Select Page
Reproductive and Developmental Biology

Reproductive and Developmental Biology

Postgraduate Certificate

ECTS: 30 credits
Duration: 4 months full-time
(standalone course)

Master’s degree

ECTS: 90 credits
Duration: 1 year full-time
(including PG Cert)



This course provides an opportunity for scientists and clinicians to specialise in reproductive and developmental biology. You gain detailed theoretical knowledge of reproductive and developmental biology while gaining practical skills within a vibrant research environment.

The primary focus is on the basic sciences and their application to selected clinical aspects of the subject. It provides a valuable qualification and sound training for a further career in scientific research or in assisted reproduction.

Whether you are from a scientific or clinical background, you will be provided with an in-depth knowledge of molecular and cellular aspects of reproduction and development.


Study programme


The Reproductive and Developmental Biology programme is available as:

  • PG Certificate (PG Cert)
  • a full Master’s degree (MSc)

You can apply to either level in the first instance

As an MSc student, you undertake three core modules plus an independent research project which will provide you with vital experience of current techniques. This also helps embed the transferable skills covered throughout the course, including data analysis and scientific writing.

The core modules of the MSc are:


  • Gonads to gametes: the development and regulation of reproductive systems and gametogenesis.
  • Eggs to embryos: the production of mature gametes, fertilisation and the earliest stages of development. The relationship between stem cells and early development is included.
  • Bumps to babies: the processes involved in human pregnancy, as the embryo develops into the foetus

In all three modules, the main complications affecting humans are considered, as well as the limits of our current understanding of these topics.

As a PG Certificate student, you take the core module ‘Gonads to gametes’, and then choose only one additional module out of ‘Eggs to embryos’ or ‘Bumps to babies’. PG Certificate students do not take the ‘Independent research project’ module.


Is this programme for you?


This course is suited to those who are looking to improve your theoretical knowledge in the areas of reproductive and developmental biology, alongside gaining practical skills within a vibrant research environment.

Training in IVF technologies and techniques is not a part of this course. Past graduates have gained places on the highly competitive Scientist Training Programme that is now required for those who wish to work as embryologists within the NHS.



As a graduate in the life-sciences, this MSc in Reproductive and Developmental Biology can help you reach the next stage of your career – be that PhD posts, entry to medical school, or clinical speciality training.

With both a full-time MSc and a PG Cert on offer, you can choose the pathway most suited to you, and use the specific scientific skills and the transferable skills we give you to take the next step.



Modules shown are for the current academic year and are subject to change depending on your year of entry.

Please note that the curriculum of this course is currently being reviewed as part of a College-wide process to introduce a standardised modular structure. As a result, the content and assessment structures of this course may change for your year of entry. We therefore recommend that you check this course page before finalising your application and after submitting it as we will aim to update this page as soon as any changes are ratified by the College.

You take the core module below.

  • Gonads to Gametes

You choose one module from below:


  • Eggs to Embryos
  • Bumps to Babies

You take all of the core modules below.


  • Gonads to Gametes
  • Eggs to Embryos
  • Bumps to Babies
  • Independent Research Project

Teaching and assessment


Teaching methods


  • Group discussions
  • Lectures
  • Practical workshops
  • Seminars
  • Site visits
  • Supervisor meetings (research project)


Assessment methods


Coursework (2 pieces per module) may include:

  • Essays
  • Critical appraisal
  • Writing up laboratory work
  • Oral presentation
  • Data handling

The research project will be assessed by the production of a poster (intermediate stage), a dissertation, and a viva.

Entry requirements


We welcome students from all over the world and consider all applicants on an individual basis.

Minimum academic requirement

Our minimum requirement is a 2.1 degree in biological science, an MBBS medical degree or DVM veterinary degree.

International qualifications

We also accept a wide variety of international qualifications.

The academic requirement above is for applicants who hold or who are working towards a USA qualification.

For guidance see our Country Index though please note that the standards listed here are the minimum for entry to the College, and not specifically this Department.

If you have any questions about admissions and the standard required for the qualification you hold or are currently studying then please contact the relevant admissions team.

English language requirement (all applicants)

All candidates must demonstrate a minimum level of English language proficiency for admission to the College.

For admission to this course, you must achieve the standard College requirement in the appropriate English language qualification. For details of the minimum grades required to achieve this requirement, please see the English language requirements for postgraduate applicants.

How to apply


You can submit one application form per year of entry, and usually choose up to two courses.


Choosing your course

This course is divided into two progressional levels of study:

  • PG Certificate (PG Cert)
  • MSc

Each level of study has its own separate entry point; you can apply to either level in the first instance.

Making an application

All applicants to our Master’s courses must apply online.