2019/20 Undergraduate Module Catalogue
MICR2320 Skills for Microbiologists 2
40 creditsClass Size: 60
Module manager: Dr Christopher Randall
Taught: Semesters 1 & 2 View Timetable
Year running 2019/20
This module is not approved as a discovery module
ObjectivesThis module aims to provide additional training in data collection, experimental techniques relevant to the multi-disciplinary arena of the biological sciences, the analysis of numerical data, problem solving, teamwork and presentation skills. Skills training during Semester 1 will be integrated with the lecture content of BIOL 2111 Genetic Engineering, BIOL 2110 Power of Bacterial Genomics and MICR 2120 Cell Biology of Disease.
On completion of the module students will:
- acquire practical skills in microbiology, specifically in molecular and medical virology, bacteriology and immunology, especially relating to medically-important organisms;
- be able to reinforce their skills in aseptic technique, microscopy and staining methods, and to expand their knowledge of microscopy (laser scanning) and cell analysis methods such as flow cytometry;
- be able to appreciate how molecular and biochemical methods impact upon microbiological research;
- appreciate the role of bacterial cell structures in susceptibility to antibiotics and other inhibitory substances;
- acquire skills in bioinformatics and statistics and will appreciate the role of bioinformatics in shaping research and the importance of statistics for analysing research data;
- expand their experience of problem-solving and learn how to retrieve research literature from library resources.
At the end of the module, students will be able to use an extended range of laboratory equipment and practical techniques current to biochemistry, molecular and cellular biology and microbiology and be proficient in the design of simple controlled experiments and in the recording, analysis and interpretation of a variety of experimental data. Students should have a sound platform on which to base their final year projects.
Students will also be able to demonstrate a good understanding of the approaches used to study biochemical microbiological and molecular processes, and be proficient in the handling of numerical data and simple mathematical transformations thereof that are commensurate with skills required of undergraduates at Level 2.
- Computer and bioinformatic skills
- Data interpretation
- Data and research paper evaluation
- Managing knowledge
- Practical laboratory skills
- Problem solving
- Recording practical data - lab book management
- Report writing.
Students participate in linked tutorials and practical sessions that cover a broad range of microbiology skills, including research skills.
- The practicals include hands-on experience in molecular and medical virology (cell infection, virus handling, purification/analysis of proteins and RNA, antibody staining and gel electrophoresis and DNA restriction methods), molecular and medical bacteriology (antibiotic susceptibility testing, bacteriophages, PCR amplification, testing for virulence factors, cell staining and microscopy, and tracer methods), and medical immunology (hypersensitivity studies, flow cytometry).
- Experience in bioinformatic methods is provided through a computer cluster session.
- Tutorial topics may relate to accompanying practicals, providing background information and knowledge in preparation for practical sessions, and/or provide new skills including critical evaluation of a research paper, analysis of experimental data in problem-solving exercises, research literature retrieval from library resources and statistical methods.
- Important aims of the course are to acquaint students with tools used in microbiological research and to reinforce skills in aseptic technique.
|Delivery type||Number||Length hours||Student hours|
|Private study hours||347.00|
|Total Contact hours||53.00|
|Total hours (100hr per 10 credits)||400.00|
Opportunities for Formative FeedbackThere are assessment elements to most of the practicals. Reports, practical write-ups, work produced during practicals, a presentation and performance in tutorials. There are no exams.
Methods of assessment
|Assessment type||Notes||% of formal assessment|
|Essay||Data interpretation and research (2000 words)||20.00|
|In-course Assessment||3 x data handling exercises: Lazy DNA research, data analysis & statistical methods, bioinformatics problem solving exercise||20.00|
|In-course Assessment||CV and Personal statement||0.00|
|Oral Presentation||10 minute individual presentation||5.00|
|Practical Report||Summative report of practical exercise||25.00|
|Practical Report||Formative report||0.00|
|Practical||Virology practical assessment - data reporting and interpretation in the form of a journal article||20.00|
|Practical||Bacterial practical assessment||5.00|
|Practical||Immunology practical assessment - data reporting and interpretation||5.00|
|Total percentage (Assessment Coursework)||100.00|
Normally resits will be assessed by the same methodology as the first attempt, unless otherwise stated
Reading listThe reading list is available from the Library website
Last updated: 17/04/2019
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