6 x 2-hour workshops per semester
6 x 3-hour practicals per semester
1 x 6-hour independent study weekly
2 of BIOL2771, BIOL2772
Enrolment not permitted
BTEC9011 has been successfully completed
Assumed knowledge
Students will be expected to understand the basic principles of molecular biology, genetics and biochemistry. It is anticipated that students would familiar with aspects of commercialisation, and social and regulatory issues that effect plant biotechnology.
Topic description
This topic provides an introduction to the principles and practice of plant genetics, biochemistry and physiology, plant tissue culture and transgenesis and their use as both tools for plant science and mechanisms by which a crop plant can be improved for food production. It will focus on how this technology is being used to improve food quality and nutrition, plant responses to abiotic and biotic stress, and the manufacture of biotechnology-related products in plants. It will discuss the use of all technologies in plant improvement within the broader debate of genetic modification and food security.
Educational aims
This topic intends to use plant biology as a framework to introduce how information flows from basic knowledge to applied biotechnology. In doing so it will develop graduates with the necessary theoretical and practical knowledge to encompass scientific strategy, with environmentally sound measures to tackle problems that face agricultural and horticultural industries today and in the future. It will also develop skills in problem solving and critical thinking, independent data collection, group work and oral and written presentation skills.
Expected learning outcomes
At the completion of the topic, students are expected to be able to:

  • transfer of core scientific concepts through to plant biotechnology products

  • use critical analysis and problem solving skills to implement innovative plant biotechnology based solutions

  • communicate information succinctly in an oral or written format

  • work in a multi-disciplinary team

  • become familiar with the use of plants in Australian and other indigenous cultures.

  • Become familiar with the technical aspects of plant biotechnology through the technique of transgenesis.