice in the biological sciences.

BIO4000W Biological Sciences Honours

Since the code BIO4000W will not carry a NQF credit value, students will be concurrently registered for BIO4002W (coursework component of 88 NQF credits) and BIO4003W (research project of 72 NQF credits).

160 NQF credits at HEQSF level 8

Convener: Dr Jacqueline Bishop

Course entry requirements: A BSc degree in Biology. Acceptance will be at the discretion of the Head of Department who will consider quality of final year results, material covered in the undergraduate curriculum, and also possibly referees’ reports.

Course outline:

The Honours course is designed to enrich the student's appreciation of theory through advanced coursework, essay writing, seminars, discussion groups and fieldwork. In addition to compulsory coursework modules, students are required to choose six elective theory modules and complete an original research project.

DP requirements: Attendance of field camp and all lectures are required for the DP. The non-project component of the course carries a sub-minimum of 50% and the project component a sub-minimum of 50%.

Assessment: Two 3-hour examinations written in November count 20%; project and research seminar count 40%; compulsory coursework counts 20%; elective coursework counts 20%. These component parts of the course will be combined in a final overall mark which will be reflected against the course code BIO4000W, with PA (pass) entered against the coursework and project codes; each of these components must be passed separately for the award of the degree.

BIO4001W Marine Biology Honours

Since the code BIO4001W will not carry a NQF credit value, students will be concurrently registered for BIO4004W (coursework component of 88 NQF credits) and BIO4005W (research project of 72 NQF credits).

160 NQF credits at HEQSF level 8

Convener: Dr Jacqueline Bishop

Course entry requirements: BSc degree in Marine Biology. Enrolments are limited to 10. Acceptance will be at the discretion of the Head of Department who will consider quality of final year results, material covered in the undergraduate curriculum, and also possibly referees’ reports.

Course outline:

The Honours course is designed to enrich the student’s appreciation of theory through advanced coursework, essay writing, seminars, discussion groups and fieldwork. In addition to compulsory coursework modules, students are required to choose six elective theory modules, at least four of which must be marine topics, and complete an original research project.

DP requirements: Attendance of field camp and all lectures are required for the DP. The non-project component of the course carries a sub-minimum of 50% and the project component a sub-minimum of 50%.

Assessment: Two 3-hour examinations written in November count 20%; project and research seminar count 40%; compulsory coursework counts 20%; elective coursework counts 20%. These component parts of the course will be combined in a final overall mark which will be reflected against the course code BIO4001W, with PA (pass) entered against the coursework and project codes; each of these components must be passed separately for the award of the degree.

Honours study

For more detailed information about the course follow this link.

Queries about the course should be directed to the course convener Dr Jacqueline Bishop (Room 3.22, H.W. Pearson Building)

How to apply

NOTE: The university and departmental deadline for application is 31 October 2021. Late applications will NOT be considered.

To be considered for the Honours degree program you need to have a BSc in Biology or Marine Biology. Class size is limited and acceptance onto the course is competitive. Students attaining an average of 70% or more in relevant third-year level science courses are normally assured of acceptance into Honours. We also consider applications from students achieving 3rd year averages of 65% or more.

Note that factors other than marks may be considered when applications are reviewed, and that final acceptance into Honours is at the discretion of the Head of Department. With this in mind, applicants are asked to submit a brief motivation (200 words) about their interest in pursuing an Honours degree, and provide any additional information (e.g. relevant work experience, outreach etc.) which might strengthen their application, as well as the names and email addresses of TWO academic referees.

The university’s application process closes on 31 October each year for the following year’s intake. Students must apply online via UCT’s online application portal AND must submit an application pack to the Department of Biological Sciences.

Application for admission into Honours requires:

  1. Online application via UCT’s central admissions procedure. You will need to fill out the UCT postgraduate studies application form (available at http://www.uct.ac.za/apply/applications/forms/) and follow instructions.
  1. Direct application to the Dept. of Biological Sciences. You will need to fill out the Bio Sci Hons application form and send this together with the required documentation by email to jamie-lee.adamson@uct.ac.za  (Tel: +27 (0) 21 650 3604) or by post to Department of Biological Sciences, University of Cape Town, Private Bag X3 Rondebosch, 7701, South Africa.

Applicants for Honours are not required to submit a research proposal or outline.

International students must also contact the International Academic Programmes Office (IAPO) who will advise on all the necessary documentation required to study in South Africa and any other related queries. http://www.iapo.uct.ac.za/

Funding

Refer to the UCT Postgraduate Funding Office (PGFO) for details on Honours financial support, scholarships and merit awards. To be eligible for UCT merit awards, students must first apply to the NRF for Honours bursary support before the closing date. See www.nrf.ac.za and the PGFO webpage for details.

http://www.students.uct.ac.za/students/fees-funding/postgraduate-degree-funding/about-office