module specification

BM7004 - Advanced Immunology (2019/20)

Module specification Module approved to run in 2019/20
Module title Advanced Immunology
Module level Masters (07)
Credit rating for module 20
School School of Human Sciences
Total study hours 200
69 hours Scheduled learning & teaching activities
131 hours Guided independent study
Assessment components
Type Weighting Qualifying mark Description
In-Course Test 30%   Progress Test 1
In-Course Test 40%   Progress Test 2
In-Course Test 30%   Case Study
Running in 2019/20
Period Campus Day Time Module Leader
Autumn semester North Wednesday Morning

Module summary

The module focuses on the development and operation of the immune system in both health and disease and explores current research in immunopathology, stem cells and immunotherapy.

Module aims

Review the development and operation of the immune system in both health and disease. Explore current ideas in immunopathology, immunosuppression, stem cells and immunotherapy. Explores recent developments in immunoassays and immunocytochemical techniques for detection of antigens and disease markers


Immunopathology: Primary and secondary immunodeficiency; autoimmunity: mechanisms; organ and non-organ specific; genetic and acquired links; hypersensitivity related allergic and inflammatory diseases.
Advances in immunodiagnostics: Developments in immunoassay and immunocytochemistry. Uses of flow cytometry and immunophenotyping in leukaemia and lymphoma; links to PCR diagnostics.
Advances in immunotherapy: modulators; immune intervention and drug targeting in cancer therapy; experimental systems in immunotherapy including the development and uses of engineered antibodies.
Overview of the complement system, including it’s regulation. Autoimmune disease in which complement is an effector mechanism (rheumatoid arthritis, lupus erythematosus, multiple sclerosis).
Transplantation immunology: HLA antigens and immunological basis of graft rejection; clinical manifestations of graft rejection; tissue typing techniques; immunosuppression and organ/bone marrow transplantation.

Learning and teaching

Students knowledge and understanding of Immunology will be developed through a programme of lectures, tutorials, workshops and supporting practical exercise together with some use of the problem-based approach and the guided use of student centred learning. Students receive 44 hours of instruction time, which includes lectures, 9 tutorials, 3 assessed tests and a practical session. Student centred assignments will enable students to reinforce and expand their knowledge base and develop subject skills and competencies.
On completion of this module students’ provide an evaluation of how the module enabled them to develop skills such as information technology, organisational skills, team building, communication time management, and working under pressure.

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of this module students will be able to:
1. Demonstrate an in-depth understanding of the development, differentiation and maturation of lymphocytes and myeloid cells.
2. Comprehend and discuss the complex interplay of the various mechanisms of immune responses to non-self.
3. Explain advances in the understanding of development of disease states attributable to the malfunction of the immune system.
4. Understand and discuss how advances in the understanding of the immune system and in immunodiagnostics have led to novel/experimental therapies and improvements in the diagnosis of disease.
5. Provide a critical analysis and abstract meaning from a case study.

Assessment strategy

The module will be summatively assessed by two in-course tests, Progress Test I (30%) and Progress Test II (40%) each and a case-study (30%). Progress Test I consists of a short answer paper based on material delivered in weeks 1-4, and Progress Test II consists of a short answer paper based on material delivered in weeks 6-9. Both of these components will be used to provide formative feedback. The case study is in week 11 (30%) and there will be an associated tutorial for guidance on the case studies in week 7.
To pass the module students need to achieve a minimum aggregate mark of 50%. There is an attendance requirement for the practical session. 

Summary description of assessment Item                                      Learning outcomes
Progress test I 30% 1,2,3
Progress test II 40% 2,3,4
Case Study 30% 2,3,4,5



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