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Guide to studying Anatomy & Physiology

Study Anatomy & Physiology and you'll cover both the structure of the internal body systems and how those systems work.

Students of Medicine examining anatomical model in classroom


  1. What's Anatomy & Physiology?

  2. Why study Anatomy & Physiology?

  3. What jobs can you get as an Anatomy & Physiology graduate?

  4. What do graduates do and earn?
  5. What qualifications do you need?

  6. What degrees can you study?

  7. How will you be assessed?

  8. What are the postgraduate opportunities?

What's Anatomy & Physiology?

Anatomy & Physiology is a line of science concerned with the bodily structure of living things. While Anatomy is the study of the structure of the internal body, Physiology is concerned with how these internal systems work.

Without a deep understanding of the internal body, health professionals cannot truly evaluate, diagnose and treat illnesses. Anatomy & Physiology is the fundamental building blocks of medical practice.

Similar courses for Anatomy & Physiology include: 

  • Anatomy, Physiology & Pathology 

Why study Anatomy & Physiology?

If you're fascinated by the way the body works, this could be the subject area for you. Anatomy & Physiology will give you an insight into the complex nature of the human body and the countless different systems that make it up. It's crucial for medicine, and through studying and working in the field, you'll be helping to improve other people's health and wellbeing.

Read our five reasons to study Anatomy & Physiology for more information on studying this course.

Young teacher in biology class with anatomy figure

What jobs can you get as an Anatomy & Physiology graduate?

Anatomy & Physiology graduates typically work in the medical and care sector. Among the jobs that are directly related to a degree are nurse, pharmacist, physician and dietitian.

As an Anatomy & Physiology graduate, you can choose to transfer to a Medicine or Dentistry degree, where you could work towards becoming a dentist or doctor.

What do graduates do and earn?

In the infographic below, the first table shows what graduates of Anatomy & Physiology have gone on to do in the months after their graduation.

The second table shows the average salaries of undergraduate Anatomy & Physiology students entering employment. The three skill levels – high, medium and low – reflect the UK's Standard Occupational Classification's major groups 1–3, 4–6 and 7–9 respectively.

Source: HESA Graduate Outcomes Survey 2017/18

What qualifications do you need? 

You'll usually need at least an A Level (or equivalent) in Biology, and another in a science-related subject.

Always check with the university/course you're interested in, as grades and other requirements vary from institution to institution.

What degrees can you study?

  • BSc Anatomy
  • BSc Human Physiology
  • BSc Neuroscience
  • BSc Pathology

There are also many joint honours degree programmes available for Anatomy & Physiology.

How will you be assessed?

Written and spot-test examinations are common, as well as poster and oral presentations. Dissections are sometimes assessed, and at some universities, you may have to complete a final-year dissertation project.

As well as this, your performance throughout the year in seminars and tutorials is often observed.

What are the postgraduate opportunities?

Postgraduate options include:

  • MSc Anatomical Sciences
  • PhD Anatomical Sciences
  • PgCert Physiology

Some UK universities offer a medicine conversion course which allows the best graduates from similar courses (such as Physiology or Biology) to enrol on a Medicine course. This is a highly sought after course, and a Biology A Level is a prerequisite.

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