Module Catalogue

CMB1006 : Practical Skills in Biomedical and Biomolecular Sciences 2

  • Offered for Year: 2020/21
  • Module Leader(s): Dr Alison Howard
  • Lecturer: Dr Simon Wilkinson, Mr Jan Deckers, Dr Julie Lane
  • Practical Supervisor: Dr Damian Parry, Dr Lindi Chen, Dr Carys Watts, Dr Sarah Judge, Dr Christopher Eggett, Dr Michele Sweeney, Dr Vanessa Armstrong, Dr Lindsey Ferrie
  • Other Staff: Mr Bogdan Metes, Dr Michelle Miller
  • Owning School: Biomedical, Nutritional and Sports Scien
  • Teaching Location: Newcastle City Campus
Semesters
Semester 2 Credit Value: 15
ECTS Credits: 8.0

Aims

This module aims to:

• Provide a range of practical laboratory skills and generic study skills essential to students studying biomolecular and biomedical sciences.

• Provide opportunities for students to apply and strengthen theoretical knowledge gained in complementary and co-requisite modules and in the performance of key analytical techniques and interpretation of data generated.

• Continue to develop safe laboratory practice.

Outline Of Syllabus

The module is structured into four strands, three that align with the co-requisite theoretical modules and a generic skills strand.

The generic skills strand consists of lectures on information retrieval and interpretation, timed essay assignment; oral presentation assignment, an introduction to statistical analysis, Excel spreadsheet data handling exercises; introduction to bioethical theories and their application, and methods of ethical reasoning.

The Microbiology and Immunology practical skills strand consists of laboratory-based and virtual practicals on the following topics: introductory bacteriology; elements of the immune system; bacteriophage assays.

The Physiology practical skills strand consists of laboratory-based and virtual practicals on the physiology of the cardiovascular system, blood pressure, and respiratory physiology and lung function.

The Pharmacology practical skills strand consists of laboratory-based and virtual practicals on the following topics: drug metabolism in vitro by liver microsomes; determination of paracetamol pharmacokinetics using spectrophotometry; the absorption of paracetamol and the effect of charcoal on drug absorption.

Teaching Methods

Please note that module leaders are reviewing the module teaching and assessment methods for Semester 2 modules, in light of the Covid-19 restrictions. There may also be a few further changes to Semester 1 modules. Final information will be available by the end of August 2020 in for Semester 1 modules and the end of October 2020 for Semester 2 modules.

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Structured Guided LearningLecture materials71:007:00Non-synchronous online - lectures and associated material, essay feedback session
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion91:009:00Pre and post practical questionnaires
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion110:0010:00Reading, research and preparation of extended essay
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion15:005:00Reading, research and preparation of group oral presentation
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesPractical72:0014:00PIP - Practical classes
Structured Guided LearningAcademic skills activities32:006:00Non-synchronous online - Virtual laboratory classes
Structured Guided LearningAcademic skills activities22:004:00Non-synchronous online - Technical exercises, data handling workshops
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesSmall group teaching81:008:00Synchronous online - Post-practical seminars
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesDrop-in/surgery41:004:00Sync online - Q&A discussion sessions, supporting online lectures and data handling workshops
Guided Independent StudyIndependent study179:0079:00Writing lecture notes, general reading, research practical techniques, practice in Excel
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesModule talk41:004:00Sync online - Module introduction & summary sessions, intro & description of coursework/assignments
Total150:00
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

1. Lecture materials will provide information explaining the basic methods of ethical reasoning, identify the strengths and weaknesses of different ethical theories, provide information on using the internet to search for scientific literature, including use of PubMed database, and describe how to effectively read scientific literature.

2. Technical exercises (virtual workshops) will provide students opportunities to develop data handling skills using Excel spreadsheets.

3. Drop in sessions and seminars will provide students opportunities to compound learning from online lectures and data handling and practical classes.

4. Group oral presentation will encourage teamwork and awareness of bioscience in the news, and provide experience of preparing and presenting work to an audience of peers.

5. Practicals will provide experience of laboratory work; information presented in practicals will include knowledge and understanding of the underlying principles of essential practical techniques and laboratory health and safety. Students will gain hands-on experience of a range of practical techniques and safe laboratory practice. Practical classes will allow students to develop skills in recording and analysing biological data, carrying out scientific calculations. Practicals also provide an opportunity for students to ask questions and exchange ideas with peers, demonstrators and academic staff in a relatively informal setting. Skills practiced include critical thinking, data synthesis, numeracy & use of computer application. Online pre and post practical work and seminars will encourage students to prepare for upcoming work, learn time management and organisation, and to reflect on learning experiences.

6. Essay writing will give students experience of performing literature searches, reading scientific papers, researching and collating evidence on a scientific topic, critically appraising work, opinion forming, document preparation and writing in a structured and concise manner.

7. The written practical report provides experience of recording scientific experimentation, data collection and analysis, literature searching, reading and analysis of scientific papers, reflection on learning, idea development and writing in a clear and concise manner.

8. Private study is used for self-directed learning and includes: reading lecture notes and texts; preparation for seminars and practicals; using learning resources on the Web. Skills practiced include critical thinking, active learning, goal setting and planning, information literacy and independence.

9. Coursework spread throughout the module will teach students time management and organisation and encourage independent working throughout.

Assessment Methods

Please note that module leaders are reviewing the module teaching and assessment methods for Semester 2 modules, in light of the Covid-19 restrictions. There may also be a few further changes to Semester 1 modules. Final information will be available by the end of August 2020 in for Semester 1 modules and the end of October 2020 for Semester 2 modules.

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

Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Practical/lab report2M60Structured lab report on assigned practical (750 words) plus 200 words relevant article section
Prof skill assessmnt2M5Sync online Group oral presentation 5% to group of peers (groups will be 4-6)
Essay2M20Extended essay (1000 words)
Prof skill assessmnt2M5Sync online - engagement with and completion of Microbiology & Immunology pre and post practical work
Prof skill assessmnt2M5Sync online - engagement with and completion of Physiology pre and post practical work
Prof skill assessmnt2M5Sync online - engagement with and completion of Pharmacology pre and post practical work
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

In order to pass CMB1006 students must achieve an overall mark of at least 40%. Failure will result in a capped module mark of 35% only retrievable to a 40% pass on completion of any reassessment considered necessary to meet the learning outcomes.

Students are expected to complete all pre and post-practical online work and assessments. Students must therefore also pass each strand in the practical engagement component with a minimum mark of 40%. Failure will result in a capped component mark of 35% only retrievable to a 40% pass on completion of any reassessment considered necessary to meet the learning outcomes. It is in students’ best interests to understand and complete all work associated with each practical, as they may be assigned any practical to submit a written report for which contributes 60% of the overall module mark.

This system is in place to ensure students who pass the module have achieved all learning outcomes.


1. The practical report will test the students' knowledge and understanding of practical techniques, ability to record and analyse biological data, ability to carry out scientific calculations and ability to reflect on and critique their learning (K1, K3, S1-5, S8).

2. The essay will assess the students' writing skills, information literacy skills and ability to write a well-structured essay on a scientific topic (S6, S7).

3. The oral presentation will assess the students' oral presentation skills, information literacy skills and ability to work as part of a team (S6, S9).

4. The professionalism and competence mark is in place to ensure that students engage with learning across all four strands of the module and will reflect their engagement with pre and post practical work.

Reading Lists

Timetable