module specification

BC4003 - Cell & Molecular Biology (2018/19)

Module specification Module approved to run in 2018/19
Module title Cell & Molecular Biology
Module level Certificate (04)
Credit rating for module 30
School School of Human Sciences
Total study hours 300
 
216 hours Guided independent study
84 hours Scheduled learning & teaching activities
Assessment components
Type Weighting Qualifying mark Description
Coursework 25%   Practical portfolio (2000 words)
In-Course Test 25%   Sem 1 online exam (1 hour)
Coursework 25%   practical portfolio (2000 words)
In-Course Test 25%   Sem 2 online exam (1 hour)
Attendance Requirement 0%   Practical Attendance
Running in 2018/19
Period Campus Day Time Module Leader
Year North Monday Morning

Module summary

This is a module which provides students with an understanding of basic cell structures and an awareness of different cell types and relates the structure and activities of cell components to their functions and to cellular activities as a whole. An overview of the organisation, expression, and replication of genetic information will be provided and the principles of Mendelian inheritance will be investigated.  The consequences of mutation on gene expression are examined together with an introduction to techniques of gene analysis and manipulation. 
The aims of this module are aligned with the qualification descriptors within the Quality Assurance Agency’s, Framework for Higher Education Qualification. This module aims to expose students to some of the key questions of cell biology concerning cell structure and intracellular activities; provide students with practical experience in a range of laboratory-based biological techniques; enhance students' ability to manage themselves and to develop organisational and analytical skills which are applicable to the workplace; provide an overview of the organisation, expression, and replication of genetic information in prokaryotes and eukaryotes together with principles of Mendelian inheritance; examine the consequences of mutation on gene expression together with an introduction to techniques of gene analysis and manipulation.  This module aims to provide students with the qualities and transferable skills necessary for employment requiring the exercise of some personal responsibility.

Syllabus

The module covers: Cells and cell theory, the differences between prokaryotic and eukaryotic cells, the plasma membrane and organelles. Nucleus, cell cycle, mitosis and meiosis. Intracellular trafficking, cell communication, cellular junctions, cell adhesion and the extracellular matrix.
The cytoskeleton. The prokaryotic cell-structure/function, principles of cell membrane transport and cells and energy (mitochondria and chloroplasts). LO1, LO2, LO3, LO4, LO5, LO6

Introduction to genomes and Mendelian genetics. Structure function of DNA/RNA, DNA replication, Transcription, Translation and mutations. Introduction to genetic technology, and to the use of DNA technology in forensics.

Balance of independent study and scheduled teaching activity

Learning will be delivered by lectures, tutorials and practicals and through weblearn-assisted formative sessions
Students will be provided with the opportunity to acquire knowledge of the subject matter through teacher led activities in the form of lectures and problem-solving tutorial sessions and laboratory-based practical exercises. The ability to undertake scientific and ethical appraisal of data will be encouraged through directed reading and tutorial discussions. Students will be expected to reflect upon taught material in order to demonstrate their understanding of molecular cell biology, a process assisted by use of the extensive module website
Lectures will utilize a variety of sources using powerpoint presentations to link content such as animations, video documentary and lecturer led demonstrations involving students.
Tutorials will consolidate the foundation learnt in lectures but will seek to link the content to the impact of modern molecular biology cell biology on medicine and agriculture in a social and cultural context in the modern day environment.
Practicals  will allow students to perform a range of experiments safely, critically analyse their results and present these in an appropriate manner. These sessions will give students oppurtunity to develop and refine their critical, analytical and writing skills. Practicals will be assessed both summatively and formatively.  The initial formative sessions will allow students to reflect on their practical skills and their ability to critically analyse experimental results and present these in an appropriate manner.
Weblearn-assisted sessions will seek to link the module content to the impact of modern molecular biology cell biology on medicine and agriculture in a social and cultural context in the modern day environment but in a wider context than covered in the lectures in an aim to encourage self-directed learning.

Learning outcomes

On  successful completion of this model student will be able to:
1. Show an understanding of the transfer of information from DNA to RNA to Protein and demonstrate an    awareness of the consequence of a change of DNA sequence.
2. Demonstrate an understanding of gene manipulation and recognise its significance in medicine, agriculture and industry.
3. analyse a range of experiments performed, safely using current techniques, in a modern molecular biology laboratory, presenting the results in an appropriate manner .
4. Relate the structure and activities of cell components to their functions and to cellular activities as a whole, and have an appreciation of how cell fractionation is used to isolate these components.
5. Describe the different ways in which cells can divide and demonstrate an awareness of how genetic information is passed between generations.
6. Discuss how energy is generated and utilized within a cell.

Assessment strategy

To pass the module students need to achieve a minimum aggregate of 40%
The module will be assessed by means of coursework components (50% of the overall mark) and time-constrained, unseen examinations/online class tests consisting of short answer questions (50% of the overall mark). To pass the module students need to achieve a minimum aggregate of 40%

Component                                              Learning outcomes
Practical Portfolio (2000 words)          4
Online sem 1 exam (1 hour)                4, 6
Practical portfolio (2000 words)          3   
Online  sem 2 exam (1 hour)               1, 2, 5

Bibliography

Alberts B., Bray D., Lewis J., Raff M., Roberts K. and Watson J.D. (2014).  Molecular Biology of the Cell, (6th edition). Garland, London, New York.
René Fester Kratz. (2009). Molecular and Cell Biology for Dummies (1st edition).  Wiley Publishing.
Jones A., Reed R., and Weyers, J. (2016). Practical Skills in Biology. Prentice Hall.