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Evolution: From the Galapagos to the 21st Century (MRes)

Master of Research
Typical Offer
2:1 degree View full entry requirements
1 year
Course Type
Highfield, Avenue and Waterfront (National Oceanography Centre Southampton)
Next course starts
September 2024

About this course

Discover the process of evolution, and its impact on modern life, on this master’s course at the University of Southampton. You’ll work with experts in subject areas from biological sciences to philosophy as you explore the subject. You'll take a field trip to the Galapagos Islands in the Pacific, where Charles Darwin developed his theory of natural selection.

On this course, MRes Evolution: From the Galapagos to the 21st Century, you’ll work with academics from across the University while developing knowledge and skills in your chosen specialism. 

As an MRes student you’ll spend more time on your research project and less on the taught part of the course. 

You’ll gain a unique perspective on the subject through insights from subject areas including: 

  • biological sciences 
  • archaeology 
  • computer sciences 
  • engineering 
  • maths 
  • medicine 
  • ocean and Earth sciences 

You’ll gain a strong foundation in evolutionary biology, while learning about new methods, current global challenges and the latest research topics, such as: 

  • evolutionary medicine 
  • evolutionary developmental biology (evo-devo) 
  • bioengineering 
  • computational evolution 
  • the philosophy of science 

A highlight of the course is a 2-week field trip to the Galapagos, the ‘living laboratory’ that played a key role in Darwin’s theory of evolution. This is an amazing opportunity for you to discover how these remote islands’ unique species helped to shape modern science.

Flexible study

If you prefer, you can apply to study this course as:

  • a part-time master's - study the same course content over 2 or more years

Your modules and fees may vary if you choose a different study option.

As a research-led University we undertake a continuous review of our courses to ensure quality enhancement and to manage our resources. As a result, this course may be revised however, any revision will be balanced against the requirement that the student should receive the educational service expected. Find out why, when and how we might make changes.

Course lead

Your course leader is Dr Neil Gostling, Senior Teaching Fellow within Biological Sciences. He is an evolutionary-developmental biologist by training and a palaeobiologist by research. He uses innovative methods to answer questions about everything from the evolution of animals to the development of root systems. Read Dr Gostling’s staff profile to find out more about his work.

“Two days after handing in my MRes project, I started work as a researcher at the BBC Natural History Unit – the start of a career I had always dreamed of.”
Thomas Land, Researcher, BBC Natural History Unit, 2020 graduate

What it’s like to study MRes Evolution: From the Galapagos to the 21st Century

In this video, Ethan talks about his role working on bones of a new dinosaur found on the Isle of Wight.

Course locations

This course is based at Highfield, Avenue and Waterfront (National Oceanography Centre Southampton).

Awarding body

This qualification is awarded by the University of Southampton.

Download the Course Description Document

The Course Description Document details your course overview, your course structure and how your course is taught and assessed.

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