College of Science


The College of Science is headed by the Pro Vice Chancellor (Science) and comprises the School of Biological Sciences, the departments of Chemistry, Communication Disorders, Geography, Geological Sciences, Physics and Astronomy, Psychology, and the Gateway Antarctica research centre.

The College has a very broad research base including spectroscopy applied to trace analysis (SIFT), NZ’s unique ecology, the human geography of exposure to environmental chemicals, protein biochemistry, molecular biology, volcanology, the neurochemistry of psychological processes, bioactive compounds from marine fauna, Antarctica, and food chemistry and toxicology.

The facilities for science at UC are world-class. The field stations - from Kaikoura in the north to Antarctica in the south - are unique in New Zealand. Other resources include cutting-edge laboratories, access to 24-hour computer labs, the Central Library and a specialist Physical Sciences Library.

The College operates the country's leading observatory at Mount John and is home to the Nanostructure Engineering Science and Technology group (NEST), a key partner in the MacDiarmid Institute, one of nine New Zealand Centres of Research Excellence.

The College prides itself in underpinning its teaching with research excellence. It is commonplace for our students to be taught by leaders in their fields either from the College or as part of significant academic exchange programmes that we run with the USA and UK.

The College is proud to have some of the southern hemispheres foremost research scientists amongst staff.