Catalogue of Modules, University of Nottingham

LS4RM2 Common research methods: molecular techniques
(Last Updated:03 May 2017)

Year  17/18

Total Credits: 10

Level: Level 4

Target Students:  MSc Molecular and Clinical Microbiology; MSc Microbiology and Immunology; MSc Molecular Genetics and Diagnostics; MSc Immunology and Allergy There are a limited number of places on this module. Students are reminded that enrolments which are not agreed by the Offering School in advance may be cancelled without notice.

Taught Semesters:

Autumn Assessed by end of Autumn Semester 

Prerequisites: None.

Corequisites:  None.

Summary of Content:  During the molecular biology practical laboratory sessions students will gain experience of standard techniques related to laboratory research in the fields of immunology, microbiology and genetics. From this they will appreciate the workflow of gene cloning, followed by sequence analysis of genes and their variability, as well as cloning and expression of recombinant proteins. This will be supported by on-line provision of podcasts describing the theory and practice of each laboratory component, as well as videos and animations describing the details of laboratory practice.

Method and Frequency of Class:

ActivityNumber Of WeeksNumber of sessionsDuration of a session
Lecture 1 weeks1 per week1 hour
Practical 8 weeks1 per week3 hours

Activities may take place every teaching week of the Semester or only in specified weeks. It is usually specified above if an activity only takes place in some weeks of a Semester

Further Activity Details:
Laboratory sessions: 24 hours Direct taught lecture: 1 hour On-line taught material: 13 hours Self-directed: 23 hours Preparation for assessment 1: 20 hours Preparation for assessment 2: 20 hours

Method of Assessment: 

Assessment TypeWeightRequirements
Exam 1 70 Problem-based learning exam based on the laboratory notes taken during practical sessions 
Inclass Exam 1 (Practical) 30 Practical assessment repeating one of the practical sessions under observation (90 minutes) 

Dr A Tarr

Education Aims:  To experience a number of molecular analytical techniques currently in use in both research laboratories and NHS Trust Diagnostic laboratories. To experience a range of molecular techniques used in a microbiology laboratory. To learn basic laboratory skills in a safe environment. To encourage independent thought on experimental design and interpretation.

Learning Outcomes:  Knowledge and Understanding: Acquire microbiology, immunology and molecular biology practical skills. Read diligently and interpret effectively the materials and methods required to construct a successful experiment Acquire information systemically, process it effectively and draw appropriate conclusions. Make and record accurate observations and measurements. Professional Practical Skills: Undertake scientific experimentation in a controlled and safe manner. Record and analyse data using a suitable style and terminology. Discuss inferences generated and apply them to wider concepts. Apply basic knowledge of practical approaches and techniques Transferable skills: Effective written and spoken communication. Organize and manage the working time. Use and access Communication and Information Technology. Manage and manipulate data Reflect on and assess progress, strengths and drawbacks. Work productively within a team.

Offering School:  Life Sciences

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