Microbiology BSc/MSci

Core Skills in Microbiology 4X core BIOL4033

  • Academic Session: 2023-24
  • School: School of Infection and Immunity
  • Credits: 20
  • Level: Level 4 (SCQF level 10)
  • Typically Offered: Semester 1
  • Available to Visiting Students: Yes

Short Description

The aim of this course is to provide Honours students in Microbiology with a firm grounding in the broader scientific skills they will need for the coming year and for their progression in science beyond graduation. 


There is normally 3 hours of teaching on Mondays.

Excluded Courses



The course will be assessed by a 2-hour examination (75%) and in-course assessment in which students write a short journal article based on data provided to them (25%). 

Main Assessment In: April/May

Are reassessment opportunities available for all summative assessments? Not applicable for Honours courses

Reassessments are normally available for all courses, except those which contribute to the Honours classification. For non-Honours courses, students are offered reassessment in all or any of the components of assessment if the satisfactory (threshold) grade for the overall course is not achieved at the first attempt. This is normally grade D3 for undergraduate students and grade C3 for postgraduate students. Exceptionally it may not be possible to offer reassessment of some coursework items, in which case the mark achieved at the first attempt will be counted towards the final course grade. Any such exceptions for this course are described below. 

Course Aims

This option aims to provide Honours students in Microbiology with knowledge of current research methods and skills in this discipline. 

Intended Learning Outcomes of Course

By the end of this course, students will be able to: 

■ Explain the key molecular techniques adapted for and utilised in microbiology diagnostics;

■ Conduct basic bioinformatics-based analysis based on amino acid sequence data;

■ Devise strategies for protein over-expression, purification and analysis;

■ Examine how genetics approaches can be used to genetically modify microbial pathogens; 

■ Appraise assays that measure activation of the immune response and demonstrate the importance of antigen/antibody interactions in the study of the immune system in health and disease;

■ Discuss the main modes of research microscopy;

■ Discuss the legal requirements underpinning animal experimentation in the UK;

■ Give an account of the basic principles of transcriptome and proteome analysis of micro-organisms;

■ Discuss methods to generate molecular epidemiology data and key concepts in epidemiological investigations. 

Minimum Requirement for Award of Credits

Students must submit at least 75% by weight of the components (including examinations) of the course's summative assessment.