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2023/24 Undergraduate Module Catalogue

MICR1202 The Microbial World

10 creditsClass Size: 198

Module manager: Dr Chris Randall

Taught: Semester 2 (Jan to Jun) View Timetable

Year running 2023/24

Pre-requisite qualifications

Normally a pass in one science A level or equivalent qualification.

Module replaces

MICR1201 Introduction to Microbiology

This module is approved as a discovery module

Module summary

The module will introduce a wide range of microscopic life forms and viruses. It gives a sound introduction to Microbiology and it explores the diversity of microbial life with emphasis on how we interact with microbes that are responsible for infections as well as those that do not normally cause disease. Students will learn how microorganisms interact with each other and how they influence the lives of more complex organisms, for good or ill and will learn how fungi, bacteria and viruses are observed and manipulated safely.


The module will provide an introduction to the microbial world and its impacts, both positive and negative on humans and other organisms.

Learning outcomes
On completion of the module students will be able to:
1. Demonstrate an understanding of and competence in a range of laboratory equipment and practical techniques current to molecular and cellular biology and biochemistry;
2. Record, analyse and interpret a variety of experimental data including the appropriate use of simple statistical tests;
3. Propose hypotheses and design controlled experiments and/or strategies to investigate these;
4. Apply knowledge of the discipline to solve biological problems;
5. Interrogate academic databases to retrieve scientific data and/or literature;
6. Communicate scientific information clearly and coherently in a range of formats, orally and in writing;

Skills outcomes
Students taking this module will learn how to contain and study microbes and understand how clinical microbiology can assist in the laboratory management of patients. They will also be given the opportunity to develop interpretative skills.


Introduction to microbial life; bacteria, fungi, viruses, algae and protozoa, their structure, function, mode of life and diversity. Microbial metabolism and exploitation. Anti-microbial strategies. Microbies and disease.

Teaching methods

Delivery typeNumberLength hoursStudent hours
On-line Learning101.0010.00
Class tests, exams and assessment31.003.00
Private study hours65.00
Total Contact hours35.00
Total hours (100hr per 10 credits)100.00

Private study

Private study will be devoted to preparing for on-line material (~20 hours), preparation for lectures, producing good notes thereafter, reviewing lecture content, doing outside reading and preparation for MRQ tests (~45 hours).

Opportunities for Formative Feedback

Student progress will be monitored through participation in the preparation for on-line exercises and in their performance in in-course summative MRQs. Preparation for the on-line exercises needs to be undertaken each week, therefore students who are not progressing with the module will be identified early. In course MRQs are spread through the module, beginning with the formative MRQ, and will identify students who are not engaging or finding difficulty with the module.

Methods of assessment

Assessment typeNotes% of formal assessment
In-course MCQOnline MRQ summative test 1 (delivered through MINERVA in one attempt lasting 40 minutes)40.00
In-course MCQOnline MRQ summative test 2 (delivered through MINERVA in one attempt lasting 40 minutes)40.00
In-course AssessmentParticipation/ engagement throughout the module (assessed through online exercises delivered in Minerva)20.00
Total percentage (Assessment Coursework)100.00

Students will access each summative test through MINERVA in one attempt lasting 40 minutes. Further guidance on the assessment will be provided in Minerva.

Reading list

There is no reading list for this module

Last updated: 22/08/2023


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