Course explanation

Course structure

Our Natural Sciences programme is very flexible, designed to allow you to study the 3 sciences that most interest you at University-level, before you decide on which subjects to continue with. You'll choose a combination of three subjects to study in your first year and gradually specialise as you progress through the course, eventually focusing on two subjects.

To see the combinations of subjects we offer, click one of the subjects you're interested in above to see what subjects it can be studied alongside. The combinations we offer are designed with employability and research specialisms in mind.

How the course works

Our Natural Sciences course is offered as either an Integrated Masters (MNatSc, BSc) degree lasting 4 years, or a BSc lasting 3 years. At each stage of the course you'll study 120 credits, but you have flexibility around the amount of credits you study of each subject.

Course structure of Natural Sciences


Year 1

You’ll study your three chosen subjects equally. You won’t have to decide which subjects you’ll study until you arrive at Leeds.

Year 2

At this stage of the course, you have several options. While you must continue with at least 2 of the subjects you studied in first year, you can:

  • Study two subjects with equal weightings (60 credits of each subject)
  • Study two subjects with a major/minor split (80 credits of one subject, 40 credits of another)
  • Study 50 credits of two subjects from your first year and 20 credits of your third subject
  • Study 50 credits of two subjects from your first year and a 20 credit discovery module, for example a language course or business module.

If you choose to study physics in your second year, you'll also need to study at least 20 credits of mathematics.

In between years 2 and 3 of the course, you can undertake a year in industry or spend a year studying abroad.

Year 3

At this point of the course, you’ll come to specialise in 2 of your subjects. You can either:

  • Study the two subjects equally (60 credits of each subject)
  • Study a major/minor split (80 credits of one subject, 40 credits of the other).

In between years 3 and 4 of the course (under the MNatSc programme), you can undertake a year in industry if you haven't already.

Year 4 (MNatSc)

In the final year of the MNatSc, BSc you’ll study 40 credits of both of your subjects. You will also perform a major research project. Your research project can be based in one scientific area or can be an interdisciplinary project, drawing together concepts and tools from both of the subjects you’ve specialised in.