So, you’ve read our article about what it’s like studying a Bachelor of Biomedical Science at UTS and now you’re looking for a personal perspective of the course?
Well, lucky you’re here then!
We’ve asked Ellie, a Biomed grad, to give us the low-down on the pros and cons, the ups and downs and the goods and the bads of the Bachelor of Biomedical Science degree at UTS.
Take it away, Ellie!
Why should you study a Bachelor of Biomedical Science at UTS?
A Bachelor of Biomedical Science is an undergrad degree offered by UTS that combines Medical Science and Biology into one united discipline. With a strong focus on both practical and theoretical skills, you’ll be learning about how the body works at a cellular level, what causes diseases and how diseases are diagnosed!
You’ll be developing the skill set to assist in preventing and treating all sorts of diseases! It’s a degree that is always in demand and is especially relevant right now.
Top 3 Pros of a Biomedical Science degree
#1: The flexibility of the degree
Ellie told us that one of her favourite elements of the Bachelor of Biomedical Science degree at UTS was its flexibility. She said that the course enabled her to explore every branch of biomedical science!
“I liked that the degree always felt so flexible. There are quite a lot of options for classes and there is sufficient time to work on each element, particularly the practical classes. For some of my classes, I had 2 prac classes each week which were around 6 hours. It’s a little long but I think it was definitely necessary,” Ellie said.
#2: Practice-based and hands-on classes
A popular characteristic of a lot of the degrees that UTS offers is their practical and hands-on approach. In almost every discipline at UTS, you’ll be encouraged to learn through experience and Biomedical Science is no exception.
Ellie told us that the teaching format at UTS is enhanced by the teachers and staff who have had professional experience in the industry.
“I think my favourite part is definitely the hands-on classes. A lot of the teachers are still part-time workers in pathology labs so they know exactly what their students should be taught. It’s never just theory, it’s about having great hands-on skills too,” she said.
#3: UTS’ resources
“I think the resources provided at UTS are really beneficial. For some of the subjects I took, we got chances to visit some of the local professional labs. That was always really interesting”, Ellie noted.
While you may need to take a bit of initiative to choose classes that offer these professional opportunities (which we’ll get into a bit later), it’s definitely worth it! Ellie said that almost all of the classes that she took were absolutely necessary for future employability and general biomedical knowledge.
Top 3 Cons of a Biomedical Science degree
#1: Lack of interactivity
While the Bachelor of Biomedical Science degree at UTS is appreciated for its practical classes and accessible equipment, Ellie told us that classroom interactivity was not quite all she had hoped it would be.
“I wish they could have made it more interactive in terms of homework or assignments. I wish there were more group assignments instead of just worksheets and quizzes,” Ellie said.
“I would have liked if we could’ve had more interaction with fellow classmates,” she added.
#2: The first year format
As a first year in the Biomedical Science program at UTS, you’ll spend the majority of your year learning about a lot of blanket science subjects. Think of it as Biomedicine 101.
While these introductory classes may be perfect for some students to get their head around things, Ellie wasn’t the biggest fan.
“I would probably say that one of my least favourite parts was the format of first year. The first year is dedicated to a lot of generic science subjects like chemistry and physics. I didn’t think it was very relevant at the time. I would have loved if they made the introduction a little shorter, then I think it would be better,” Ellie told us.
#3: Lack of study space (which has since been amended)
During our chat, Ellie took us back to 2016. A time when Pokemon Go developed its cult following, Beyonce was singing Lemonade and Ellie was just an undergrad student — UTS was a bit of a different place.
Ellie told us that before UTS began construction on Building 2, the funky see-through tower that’s usually the focus of UTS’ advertising, there wasn’t much space for students to study.
So, while this may not be such an issue now, we thought we’d include it anyway.
“I remember wishing there was a little more space on the campus to study. At the time, we didn’t have the new Building 2 so it wasn’t as great as it is now,” Ellie said.
“Not at all. I think it’s great!”
There’s your answer. While Ellie hasn’t expressed any regrets about taking on the degree, as she mentioned in the cons of the degree, there is still room for improvement!
What do you wish you had known before starting the degree?
#1: Know the difference between Medical Science and Biomedical Science
Ellie actually started off her university experience as a Medical Science student. She told us that it’s a common misconception for people to assume Biomedical Science is the same as Medical Science and it wasn’t until she took it upon herself to look into the subjects that she realised it wasn’t the case.
“For this degree, some people may confuse it with Medical Science because the two are rather similar. Once I looked into all of the subjects I realised what I wanted to do was actually in Biomedical Science,” Ellie told us.
“I kind of wish UTS had made it a little clearer or held some orientation event to discuss the difference,” she added.
#2: Do professional experience subjects
Something else that Ellie told us she wished she had known at the start of her degree was the importance of taking Professional Experience subjects.
These are a series of elective subjects that you can opt in to as a Biomedical Science student. UTS’ Professional Experience subjects give students the chance to gain real work experience since the degree doesn’t require students to complete an internship.
“It’s pretty much an internship experience that you can do at some of the collaborative labs around Sydney. You could also take this subject twice because it’s really good to have that experience,” Ellie said.
She recommended that future students take the initiative to enrol in this subject because it helps you “put your foot one step ahead of everyone else trying to get into the industry!”
What makes this degree different from the ones offered at other universities?
As we have mentioned, a defining factor of UTS’ Bachelor of Biomedical Science is its huge focus on hands-on work! Ellie told us that it was one of her favourite parts of the degree.
“You need to have hands-on skills if you want to work in a lab which is why UTS is really great. I don’t think other universities would provide it to that extent,” Ellie explained.
At UTS, the science courses are AIMs accredited which means that it’s the only course in Sydney that’s accredited by the Australian Institute of Medical Scientists.
“It’s one of the few courses that directly relate to pathology which is what I wanted to do. It’s quite a unique course,” Ellie added.
What inspired you to choose this degree?
Ellie told us that she always knew that working in pathology was what she wanted to do. It just came down to where she wanted to study it.
She told us that she chose UTS because of its pathology-based and reputable course. She wasn’t disappointed!
“I really really enjoyed my degree. I feel like UTS has done a great job designing the whole program by making it such an enjoyable experience for students. A lot of the things I learnt at uni has helped me get a job in pathology labs because the skills are very much transferable,” Ellie said.
What are the possible career paths?
As a Biomedical Science graduate, you’ll have developed the skills to work in a variety of biology and medicine-based fields. You could work in:
- Pathology laboratories (like Ellie)
- Hospital laboratories
- Biotechnology industries
- Pharmaceutical companies
You may also choose to commit to further study to advance your degree in medicine and allied health professions. For the most part, once you graduate your life will probably continue to revolve around biomedical research!
Gemma Billington is a Content Writer at Art of Smart and an undergraduate student at the University of Technology Sydney. While studying Journalism and Social and Political Sciences, Gemma enjoys spending her time at the gym or reading about Britain’s medieval monarchy – ideally not at the same time. She currently creates and administers social media posts for Central News and writes for the student publication, The Comma. After completing her undergraduate degree, she hopes to study a Masters of Medieval History and is very excited about the prospect!