Overview

This unit aims to discuss the key features of eukaryotic and prokaryotic cell structures; study the structures and functions of major biological molecules; examine the key concepts of biochemistry and genetics; introduce molecular biology and recombinant DNA technology; and to develop essential skills in basic microscopy, biochemistry and molecular analyses.

Requisites

Teaching Periods
Location
Start and end dates
Last self-enrolment date
Census date
Last withdraw without fail date
Results released date
Semester 1
Location
Hawthorn
Start and end dates
26-February-2024
26-May-2024
Last self-enrolment date
10-March-2024
Census date
31-March-2024
Last withdraw without fail date
12-April-2024
Results released date
02-July-2024
Semester 2
Location
Hawthorn
Start and end dates
29-July-2024
27-October-2024
Last self-enrolment date
11-August-2024
Census date
31-August-2024
Last withdraw without fail date
13-September-2024
Results released date
03-December-2024

Learning outcomes

Students who successfully complete this unit will be able to:

  • Describe the central role of the genetic material, DNA, the flow of genetic information in the cell, and its regulation
  • Describe and apply some important principles and methods of analysis and manipulation of the genetic material, for diverse applications in biotechnology
  • Discuss the structures and functions of select biologically important molecules and biochemical processes within cells/organisms
  • Define innate and adaptive immune systems of vertebrates and examples of immune disorders, and investigate the applications of principles of immunology in medical and other areas of biotechnology
  • Conduct laboratory exercises where the theoretical knowledge in the above areas is applied to practical situations

Teaching methods

Hawthorn

Type Hours per week Number of weeks Total (number of hours)
Live Online
Lecture
2.00 12 weeks 24
On-campus
Class
1.00 12 weeks 12
On-campus
Lab
3.00 6 weeks 18
Online
Directed Online Learning and Independent Learning
2.00 12 weeks 24
Unspecified Activities
Independent Learning
6.00 12 weeks 72
TOTAL150

Assessment

Type Task Weighting ULO's
ExaminationIndividual 20 - 40% 1,3,4 
Laboratory ReportIndividual 20 - 30% 1,2,3,4,5 
Online QuizzesIndividual 5 - 20% 1,2,3,4 
TestIndividual 25 - 35% 2,3,4 

Hurdle

As the minimum requirements of assessment to pass a unit and meet all ULOs to a minimum standard, an undergraduate student must have achieved:

(i) An aggregate mark of 50% or more, and(ii) Obtain at least 40% in the final exam, and(iii) Complete a minimum of 80% of laboratory work based on the criteria for successful completion as explained in the lab handout(s).Students who do not successfully achieve hurdle requirements (ii) and (iii) will receive a maximum of 45% as the total mark for the unit.

Content

  • Overview of the structures and functions of select biologically important molecules and biochemical processes
  • Overview of DNA structure, the flow of genetic information, DNA replication, gene transcription, and protein translation
  • Brief overview of cell structure, cell division and genetics
  • Introduction to the human immune system
  • Introduction to biotechnology: basic principles of various techniques of genetic analysis, genetic engineering and biotechnology
  • Applications of above techniques in human health and welfare, medicine, agriculture and the environment
  • Introduction to some of the ethical, legal, social and scientific issues associated with the above technologies
  • Relevant practical exercises in the above areas
  • Graduate Attribute – Communication Skills: Communicating using different media
  • Graduate Attribute – Digital Literacies: Information literacy
  • Graduate Attribute – Digital Literacies: Technical literacy

Study resources

Reading materials

A list of reading materials and/or required textbooks will be available in the Unit Outline on Canvas.