Undergraduate

Molecular Life Sciences (Extended Major)

This extended major will help you develop in-depth understanding in biochemistry, genetics, and molecular biology, preparing you for a career in fields such as biotechnology, health diagnostics, aquaculture and plant breeding.
80
ATAR

Contact us

Address

Student Central

The University of Western Australia (M355), 35 Stirling Highway, Perth, Western Australia 6009

Telephone

131 UWA (131 892)

International

(+61 8) 6488 1000

Hours

8.30am - 5pm AWST, Monday - Friday

Frequently asked questions

Careers and further study

This course opens up a world of future study pathways and career options.

Career Pathways

UWA is Western Australia’s top ranked University, and is also one of the Group of Eight leading research universities in Australia. UWA’s biological disciplines, including those that comprise the molecular life sciences, are particularly renowned nationally and internationally and rank amongst the world’s best 100 in their subject area.

A bachelor’s degree in Molecular Life Sciences from UWA would be highly recognised amongst employers in the biosciences. Career options include agricultural consultancy, biotechnology, drug development, food production and quality control, fermentation industries and chemical production. Life scientists find jobs in diagnostic laboratories in hospitals, veterinary health, toxicology and allied health fields. Opportunities beyond the laboratory include education, patent law and policy-making, as well as in agriculture and the environment, sales and marketing for medical, research and pharmaceutical industries. With their specialist knowledge of living systems, molecular life scientists find work as journalists and science communicators. A degree in Molecular Life Sciences is also an ideal launchpad for specialised postgraduate courses in bioinformatics, synthetic biology or forensics. Finally, many careers in the molecular life sciences benefit from further study towards a higher degree by research, so that graduates can reach more senior positions in research and development, whether in academia or in industry.

There are numerous companies and institutions in diverse industries that seek molecular life scientists in Western Australia (indicated by *), nationally and internationally:

• Pharmaceutical companies (e.g. Pfizer*, CSL, Abbvie, GlaxoSmithKline, EvansPetersen Healthcare)
• Biotechnology companies (e.g. Dimerix*, PYC Therapeutics*, Orthocell*, Novozyme, Life Cykel, Qiagen, Roche, Merck)
• Molecular diagnostics laboratories (e.g. Pathwest*, Safe Work Laboratories*)
• Biochemical/protein analytical laboratories (e.g. Proteomics International*)
• Provisioners of scientific instrumentation (e.g. Thermo Fisher Scientific, Westlab, LabGear Australia)
• Research Centres (e.g. Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO)*, Telethon Kids Institute*, Ingham Institute, Garvan Institute for Medical Research)
• Top-ranked universities around the world

UWA is Western Australia’s top ranked University, and is also one of the Group of Eight leading research universities in Australia. UWA’s biological disciplines, including those that comprise the molecular life sciences, are particularly renowned nationally and internationally and rank amongst the world’s best 100 in their subject area.

A bachelor’s degree in Molecular Life Sciences from UWA would be highly recognised amongst employers in the biosciences. Career options include agricultural consultancy, biotechnology, drug development, food production and quality control, fermentation industries and chemical production. Life scientists find jobs in diagnostic laboratories in hospitals, veterinary health, toxicology and allied health fields. Opportunities beyond the laboratory include education, patent law and policy-making, as well as in agriculture and the environment, sales and marketing for medical, research and pharmaceutical industries. With their specialist knowledge of living systems, molecular life scientists find work as journalists and science communicators. A degree in Molecular Life Sciences is also an ideal launchpad for specialised postgraduate courses in bioinformatics, synthetic biology or forensics. Finally, many careers in the molecular life sciences benefit from further study towards a higher degree by research, so that graduates can reach more senior positions in research and development, whether in academia or in industry.

There are numerous companies and institutions in diverse industries that seek molecular life scientists in Western Australia (indicated by *), nationally and internationally:

• Pharmaceutical companies (e.g. Pfizer*, CSL, Abbvie, GlaxoSmithKline, EvansPetersen Healthcare)
• Biotechnology companies (e.g. Dimerix*, PYC Therapeutics*, Orthocell*, Novozyme, Life Cykel, Qiagen, Roche, Merck)
• Molecular diagnostics laboratories (e.g. Pathwest*, Safe Work Laboratories*)
• Biochemical/protein analytical laboratories (e.g. Proteomics International*)
• Provisioners of scientific instrumentation (e.g. Thermo Fisher Scientific, Westlab, LabGear Australia)
• Research Centres (e.g. Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO)*, Telethon Kids Institute*, Ingham Institute, Garvan Institute for Medical Research)
• Top-ranked universities around the world

Salary Information

Based on salary information for biochemists and molecular biologists, you can expect an annual salary of $108,000 (+ bonus) as the average across all industries and experience levels, with a salary growth of ~2.0% per year. 

Further Study

You might consider further studies in:

You might consider further studies in:

Fees and scholarships

Learn more about the fees that apply to you for this course. For fee type definitions and further assistance, see the Fee Calculator Help page. You can also search our database for scholarships that are relevant to you or this course

Domestic Student Fees

Indicative annual course fee
2024
Commonwealth Supported Place $9,845.65

Eligible Commonwealth Supported Place (CSP) students can use the HECS-HELP loan program to pay their tuition fees. For Full-Fee Paying (FFP) places, students are charged an annual course fee.

Find out more information about tuition fees, or visit the fee calculator for a more accurate cost.

Scholarships

Scholarships are available to students from a diverse range of backgrounds, including academic achievement, financial need, educational disadvantage, leadership and community service, artistic or sporting achievements, and being from a rural or remote area.

Cost of living

There are a few things to consider before applying to study at university. One could be your cost of living. This can depend on factors such as lifestyle, accommodation, tuition fees, medical insurance, textbooks and more. For an indication of expenses and average costs, see our Cost of living page.

International Student Fees

Indicative first year fee
2024
$46,600.00

Find out more about tuition fees or visit the fee calculator for the estimated total course fee.

Note, tuition fees are reviewed annually and are subject to increase up to 7.5 per cent per annum.

Scholarships

Scholarships are available to students from a diverse range of backgrounds, including academic achievement, financial need, educational disadvantage, leadership and community service, artistic or sporting achievements, and being from a rural or remote area.

Cost of living

There are a few things to consider before applying to study at university. One could be your cost of living. This can depend on factors such as lifestyle, accommodation, tuition fees, medical insurance, textbooks and more. For an indication of expenses and average costs, see our Cost of living page.

Admission requirements

The University of Western Australia welcomes applications from international and domestic school-leavers. If you’re interested in studying this major, find out the admission details below.

Minimum entry requirements

Below you’ll find a list of admission equivalencies for this course's Australian Tertiary Admissions Rank (ATAR).

Admission requirements

For applicants with recent secondary education, information on admission criteria is available on our entry requirements page.

Prerequisites

This major requires:

  • Mathematics Methods ATAR; OR
  • Mathematics Applications ATAR with a mathematics unit taken in the first year; OR
  • Students without ATAR mathematics to take two mathematics units in their first year.

  • Chemistry ATAR or an additional chemistry unit taken in the first year.

ADMISSION REQUIREMENT

English competency

English is the language of instruction and assessment at UWA and you will need to meet the English language requirements of the University to be eligible for a place.

Minimum overall IELTS score of 6.5, with no band less than 6.0.


ADMISSION REQUIREMENT

How to apply

Group of smiling students wearing UWA shirts 

Ready for the next step?

Find out how to apply through our simple online application process. 

We'll guide you through our entry requirements, admission pathways available to you and application deadlines for your chosen course. 

We can’t wait for you to join us!  

Apply now

Course details

The Molecular Life Sciences extended major will help you develop a scientific understanding of the biochemistry, molecular biology and genetics of all living organisms. By understanding how molecules are organised and interact in living cells, you’ll also gain the tools to improve our quality of life. This may be through the development of new vaccines or advances in drought-resistant crops.  

About the course

The extended major in Molecular Life Sciences will help you develop a scientific understanding of the biochemistry, molecular biology and genetics of all living organisms.
Molecular Life Sciences (Extended Major)

Quick details

Status
  • Available
Locations
  • Perth (Crawley campus)
  • Albany (Regional campus)
Attendance
  • Full-time
  • Part-time
Delivery
  • On-campus
Starting dates
  • Semester 1, Semester 2
Level of study
  • Undergraduate
Course Code
  • MJD-MLSDM
Full time/part time duration
  • 3 years (BSc), 4 years (BSc[Hons])
Molecular Life Sciences (Extended Major)
Status
  • Available
Locations
  • Perth (Crawley campus)
  • Albany (Regional campus)
Attendance
  • Full-time
  • Part-time
Delivery
  • On-campus
Starting dates
  • Semester 1, Semester 2
Level of study
  • Undergraduate
Course Code
  • MJD-MLSDM
Full time/part time duration
  • 3 years (BSc), 4 years (BSc[Hons])
Honours Available
  • Yes
Degrees course is available in
  • Bachelor of Molecular Sciences
  • Bachelor of Philosophy (Honours)

Why study this course

  • Learn about the most recent advances in the molecular life sciences, how these affect our everyday lives and how we can use this knowledge to solve global challenges
  • Learn through hands-on laboratories while also gaining skills in data analysis and interpretation and critical thinking
  • Develop a solid foundation in molecular life sciences with professional and transferable skills that open up many exciting possibilities for future career development and/or study

You'll learn to

  • demonstrate a profound understanding of the theoretical basis of biochemistry, molecular biology, genetics in animals, plants and microorganisms
  • gain technical competency and practical skills to master state-of-the-art molecular techniques
  • develop and demonstrate your skills in critical thinking, experimental design, data analysis and interpretation

Course Structure

Our undergraduate degrees offer you a broad range of options allowing you to combine subjects in a way that matches your career goals and personal interests.

Student Story

Reuben Lemmes

Student Story
Reuben Lemmes

Work Integrated Learning

Work Integrated Learning (WIL) helps bridge the gap between theory and practice by providing opportunities for students to gain hands-on, practical industry relevant experience and for employers to help shape the graduates of tomorrow.

Facility

Cell and Molecular Life

Digital illustration of Cell Division Stages of Mitosis

The Cell and Molecular Life Facility offers state-of-the-art technology to staff and students whose research investigates diverse insults affecting animal and human cells and tissues.

Facility