From maths to marine biology, chemistry to climate science, there are many reasons our students choose to study science at Melbourne. Here are some of their stories.
I completed a Bachelor of Science in 2011, with a double specialisation in pure and applied mathematics. When I was choosing my breadth subjects in first-year, a subject adviser suggested I might like microeconomics. I didn't expect to learn economics at university and I certainly didn't expect it would become a major research focus of my PhD.
In 2013 I finished my Masters of Science (Mathematics and Statistics) specialising in the application of mathematics on economics. During this I began to appreciate how mathematics can be used as a powerful tool to gain insight into problems in a variety of fields and applications.
Studying at the University of Melbourne has given me the opportunity to pursue my research interests in mathematics and economics with excellent supervision and mentoring. It has given me a broad range of experiences, such as living on campus at Janet Clarke Hall, tutoring undergraduates and travelling overseas. I would encourage science students to consider taking mathematics subjects, as they equip you with valuable quantitative, problem-solving and analytical skills.
See here to find out more about Janet Clarke Hall and other residential colleges.
With the world population ever climbing, biotechnology has the ability to directly answer problems related to the demand for food, medicines and many other key global challenges. The Master of Biotechnology uniquely offers a taste of both research and industry, so I jumped at the opportunity to explore either option.
As a part of the industry project in the degree, our group has been tasked with identifying the key influencers of a novel peanut allergy vaccine currently being developed by a relevantly new start-up biotech company. Already within this first month of working on the project, I have met three CEOs, put together a professional charter and have begun sketching the competitive landscape for our product. Over the next few months I’ll get to meet other key people involved in the process of commercialising a biotech product, including the IP lawyers and the lead researchers. With access to some of the finest resources, my team and I will put together a report that the company will use.
I have relished the sense of community within the Master of Biotechnology; I’m happy to say that most faces of our year are now familiar to me. There is a strong focus on teamwork in the coursework, meaning that you do a fair amount of group work within your core subjects. It’s been truly rewarding; I met my closest friends in the course through group assignments.
Find out more about the Master of Biotechnology Industry Project here.
Jeremy is specialising in Tectonogeochemistry during his MSc (Earth Sciences).
I love exploring the natural world and I have always been curious about how things come about. Studying geology has allowed me to learn so many things about the Earth and its history. I have also met so many like-minded people, travelled to unique places, gained heaps of knowledge, and made lifelong friendships.
My dream career would definitely involve travelling to and exploring new places. I have been lucky enough to see some of the finest spectacles Earth has to offer, leading me to appreciate the outdoors on a whole new level. I’d love to research large scale tectonic processes in different places around the world.
The highlight of my studies has been travelling to Timor-Leste for my Masters research. I spent six weeks in very remote areas of the island in order to map its geology and collect samples for further analysis. It was an amazing experience to explore places that no one may have been to before and to discover new things previously unseen.
My advice would be to try not to look too far ahead into the future. Have fun with your course, try some different subjects and meet new people. You might find you have a hidden passion for something. Something I didn’t expect to learn is how to cut a rock down to 30 microns thick in order to look at it under a microscope. When I first learned about the process, it seemed completely surreal to me, but now it is just standard practice.
James is completing a major in Chemistry alongside a Diploma of Mathematical Science
Whilst attending two youth science forums, NYSF (Perth, 2013) and LIYSF (London, 2013), I was fortunate to hear from several distinguished scientists and see science in action at facilities such as CERN. These experiences inspired me to pursue chemistry, through which we can understand so much of the natural world around us. I find it fascinating that chemistry can explain physical phenomena by considering interactions between the smallest of objects. My interest for statistics was piqued in second year, when I was first able to appreciate the role maths has in forging new knowledge from data. This helps us to draw informed conclusions, which seems particularly relevant in this information epoch.
As science branches ever further outwards, it has become increasingly difficult for scientists to specialise in multiple areas. I hope to be able to communicate science across disciplinary boundaries and to synthesise and distil the information down to the level where policy-makers can use it effectively. Either that, or I'd love to use statistics to help improve conditions in the developing world, by creating and analysing models for complex issues such as food distribution, climate change or disease outbreak. Immediately after I graduate, I want to travel to Peru and tackle the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu.
Certain subjects can completely change the way you view the world. For me, studying Famine (GEOG10001) and Intro to International Politics (INST10001) provided these revelations, opening my mind to radically different perspectives through frameworks such as Sen's Entitlement Theory and Feminism/Gender in Politics. I never anticipated it, but university introduced me to feminism, through which my perception of the world has undoubtedly changed for the better. I hope that I am more aware of privilege and inequality now (with respect to gender, race and other arbitrary classifications), and I have made time to volunteer for a program that aims to tackle educational inequality in Victoria.
James received the 2015 Huntsman Australia Prize and the 2014 Dwight Prize in Chemistry.
For more information on breadth subject options, see here.
With a reputation as a global research leader, with world renowned scientists, state-of-the art facilities and a strong culture of industry collaboration, the Faculty of Science is finding solutions to the issues that matter most.
Our research is driven by respected research leaders, with 11 themes across eight core research disciplines.Explore
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Our state-of-the-art facilities and cutting-edge research centres create the critical mass required for the discovery and development of solutions designed to address society's major issues.Learn more
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Enrich Your Studies
Enhance your university experience by learning more about academic skills, internship subjects, research project subjects, student societies and clubs, studying abroad and exchange, and volunteering and leadership.
Awards, Prizes & Scholarships
The Faculty of Science awards program recognises teachers and researchers, as well as students at undergraduate and graduate level.
Many of the Faculty's awards are supported by trust funds established through the foresight of generous benefactors. Others are provided annually by industry partners and supporters through donations and sponsorships.
Careers in Science
As a Bachelor of Science student you may wonder what career pathways are open to you once you have graduated, and if you need to continue with honours or postgraduate study.
Meet our Students
Meet our Science Ambassadors, and read about our diverse Undergrads, Postgrads and Alumni.
With teaching and research expertise based on over 150 years of pioneering scientific discovery, our degrees are designed to empower students to apply scientific thinking and analysis to issues that impact on the world today and are the challenges of tomorrow. Our entry standards are among the highest in Australia, creating a study environment that nurtures the best from our students.
Spanning the sciences, health sciences, technology and engineering, the Bachelor of Science can be tailored to suit individual strengths and career goals, enabling you to explore a range of interests before refining your choices later in the degree.VIEW
Certificates & Diplomas
Our Certificates and Diplomas develop and enhance your abilities in oral and written communication, critical thinking, numeracy and problem solving. Some courses offer research experience and experience with laboratory techniques.VIEW
Our Master of Science degrees offer advanced research training, specialised coursework studies and professional skills development; while our professional masters degrees offer training that is focused on skills relevant to industry, business & government.VIEW
Graduate Research & PhD
With over 400 researchers and 500 graduate research students, we are at the forefront of investigator research in Australia and around the world. Our programs allow a student to study a specific subject area in great detail.VIEW
Researchers have discovered fish have an innate ability to avoid parasite infection, paving the way for new methods to prevent outbreaks in farmed populations.Pursuit
Sun Tzu's 'The Art of War' tells us we must know our enemy if we hope to defeat it.News
Research finds a dramatic increase in feral predators as bushfires make some native Australian animals even more vulnerable.Pursuit
Planning a baby? Here are seven pro-active steps you can take to avoid some common chemicals in your home and food that may affect your fertility.Pursuit
Mapping the massive network of tunnels that give miners underground access to mineral ores is an expensive and time-consuming process, but new optimisation software, inspired by the complexity of the microchip, could save the industry millions.Pursuit
Clare Duck has been selected by the International Forestry Students’ Association (IFSA) to attend the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Bonn, Germany this year.News
On Tuesday 3 October, Prof Madeleine van Oppen featured on ABC's Catalyst.News
The Australian Society of Exploration Geophysicists has awarded the ASEG Gold Medal to University of Melbourne alumnus Richard Lane at a ceremony in Canberra.News
The iconic King Billy Pines of Cradle Mountain offer a glimpse into climate history, with the publication of one of the longest tree-ring chronologies in the Southern Hemisphere.Pursuit
Edita Ritmejeryte, a PhD student from the School of Ecosystem and Forest Sciences (SEFS), has won the Best Student Poster Award at the International Society of Chemical Ecology Meeting in Kyoto.News
Bachelor of Science (Honours) student Eleanor Denson has been selected as a Laureate of the Embassy of France “Nicolas Baudin” mobility Program for a research internship in paleoclimatology at the Laboratoire des sciences du climat et de l’environnement in Gif-sur-Yvette.News
In a breakthrough in our understanding of hydrodynamics, researchers have demonstrated the seemingly impossible: a ball that sinks in water with almost zero drag.Pursuit
The School of Geography’s 2017 Artist in Residence Linda Tegg is part of the winning team selected to represent Australia in the 2018 Venice Architecture biennale, the world's highest-profile architectural event that runs from May to November.News
This year’s dry winter is good news for Melbourne’s hay fever sufferers, but after last year’s thunderstorm asthma event claimed nine lives, there are never any guarantees when it comes to pollen.Pursuit
Frequent bushfires in the Victorian high country have devastated the snow gum population, endangering the flora and fauna that depend on them for survival.Pursuit
The School of Earth Sciences has recently completed a new display case in the front lobby of the McCoy building. The museum-styled display showcases the novel research into cave science conducted at the University of Melbourne, led by Australian Laureate Fellow Professor Jon Woodhead.News
A University of Melbourne team developing a life-saving oxygen supply system for the world’s poorest areas has won the 2017 ANSTO Eureka Prize for Innovative Use of Technology.News
Not all mercury is the same, and a new automated technique has slashed the time needed to determine the bio-accessibility of different forms of toxic mercury in the environment.Pursuit
Dr Linden Ashcroft, PhD graduate from the School of Earth Sciences and climatologist at the Bureau of Meteorology has been jointly awarded the 2018 Moran Award for History of Science Research from the Australian Academy of Science.News
Dr David Garrett and the team at the University of Melbourne are currently testing a new electrode which will last for the lifetime of the patient without being rejected by the body - a major step forward in how we recreate sight for the blind.News
An international study has calculated how much good old-fashioned animal poo increases crop growth and reduces pollution, benefiting the bank balance and the environment.Pursuit
Bioinformatics workshops for researchersTraining/Workshop bioinformatics;Computing and Information Systems;Biomedical Engineering;
Monday 6:00pm - 7:30pmInternational Climate Diplomacy – The Next StepsFree Public Lecture Politics;Climate Change;Law;Science;
Thursday 2:00pm - 3:30pmThe School on the Hill: The Creswick Historical Collection Exhibition OpeningLaunch creswick;forestry;collection;History;Science;
Friday 12:00pm - 1:00pmCentre for Systems Genomics Seminar: Lessons from the Neandertal microbiome: how our past impacts ou...Seminar/Forum
Thursday 9:00am - 6:30pmThe 30th Victorian Universities Earth & Environmental Science Conference (VUEESC)Conference
For over 100 years, our Faculty of Science has been recognised internationally for our role in expanding the frontiers of knowledge for the betterment of society. Guided by the University of Melbourne's strategy of Growing Esteem, our community of staff and students continue to contribute strongly in each of the three important elements of a world-class university:
Research – our researchers operate at the highest levels internationally across a breadth of disciplines, contributing to the store of human knowledge, finding applications that benefit society and informing teaching programs which position our students for the international market place.
Learning and Teaching – attracting the best and brightest from around Australia and internationally, Science at Melbourne offers a broad range of disciplines to prepare scientists and professionals for the challenges of tomorrow.
Engagement – by engaging with industry, schools and our community locally and around the world, our staff, students and alumni are able to define, analyse and help solve complex issues in science and business.
We are proud of who we are and our achievements.
Dean, Faculty of Science
Read more about the Faculty of Science, Associate Deans and Faculty leadership team.
The Faculty of Science values strong relationships with our alumni, industry, government, donors and the wider community.
We actively engage the wider community through events, social media, public lectures and schools programs. We are committed to bringing science to the community and creating excitement about scientific research and discovery.
We invite all friends and supporters of the Faculty of Science to engage with us and help us to continue being Australia's leading scientific teaching and research hub.
Stay connected with a community of over 50,000 Science Alumni. Being a valued member of our community does not stop at graduation. Alumni contribute to the vibrancy of university life and the student experience.
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Since the University's foundation in 1854, our scientists have been using their knowledge and discoveries to make important contributions to the world. Your gifts enable us to continue this tradition of teaching and research excellence.
Science in Schools
Providing high quality communications to secondary school audiences about courses, careers and graduate outcomes, professional development for science teachers, and activities and programs for future students, parents and careers practitioners.
There are many ways in which an organisation can collaborate with Science at Melbourne. Contract research and collaborative research are just a few of the ways… Join the many organisations that collaborate with the Faculty of Science.
The Faculty of Science aims to make a genuine contribution to the discovery of new knowledge and technologies through collaborative partnerships with local and international academic, industry and government partners.