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2022/23 Undergraduate Module Catalogue

BLGY1238 Exploring Whole Organism Biology in the Lab and Field

10 creditsClass Size: 80

Module manager: Dr Henry Greathead

Taught: Semester 2 (Jan to Jun) View Timetable

Year running 2022/23

Pre-requisite qualifications

Biology A level or equivalent

Module replaces

BLGY1236 Practical Applied Biology

This module is not approved as a discovery module

Module summary

This module provides hands on experience of conducting research in whole organism biology in both the laboratory and field. A range of methodologies, from the sampling of organisms in different habitats to the application of molecular genetic techniques for organism identification, will be used to address evolutionary, ecological and environmental questions, and demonstrate uses of biotechnology.


An understanding of the experimental techniques that underpin study of whole organism biology. The key objective of this module is to provide training in a range of experimental techniques, and data collection, analysis and interpretation. Through this training technical competence will be developed.

Learning outcomes
On completion of the module students should be able to:
- Demonstrate an understanding of the fundamental biology underpinning the practicals;
- Competently use techniques used in whole organism biology research;
- Analyse and interpret results;
- Communicate results.

Skills outcomes
- Good Laboratory Practice;
- Core techniques for the study of whole organism biology.


The module is practical-based.
Practicals include:
- Digestive physiology and environmental impact of livestock farming;
- Microbial fermentation and fractional distillation;
- Arthropod diversity and molecular genotyping;
- Plant identification and invertebrate diversity.

Teaching methods

Delivery typeNumberLength hoursStudent hours
Private study hours76.00
Total Contact hours24.00
Total hours (100hr per 10 credits)100.00

Private study

Private study will include completion of coursework elements (30h);
Background reading (46h) in support of the online practicals (reading handouts and associated literature) and in researching coursework elements.

Opportunities for Formative Feedback

Feedback for the MCQ test. The practical worksheet is annotated and returned to students.

Methods of assessment

Assessment typeNotes% of formal assessment
In-course AssessmentParticipation: Completion of non-assessed assignments associated with all practicals10.00
In-course Assessment'Digestive physiology and environmental impact of livestock farming' worksheet.40.00
In-course MCQMCQ test in Minerva50.00
Total percentage (Assessment Coursework)100.00

Further guidance on the assessment will be provided in the module handbook/Minerva. Normally resits will be assessed by the same methodology as the first attempt, unless otherwise stated.

Reading list

The reading list is available from the Library website

Last updated: 09/12/2022


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