Wolverhampton School of Sciences

Microbiology and Biotechnology with Sandwich Placement

BSc (Hons) Sandwich 4 years

We encounter micro-organisms continually, since they exist on the surfaces we touch and on the foods we eat and drink, and even the air we breathe.

We encounter micro-organisms continually, since they exist on the surfaces we touch and on the foods we eat and drink, and even the air we breathe.

  • Institute Code W75
  • UCAS Code C503
  • Entry Requirements View
  • Fees View
  • Course Specifications View
  • Start Date(s) 19 September 2022
  • Award BSc (Hons)
  • Study Mode Sandwich
  • Course Length Sandwich (4 years)
  • Campus Location Wolverhampton City Campus
  • School Wolverhampton School of Sciences
  • UCAS Points Calculator Click here

Why choose this course?

We encounter micro-organisms continually, since they exist on the surfaces we touch and on the foods we eat and drink, and even the air we breathe. In addition to the vital role of microorganisms in disease and the environment they are also used in biotechnology for the manufacture of many products which we use and the foods we consume. The course aims to explore the diversity microorganisms together with the principles and applications of biotechnology.

Biotechnology is a rapidly expanding discipline which is finding applications throughout society including medicine, agriculture and the environment. The course will provide a grounding in the basic principles of microbiology, plant biology, cell biology, genetics and the structure and function of biomolecules necessary to underpin the advanced study of biotechnology and demonstrate how these principles are applied for the development of useful products and applications.

Specialist facilities will enable the investigation of the biology of the cell and the nature of genes together with the biochemical analysis of biological products. The course explores the physicochemical principles associated with fermentation design and operations for the processing of materials by microbial, animal and plant cells (and their enzymes) including genetic modification to make useful products or purposes.

Technical competence is an important aspect of the award hence you will be provided with ample opportunity to undertake experiments which not only underpin theory but also provide training in analytical equipment.

The course will also explore the social consequences of developments in biotechnology, considering the benefits and risks connected with recombinant DNA experiments and the use or release of genetically modified organisms and their products.

A sandwich year in an industrial or research setting, supported by a University supervisor, is an optional, yet highly recommended opportunity which will provide invaluable work experience in settings from hospital pathology, to major biotechnology companies or food production facilities.

What happens on the course?

The emphasis throughout the course will be on the applied nature of the study of microbiology and biotechnology in terms of how fundamental knowledge can be applied to tangible vocational situations and problems, together with the acquisition of practical and generic skills. The intention of this approach will be to prepare students for their chosen career in any of the varied career options made available by a degree in the applied aspects of microbiology and biotechnology. To achieve this the award is structured to enable challenges to apply information effectively, to work in teams, to gain actual industrial experience, to learn from the experiences of professionals, to acquire technical competence and to develop generic and time management skills.

In Year One students will study

Introduction to Biosciences, Cell Biology and Genetics, Biochemistry for Life Science, Introduction to Microbiology, Introduction to Plant Biology and Biomedical Basis of Disease

In Year Two students will study

Molecular Biosciences, Molecular Biosciences Practical Techniques, Analytical Techniquesin Biosciences, Applied and Environmental Microbiology with optional module choices of Biochemistry or Pharmaceutical Microbiology

In Year Three students will study

Pharmaceutical Microbiology, Microbial Biotechnology, Bioinformatics, Honours Project (Biosciences) with optional module choices of Plant Biotechnology, Medical Microbiology, Developmental Biology, Control of Water and Foodborne Disease

During Level 4 within 4AB023 Introduction to Biosciences, students undertake activities relating to gaining employability skills which can contribute to the Enterprise and Employability Award Silver.

During Level 5, students obtain instruction and guidance in CV production, which are subsequently used, in conjunction with a letter of application, to apply to prospective supervisors during the process of project topic allocation.

The sandwich version of the course is actively promoted and supported by a Sandwich tutor, which enables students to obtain valuable work experience during their year of placement. The experience of work placement on sandwich greatly enhances the employability of graduates.

A number of activities run in the University Career Development Week, to either heighten awareness of the application of science in industry and prospective jobs. These include visits to industry, participation in jobs fairs and postgraduate fairs and team building activities.

Within modules guest speakers from industry who are practitioners in specialist roles, provide explanation and insights into the roles of biologists in the workplace.

Assessment on the project module 6AB020 Honours Project (Biosciences), will involve a poster session to which prospective employers will be invited so that the skills acquired and used in research can be show cased to a wider audience.

Course Modules

Potential Career Paths

There is strong market demand for graduates with microbiological and biotechnological knowledge and skills demonstrated by excellent employability for our recent graduates. Employers value the transferable skills such as problem solving, critical thinking, time management, team working, numeracy and communication that are developed throughout the course.

There are varied scientific career options for graduates including roles in the medical and health sector, pursuing a career in the teaching profession, as well as numerous roles in quality assurance, product development and research in the water, food, pharmaceutical, biotechnological and environmental industries. Science graduates also have opportunities in management, business, regulatory affairs and marketing. 

Additional Information

Everything you need to know about this course!

  • Study in the state of the art Rosalind Franklin Science facility
  • An applied course that provides extensive practical experience applying your knowledge in the laboratory and through case studies.
  • Excellent laboratory and IT facilities that support your studies.
  • Teaching is underpinned by research: In the last REF, the University of Wolverhampton was ranked at its highest ever level.
  • Current advances in technology supported learning and teaching approaches embedded throughout the course, ensuring that all students meet their full potential during their studies.
  • An optional one-year placement provides you the opportunity for valuable work experience to enhance your employability and provide useful employment contacts.

Employers are keen to see transferable skills within the curriculum. Transferable skills integrated in the course include;




Report writing

Critical Thinking

Problem Solving

Team working/leadership

Time management


Location Mode Fee Year
Home/EU Sandwich £9250 per year 2020-21
Home Sandwich £9250 per year 2021-22
Home Sandwich £9250 per year 2022-23
International Sandwich £12250 per year 2020-21
International Sandwich £13450 per year 2021-22
International Sandwich £13950 per year 2022-23

The University is committed to a transparent fee structure, with no hidden costs, to help you make an informed decision. This includes information on what is included in the fee and how fees are calculated and reviewed

  • 96 UCAS points
  • A Levels - grades CCC / BCD to include a Science based subject, preferably Biology
  • BTEC L3 Extended Diploma or OCR Cambridge L3 Technical Extended Diploma in Applied Science - grades MMM 
  • Access to HE Diploma: 45 L3 credits at Merit to include at least 18 credits in Science


Students must usually have studied for a minimum of two years post GCSE level. However, we will consider applications from mature students who do not have two years of post-16 study, where they have relevant work experience. Please see http://wlv.ac.uk/mature for further information.

If you've got other qualifications or relevant experience, please contact The Gateway for further advice before applying.

International entry requirements and application guidance can be found at http://www.wlv.ac.uk/international/apply

English language requirements also apply

Royal Society of Biology

"Accredited by the Royal Society of Biology for the purpose of meeting, in part, the academic and experience requirement of membership and Chartered Biologist (CBiol)."

Tuition Fees Loan (Home Fee Status):

Most students will be able to apply for a loans to pay for these subject to eligibility. To find out more information please refer to the government Student Finance website.

Changes for EU students:

The UK government has confirmed that EU students starting courses from 1 August 2021 will normally be classified as having Overseas Fee status. More information about the change is available at UKCISA:

EU citizens living in the UK with 'settled' status, and Irish nationals living in the UK or Ireland, will still be classified as Home students, providing they meet the usual residency requirements, for more information about EU Settlement Scheme (EUSS) click here.


If you don’t want to take out a loan to pay your fees or if you aren’t eligible to receive a loan, you might want to take advantage of the University’s scheme to pay by instalments: See How to pay.

For more information please contact the Gateway.

Your employer, embassy or organisation can pay for your Tuition fees:

If your employer, embassy or organisation agrees to pay all or part of your tuition fees; the University will refer to them as your sponsor and will invoice them for the appropriate amount.

We must receive notification of sponsorship in writing as soon as possible, and before enrolment, confirming that the sponsor will pay your tuition fees.

Financial Hardship:

Students can apply to the Dennis Turner Opportunity Fund.

for help with course related costs however this cannot be used for fees or to cover general living costs.

Bursaries and Scholarships:

In addition the University also offers a range of Bursaries and Scholarships packages

You can find more information on the University’s Funding, cost, fee and support pages.


01902 32 22 22




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