BSc in Biology


2 locations available

Program Description

What are the effects of climate change on sea life? How does a disease like cancer arise? What happens in the brain when you are asleep?

The field of Biology is concerned with how plants, animals, and humans are made up and how they function. The difference with biology at secondary school is that this degree program involves more science: you will study more mathematics, physics, and chemistry.

Scientists are expanding their horizons more and more. As a biologist, you will increasingly work together with scientists of other disciplines. This interaction will provide you with useful knowledge.

Choose the specialization that suits you best

Many universities offer Biology degree programs. The big advantage of studying in Groningen is that you can choose exactly the specialization that suits you best. The first semester covers basic topics that are essential for all fields of biology. After the first semester, you can choose to follow the Major in Ecology and Evolution of the joint program for the Majors in Molecular Life Sciences, Behaviour and Neurosciences and Biomedical Sciences. During the second year, these Majors will gradually start to differentiate. In the third year, you start with a Minor of one semester, in which you can either broaden or deepen your knowledge. In the last semester, you will complete your Bachelor’s program with a Bachelor’s project in the specialism of your choice.

All your lecturers are involved in research in some way. Their research will help you become acquainted with the many new developments in the field of life sciences.

Why study this program in Groningen?

  • The degree program all offer a wide choice of specializations that you can major in. During the first semester, you will follow a broad-based programme, after which you can make your definitive choice.
  • The biomedical degree programs have close ties with the University Medical Center Groningen. If you choose one of these programs, you will spend a lot of time at the UMCG, for practicals, among things.
  • Groningen also offers a unique master degree programme in Marine Biology.
  • Our faculty is the home of the 2016 Nobel Prize Winner in Chemistry, Ben Feringa, and the Nobel Prize winner in Physics, Frits Zernike.


Year 1


  • Basic Cell and Molecular Biology (5 EC)
  • Biostatistics 1 (5 EC)
  • First-year symposium (2 EC)
  • Genetics, Ecology, and Evolution (5 EC)
  • Lab course (3 EC)
  • Microbiology (2 EC)
  • Physiology (5 EC)
  • Behavioral Neurosciences (5 EC)
  • Biochemistry and Cell Biology in Ecology and Evolution (5 EC)
  • Cell Biology and Immunology (5 EC)
  • Ecophysiology of Plants and Animals (5 EC)
  • Evolutionary Ecology (5 EC)
  • Metabolism (5 EC)
  • Molecules of Life (5 EC)
  • Research Skills in Ecology and Evolution (10 EC)
  • Research Skills in Life Sciences (10 EC)

Study abroad

  • Study abroad is optional
  • Maximum of 30 EC

Entry requirements

Admission requirements

Specific requirements More information
additional subject

Biology, Physics, Chemistry and Mathematics.

This is merely an indication of the required background knowledge. The admissions board determines whether the specific contents of this/these course(s) meet the admission requirements of the bachelor program for which you applied.

language test Proficiency in English is an admission requirement for all English-taught degree programs.
previous education

Secondary education equivalent to Dutch pre-university education is required.

This is merely an indication of the required general level of applicants' previous education.

Application deadlines

Type of student Deadline Start course
Dutch students 01 May 2021 01 September 2021
EU/EEA students 01 May 2021 01 September 2021
non-EU/EEA students 01 May 2021 01 September 2021

Tuition fees

Nationality Year Fee Program form
EU/EEA 2020-2021 € 2143 full-time
non-EU/EEA 2020-2021 € 14000 full-time

The Dutch government intends to halve the statutory tuition fees for specific groups of first-year bachelor's students starting from the 2018/19 academic year.

Job prospects

In Biology, you will develop a scientific way of thinking that will help you to solve biology-related questions and problems. This analytical perspective is useful in all kinds of lines of work, so you will have plenty of career options after graduating.

Want to become a researcher?

A lot of biologists work as researchers, either for a short while or as a long-term career. The type of research will depend on the discipline you specialize in and the themes that play a role in your working environment. There are various types of research. For example, you could study the brain at the University Medical Center Groningen, or help to unravel the structure of genes in a laboratory. You could study the effects of gas drilling on the marine environment for the NAM, or coordinate research on the influence of large grazers on vulnerable ecosystems for a conservation organization. Or you could gather information about forgotten crops that can thrive without pesticides, or with very little pesticide, in our changing climate. These are all examples of research. What you achieve with this research will depend on yourself and the world around you. It's up to you!

Other Possibilities

But there are lots of other excellent job opportunities open to you. Some biologists become policy advisors in an organization or company or find a job as a press officer, teacher, educational consultant or scientific journalist. A small number of biologists work in the corporate sector, for example as clinical research associates. Here too, there are jobs to be had with all manner of organizations.

Job examples

  • Researcher
  • Environmental advisor
  • Health advisor
  • Ecologist
  • Microbiologist
  • Policy advisor
  • Science communication or journalism
  • Teacher/lecturer


Our Bachelor's degree program in biology is connected to the following research institutes of the University of Groningen.


The Groningen Institute of Evolutionary Life Sciences (GELIFES) fills a special niche in the field of life sciences that not only covers mechanistic, evolutionary and ecological approaches but also specifically aims at the integration of these fields that are traditionally studied in isolation.

GELIFES is part of the Faculty of Science and Engineering and embraces fourteen research groups:

  • Animal Ecology
  • Behavioral Biology
  • Behavioral Physiology
  • Behavioral Ecology and Self-organization (BESO)
  • Chronobiology
  • Community and Conservation Ecology (Cocon)
  • Evolutionary Genetics
  • Marine Benthic Ecology & Evolution (MarBEE)
  • Marine Evolution and Conservation (MarECon)
  • Microbial Ecology
  • Molecular Neurobiology
  • Neuroendocrinology
  • Plant Ecophysiology
  • Theoretical Biology

GBB - Groningen Biomolecular Sciences and Biotechnology Institute

GBB has the ambition to perform research of the highest standard in the field of biomolecular sciences, with a focus on proteins. We aim to understand the structure and dynamics of proteins in relation to their function and activity; to unravel the functional role of proteins in living cells; and to obtain insights in the fundamental properties of proteins that are relevant for application in health and the future bio-based economy.

Research groups: Bioinformatics, Biotransformation and Biocatalysis, Cell Biochemistry, Electron Microscopy, Membrane Enzymology, Microbial Physiology, Molecular Cell Biology, Molecular Genetics, Molecular Microbiology, Molecular Dynamics, Molecular Systems Biology, NMR, Protein Crystallography

Last updated Apr 2020

Keystone scholarship

Discover the options our scholarship can give you

About the School

The University of Groningen has a rich academic tradition dating back to 1614. From this tradition arose the first female student and the first female lecturer in the Netherlands, the first Dutch astr ... Read More

The University of Groningen has a rich academic tradition dating back to 1614. From this tradition arose the first female student and the first female lecturer in the Netherlands, the first Dutch astronaut and the first president of the European Central Bank. Geographically, the University is rooted in the Northern part of the Netherlands, a region very close to its heart. Read less
Groningen , Leeuwarden + 1 More Less