Stockholm university
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Nordic Master´s Programme in Biodiversity and Systematics

Be part of the new generation of taxonomists with the expertise and skills to take action against biodiversity loss. You will gain a broad knowledge of living organisms, their relationships and learn specific identification and research skills to be able to follow a career in the conservation of biodiversity for the future.

Information for admitted students autumn 2024

Congratulations! You have been admitted at Stockholm University and we hope that you will enjoy your studies with us.

In order to ensure that your studies begin as smoothly as possible we have compiled a short checklist for the beginning of the semester.

Follow the instructions on whether you have to reply to your offer or not.


Checklist for admitted students

  1. Activate your university account

    The first step in being able to register and gain access to all the university's IT services.

  2. Register at your department

    Registration can be done in different ways. Read the instructions from your department below.

  3. Read all the information on this page

    Here you will find what you need to know before your course or programme starts.


Your seat may be withdrawn if you do not register according to the instructions provided by your department.

Information from the department - programmes

Welcome to the Department of Biological Education! We are happy to be part of your student experience and contribute to your future success.

In order to get you off to a good start, we have gathered the important things you need to know here. Read through carefully and if you have any questions, please contact us.


We send letters, about once a month, to all admitted student with important information for preparing for your Master's studies with us. Please ensure that you get these by whitelisting in your e-mail client, and if necessary regularly checing your spam-box.

If you have not studies with us before (and maybe even if you have) we recommend that you read our information for New students. By carefully reading on our webpages and contacting us if you have questions that are not answered there, you will help us to better help more students :)

Information for new students at BIG

All those admitted to the programme are invited to an introductory week, where you learn more about the programme, meet your classmates and all you need to have a smooth start on the programme.

Introduction to Master's programmes

Register before the deadline

You must registered for the courses in order to start the programme and attend classes. By registering, you accept your place.

Online registration is open August 5th and closes on the 21st. It is your responsibility to make sure you register. If you do not register before the online registration closes, you may lose your place on the programme. If you have problems registering, it is important that you contact the student office latest August 21st.

Reserve place

If you have been given a reserve place you may be admitted if someone declines their place. In which case you must confirm that you want the place by attending the reserve roll call for the programme. In some cases reserves may be offered a place before the reserve roll call (Note! make sure you receive our e-mails by whitelisting and/or checking your spam folder regularly).

Read about reserve roll call

More information about your studies with us

On our website you will find more information about your studies with us.

Welcome activities

Stockholm University organises a series of welcome activities that stretch over a few weeks at the beginning of each semester. The programme is voluntary (attendance is optional) and includes Arrival Service at the airport and an Orientation Day, see more details about these events below.
Your department may also organise activities for welcoming international students. More information will be provided by your specific department. 

Find your way on campus

Stockholm University's main campus is in the Frescati area, north of the city centre. While most of our departments and offices are located here, there are also campus areas in other parts of the city.

Find your way on campus

Read more

New student

During your studies

Student unions

For new international students

Pre-departure information

New in Sweden

Beetle collection. Clourful beetles pinned to collection labels.
Unidentified Tortoise Beetles. Part of Don Ehlen's "Insect Safari" collection. Photo: Jon Mable/Wikimedia commons

Reasons to choose a Master in Biodiversity and Systematics

  • Emphasis on gaining practical skills alongside theoretical knowledge
  • Constantly updated courses to reflect latest research
  • Programme designed to be tailored to individual students career goals
  • Programme overview

    The programme is a collaboration between five nordic universities and courses are taught as a combination of distance studies and intensive field and lab sessions at different field stations and participating universities. The distance element allows you alot of flexibility in when and where you conduct your studies. The up to week long field and lab sessions give you hands on experience of methods and deeper insight to biodiversity and systematics research across Sweden and the Nordic countries.

    The programme consists of courses within four main categories: Biodiversity-identification, Biodiversity-classification, Systematic theory and Tools & skills. You will receive a broad training in both practical and theoretical subjects and there is plenty of space available in the programme to choose from a selection of elective courses depending on your interests and career goals. The requirement is that you include at least one course from each of the categories.

    Year 1

    Compulsory courses

    Alpha taxonomical principles (Gothenburg)

    Fundamental and molecular systematics (Uppsala)

    Elective courses

    List of courses

    Year 2

    Compulsory course

    Degree project in Biodiversity and Systematics
    (instructions apply for all degree projects at the department)

    Independent project

    Master’s degree projects are carried out within ongoing research projects at your host university.

    Recent degree projects

    • Systematic review of the Puntius chola and Puntius sophore complexes (Teleostei: Cyprinidae) in Bangladesh and Myanmar
    • Phylogeny and diversity of the Madagascan Uvarus. A glimpse into the diving beetle tribe Bidessini (Coleoptera: Dytiscidae)
    • Tracing the ancestral distribution of Chimarra (Trichoptera: Philopotamidae) with descriptions of 7 new species from Malawi
  • How to apply

    The Master's programme in Biodiversity and Systematics is only open for application in the first round, with deadline for applications in mid-January.

    The Biodiversity and Systematics programme requires a solid background in Biology, specifically we expect the equivalent to a Bachelor in Biology including at least one year's full time studies in Biology.

    Selection process

    Additional eligibility criteria

    Applicants that meet the eligibility requirements are ranked based on their merit rating. Only students with the highest merit ratings are selected for our programmes. The merit rating is based on the following four selection criteria, with equal weight:

    • relevance of previous studies in relation to the programme
    • grades of academic courses
    • motivation letter
    • research ideas

    Required supporting documentation

    To submit your motivation letter and research ideas you must use our cover letter form (updated yearly, only latest version accepted).

    Cover letter/Motivation letter
    Note! Must be submitted by the supporting documentation deadline. The form is only available during the application period, up to the supporting documentation deadline.

    Recommendation letters and CVs are not concidered.

  • Career opportunities

    The Master’s degree in Biodiversity and Systematics opens career paths for students wishing to pursue careers in academic research or as museum curators. Similarly, the programme is well suited to non-academic careers in Nature conservation, government agencies and non-governmental organisations.

  • Contact

    Student office
    Study counsellor at master's level