Biochemistry looks at how life works at the molecular level, helping us to work out why cells and organisms possess the properties they do. Understanding these molecules – their structure and how they interact – gives us knowledge we can use to solve real world problems, whether it's fighting disease or providing valuable biotechnology solutions for industry. The Biochemistry course looks at a range of plants, animals and micro-organisms to teach you, for example, how genetic information in DNA affects cells, how the immune system works, how cells communicate through hormones, and the chemistry behind enzymes. That way you get a breadth and depth of knowledge that can be applied to many different areas.
A degree in biochemistry, as with any degree, can lead to a very wide variety of jobs. Typically 50% of graduates go straight into a job, 40% continue studying and 10% combine work and study. Six months after finishing the degree there is, on average, one graduate per year still seeking employment.
Of those who continue studying, 60% carry on to do a doctorate in biochemistry or a related area, such as pharmacology, immunology or physiology. The remaining 40% are spread evenly between taught advanced courses (such as a MSc), teacher training, medicine, law and accountancy.
Of those who go into employment, about 25% take a job in scientific research, development or on the technical side. About 20% go into finance, 20% into management or administration, and the remaining into a wide variety of jobs ranging through the media, sales and marketing, local and national government, the voluntary sector, the police and the clergy.