Module Catalogue 2018/19

CMB1001 : Microbiology and Immunology with Practical Skills (Inactive)

  • Inactive for Year: 2018/19
  • Module Leader(s): Dr Vanessa Armstrong
  • Demonstrator: Dr Carys Watts
  • Lecturer: Dr Phillip Aldridge, Dr Debra Bevitt, Dr Judith Hall, Professor Jeff Errington, Prof. Geoffrey Toms, Dr Edwin Williams, Professor Robert Hirt
  • Owning School: Biomedical Sciences
  • Teaching Location: Newcastle City Campus
Semester 2 Credit Value: 20
ECTS Credits: 10.0
Pre Requisites
Pre Requisite Comment


Co Requisites
Co Requisite Comment



This module aims to provide an introduction to Microbiology and Immunology. The emphasis is on the different types of micro-organisms, microbes as infectious agents and the defence systems that have evolved to combat them. The module should provide the students with sufficient background to support the study of a range of biological, biomolecular and biomedical science disciplines at Stage 2. It will also provide a foundation for further study of Microbiology and Medical Microbiology and Immunology at honours level.

Original Summary:
The series of lectures introduces the range of microorganisms, including viruses, bacteria, and eukaryotic microorganisms (such as fungi and protozoa). These organisms show enormous diversity in their structures, replication requirements and metabolic processes. We also consider why microbes are important to human kind for numerous reasons: they play a vital role in sustaining life on Earth and that they have important applications in a range of industries: e.g. food and drink, agriculture, biotechnology, pharmaceuticals. In addition some microorganisms cause disease to humans or other animals. Although this is a minority of species, these are of profound importance, as recent epidemics of HIV, SARS and Foot and Mouth Disease have shown us. Microorganisms are also being exploited by bioterrorists. The immune system evolved to defend the body against microbial infection and this module introduces you to the cells and molecules that contribute to these defences, and how they recognise and attack foreign invaders.

In addition to the lectures the module also includes 4 practical sessions and 2 seminars. Assessment is based on course work (10%) and an examination (90%).

Outline Of Syllabus

The lectures and seminars cover the following topics:
Microbiology: introduction to micro-organisms; bacterial morphologies; major structural components of bacteria; bacterial cell division and growth; cultivation of bacteria; principles of bacterial identification; eukaryotic microorgansims; food microbiology.
Immunity: introduction to immunity; innate defences against infection; cell biology of the specific immune system; humoral specific immunity; cell mediated specific immunity; the immune system in action.
Virology: virus structure and classification; bacteriophage; viruses of animals and man; plant viruses and viroids; assay of animal viruses; prions.

Practicals consists of laboratory-based practicals on the following topics: introductory bacteriology; elements of the immune system; bacteriophage assays.

Learning Outcomes

Intended Knowledge Outcomes

1. describe the structural features of prokaryotic cells, and their implications for survival and growth
2. describe how bacteria divide and the factors that affect population growth
3. appreciate the metabolic diversity of bacteria and describe examples of their natural products
4. describe the different types of eukaryotic micro-organisms
5. appreciate the importance of microorganisms in infectious disease
6. describe the variety of defence mechanisms that protect the body against infection and appreciate the importance of the immune system
7. describe the various leucocytes and their functions
8. explain the differences between innate and specific immunity and describe the range of effector mechanisms
9. describe the structure of antibodies, T cell receptors and MHC molecules and explain how these molecules bind antigen
10. describe the basic structure of viruses and how they replicate
11. appreciate the diversity of viruses and their hosts
12. describe examples of viruses that infect plants, insects and humans

Intended Skill Outcomes

1. Students will be able to demonstrate basic microbiological, virological and immunological techniques
2. Students will be able to interpret simple experimental data
3. Students will have experienced working in groups, and distilling and presenting information in oral and written form

Graduate Skills Framework

Graduate Skills Framework Applicable: Yes

    Teaching Methods

    Teaching Activities
    Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
    Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesLecture301:0030:00N/A
    Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion11:001:00Formative class tests
    Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesPractical33:009:00N/A
    Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesSmall group teaching31:003:00Seminars
    Guided Independent StudyIndependent study1157:00157:00N/A
    Teaching Rationale And Relationship

    1. Lectures will define the scope of the course and communicate basic knowledge as a basis for further study
    2. Seminars will encourage students to apply their knowledge to solve problems
    3. Seminars will also develop team-working skills, inter-personal communication, oral and written presentation skills and introduce students to researching information from a variety of sources

    Reading Lists

    Assessment Methods

    The format of resits will be determined by the Board of Examiners

    Description Length Semester When Set Percentage Comment
    Written Examination902A90EMI format: 25-30 questions
    Exam Pairings
    Module Code Module Title Semester Comment
    CMB1003Microbiology and Immunology2EMI format 25-30 questions
    Other Assessment
    Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
    Practical/lab report2M10In-course written and online worksheets assessing cell biology, genetics and biochemistry practical strands, short answer questions.
    Formative Assessments
    Description Semester When Set Comment
    Computer assessment2MA mid-semester EMI (formative), 25-30 questions, will be provided to students under exam conditions.
    Assessment Rationale And Relationship

    The end of semester examination assesses knowledge and understanding of the course material.
    Practical reports will test the students knowledge and understanding of practical techniques, ability to record and analyse biological data and ability to carry out scientific calculations. The formative EMI questions will help students assess their knowledge and understanding of course material as well as familiarise students with the format of an EMI exam.


    Past Exam Papers

    General Notes

    Original Handbook text:

    Disclaimer: The information contained within the Module Catalogue relates to the 2018/19 academic year. In accordance with University Terms and Conditions, the University makes all reasonable efforts to deliver the modules as described. Modules may be amended on an annual basis to take account of changing staff expertise, developments in the discipline, the requirements of external bodies and partners, and student feedback. Module information for the 2018/19 entry will be published here in early-April 2018. Queries about information in the Module Catalogue should in the first instance be addressed to your School Office.