single degree

Master of Science (Advanced) in Biological Sciences

A single two year graduate degree offered by the ANU College of Health and Medicine

  • Length 2 year full-time
  • Minimum 96 Units
  • Length 2 year full-time
  • Minimum 96 Units

Do you want to make a career out of making new discoveries about the fascinating living world?  The Master of Science in Biological Sciences (Advanced) is a flexible program that can be tailored to suit your specific educational goals. Our program allows you to specialise in a particular area of biology such as biomedical sciences, ecology and evolution, genetics, and plant sciences. This program offers a research component which provides the student an opportunity to conduct hands-on research in a laboratory of a research scientist/supervisor. 

Career Options

Graduates from ANU have been rated as Australia's most employable graduates and among the most sought after by employers worldwide.

The latest Global Employability University Ranking, published by the Times Higher Education, rated ANU as Australia's top university for getting a job for the fourth year in a row.

This program is available for applications to commence from first semester, 2018

This program is available for applications to commence from First Semester, 2018

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion, students will have the skills and knowledge to:

1.     demonstrate high level knowledge in the area of their study;

2.     apply their knowledge in the discipline to new problems;

3.     interpret, synthesize and critically analyse published literature of relevance to the discipline;

4.     demonstrate theoretical and/or practical skills relevant to techniques and research methodology in the discipline;

5.     critically analyse data within the discipline to reach independent conclusions;

6.     independently perform experimental or theoretical work, interpret and analyse results, write reports and collate data into a thesis;

7.     demonstrate a critical understanding of science in society;

8.     clearly communicate theory and results in both written and oral formats

Further Information

Please note, the 48 units from completion of BIOL8701 or MEDN8701 Research Project must be taken twice in consecutive semesters.

Students must achieve a minimum 70% weighted average mark in the first 48 units of courses attempted in order to commence BIOL8701 Research Project or MEDN8701 Research Project.

Students who do not achieve a minimum of 70% weighted average mark will be transferred to the Master of Science in Biological Sciences.

Admission Requirements

A Bachelor degree or international equivalent

  • with a grade point average of at least 5.5/7
  • with at least 8 courses in a cognate discipline.

Cognate Disciplines

Biology, biomedical sciences, molecular biology, genetics, evolution, ecology and plant sciences.

Domestic Tuition Fees (DTF)

For more information see:

Annual indicative fee for international students


ANU offers a wide range of scholarships to students to assist with the cost of their studies.

Eligibility to apply for ANU scholarships varies depending on the specifics of the scholarship and can be categorised by the type of student you are.  Specific scholarship application process information is included in the relevant scholarship listing.

For further information see the Scholarships website.

Program Requirements

The Master of Science (Advanced) in Biological Sciences degree requires the completion of 96 units, which must consist of:

A minimum of 36 units from the completion of 6000- and 8000 level courses which must consist of:

12 units from the completion of BIOL8700 Research Proposal


A minimum of 12 units from completion of Science and Society Courses from the following list:

BIAN8005  Theory Seminar in Biological Anthropology

BIOL6191 Biology, Society and Ethics

BIOL6201 Big Questions in Biology

BIOL8021 Health and Disease in a Changing World

ENVS6013 Society and Environmental Change

ENVS8015 Contemporary Perspectives in Environmental Science

POGO8093 Science, Innovation and Public Policy

SCOM6003 Science in Popular Fiction

SCOM6012 Science Communication and the Web

SCOM6015 Speaking of Science

SCOM6016 Science in the Media

SCOM6017 Science Events for Public Engagement

SCOM6027 Science and Public Policy

SCOM6029 Cross Cultural Perspectives in Science Communication

SCOM6030 Science Dialogue Theory and Practice

SCOM6031 Science, Risk and Ethics

SCOM6032 Making Modern Science

SCOM6501 Strategies in Science Communication

SCOM8014 Communicating Science with the Public

SCNC8000 Science Internship

VCPG6003 Leadership and Influence in a Complex World

VCPG6004 Creating Impact

VCPG6002 Mobilising Research

VCPG6001 Unravelling Complexity


A maximum of 12 units from completion of further courses in any of the following subject areas:

BIAN Biological Anthropology

CHEM Chemistry

EMSC Earth and Marine Sciences

ENVS Environmental Science

MATH Mathematics

NEUR Neuroscience

POPH Population Health

PSYC Psychology

SCOM Science Communication)


A maximum of 12 units from completion of elective courses offered by the ANU

48 units from completion of Research and Research Methodology Courses from the following list:

BIOL8701 Research Project

MEDN8701 Research Project

Back to the top

Responsible Officer: Registrar, Student Administration / Page Contact: Website Administrator / Frequently Asked Questions