Chemistry based Biochemistry? Watch

guy321
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So i'm thinking to apply for biochemistry but I kind of prefer chemistry more than biology. However, I do not want to do pure chemistry or natural sciences. I've heard bristol is more chemistry heavy with their biochemistry undergraduate course. What other unis are like this?
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Aranos
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I've finished first year of biochemistry at Warwick. Of the 126 credits we study in first year, we have 18 credits of Organic Chemistry, 12 credits of Physical Chemistry and a small 6 credit chemistry labs module that we complete in the first 6 weeks.

So ~30% of first year is all chemistry, but there's chemistry laced throughout the biology based modules too .
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artful_lounger
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Southampton's MSci Chemistry & Biochemistry course is based in the chemistry department and is predominantly (50%+, varying from year on year) taught within the department. Oxford's Biochemistry course is much more chemically oriented than many others.

You may want to look more into joint honours courses or indeed consider Natural Sciences. Also it's worth noting Natural Sciences at Cambridge is essentially equivalent to a single honours science course elsewhere, except you do even more content than in such a course, some of which will complement your main subject area.
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guy321
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(Original post by artful_lounger)
Southampton's MSci Chemistry & Biochemistry course is based in the chemistry department and is predominantly (50%+, varying from year on year) taught within the department. Oxford's Biochemistry course is much more chemically oriented than many others.

You may want to look more into joint honours courses or indeed consider Natural Sciences. Also it's worth noting Natural Sciences at Cambridge is essentially equivalent to a single honours science course elsewhere, except you do even more content than in such a course, some of which will complement your main subject area.
I've looked at oxford in quite a lot of depth and am thinking of applying there.

For the Southampton course it looks good but I live in Southampton and that's unfortunately put me off going to Southampton uni because it's soooo close.

I'll take a look at Bristol - I can't find any others though?
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artful_lounger
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(Original post by guy321)
I've looked at oxford in quite a lot of depth and am thinking of applying there.

For the Southampton course it looks good but I live in Southampton and that's unfortunately put me off going to Southampton uni because it's soooo close.

I'll take a look at Bristol - I can't find any others though?
I think beyond that you need to look into Natural Sciences style courses, which allow you to develop the chemical aspects of interest much more while also pursuing the core biochemistry and molecular biology. In the UK Biochemistry tends to be more of a bioscience course, than a Chemistry subspecialism, at the undergraduate level. For postgraduate work, it tends towards the latter however, so if a PhD is on the horizon then a Chemistry degree with optional modules in biochemistry/biosciences would be the best preparation.
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guy321
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(Original post by artful_lounger)
I think beyond that you need to look into Natural Sciences style courses, which allow you to develop the chemical aspects of interest much more while also pursuing the core biochemistry and molecular biology. In the UK Biochemistry tends to be more of a bioscience course, than a Chemistry subspecialism, at the undergraduate level. For postgraduate work, it tends towards the latter however, so if a PhD is on the horizon then a Chemistry degree with optional modules in biochemistry/biosciences would be the best preparation.
I've looked at natural sciences courses and they only partially interest me. It seems that i would only pick the biochem/chemistry modules but I can't always pick them and I would have to pick atleast some other science modules which don't interest me - that's why I think biochemistry is better for me than natural sciences
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artful_lounger
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(Original post by guy321)
I've looked at natural sciences courses and they only partially interest me. It seems that i would only pick the biochem/chemistry modules but I can't always pick them and I would have to pick atleast some other science modules which don't interest me - that's why I think biochemistry is better for me than natural sciences
Which courses are you looking at specifically? UEA and Southampton pretty much give you carte blanche over their module catalogues, and barring timetable clashes or subject overlap, you have a good deal of flexibility in what you pick. UCL and I believe Birmingham would have you begin with three subjects - usually a molecular/cellular oriented bioscience course, chemistry, and most likely maths as an ancillary subject, and then you can specialise down. Durham is fairly non-prescriptive unless you're planning to go for a "named" course (like "Biology and Chemistry").

Cambridge's Natural Sciences programme is essentially a single honours science degree, except you do even more work than a comparable student and end up getting some more experience in allied subject areas. If you were interested in Biochemistry you'd probably want to apply to BioNatSci and take e.g. Chemistry, Biology of Cells, and possibly Physiology of Organisms as your IA (first year) subjects - all of which are related and relevant to biochemistry in different ways. In IB you'd probably end up taking one or both of the two "biochemistry" options (BMB/CDB) and one or both of Chemistry A/B (or something else related, like physiology or pharmacology). For Part II/III you would be focused solely in the relevant department (Biochemistry - or possibly Chemistry, as they have a lot of links and approach similar areas from different perspectives).

There seems a great misconception on TSR that a natural sciences course is worse preparation than a single honours course - this is nonsense. It entirely depends on what you intend to do with it, and what your interests are. Given you're interested in Biochemistry, but want a stronger Chemistry background than usually possible in such courses, then a Natural Sciences course would make perfect sense. You also don't need to write a "natural sciences" personal statement - a PS focusing on Biochemistry and the interface with Chemical Biology, "traditional" Chemistry, and the many fields of Bioscience that relate to and build from Biochemistry and Molecular Biology would suffice.
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thenextchemist
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Pharmaceutical Chemistry or Biochemistry sounds perfect if you do not want to do pure chemistry.
Pharmaceutical Chemistry does have more chemistry than Biology and vice versa for Biochemistry.
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