Plant Biology is the scientific study of plants, fungi and algae. Plants are vital for supporting and maintaining the atmospheric and environmental conditions required for all life on earth. They are the mainstay of human and animal diets, while also providing pharmaceuticals, timber, paper and clothing.
Plants are being exploited as sources of renewable energy and biofuels and make an important contribution to measures aimed at reducing the effects of climate change. A key to the further development of plants for practical or economic use is an improved understanding of metabolic and developmental processes and their interactions with environmental factors.
Download the UCD Science Undergraduate Courses Entry 2023 Brochure (pdf)
For more information regarding this course, please click School of Biology and Environmental Science
This is a sample pathway for a degree in Plant Biology. Topics include plant biotechnology, plant physiology, plant ecology, plant genetics, and plant cell and molecular biology.
Biology • Chemistry • Mathematics • Optional Science modules • Elective module
Plant Biology • + 2 other Science subjects • Elective modules
Plant Biology • Elective modules
Plant Biology (includes a research project)
Timetables & Assessment
Each student will have their own timetable based on their individual module selection. This is a full-time course and classes may include lectures, practicals and tutorials, depending on the subjects. Students will also be expected to study independently (autonomous student learning). Assessment varies with each module but may comprise continuous assessment of practicals, written exams and online learning activities.
Plant Biology graduates have obtained positions as:
- Plant and environmental scientists
- Pollution biologists
- Molecular geneticists and cell biologists
- Agronomists, horticulturists, foresters or park rangers
- Environmental consultants
- Wildlife, conservation, biodiversity or heritage officers
Graduates are also eligible to pursue MSc programmes in UCD in Applied Science (Environmental Science) and Biotechnology, in addition to PhD programmes both in Ireland and abroad.
"Placing UCD Science at the top of my CAO was an easy choice as I could explore all subject areas before making an informed decision on my degree. To me, no area holds greater merit for study than plant science- its implications infiltrate all aspects of modern society from global food security to phytopharmaceuticals. I was Vice-Auditor of the UCD Biological Society. Being involved in a society allowed me to meet other people from various stages and degrees in UCD, as well as encounter some incredible scientists. The UCD O’Brien Centre for Science is home to unparalleled plant science labs and teaching facilities including the Bloom gold medal-winning UCD Evolution Garden, which are invaluable resources as I now pursue my PhD in plant genetics in UCD."
Caroline Dowling, Graduate