Biological

Degree Award Options:

  • Wildlife Biology
  • Field Biology with Wildlife Tourism

Wildlife Biology Stream

Wildlife Biology is the study of the natural environment and all of the living things in it, from microscopic bacteria and algae to plants, invertebrates, fish, mammals and birds. This unique course is designed to prepare you for work in the areas of ecological consultancy, environmental education and biodiversity conservation. It includes a basic grounding in the chemical and life sciences, with an emphasis on all aspects of the natural environment.

The outdoor education modules which feature so prominently in the first two years of this course give you the skills to work and navigate safely in outdoor environments. The second two years focus on understanding, managing and conserving wildlife and wildlife environments.

As with all of our honours degrees, there is a period of work placement in a relevant, professional setting. You also complete a final year research project, designed to allow you to apply and practice the skills learned in taught modules.

It’s important to note that much of this course is delivered in remote and challenging outdoor environments. You need to be reasonably fit, and prepared for bad weather and rough terrain.

Field Biology with WildlifeTourism Stream

Wildlife tourism, which is closely related to eco and sustainable tourism, is now a multi-million euro industry, centred on offering recreational and educational environmental experiences, as well as customised tour packages and safaris. This unique course combines conservation and wildlife biology with topics relevant to the wildlife tourism industry.

Graduates can look forward to exciting global opportunities in a growing and innovative sector. Work placement is a central feature of the course. As a third-year student, you participate in a structured period of work experience in a relevant setting.

This is the only course of its kind in Ireland, and as a result has been very popular since it was first introduced. It’s also unusual in that there is an emphasis on the development of field and laboratory skills, with students spending at least one day a week at a field site in Kerry or elsewhere in Ireland.

The degree gives you an understanding of the very fabric of our planet through the study of chemistry, physics and earth sciences. A module in Irish wildlife gives an insight into the major groups that make up our native wildlife, giving you a strong base on which to build deeper and more focused study later. The course is delivered via an exciting blend of lectures and laboratory practicals, while regular field trips are a key feature of the course.

Graduates have taken up employment opportunities with a varied range of employers, including ecological consultancies, environmental education providers, the National Parks and Wildlife Service and conservation non- Governmental Organisations (NGOs). Others have worked on contract for Inland Fisheries Ireland, the Marine Institute, and in self-employed roles. Additionally, your outdoor and aquatic skills, coupled with the tourism related content, prepare you for work in the tourism sector, particularly in the area of nature, wildlife and adventure tourism. The kind of work done by our graduates is also varied, and includes project ecologists on LIFE funded community based conservation projects, GIS technicians, ecologists (in consultancy), fisheries inspectors, research assistants, environmental educators in outdoor education centres and at eco-tourism ventures. Other potential roles include conservation rangers, heritage officers, biodiversity officers, researchers and ecologists with state and semi-state organisations (Coillte, Bord na Mona, Department of Agriculture, NPWS, etc). There is also considerable scope for self-employment in these areas.
 

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