The details
Life Sciences (School of)
Colchester Campus
Undergraduate: Level 4
Monday 13 January 2020
Friday 20 March 2020
05 September 2019


Requisites for this module



Key module for

BSC C700 Biochemistry,
BSC C701 Biochemistry (Including Placement Year),
BSC C703 Biochemistry (Including Year Abroad),
BSC CR00 Biochemistry (Including Foundation Year),
BSC C100 Biological Sciences,
BSC C101 Biological Sciences (Including Year Abroad),
BSC C102 Biological Sciences (Including Placement Year),
BSC CD00 Biological Sciences (Including Foundation Year),
BSC B990 Biomedical Science,
BSC B991 Applied Biomedical Science (NHS placement),
BSC B995 Biomedical Science (Including Year Abroad),
BSC B999 Biomedical Science (Including Placement Year),
BSC BD00 Biomedical Science (Including Foundation Year),
BSC C400 Genetics,
BSC C402 Genetics (Including Year Abroad),
BSC C403 Genetics (Including Placement Year),
BSC CK00 Genetics (Including Foundation Year),
BSC C161 Marine Biology (Including Foundation Year),
BSC C164 Marine Biology,
BSC CC60 Marine Biology (Including Year Abroad),
BSC CC64 Marine Biology (Including Placement Year),
MMB C160 Marine Biology,
BSC C410 Genetics and Genomics,
BSC C411 Genetics and Genomics (Including Placement Year),
BSC C412 Genetics and Genomics (Including Year Abroad),
BSC C200 Human Biology,
BSC C201 Human Biology (Including Year Abroad),
BSC C202 Human Biology (Including Placement Year)

Module description

This module introduces microbiology from historical landmarks to the modern microbiology era including microbial diversity, structure and function, microbial genetics and the importance of microbes to humans and the environment. Students will acquire practical skills enabling microorganisms to be handled, grown, purified, counted, characterised and killed. Infectious disease remains a major problem despite many advances in prevention and treatment. This module will also look at some of the main types of infectious agents and how they cause disease.

Module aims

This module aims to introduce microbiology through theory and practical skills

Module learning outcomes

To pass this module, students will need to be able to:

1. understand the importance of microorganisms in the environment, industry and disease;
2. understand how microorganisms are classified, and describe the basic structure, physiology and genetic diversity of microorganisms (prokaryotes, eukaryotes and viruses);
3. work effectively with microorganisms in the laboratory, demonstrating aseptic techniques, serial dilution, microbial growth, enumeration, response to antibiotics, identification by staining and microscopy, understand how different media types may select for different environmental microorganisms, understand the necessity for sterilisation, identify major sources of contamination, determine the effect of antibiotics on microbial growth.

Employability and transferable skills:
Aseptic techniques
Cultivation and growth control of microorganisms
Identification and counting of microorganisms
Data and statistical analysis

Module information

No additional information available.

Learning and teaching methods

24 x 1 hour lectures plus 1 revision class before MCQ and 1 revision class before summer exam; 2 x 3 hour practicals, plus DAI plus Continuous Assessment using mastering Biology.


This module does not appear to have a published bibliography.

Assessment items, weightings and deadlines

Coursework / exam Description Deadline Weighting
Coursework   Prac 2 EVS    30% 
Coursework   Prac 1 and DAI  18/02/2020  70% 
Exam  50 minutes during Early Exams (Multiple Choice) 
Exam  60 minutes during Summer (Main Period) (Main) 

Overall assessment

Coursework Exam
33% 67%


Coursework Exam
33% 67%
Module supervisor and teaching staff
Dr Corinne Whitby, email:
Dr Corinne Whitby, Dr Boyd McKew, Dr Selwa Alsam
School Undergraduate Office, email: bsugoffice (Non essex users should add to create the full email address)



External examiner

Dr Clive Butler
The University of Exeter
Associate Professor of Microbial Biochemistry
Available via Moodle
Of 190 hours, 28 (14.7%) hours available to students:
162 hours not recorded due to service coverage or fault;
0 hours not recorded due to opt-out by lecturer(s).


Further information
Life Sciences (School of)

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