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2021/22 Undergraduate Module Catalogue

LLLC0193 Organisms: Form and Function

25 creditsClass Size: 40

Module manager: Dr Stephen Maw

Taught: Semesters 1 & 2 (Sep to Jun) View Timetable

Year running 2021/22

This module is not approved as a discovery module

Module summary

This module requires no prior knowledge of biology and intends to teach the underpinning principles of life. During this module you will be expected to apply knowledge gained from lectures, workshops and in the laboratory to build a reasonable mental model of the biological world based on direct observation and abstract concepts.


The aim of this module is to enable students to develop a theoretical and practical understanding of selected topics around the study life as well as build approaches to apply this knowledge.

Learning outcomes
On successful completion of this module, students will be able to:
1. Present biological concepts and ideas using precise language and scientific terminology and notation.
2. Use data to infer and support biological concepts
3. Relate laboratory experience to theoretical knowledge
4. Discuss key ethical issues associated with scenarios in scientific disciplines

Skills outcomes
Students will be able to apply biological principles in new situations, theoretical and practical.
Students will be able to describe, explain and interpret results in terms of biological principles and concepts and be able to apply mathematical methods to solve problems in biology.


The content will cover areas such as:
-The cell as the basic unit of life
- The Central Dogma of Molecular biology
- Growth and Development
- Key biochemical processes including respiration and photosynthesis
- Communication: nerves, hormones and plant growth factors
- Homeostasis
- Reproduction

Teaching methods

Due to COVID-19, teaching and assessment activities are being kept under review - see module enrolment pages for information

Delivery typeNumberLength hoursStudent hours
Independent online learning hours48.00
Private study hours130.00
Total Contact hours72.00
Total hours (100hr per 10 credits)250.00

Private study

ndependent on-line learning:
Using VLE resources 48
Private study:
Reading 30
Working problem sets 20
Preparing coursework 30
Revision for examinations 35
Preparation for practical sessions 15

Opportunities for Formative Feedback

In the first semester coursework will be predominately summative to encourage student engagement with the academic content and with the practice of independent study. In the second semester this scaffolding is removed and the focus shifts to more formative assessment to further develop the appropriate skills as independent learners to support undergraduate study.
General feedback on assignment performance will be posted on Minerva, while individual feedback will also be provided upon marking of assignments. Students will also participate in self and peer review across the foundation year.
Reflection with essay/exam wrapper activities; poster presentations; Group Presentations; critical essay writing; problem sets; laboratory reports (formative); and short essays.

Methods of assessment

Due to COVID-19, teaching and assessment activities are being kept under review - see module enrolment pages for information

Assessment typeNotes% of formal assessment
PresentationPoster presentation 500 word equivalent10.00
Written Work4 x 2 hour problem sets25.00
In-course Assessment40 minute in course exam5.00
Total percentage (Assessment Coursework)40.00

Due to the developmental and pedagogical nature of some assessments and timings, there is not a viable opportunity to provide a resit for the following: Science mid-terms in the first semester; laboratory sessions provided by external departments, or after a coursework deadline has passed and the model answers have been shared. Attendance is required for coursework elements which are linked to an assessment available only at that specific time, such as fieldwork, lab reports on specific labs, and midterms. A minimum attendance standard is expected for lab sessions. If a student fails the module coursework the resit opportunity will be an equivalent problem based learning assessment in July. Students who miss any of these learning opportunities can apply for mitigating circumstances and potentially could be given consideration at the exam board.

Exam typeExam duration% of formal assessment
Unseen exam 2 hr 30.00
Unseen exam 2 hr 30.00
Total percentage (Assessment Exams)60.00

Resits for the exam component of the module will be assessed by the same methodology as the first attempt during the July Resit period, in most cases, or during the next available opportunity. In order to receive credit for a module BOTH the exam components should be a pass.

Reading list

The reading list is available from the Library website

Last updated: 30/06/2021 16:23:10


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