1 x 50-minute lecture-1 weekly
2 x 50-minute tutorials weekly
1 x 3-hour practical weekly
1 BIOL1102 - Molecular Basis of Life
2 1 of CHEM1101, CHEM1202
Must Satisfy: (1 and 2)
Topic description

This topic is designed to provide knowledge of the fundamental aspects of the actions of microorgansims as well as laboratory skills in isolating, handling, enumerating and identifying microorganisms. The aim is to promote understanding and awareness in these students of the important roles microorganisms have in major areas such as human health and the environment.

Educational aims

This topic aims to provide students with an increased awareness and understanding of the fundamental importance of microbiological processes in the world around them. Students will gain an understanding of the impacts microbial processes have on diverse areas such as human health, food, drinking water quality, the environment etc. The topic aims to enhance students' learning of laboratory skills and practices.

The specific aims and objectives of this topic are to:

  • Develop bacteriological techniques, such that students can conduct laboratory work with bacteria with confidence and safety
  • Examine some of the diversity of form and fundamental biological activity found amongst bacteria
  • Learn strategies for isolating and enumerating microbes from environmental samples
  • Learn methods for confirming the identity of specific bacteria
  • Begin to study bacteria which have a direct impact on human welfare
  • Develop techniques for recording observations accurately in a notebook which is then available as a definitive long-term record of experimental work
  • Develop numerical skills relevant to practical microbiology
Expected learning outcomes
On completion of this topic you will be expected to be able to:

  1. Understand key processes in microbiology, including microbial cell biology, microbial genetics, microbial interactions with and impacts on humans and the environment
  2. Possess the technical skills required to handle microorganisms safely as well as to work safely in a laboratory
  3. Participate in a range of laboratory practices; analytical, critical thinking and communication (reporting) skills applied to microbiological laboratory experiments
  4. Communicate results of experiments

Key dates and timetable

(1), (2)

Each class is numbered in brackets.
Where more than one class is offered, students normally attend only one.

Classes are held weekly unless otherwise indicated.


If you are enrolled for this topic, but all classes for one of the activities (eg tutorials) are full,
contact your College Office for assistance. Full classes frequently occur near the start of semester.

Students may still enrol in topics with full classes as more places will be made available as needed.

If this padlock appears next to an activity name (eg Lecture), then class registration is closed for this activity.

Class registration normally closes at the end of week 2 of each semester.

Classes in a stream are grouped so that the same students attend all classes in that stream.
Registration in the stream will result in registration in all classes.
  Unless otherwise advised, classes are not held during semester breaks or on public holidays.